new bristlenose pleco

Discussion in 'Pleco - Plecostomus' started by JoannaB, Apr 18, 2012.

  1. JoannaBWell Known MemberMember

    Got our bristlenose pleco today! He or she gave the fish store guy quite a chase before being captured. Now she is terrified or "shy" as my 3-year old put it - not moving much now. We have turned off the main aquarium lights early, and are planning to turn off the blue LED nightlight soon. I don't think she or he realizes yet that there is a cave on the other side of the tank, and that there are other hiding places. There are lots of brown algea around. I am assuming that this fish is not moving much because she is scared from the move, right? When we got our zebra danios they were moving around a lot and exploring, but I am assuming that this is the difference in personality between danios and pleco, and that even though it is nocturnal and it is now night, being terrified causes it to not move about much. I hope she did not get injured during the capture with the net in the store! I did not see any sign of injury, and come to think of it she did move about the width of the aquarium since we got her earlier this evening, just very slowly. Now the danios were not eating much of anything for the first two days after we got them, but then perked up nicely - is about two days the amount of time we should expect the bn pleco to need to adjust as well, or is there no rule of thumb on that? I am assuming that as long as there is plenty of brown algea we should not feed it algea wafers or veggies for the next couple of days or so? Any other suggestions on how we can help her feel more at home and adjust quicker? I keep thinking of it as a "her" but I assume that at about 2inches in size it is still too early to tell, despite no bristles, right? She is cute, and we are very excited to have her.

  2. QQQUUUUAADDDWell Known MemberMember

    Congrats. Pics?

  3. JoannaBWell Known MemberMember

    For now the lights are off, and she is hiding a bit, so no pics yet, but once she adjusts, I shall strive to take a picture. She is a beauty, one of those albino longfinned bristlenose plecos. :)

    Oh oh! We just noticed that some part of the long fin is close to detached - it's kind of like long hair that is falling out. Will this harm her? Is it normal?

    Last edited: Apr 18, 2012
  4. LeguresValued MemberMember

    Just give the Pleco to adjust and de-stress herself. You wouldn't like it if you were shipped a whole bunch of times either!
    It might take some time to adjust but he will eventually get used to his new home! :)

    BN Plecos usually hide a lot but will come out a lot at night. I've had BN Plecos that were active during anytime of the day so you never know.
    My BN Plecos didn't grow their bristles until about 6 months. So expect some bristles soon! :)

    As for the detaching fin, it just sounds like the fin is damaged. It's no big deal. Just make sure you have good water parameters to make sure she doesn't develop fin rot.

    Otherwise, congrats on the Pleco! Sounds like a keeper :)
  5. JoannaBWell Known MemberMember

    Good news: before going to sleep I decided to look in one more time on the pleco. I turned on the light in the room, but not in the aquarium, and there she was, moving very fast and all over the tank, so the damaged fin is not inhibiting her movement. I could swear that she could see me, and was trying to hide from me -- I had not approached the tank, but was observing from a distance. Could it be that she did nonetheless see me accross the room? Anyway, she seems to have discovered several of the hiding spots, and I think she was doing a bit of aquarium wall polishing as well, although she still has a lot to do there. I think our water parameters are ok, at least they were yesterday, when I measured them prior to getting her. The danios meanwhile seem to be nervous about the new inhabitant: they are now all swimming fairly fast right under the surface, and only once did I notice one of them swim down to check out the pleco briefly. I guess they will all need to get used to one another, and realize that they are not a danger to each other.
  6. AquaristFishlore LegendMember

    Good morning!

    As mentioned above by others, give the fish time to adapt to its new environment. Chances are you may wake up this morning and see a lot of the Diatoms have been eaten. My juvenile, female Bristle Nose went on a cleaning spree when I added her to my 33g long tank. Such a good little house keeper. She is about 6 months old or so. Still tiny and so cute. :)

    If you haven't already done so, I would make sure to have some driftwood in the tank for your Pleco to munch on. Driftwood helps with digestion for this species.

    I feed my Plecos a slice (round) of raw zucchini every morning stuffed with an algae or vegetable wafer. Pushing the wafer into the slice helps to prevent other fish from stealing the wafer, giving the Pleco a chance to eat it first.

    Best wishes for your fish and tank!

  7. JoannaBWell Known MemberMember

    thanks for the advice! Yes, I have two pieces of driftwood in there already (not very big ones though - does a bn pleco need a lot of driftwood?) Also I thought the zucchini was supposed to be blanched, or cooked for a minute or three?? Is raw soft enough? Thanks for the recommendation of hiding the wafer!
  8. MmbrownWell Known MemberMember

    Hi! Congratulations on your new fish, you will love her.

    My BN acted the same way for about a week, I just turned the lights off (had no other fish at the time so it was of no matter) and gave it periodic peace offerings of zucchini. Beating a dead horse now but yeah your fish will get used to you in time. Our BN hides if you walk towards the tank suddenly/swiftly, but actually if you're calm and just sitting next to the tank he/she (named Chester but no bristles (yet?)) will come sit by you and look at you.

    I've read the little guys have really strong mouths, which makes sense since they can chew on wood. But I still blanch my zucchini before putting it in the tank because, if nothing else, blanching it makes it sink to the bottom and stay relatively sill- no veggie clips needed.
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2012
  9. LeguresValued MemberMember

    You can feed it zucchini in any form. Most of the choices are from preference.

    As said above,
    Blanching it will just help it sink a little better, as stated above. If you don't blanch it, you can just attach it to a veggie clip, or weigh it down.
  10. Redshark1Well Known MemberMember

    Yes, you are right. You have a much more sophisticated fish in your Bristlenose than Danios LOL!

    I like the long-finned ones very much, but they are almost never seen around here.

    They can take time to get acclimatised. First they need to feel safe, then they will venture out more.

    Don't worry about the fin. My female had all her fins and her tail munched off by my aggressive male. I removed the male and all her fins were like new within a few weeks. She had got trapped in a hole that the male regarded as his and as she was too young to breed she got a beating. My, did I feel bad about that because she had become a little favourite. She hid for a while but is now very outgoing and post lunchtime is to be seen out and about- you can see her here:


    I would say that unless I ran out of algae I wouldn't feed veggies as they can spoil the water quality and block the filters. They will eat raw veggies held down with a screwcumber and will eat the skin off courgette (zuchinni) first no problem. Take the veggies out at the end of the day to avoid decay. Feed in the day and they will come out more. Feed at night and you may see them much less. As you can see my fish has lots of space and lots of algae!

    Here she is when very young, hope you liked the pics and good luck:
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2018
  11. JoannaBWell Known MemberMember

  12. JoannaBWell Known MemberMember

    Update on my bn pleco: so it's been about a week since we bought the bn pleco. Last night she ate a cucumber slice. Today my son insisted that we feed her a large algea wafer - if she does not eat it, I will clean up the rest tomorrow morning. When my son dropped the algea wafer in, it landed on her long fin tail. Since it is a big algea wafer, I was worried that it would be too heavy, so I reached in to move it. The pleco moved out of the way when I reached in (had no problem moving from under the wafer), but what I found very promising was that she just moved a couple of inches out of the way, and did not try to hide. The other day, saw her lying on top of the sunken ship in the light of the blue night light - looked like she was "sunbathing" or posing for a picture - alas it was too dark to take a picture, and I did not want to scare her by turning on the overhead fluorescent light - she looked so comfy up there. The night before that, my husband and I watched her: her head was inside the tube of our sponge filter, and her tail was swishing in the stream of bubbles produced by this sponge filter. Overall I think she has acclimated beautifully. I love this fish!
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2012
  13. Redshark1Well Known MemberMember

    Yes, the Bristlenose is a brilliant and interesting fish, and a far more suitable aquarium fish than most plecos.

    Watch out for the sharp spines on the gill covers !

    They live a long time apparently. We can expect 10 years with good care.

    I think I will stick with just one. She seems so happy now.
  14. pirahnah3Fishlore VIPMember

    I say, I really enjoy my BN in my desk tank. She is a lot of fun to watch and very interesting to try and understand.
  15. can haz catfishies?Valued MemberMember

    I love my bn plecs I have two breeding pairs and they are awesome, even better is when you come home and find 70+ tiny bristle noses have just hatched out, so cute when you see them nomming away!

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