Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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kaythenewbie 10-11-2010 03:37 PM

the case of the vanishing zucchini
I have a really odd mystery on my hands. I currently have a 20 gal (long) community tank with:
5 glowlight tetra
5 black phantom tetra
2 otocinclus vestius
2 african dwarf frogs
1 dwarf flame gourami

I've been putting both algae wafers and blanched zucchini in the tank for the otos (although there is plenty of natural algae in the tank for them too) since I know that otos need a constant supply of food. My otos have been in the tank for a little over 2 weeks and are doing great. My algae problem is under control and my otos will eat the prepared foods. I have been putting 1 slice of zucchini on one side of the tank and an algae wafer on the other side of the tank, I contiually put them in the same place because the otos have learned to always look there for food.

I switch the slice of zucchini every 3 days. The otos won't touch it on day 1, they eat it on days 2-3, and I replace it with a fresh one on day 3. This system worked for the 1st week with otos.

Now my zucchini keeps disappearing before day 3. There is no way my little otos are eating it that fast. They've never polished off a whole slice of zucchini. Also, it will be completely there (not even remotely eaten) and half and hour later the entire slice has vanished!

I will usually find some zucchini remnants scattered throughout the tank. Then I have to gravel vac the mess (which I'm getting really sick of since it's happened 4 times last week).

I highly doubt my zucchini is spontaneously combusting. ;-) So there must be a fishy culprit.

But none of my other fish have ever even displayed any interest in the zucchini. But I highly doubt my otos are the reason for the disappearance.

For the most part, the zucchini's been vanishing at night. But now it's starting to disappear during the day too. And it's going at a faster rate-sometimes the day I put it in the tank.

Anyone have any ideas on who's stealing the veggies and how I get them to stop?

kitten_penang 10-11-2010 04:08 PM

don't sop them add what mom said.veggies are good for ya ;)

Spooki 10-11-2010 04:26 PM

It's possible the phantom tetras are tearing it up, they can get pretty frenzied around food. Maybe you should hook up a camera to catch the culprit in the act.

SinCrisis 10-13-2010 04:39 PM

maybe snails?

PRichs87 10-13-2010 05:44 PM

My guess would be the tetras, I used to have Otos in my tetra tank also. They would just rip the veggies apart and not eat them, they are bothersome fish at times in my opinion.

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