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Otocinclus flexilis Cope, 1894

Image contributors to this species:

Marcelo Loureiro (1) Johnny Jensen's Photographic Library (2) Nick Ridout (1)

ScotCat Sources:

Article Etymology = Genus Etymology = Species

Other Sources:

Fishbase  Search Google  All Catfish Species Inventory  Catalog of Fishes

Relevant Information:

Aquarium Care: Requires cool waters in the aquarium as sustained high values can be problematic for this species. A planted tank is best as it is kind to plants but will keep the algae at bay. Can be a bit territorial with other fish but do well together in groups. Diet: Algae eater, tablet foods, lettuce, flake and small live and frozen foods. Remarks: This species (and one other) was removed from Otocinclus into a new genus, Macrotocinclus, by Schaffer (1997) and some publications use this change but it is not widespread at present (2011). The recent paper (2010) by Lehmann, P., F. Mayer and R.E. Reis have resurrected Otocinclus arnoldi from the La Plata basin from the synonymy of O. flexilis and is thus a species in its own right based on three distinguishing features: the possession of five branched pectoral-fin rays, the larger number of enlarged odontodes on the tip of the parieto-supraoccipital posterior process, and having the prootic involved in the contact with the hyomandibular articular condyle.

Common Name:

Imitator Sucker Catfish


Otocinclus fimbriatus




Brazil: Rio Jacuí, Rio Grande do Sul. Type locality: Rio Jacuhy [Jacuí], Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.


6.0cm. (2½ins)


20-24°c (67-75°f.)




Baensch, H.A. and R. Riehl 1985 Aquarien atlas. Band 2. Mergus, Verlag für Natur- und Heimtierkunde GmbH, Melle, Germany. 1216 p.
Evers, H.-G. & I.Seidel: Mergus, Baensch Catfish Atlas Volume 1, 1st English edn., 2005. Pp.944.
Ferraris, C.J. Jr., 2007. Checklist of catfishes, recent and fossil (Osteichthyes: Siluriformes), and catalogue of siluriform primary types. Zootaxa 1418:1-628.
Lehmann, P., F. Mayer and R.E. Reis, 2010. Re-validation of Otocinclus arnoldi Regan and reappraisal of Otocinclus phylogeny (Siluriformes: Loricariidae). Neotrop. Ichthyol. 8(1):57-68.



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