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a common pleco is to big for that tank. Yes your lfs was right, they get that big and yes your right, 29 gallons is too small. Possible a bulldog plec?
 

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i have heard of sailfin gibbyceps reaching 50cm! :shock:
 

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If you're looking for an algae eating fish to help with maintenance in the tank, does it have to be a pleco? Otocinclus are a much better and safer option for a tank of that size. They are small (4 inches full grown) and eat a lot, not just in quantity, but also in different types of algae. Otos are live plant safe, peaceful, and fun to watch.
Do you have live plants? If not, another good option is something called a "mystery snail". They are a tropical (warm water) relative of the apple snail, so they don't reproduce to zillions overnight, get quite large (1 should be enough in up to a 30 gallon tank), are fun to watch, and also eat a lot of algae. Mystery snails are also peaceful, so won't bother the fish. DO NOT keep a mystery snail in a planted tank, they will devour the plants in record time.

In that size of a tank, the only pleco I would consider long term would be the bull dog, but keep in mind they need softer water. While the otos thrive in softer water, they are able to do well in pH of up to 8.0 without problems.
 

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Bulldogs (Chaetostoma) i find can be hard to acclimatise, most tropical tanks run too hot for them (prefer 20-23 (68-74) degrees)) and highly oxygenated water and unless you are set up specifically for plecos (heavily overfiltered, meaning large currents) i don't think they are a group that feels particularly happy in a 'normal' tropical set up.

How about a good old bristlenose? Run of the mill ancistrus sp.3 should stay small enough for that tank (sorry i can't equate u.s. gallons to a tank footprint size a thats a bit of a guess)

Bettababy's suggestion is a good one, a small group of oto's would work well in a smaller tank, or if available in your area a small (say 3) group of Parotocinclus jumbo (lda25, pitbull pleco).

hth
 

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i have 3 common plecos in my 28 gallon. the largest bein 7 inches, as soon as they get too big for the tank ill b rehoming them, but i believe this can take a long time? ive had 1 for 2 years and hes not grown much at all, perhaps an inch
 

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lioness501 said:
i have 3 common plecos in my 28 gallon. the largest bein 7 inches, as soon as they get too big for the tank ill b rehoming them, but i believe this can take a long time? ive had 1 for 2 years and hes not grown much at all, perhaps an inch
from what i have been told, Sailfin Gibbiceps grow really fast and common plecs ( L21 ) grow quite slow..... :)
 

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flatcam1 said:
from what i have been told, Sailfin Gibbiceps grow really fast and common plecs ( L21 ) grow quite slow..... :)
Commons (L. pardalis) growm quick as well flam, mine put on about 4 inch in 5 months.

lioness501 said:
i have 3 common plecos in my 28 gallon. the largest bein 7 inches, as soon as they get too big for the tank ill b rehoming them, but i believe this can take a long time? ive had 1 for 2 years and hes not grown much at all, perhaps an inch
whats the dimensions of that tank please? and filtration? i would imagine that a 29gal means they are too big for the tank already (the biggest at least). Realistically, you would want that tank to be at least 14 inches wide, as a bare minumum. Might explain why they are growing slow.
 

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lioness501 said:
i have 3 common plecos in my 28 gallon. the largest bein 7 inches, as soon as they get too big for the tank ill b rehoming them, but i believe this can take a long time? ive had 1 for 2 years and hes not grown much at all, perhaps an inch
stunted. would you like to live in an 8x9 foot room with two others? didnt think so.
 

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i will indeed b rehoming the larger one sometime soon, ans ls bells, thanks for that comment!!! i did say i was rehousing them once they were too big and the one ive had for 2 years was on his on with a couple of danios so no his growth is not stunted. the tank they r in now is only 4 months old! thanks!!( i dont appreciate tryin to b made to look silly or stupid)) i appreciate constructive critisism and helpful advice.
 

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I've seen plenty of otos at 4 inches, but they do grow slower than the plecos, so it takes quite a while for them to reach full grown.
 

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Many of us here understand and know a lot about fish keeping, others come here because they haven't had an opportunity to learn. Many LFS's are in this business strictly to make money, and accurate information doesn't always do that. Unfortunately, too many people AND animals fall victim to this, which is why places like FF are here.

Some legitimate points have been made in this post, and now that accurate information is available, I'm sure everyone will do what is needed for the animals.

Some basic information on the common pleco:

Full grown, they reach about 18 - 20 inches long, which also means 4 - 5 inches wide. The common pleco is actually a catfish, and retains some of the catfish habits during it's life, such as scavenging for food along the bottom, preferring to feed nocturnally, and needing caves to hide in. The common pleco is primarily a vegetarian fish, but not completely, so they qualify as an omnivore. When there isn't enough food source available, they have been known to feed on other fish in the tank, or when they are feeling too crowded they can become sllightly aggressive towards tankmates. Common plecos are large waste producers, so water quality can become an issue in a smaller tank as they grow.
High nitrate levels over a period of time will stunt growth, cause internal damage, and eventually lead to an early death for the fish. 1 common pleco should not be kept in a tank of less than 75 gallons for space reasons, and so they are able to find enough food to keep them healthy and well fed. Substitue foods can be added to their diet, but the common pleco is also known to be easily spoiled, so if feeding extra foods, you'll want to watch the intake and maintenance levels the fish is performing in the tank. If fed enough on other foods, the common pleco will usually stop eating algae from rocks and glass in the tank (which is why most people add them to a tank in the first place).
The common pleco can withstand a wide variety of temperatures in their environment, provided the temp is stable. This makes them desirable for keeping in outdoor ponds during warmer months.

It would be helpful if you could post water params for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and pH levels. If your pleco has pretty much stopped growing at 7 inches after 2 years, there is a reason for it. It could be that you don't have a common pleco, it may be another species, or it could be water quality and food related, or it could be a genetic problem (though this is highly unlikely).
If you can provide us with more information on the tank, then we can help you NICELY, POLITELY, and in as much detail as possible.
 

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thanks bettababy, its not my 7" that has not grown, only had him a month, its my smaller 1 which started out 3 inches and measured him yesterday at 5 inches. they still keep the algae under control and i give them a substitute twice a week, they r not in the least bit aggresive, its only the 7" that im worried about. i have 1 that is 2 inches but he is slightly different in coulour and markings so not sure if he is common pleco or not?
water params r
no3=50
no2=0
gh=>6
kh=3
ph=7.2
ammonia=0
is this ok?
 
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