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Questions about how to care for a BN Pleco


Josie

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Hi everyone!  So I am thinking about getting a BN pleco for my GF tank.  I want one mostly because I think they are cool little fish, but the algae eating is also a plus :)  I just have a few questions about it.

 

1) The water in my goldie tank is usually around 72 F.  Is this too cold for a BN pleco?  Do I need to add a heater?

 

2) My goldfish are goldfish and they eat EVERYTHING.  I have a little algae, but not much.  I am mostly getting this little pleco for a pet, not a cleaner.  How do I feed him so that the goldfish don't eat all his food?  I was thinking of giving him algae wafers and maybe some cucumber or peas.  Any feeding suggestions are welcome.

 

3) He doesn't need to eat driftwood, does he?!?

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Hi everyone!  So I am thinking about getting a BN pleco for my GF tank.  I want one mostly because I think they are cool little fish, but the algae eating is also a plus :)  I just have a few questions about it.

 

1) The water in my goldie tank is usually around 72 F.  Is this too cold for a BN pleco?  Do I need to add a heater?

 

2) My goldfish are goldfish and they eat EVERYTHING.  I have a little algae, but not much.  I am mostly getting this little pleco for a pet, not a cleaner.  How do I feed him so that the goldfish don't eat all his food?  I was thinking of giving him algae wafers and maybe some cucumber or peas.  Any feeding suggestions are welcome.

 

3) He doesn't need to eat driftwood, does he?!?

How big is the tank and how many Goldfish are in it?

 

72 is acceptable, but on the bottom of the recommended range.  I heat my Goldfish tanks to about 75 as a compromise for the Plecos.  They seem to be more sluggish at colder temperatures.  

 

If you don't have much algae, you will definitely want to supplement with veggie based foods.  I feed my Plecos blanched Zuchinni slices that are weighted down to the tank floor with vegetable clips.  They love them!  They also enjoy whatever Repashy Super Green escapes the Goldfish.  Algae wafers are fine if the Goldfish don't eat them all.  You really don't want to give Plecos a great deal of protein although occasional bloodworms are good for them.  If getting food past the Goldfish to the Plecos is a problem, try feeding them near their hiding spot just before you turn the lights off.  

 

Yes, they must have a piece of wood to rasp on as it aids their digestion.  This can also serve as a daytime hiding place which is also necessary for Plecos :)

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Thanks for the info!  Right now there are 6 small goldfish in a 60 gallon.  I will be splitting them probably into two groups of three goldfish once I get another tank set up.  I am wondering about the wood-I have spiderwood, is that okay?  Or do they need something softer?

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Thanks for the info!  Right now there are 6 small goldfish in a 60 gallon.  I will be splitting them probably into two groups of three goldfish once I get another tank set up.  I am wondering about the wood-I have spiderwood, is that okay?  Or do they need something softer?

I would wait until you split the fish into 2 tanks before adding the Pleco.  The Spider Wood should be fine if it offers some dark shelter.

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Jared gave some great advice!  I have nothing to add, apart from saying how cool they are to watch dart around the tank.  

 

I definitely agree that you should wait until you have the new tank running, before adding a pleco.  They poop a LOT, and will add significantly to your already heavily stocked aquarium.

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They poop A LOT! :)

Driftwood is a must! It doesn't have to be a big piece, but the need it!

They are fun little fish but mine doesn't come out a whole lot during the day if the lights are on. They're mostly nocturnal, I believe but really do help with algae.

Acro on this forum is where many of us got ours. I'm unsure if he has more.

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Also just make sure if you get two that they are either a pair or two females as the males can and will fight and if there is a female usually the fighting can get pretty aggressive between two males :)

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That is what I have heard and I would be worried about it, so I think I will just get one.  Should I put it in QT when I get one?

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That is what I have heard and I would be worried about it, so I think I will just get one.  Should I put it in QT when I get one?

Definitely! I wouldn't do salt, as they're extremely sensitive to it, but I would observe for several weeks for signs of ich or other contagious baddies.

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That is what I have heard and I would be worried about it, so I think I will just get one.  Should I put it in QT when I get one?

Definitely! I wouldn't do salt, as they're extremely sensitive to it, but I would observe for several weeks for signs of ich or other contagious baddies.

 

Also if you have a heater try and cover it with something as one of my plecos burnt herself on it and I tried my best but she still died sadly :(

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I would not get a BN with goldfish, especially the longer finned varieties. They might be one of my favorite type of algae eaters and they do a remarkable job but will eat on a resting goldfish's fins and for the most part are nocturnal.

I've seen that happen and chucked the guy into my 4500 gallon Koi pond. Figured he was dead when spring came around but never found his carcass. He lived throughout the entire winter when the temps bottomed out at 50 degrees so I left him in. Not something I would recommend. but I've seen it.

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I'm not sure where Rob above is getting the info that bristlenose plecos will snack on goldfish fins or body etc. This is frequently said about common plecos and videos of it happening can even be found on YouTube. I have had 2 bristlenose plecos in with my goldfish for about 3 years and have not noticed any behavior like that and I don't know of anyone else who has observed it either. I have to say, I don't do anything for my 2 2 BN plecos. They each have their own cave in my 125. I don't heat it and I don't feed them anything besides goldfish food. The way I spread the food throughout the tank makes it very possible for them to get some if they want it. It is possible that my way is not the best way in this case, but it has been working ok.

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I'm not getting that info from anywhere. I've seen it with my own two eyes in my tank. I surely would not have tossed a perfectly fine BN into an unheated pond if it was not eating on the GF. I love BN Plecos, easily my favorite algae eater because they stay small and are absolute machines at cleaning, although I will never keep them with fancies again. Just my 2 cents based on my past experience.

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I have had a BN attack my fish once.. It went into the Guppy tank soon after... I had it in a 45 gallon tank with 3 goldfish. Mind you this is about 10 years ago.... So yeah it can happen if you dont have enough room... or some kind of log too :)

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I'm not getting that info from anywhere. I've seen it with my own two eyes in my tank. I surely would not have tossed a perfectly fine BN into an unheated pond if it was not eating on the GF. I love BN Plecos, easily my favorite algae eater because they stay small and are absolute machines at cleaning, although I will never keep them with fancies again. Just my 2 cents based on my past experience.

Just curious why you felt it ok to toss a perfectly good BN into a pond where you thought it would die, when it wasn't on for it to supposedly be snacking on goldfish?

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I'm not getting that info from anywhere. I've seen it with my own two eyes in my tank. I surely would not have tossed a perfectly fine BN into an unheated pond if it was not eating on the GF. I love BN Plecos, easily my favorite algae eater because they stay small and are absolute machines at cleaning, although I will never keep them with fancies again. Just my 2 cents based on my past experience.

Just curious why you felt it ok to toss a perfectly good BN into a pond where you thought it would die, when it wasn't on for it to supposedly be snacking on goldfish?

 

I'm not sure I understand the last part of your question, but I dumped the fish in an unheated pond because I didn't have any other tanks and I was pissed off. He still went on to live another two years.

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So a pirate walks into a bar and he has a steering wheel sticking out of his pants. The bartender notices and says, "Hey, you know you have a steering wheel sticking out of your pants?" The pirate says, "Arrrrr, it's drivin' me nuts."

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I'm not getting that info from anywhere. I've seen it with my own two eyes in my tank. I surely would not have tossed a perfectly fine BN into an unheated pond if it was not eating on the GF. I love BN Plecos, easily my favorite algae eater because they stay small and are absolute machines at cleaning, although I will never keep them with fancies again. Just my 2 cents based on my past experience.

Just curious why you felt it ok to toss a perfectly good BN into a pond where you thought it would die, when it wasn't on for it to supposedly be snacking on goldfish?

I'm not sure I understand the last part of your question, but I dumped the fish in an unheated pond because I didn't have any other tanks and I was pissed off. He still went on to live another two years.
Haha man autocorrect really got me there! So I am interested to learn more... What water temps did this BN survive? Nevermind I see you already said 50 Edited by DieselPlower
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I'm not getting that info from anywhere. I've seen it with my own two eyes in my tank. I surely would not have tossed a perfectly fine BN into an unheated pond if it was not eating on the GF. I love BN Plecos, easily my favorite algae eater because they stay small and are absolute machines at cleaning, although I will never keep them with fancies again. Just my 2 cents based on my past experience.

Just curious why you felt it ok to toss a perfectly good BN into a pond where you thought it would die, when it wasn't on for it to supposedly be snacking on goldfish?
I'm not sure I understand the last part of your question, but I dumped the fish in an unheated pond because I didn't have any other tanks and I was pissed off. He still went on to live another two years.
Haha man autocorrect really got me there! So I am interested to learn more... What water temps did this BN survive? Nevermind I see you already said 50

 

I lived in West Central FL at the time so when it did hit 50 or slightly below it didn't last very long. Normal temps for the winter time pond was normally 55-62ish. Again for anyone reading this I would not recommend these protocols for keeping a BN, it's just something I've observed and thought I would pass it on.

Almost all of the tropicals sold in the US come from fish farms in the Tampa area, most notably Hillsborough County which routinely experienced lower temperatures than where I lived as I was just slightly to the north and west and closer to the gulf. They would cover the ponds during the cold stretches and sometimes the fish would make it, sometimes they would lose them all in the rare hard freezes.

IMO unless they are very delicate species they can withstand colder temps....for shorter periods of time...and still come out Ok.   

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