Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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MoneyMitch 11-16-2009 12:44 AM

Pleco Issues
So i went out and biught 4 fish yesterday and included with those four was a 3-4 inch common pleco. since i added him to the tank he has constantly been picked on but the lfs said this would be fine cause those guys are built like tanks. it is now day 2 since he has been in the tank and i noticed him on his side and thought the worst. so went to scoop out the dead fish and suprise to me he swims away before i even touch him. then to top things off when he swims he does more of like a twirl than anything..... what is going on here im stumped.

you can see all the info for my stock list under my aquarium tab.

up to date prams:

0 ammonia
0 nitrite
20 nitrate
8.2 ph

i just dont understand......

1077 11-16-2009 02:12 AM

Most plecos unless quite large,,will often be on the receiving end of such harrassment as you have witnessed in a tank of cichlids. Is why I would opt for a larger species such as the Synodontis I mentioned some time back when you expressed interest in something suitable for a cichlid tank.

Cichlids may have inflicted internal damage to the pleco and this could be affecting it's ability to navigate. Seems possible that fish may also be adjusting to possible difference in water parameters from dealer's tank to yours considering you opted not to quarantine, and the fish has been in the tank for lesss than 48 hours. Fish could also be sick.
As your signature indicates,,I would want to be more aware of possible issues with fish than the LFS.
If it is a large waste producer like the common pleco that intersts you,, I would look for a larger specimen that may be better able to defend itself in your tank. Until then.. I would keep a close eye on behaivors of the fish and be prepared to rehome the juvenile pleco if this appears warranted.

Romad 11-16-2009 07:40 AM

Hmmmm... looks like he has plenty of hiding spaces. Mine rarely comes out during the day and hides in his cave until nightfall.

Wish we could trade. My common is about 5" long right now and is rapidly outgrowing my tank.

Give him some time to acclimate and see what happens.

Byron 11-16-2009 12:42 PM

I second 1077's advice. In this case I would suspect the difference in water to be the cause; the erratic swimming behaviour is indicative of internal damage from sudden changes.

I also think a common pleco at 12 inches adult size is too large a fish for a 55g tank. I know they usually do well with cichlids according to various authors, but a larger tank would be preferable.


MoneyMitch 11-16-2009 03:08 PM

thx for advice and im aware of how big they get, however hes not going to go from 4-5 inches to 13 overnight.... but anyways woke up to him dead today and have called the lfs and they say to bring him a stock list and water sample and they said they will get me set with something that will work free of charge. ill keep it updated as things progress.


MoneyMitch 11-17-2009 02:38 PM

so heres the update, they tested the water which came back perfect. they said that the "common pleco" is one that will breed very easy and thus is mass bred which in turn can lead to genetic issues and that the smaller the pleco the more sensitive it is to params. they went ahead and gave me a larger one and said it will do better than the smaller one i had. they also said the other fish were picking on the other one because it had problems, and that its basically a instance of survival of the fitest. the other fish were taking out the weak link.

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