Plecostomus Fish Facts

Large Plecostomus Fish at the Baltimore Aquarium

Aquarium Fish?
Definitely is! The Plecostomus fish or simply Pleco, can be kept in a fish tank or aquarium.

Pond Fish?
Yes, the Pleco can be kept in ponds. they grow quite huge in ponds as a matter of fact!

Fish Farming Potential?
The Plecostomus fish is not an important food fish at all. It is however an important ornamental or aquarium fish and so is farmed for this industry for sure.

Predator?
The Pleco is more of an omnivore. Will generally not harm other fish in any way.

Size?
As aquarium fish, this fish is sold as small as a finger size or larger to perhaps palm size. In the aquarium, this fish will generally not grow too large, at most the size of your hand and perhaps slightly larger. In ponds and rivers, they can grow quite large, to the size of a mans leg or thigh.

Food Eaten?
This fish is an omnivore. It is widely thought to be an algae eater but I have not really seen algae being its main stay diet. Perhaps it does derive some nutrition from algae but it may just be because this fish tends to stick to the aquarium sides and appears to be eating algae. They do better with floating pellets or better yet, sinking pellets.

Aquarium Fish Disease?
No particular disease is visible, however, the Plecostomus fish may die simply from malnutrition (for e.g. if you think they eat the left overs of other fish or are good enough at just eating algae).

Money Value?
There are many varieties of the Pleco. The common dark colored ones are quite cheap. There are albino Plecos which may be slightly more expensive. There are then various types that are more colorful, some with white spots, and other more glaring colors and patterns. These will tend to be much more expensive at the pet store (significantly more expensive). These are not generally known to be food fish.

Aquarium Fish Compatibility?
The Plecostomus fish tends to be compatible with really any freshwater fish. Even predatory fish tend to tolerate them especially if they are not too small. A good compatible fish to have in any aquarium (plus it makes you think that it helps to clean up some of the visible fish doodoo, though likely it hardly does :) )

Common Fish Names?
I would like to find this out, perhaps only the Natives in the Amazon (and perhaps Africa) have a proper common name for this fish.

Most of the world knows it as 'Sucker Fish' for obvious reasons since it sticks to the aquarium sides.

In Malaysia, it is interestingly colloquially called 'Ikan Bandaraya' (Pronounced 'Ee' 'Kan' (like 'Khan' in Genghis Khan) 'Bun' (as in 'bun' of a bread bun') 'Da' (like 'far') 'Ra' (as in the Egyptian God Ra) 'ya' (like the German 'Ya')

This translated means 'Municipal Fish', again having the connotation that this fish cleans up trash.

Freshwater or Saltwater?
Totally freshwater species.

Little known fact?
There are obviously many species of this fish, there is one reputed to survive solely on eating wood that have fallen into the Amazon River!

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