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Hey guys. My friend has a fivE gallon tank with a minnow and two Otto cats. It's not a planted tank, and she only feeds flakes. She has lost a lot of fish lately. She had a ton more minnows and ottos. We think the minnows died of dropsy because they were previously in really bad conditions and I heard that ottos often die within the first month, but I was wondering If I could suggest anything to help her remaining fish. I already suggested algae tablets for the ottos .....:confused:
 

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Dropsy is a symptom, not a disease. It sounds like they died from water quality issues.

To help out your friend, we'll need to know more information about the set-up :). Was the tank cycled before adding fish? How is it filtered? What are the water parameters (especially temperature, ammonia, and nitrite)? How long has the tank been set up? What species of minnow are they (this is really important)?

Oto cats need a stable, established aquarium with algae to eat. I'm guessing that this tank is too new and polluted to support them.

How many fish did she have originally? A 5-gallon aquarium is pretty small and can only support a few small fish...I'm wondering if maybe she stocked too heavily.

For the time being, I'd at least recommend your friend do a partial water change.
 

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I don't know much about minnows, but otos are very sensitive to water conditions. So sensitive that I would never keep them in a tank that small - the smaller the tank the more the water quality varies because it takes very little to change it. I've kept otos in as little as 28 gallons, but with sufficient care they might do well in a 20 gallon tank.
 
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