Plecostomus | Common Plecostomus

Plecostomus | Common Plecostomus

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(Please note that the fish shown in the photo is only a representative of what an adult specimen would look like. The color may vary based on the age and sex of the fish you receive.)

Scientific Name: Hypostomus plecostomus

Common Name: Plecostomus, Pleco Fish, Suckermouth Catfish, Armor-Plated Catfish

Adult Size: 24 inches

Life Expectancy: 10+ years

Habitat: Peru, Brazil

Minimum Tank Size: 50 gallon

Ideal Tank Conditions: 

  • Temperature Range: 66 - 79° F
  • pH Range: 6.5 - 8.0
  • Water Hardness: 1 - 25

Temperament: Peaceful

Diet & Nutrition: Omnivore but the bulk of their diet is algae. They will eat undesirable algae and will generally not harm plants. Also feed supplements including algae wafers, green foods and sinking pellets to make sure they don't starve. Some supplements that can be offered include vegetables like blanched spinach, lettuce, and peas as well as live worms, small crustaceans, and insect larvae.

Breeding & Spawning: Reproduction in aquarium setting extremely difficult. This fish is bred in large quantities in Singapore, Hong Kong, and Florida. They are bred in large commercial fishery ponds where a spawning pit is fanned out in the side of the muddy steep banks. A pair will spawn about 300 eggs and the male will guard the eggs, and then the fry. The fry feed off of mucus excreted from the body of the parents.

Gender: Male's genital papilla is a small but thick stub protruding from its undercarriage. On the female it will be either recessed or lie flat on the body.