Resources to Help With Pleco ID?

Flyaway Soul

I'm going to try to snap a pic of the lil dude after work, but he's only been in the tank for 2 days so he's quite shy and I don't want to stress it out.

I bought a pleco at my LFS that was listed as a bristle nose (which it absolutely isn't), was sold to me as a butterfly pleco (possibly a striped butterfly???) when I pointed out that it obviously wasn't a bristle nose, but it looks more like a clown or candy stripe pleco to me and they do occasionally get those species through the store as well.

I know that no one here can magically identify it without a photo, but I was wondering if anyone could give me tips or point me towards resources that could help me ID the pleco so I know what kind of foods I should keep on hand. When I first tried to ID it in the store, I was sure it was a candy stripe, but now I'm doubting myself because candy stripes and clowns look very similar to me and I know that actual butterfly plecos do have a striped variant.

It is a dark brownish color with wide cream stripes as opposed to the more hairline light stripes I've seen on some other species of pleco, but it seems to have darkened up a bit since being in my home tank with a darker substrate. He strictly only comes out at night and immediately hides in his cave from any light, so getting pictures has been very difficult. Any help is appreciated, I'll try to net him tonight to get a good picture.


You could try


+1 Planet Catfish. As for feeding, add driftwood to the hardscape. Many species of Pleco are wood knawers & need it to survive.
Algae disc's, Omega One Kelp pellets & sinking Cichlid pellets should round out any Plecos nutritional needs.

Flyaway Soul

I got some passable pictures of it, but they're not fantastic. He's gotten much darker since being in the tank.

I also do have wood in the tank and am getting in more next weekend. I slowly ditching all of my old resin ornaments for natural decor. I already feed algae disks, shrimp pellets, and cichlid pellets for my other fish. Should I swap the shrimp pellets, for my cories, out for kelp pellets? My cories don't really care much about them as far as I can tell.


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Shrimp pellets can really foul up a tank. Your Cory Cats & Pleco will do just fine on Omega Kelp Pellets. You could even mix in New Life Spectrum Thera +A sinking small grain pellets.
The new Plevo looks like it might be a Clown Pleco, L104. They don't grow very big & is a wood knawer.

Flyaway Soul

Shrimp pellets can really foul up a tank.
I've actually never heard this before, that's good to know.

I thought it could be a clown pleco but the stripes seem too wide? Is there a good way to tell the difference between a clown L104 and a candy stripe L015? The best I've been able to find to that end is "clowns eat lots of wood compared to similar looking plecos" and the lil monster only comes out at night when I go to sleep.

They both are smaller species and fall well within the parameters of my 80gal, I just want to know which it is at this point lol thank you so much for the nutrition tips as well!

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