Thinking of getting rid of my Clown Pleco

Discussion in 'Pleco - Plecostomus' started by thumos, Jun 24, 2016.

  1. thumosValued MemberMember

    I was wondering if there are other plecos that are more active?
    There is considerable algae build up despite the pleco, 3 amano shrimp and 4 nerite snails in a 29 gallon.

    Plus the pleco hides all day and does not detach from his log for tank cleanings.

    I cannot ascertain his condition and would rather send him back to the LFS than have him die (if he is actually in a bad condition).

    I also just got a school of cordys and they eat the wafers meant for the pleco so he may starve at this rate anyway.

    Thanks for the advice in advance.

  2. AquaphobiaFishlore LegendMember

    Plecos tend to be nocturnal so most of his activity is going to happen while you're asleep. If you have a lot of algae in your tank though it's best to get to the root cause and deal with it from there.

    What is your total stock in this tank?
    What are your parameters?
    What kind of lighting and how long is it on for?
    Do you have live plants?
    What kind of filter?

    In the meantime you may want to try dropping the wafers meant for the Pleco into the tank after lights out since he'll have a better chance of getting some of it:)

  3. Charles556Valued MemberMember

    I wouldn't worry about your clown pleco starving, unless you only have a piece of Mopani bogwood.

    The reason why your clown pleco refused to detach from the wood is because the fibers are the main part of its diet. Vegetables and wafers are really only a supplement. Still, you should do what Aquaphobia suggested.

  4. alirayFishlore VIPMember

    I disagree. A pleco no matter what kind, needs a good diet like any other fish. The clown pleco is more nocturnal in nature. They need real driftwood to rasp on as it helps their digestion , However that is not what they live on. As they rasp on it in nature they get the biofilm, algea, and all the little insect, worms, baby shrimp, baby snails giving them both veggies, algea, some wood fiber. I keep BN plecos and if you look on the post Plecos!! Share Yours. on page 3 about halfway down, I posted A diet for them which would be the same for the clown pleco. The key is food always available, veggie or fruit 24/7 as well as wafers shrimp pellets . They also will scavange dead fish in the wild. Please give it a read, I will be happy to answer questions if you have them. :;hi1Alison
  5. Charles556Valued MemberMember

    Apparently, I wasn't specific enough.

    In NO way, shape, or form did I suggest that clown plecos can survive solely off of wood. That's why I recommended that the OP drop the wafers after dark, like Aquaphobia suggested. In fact, if the only wood in the tank is Mopani, the pleco would probably starve since the wood is too hard.

    What I was actually trying to say was that P. maccus' diet primarily consists of wood. I should've added in that you need to supplement their diet with algae wafers, fresh veggies, and protein, like aliray suggested, if I had known what was in store for me.

    For my very own Clown Pleco, I supplement its diet with Hikari algae wafers, blanched cucumbers and soft-leafed veggies, Hikari Sinking Wafers, NLS All Purpose sinking pellets, Omega One Shrimp pellets, and more. I drop in a variety of these every night after lights out. I am not trying to spread misinformation here.

    And finally, @aliray, I'm really curious of your source for the diet of clown plecos. I've tried googling the information, but the most reliable sources I could find all say that the wood fibers themselves are the main part of P. maccus' diet. Nowhere I looked said that the wood was only used "to aid in digestion" or "to rasp for biofilm, algae..."
    If you could provide a link, I'd love to give it a read! Thanks.

    Here are the sources I found:

    "The primary diet is driftwood, but they need to supplement their diet with vegetation, so adding algae wafers, and fresh veggies like cucumber, lettuce, etc." -Fishlore

    "A wood-eating fish, the tank should be decorated with several different types of driftwood. These fish really like to have something to chew on. Squash, cucumber, and other vegetables should be readily available to them (yams are a favourite). Supplement two to three times weekly with frozen foods." -Planet Catfish

    "The Clown is a wood eater, so driftwood is a must...vegetables (zucchini, cucumbers, sweet potato, etc.) are required. Sinking pellets as well as algae and vegetable wafers should also be fed to this fish." - Badmans Tropical Fish

    "The Clown pleco should never be kept in an aquarium without wood since it is a wood eating species. Ideally include several types of wood in the set up... Do not force your Clown pleco to rely on natural algae growth only; always supplement with algae based prepared foods." - Aquatic Community

  6. DoubleDutchFishlore LegendMember

    To be honest I love it when animals / fish show their natural behaviour in the enclosure we put them in. It's just a good sign.
    Strange thing is lots of people just want them to behave unnatural and if they don't will consider to get rid of them.
    Possoble sollutions : get info before you decide to buy them or accept the way they are and admire them for how they behave. There are fish in my tanks that show up twice a year hahaha. Loving it.
  7. alirayFishlore VIPMember

    Sorry I guess I misunderstood what you were saying. I took it to mean that he could live on wood fiber only. When I got hooked on BN plecos a couple of years ago I started researching them at to wild diets , Ambient temps, where they live, foods to feed, dietary needs and anything else I could find out about them for months as well as this forum and another one. All the links you listed, sellers, Every last pleco thread as far back as they were listed. in the pleco forums , both of them, that I belong to and then googled and googled some more. I admit getting a little obsessive about the research . On the other hand I am retired so I have lots of time to research. They became my favorite of any fish I have ever owned. And still are. I still continue to research them. The clown as far as I know is an omnivore so does need variety, which was what I was trying to say. Sorry If I upset you, My goal was just to make sure he fed him a good diet. :;hi1Alison
  8. Charles556Valued MemberMember

    Oh no, I wasn't offended. I was a 4-year Varsity debater in high school, so this is fun for me. The research part of fishkeeping has become one of my favorite pastimes; for example, I've memorized the scientific name, dietary needs, temperature and water requirements, and more of every single species of fish I own.

    Looking at my original post, it was a bit lacking. I can see how it could mislead someone.
  9. thumosValued MemberMember

    None of you have addressed the primary concern I had which was to verify his well being.
    I also do not know where you got that I don't know what to feed it.
    My problem is:
    How do I know it is getting enough food with the other competition in the tank?
    I have snails, shrimp and albino cordys that now hang out in the log he hides in.
    The log is an artificial log, not a real log.
    Driftwood is in the middle of the tank.

    I drop cat scrappers and algae wafers after dark but I see the cordys also going after them.

    I also sink or attach zucchini, cucumber, sweet potatoe, spinach, broccoli stems etc at night but there usually aren't any obvious bite marks.

    So: how do you verify that your hidden fish is getting nutrition other than it isn't dead yet?

    When I say he does not detach from the log for tank cleanings, I literally mean, even if I remove the artificial log from the water, he will not let go!
    I was tempted to pull him off but decide it was not in his best interest.

    So, any other clown/ extremely shy pleco owners have suggestions for my actual problem?
  10. AquaphobiaFishlore LegendMember

    Excuse me? At least 2 of us did indeed address your concerns! We told you to drop the wafers in after the lights go out because he's nocturnal. When the other fish are resting he may get a chance to eat.

    Plecos should have a slightly rounded belly, not bloated, not sunken.

    Oh, also, my pleco usually won't touch her veggies until they've been allowed to soften for at least 24 hours, preferably more;)
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2016
  11. thumosValued MemberMember

    That log is what I am talking about. He is actually in a niche in the bottom left of that log. How do I check his belly?
    As soon as he sees anyone, he's back in there.
  12. AquaphobiaFishlore LegendMember

    How long have you had him/her?
  13. chromedome52Fishlore VIPMember

    That is not a log, it is a log-shaped artificial decoration. Do you have any real wood in the tank?
  14. thumosValued MemberMember

    Yes, as I stated above, there is driftwood in the middle of the tank which is what I would have expected him to attach to.
    I also know that the artificial log is in fact an artificial log.
  15. chromedome52Fishlore VIPMember

    Apologies, I went back and apparently I missed that post.

    I have a Clown Pleco, he's over 10 years old. Most of that time I never knew where he was. I can tell you that they do not compete well for food. Too many other fish eating the same diet can be a problem, even if you put the food in after dark. Most of these competitors are going to feed at night, too.

    The only way to check on his condition is to hang the log above the water. He will eventually have to drop out of it. This is how they collect many of these fish from the wild; a collector acquaintance once got over 50 of these fish from a piece of wood less than 24" long! I'd do this over another container, or he may just go for another hiding place in the main tank. Once he is out, you can look at his condition. As noted, he should look rounded but not bloated, and the worst sign is if he looks sunken bellied.

    I have found Clowns to not be very good at cleaning algae on the glass. However, if it grows on a rock, they seem to go for it. And they certainly love to eat it off of wood.
  16. thumosValued MemberMember

    Awesome thanks!!
    I will try that tomorrow during my cleaning.
    As an aside, what pleco goes for algae on glass?
    I have had my eye on a red/golden pleco and the LFS said he would trade me.

    Also, do any of you guys make your water black with leaves?
  17. AquaphobiaFishlore LegendMember

    I do:) The fish love it and their colours really intensify when I do that! I don't always have the actual leaves on hand though so I also have bottles of extracts of the leaves. Much easier;)

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice