Albino Bristlenose Plecos - Tons of Babies

taj13

What can I do if my tank is being "overrun" with pleco babies?

I guess this is irresponsible of me, but I didn't realize that albino bristlenose plecos would reproduce so readily. I started out with 3, now I easily have about 2-dozen tiny (1/4") babies (around 3 months old). I live about 45 minutes from the nearest pet store, and they're chain stores (Petsmart, Petco, Pet Supermarket, etc.) and won't take any off my hands. I really don't know of anyone nearby who has a freshwater aquarium to share some with.

I have a 30 gallon tank with low-tech plants, 3 nerite snails, a female betta, 4 corydoras, 8 zebra danios and 6 platys in addition to the albino bristlenose plecos. (And no, I don't have any issues with the live-bearers. Maybe all of their fry get eaten?) I did have some African Dwarf Frogs, but no longer have those. (You might see one in the photos.) I have a HOB filter as well as a canister filter, and -- due to recommendations from Fishlore members -- I do 20-30% water changes 2-3 times/week. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

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mattgirl

There is nothing cuter than a tiny pleco but.......If you don't have an outlet for them you may need to separate the male and female. They will bless you with a new spawn of babies once a month once they get started. My super reds bred twice and I ended up with well over 200 fry. I removed the male before it got even more out of hand.

All of your fry may not survive if some of your fish eat them when they are tiny but if even a handful from each spawn grow up your are going to be over run with them. If you don't have a prefilter sponges on your filters they could be filled up with little guys too.
 
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taj13

There is nothing cuter than a tiny pleco but.......If you don't have an outlet for them you may need to separate the male and female. They will bless you with a new spawn of babies once a month once they get started. My super reds bred twice and I ended up with well over 200 fry. I removed the male before it got even more out of hand.

All of your fry may not survive if some of your fish eat them when they are tiny but if even a handful from each spawn grow up your are going to be over run with them. If you don't have a prefilter sponges on your filters they could be filled up with little guys too.
Thanks for the advice. So, another dumb question . . . how do I know which is the male? I plan on starting a 50 gallon tank in a few months. I would definitely have a place to relocate the male, but I'll have to wait a while.
 
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mattgirl

Thanks for the advice. So, another dumb question . . . how do I know which is the male? I plan on starting a 50 gallon tank in a few months. I would definitely have a place to relocate the male, but I'll have to wait a while.
The male will have the bristles. It really doesn't matter which one you move though. Just as long as they are not in the same tank......no more babies. It was easier for me to remove the male because he stays inside a piece of wood I have in the tank. All I had to do is pick up the wood and transfer it and him to another tank.
 
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taj13

Thanks. Lesson learned -- I need to do more research before I add fish!
 
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