Haven't seen new pleco eat after 2 weeks

Novembersdoom6
Member
I added a 1.5" snowball pleco to my 60 gallon planted tank two weeks ago. My water parameters are all good, no ammonia or nitrites, nitrates below 20 ppm. He shares a tank with some SA cichlids and tetras.

I have been trying to feed him this whole time, but have yet to see him eat. I've tried feeding him at night, such as by leaving cucumber, sweet potato, and Repashy in the tank overnight. I've also used a medicine dropper to try spot feeding blood worms and brine shrimp, but didn't see him eat any of them. I do know the cichlids end up eating most of it. I've woken up to some very fat cichlids after leaving food overnight. However, they don't really eat the veggies. The veggies didn't appear to really have been eaten in the morning, so I don't think the pleco really munched on them either. I also think the cichlids are spooking the pleco by always hovering over any food and picking at it all night.

I'm not sure if the pleco has been eating anything at night or not. During the day he stays in one spot, but when the light go off, I have seen him moving around and sitting in different spots around the tank. He seems to have settled in a little bit, but still very shy. I also saw him lying on a plant leaf the other night, and the next morning, I saw what appeared to be a part that was nibbled off, which I don't think was there before, but it could have been.

I'm a little concerned, because if he's gone this long without eating, he may waste away and not make it. Time is really of the essence now. I suspect he may be finding little bits of food at night, maybe some algae and whatnot. But it's hard to tell. He doesn't look super skinny, but it's hard to tell, he's so small as is and I don't really get to see his belly.
 
Betta'sAnonymous
Member
I recently experienced this my self. I tried all sorts of stuff, the pleco wouldn't eat and eventually starved. My fish guy did give me a heads up that he was most likely wild caught, so he might not have recognized it as food.

Have you been putting it near where he hangs out at a lot?
 
GuppyOverlord11
Member
Nopsu
Member
GuppyOverlord11 said:
Have you tried algae wafers?
Yeah I had a pleco for a moment some years ago and he would not touch the blanched veggies, but would love algae wafers! Also he was not interested in any meaty food I fed my cories.
His favorite thing to do was munch on driftwood all day lond since they need those wood fibers. Ive heard there is some targeted algae wafers including wood fibers too but never tried them..
 
StarGirl
Member
Nopsu said:
Yeah I had a pleco for a moment some years ago and he would not touch the blanched veggies, but would love algae wafers! Also he was not interested in any meaty food I fed my cories.
His favorite thing to do was munch on driftwood all day lond since they need those wood fibers. Ive heard there is some targeted algae wafers including wood fibers too but never tried them..
I have some wood algae wafers my BN likes them. They are Sera brand.
 
  • Thread Starter
Novembersdoom6
Member
Thanks for the responses. I have tried algae wafers, but so far, the cichlids usually get to them first. I can try placing them in the tank near the pleco late at night, but even then, I suspect the cichlids still get to them, rather than the pleco.

From what I've read, this species is usually wild-caught, so I think that's part of it. I've tried pretty much everything I can think of to get him to recognize food and eat it, but I'm not sure it's working, again unless he's munching on stuff at night and I'm not seeing it. I usually try to quarantine and make sure they're eating, but this is one time I didn't. It would've been much easier to make sure he's eating in a small tank without a bunch of other greedy fish around. These are normally pretty pricy, but I saw him for a good price at the LFS and picked him up. In the future, I'll make sure to quarantine first and make sure they're eating and putting on some weight before transferring to the DT. Lesson learned there.
 

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