Goldfish and Plecos

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James95

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Hi all,

I have a 55 gallon tank with 5 goldfish. The tank has been set up since 2006 and formerly housed my blood parrots cichlids before I upgraded them to a new 65 gallon tank. I added the 5 goldfish to the tank about a month ago... 2 comets and 3 fantails. Recently, algae really started to take over the tank so I added a 4 1/2" common pleco. I didn't realize that goldfish and plecos were incompatible due to the fact that sometimes plecos have been known to suck on the goldfish's slime. I'm now paranoid about the goldfish getting hurt. Does anyone have experience successfully housing the two species together?

If not, I feel like I have three options:
1.) trade in the pleco and keep the goldfish
2.) trade in the goldfish, keep the pleco, and add my small tropicals from my 10 gallon to the 55 gallon (which are compatible with the pleco).
3.) Keep the goldfish in my 55 gallon move the pleco to my 65 gallon cichlid tank (could he peacefully coexist with my blood parrots? They are my most prized fish).

I'm not really a fan of either option but I don't want any fish to get harmed Any advice or input is welcomed!
 

Akari_32

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I would, actually remove the two common goldfish, and the pleco, and leave the tank with just the fantails. The pleco will get too large for the 65 gallon, as well.

You could also rehome the whole lot in the 55 and move your other fish the smaller tanks to it.
 
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Akari_32 said:
I would, actually remove the two common goldfish, and the pleco, and leave the tank with just the fantails. The pleco will get too large for the 65 gallon, as well.

You could also rehome the whole lot in the 55 and move your other fish the smaller tanks to it.
Okay, thanks for the input Akari

I like the goldies but feel like they're eventually going to outgrow the tank anyway-- along with the pleco. Maybe it would be best to just re-home the whole crowd. What would you personally do? Keep the fantails?

I think the 55 would make a beautiful planted forest with lots of little fish like my platies and mollies. It's quite tempting
 

Akari_32

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You're talking to someone with more than a dozen goldfish. I'll let you figure out what *I'd* do It's your tank though, and you have to look at it
 
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Akari_32 said:
You're talking to someone with more than a dozen goldfish. I'll let you figure out what *I'd* do It's your tank though, and you have to look at it
Point well taken.

I don't know anymore... I love the goldies and the pleco equally. He would grow up into a really cool looking, big fish. The goldies are awesome too. Would the goldies do well in a container pond during the summer months? For the pleco alone, how big of a permanent home would I need?
 

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Honestly, I vote for reducing the bioload a bit, but as far as plecos go ... my friend has a 65gal tank with something like a 13 year old common pleco in with was once 3 goldfish until they got fish TB[which the last one has recovered from just like Plecy]. They've never had any issues being together and at this point, she probably couldn't ever part with her pleco even tho it's "ill-advised"[by most people's standards] to keep him in the 65.

Honestly, it's your tank and comes down to what you want to do ... and obviously fish aren't gonna last forever so you could even change the bioload in time.
 
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James95

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Haha that's funny you posted the link to Robyn's page. That's so cool that you're friend's with her! I love seeing all her pics and learning from her experience. She is a truly invaluable resource! I remember reading that way back when she had problems with Plecy sucking on other fish in his tank. Maybe I'll just see how it goes.

Then again... part of me just wants to trade in all my fish and get another pair of Blood Parrots! I'm so indecisive
 

Akari_32

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I'd say 100+ gallons for the pleco, but you have to make sure it's got a wide foot print, wide enough for the fish to comfortably turn around. The three goldfish need 55 gallons to themselves, but larger is better. You could upgrade the fish your 65 to something large enough for them and the pleco, and then move the goldfish to the 65. Your mollies and platies would be fine with the goldfish, as well.
 
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Akari_32 said:
I'd say 100+ gallons for the pleco, but you have to make sure it's got a wide foot print, wide enough for the fish to comfortably turn around. The three goldfish need 55 gallons to themselves, but larger is better. You could upgrade the fish your 65 to something large enough for them and the pleco, and then move the goldfish to the 65. Your mollies and platies would be fine with the goldfish, as well.
Oh heck no! Lol. There's no way I'm buying a 100+ gallon tank for a $8 fish.

I guess I'll end up re-homing him. I will leave the 65 gallon as is, and figure out a plan to renovate the 55 gallon into some other type of tank. Maybe a big community tank would be nice...
 

junebug

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You got a pleco, a non algae eating fish, to eat algae? o_O

If you need an algae eater, rehome the pleco to a nice pond and get some nerite snails.
 

Akari_32

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That's what you get for buying with out researching!
 
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junebug said:
You got a pleco, a non algae eating fish, to eat algae? o_O

If you need an algae eater, rehome the pleco to a nice pond and get some nerite snails.
That's funny. Because so far he's completely cleared my glass of all algae. He's currently cleaning my decorations... So yeah. Pretty sure he eats algae. Lol
 
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Akari_32 said:
That's what you get for buying with out researching!
You're right! Lol. I thought a 55 gallon was a safe bet. Oh well! Haha
 

junebug

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James95 said:
That's funny. Because so far he's completely cleared my glass of all algae. He's currently cleaning my decorations... So yeah. Pretty sure he eats algae. Lol
Plecos are omnivorous, especially common plecos, with a heavy emphasis on meat in their diet. If yours is small, he'll eat algae for a little while, but he'll stop as he gets older and will add to the bioload of your tank in a bad way. These fish produce tons of waste and, as was already mentioned, need at least 100 gallons of water to live in. (this is all aside from the issue of him eventually sucking the slime coat off your fish)
 
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junebug said:
Plecos are omnivorous, especially common plecos, with a heavy emphasis on meat in their diet. If yours is small, he'll eat algae for a little while, but he'll stop as he gets older and will add to the bioload of your tank in a bad way. These fish produce tons of waste and, as was already mentioned, need at least 100 gallons of water to live in. (this is all aside from the issue of him eventually sucking the slime coat off your fish)
I'm well aware of all these future issues. You're not telling me anything I didn't already know. For now, he is in fact doing what I wanted-- cleaning up the algae. I think it's a stretch to call him a "non algae eating fish".

Just because he's not solely a herbivore doesn't mean he won't eat some algae. Omnivores consume both animal/protein matter AND plant matter. If he didn't eat any plant matter than he would be considered a carnivore, which he's not.
 

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Junebug, my 5 year old common plec completely cleaned every spec of algae out of my 10 gallon in less then a week. He'll attack algae wafers and I've never actually seen one that's refused to devour algae. Chinese algae eaters, clown plecos, BN plecos -- sure[even tho my BNs never really stopped] but commons are good algae eaters ... they just get way too big for most tanks.
 

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If you still want a pleco for the tank, bristlenoses are great for that. (In fact, I have a male I want to get rid of if you want him!)
 

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In my experience, plecos eat algae. I've had a common, bristlenoses, a rubberlip, and clown plecos. They've eaten algae much more than things like shrimp pellets and other protein matter. At least it's a fish in which eats algae (and is what it's doing) instead of something like a chinese algae eater, which are mainly carnivorous.
 
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Akari_32 said:
If you still want a pleco for the tank, bristlenoses are great for that. (In fact, I have a male I want to get rid of if you want him!)
Thank you, Akari!

I literally have no idea what I'm doing with the tank at this point. But when I do figure it out I may take you up on that offer! Lol
 

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You better decide quick because he's being extremely aggressive to my sailfin pleco and tearing her to shreds (and she's twice his size!). If he does much more damage, he'll be living at the lfs LOL He doesn't bother the other fish (goldfish) though, and he is such a looker. I would much rather see him go to a forum member than the pet shop.
 
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