Plecostomus and Lighting

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by anoble1, Dec 29, 2009.

  1. anoble1

    anoble1New MemberMember

    I have 1 Plecostomus and 4 guppies. Should the tank light always be left on? Or when should it be off and for how long?

    I have a 30 gallon tank
  2. Meenu

    MeenuFishlore VIPMember

    Welcome to fishlore. :)

    Most of us have our lights on a timer for consistency. You can leave your lights on every day for 8-10 hours, that should work.

    What kind of pleco do you have? Do have him just eat algae, or do you supplement his diet with wafers?

    Also, do you have a heater?
  3. OP

    anoble1New MemberMember

    Not sure what kind of Pleco I have. I'll look tonight. Well, I gave him a wafer. He didn't get around it. Should I leave the wafer in there after a period of time?

    Yes, I got a heater. He usually just stays attached to it like he is cold.
    I may leave the lights on during the day and turn them off at night.

  4. Nutter

    NutterFishlore VIPMember

    Lighting hours pretty much as Meenu stated. 12-14hrs tops & that's only if you don't have live plants. Buy a timer to use, they only cost $5 & your fish will benefit from the predictability of the lighting times. Also good just in case you forget.:)

    Remove the algae wafer. I leave my wafers in for about an hour with new fish & then remove them. Make sure you drop it very close to the same spot each time & it won't take long for the fish to figure out where to look for a feed. Feeding about 30mins after the lights go out is usually a good idea. Most plecs are nocturnal & will just stay hidden during the day not even aware that food is in the tank for them. You can slowly change the feeding time until the fish is getting it's food while the lights are on so that you can watch it eat. Zuchini & cucumber are also good foods for most plecs.

    He seems to have chosen the heater as his prefered home. Perhaps there is no other form of cover to his liking. Plecs like a nice big cave or hollow log to use as thier daytime refuge. They also need wood to have a chew on from time to time.

    I see you are unaware of the aquarium nitrogen cycle so please take the time to have a read of this article:
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2009
  5. Meenu

    MeenuFishlore VIPMember

    I posted a response to the question you asked on my profile page on yours. :)

    I was asking about a heater because you listed a range for your temperature. With a heater, you should have a consistent temp, rather than fluctuations. I like to keep my tank around 77 degrees. If you don't already have one, you may want to pick up an aquarium thermometer. They are inexpensive (some are around $3), and they give you some peace of mind. You'll know if you have a heater malfunction.

    I ask about the pleco because your tank is too small for a common pleco, since those can get VERY large. Some pleco varieties stay around 6 inches - 1 of those is fine for a tank your size.

    I agree with Nutter that you should familiarize yourself with the nitrogen cycle. :)
  6. Aquarist

    AquaristFishlore LegendMember

    Good morning.

    Your Pleco will love a round slice of zucchini from the grocery store. I feed it to mine every morning. He is in the same spot waiting for it after the lights come on. Some people blanch it (boil it for just a minute) but I don't. He'll eat almost the entire slice within an hour. When he's done the slice looks like a little bowl. I use plant weights to weigh the zucchini down. It may take a time or two before your Pleco realizes that it's food. I'd removed any uneaten portion after 2 or 3 hours. He's learned that feeding time is in the morning and not at night :) oops! a little off topic there lol

    As for lighting. I use timers and the lights are on for a total of 11 hours. 4 hours in the morning....then they go off giving the fish a "cloudy day" and then they come back on for 7 hours, late afternnon throughout the evening.

  7. Meenu

    MeenuFishlore VIPMember

    I do mine similarly. since the kids are at daycare and I am at work during the day, no point in "lights on time" being during the day. Mine come on in the morning for a couple of hours, then turn back on before we get home and off at bedtime.
  8. OP

    anoble1New MemberMember

    I have an albino Pleco. Water temperature it 78. So, does it matter if you feed when the light is on or off?

  9. Nutter

    NutterFishlore VIPMember

    No. The plec would actually prefer to feed under the cover of darkness but the owners wouldn't!! We want to see our prized fish so getting them to feed during the lights on time is preferable. Most plecs will be happy enough to feed under lights either just after they have come on or just before they go off. Like most fish thier most active feeding time is just around sunrise, (lights on) & sunset, (lights off).

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