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Pterygoplichthys gibbiceps
Leopard Sailfin Pleco

 Age of Aquariums > Freshwater Fish > Leopard Sailfin Pleco - Pterygoplichthys gibbiceps

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Glyptoperichthys_gibbiceps_3.jpg (31kb)
Photo Credit: C. Bora Hanci

I had two Leopard Plecos in my 209 liter tank until they both grew to 15 cm in length. One was rather aggressive with the other so I traded the bully in to my local Fish store. They owner was glad to take him and gave me a great deal on several community tank fish. The remaining pleco has grown to 24 cm in length and gets along quite well with my other fish. He enjoys an algae tablet every evening. He is very active even during the daylight hours when I have my lights on. He is the oldest and my favorite fish in the tank.

Contributed by Robert Jeschbach

My Sailfin Pleco has been through a lot. These fish are very hardy. I've had mine for about 7 months now and he is doing well, despite all the troubles he's been through. When I first got him, he jumped out of my tank and fell 1.5 meters, still alive. Recently, I cleaned out my tank and all the fish were doing fine. Then one morning it just turned clouded, (I found out later on it was a build up of lime deposits) and four of my fish had died. So, I transfered the rest of them to a smaller bowl and stuck my tank's heater in there. But I forgot to turn down the heater. I boiled all my fish. Everyone fried except for my Pleco, he survived in that 38C heat. But that is not all...later on I went to check on him and I didn't see him in that bowl I had him in. I freaked out. I found him on the floor and I thought he was dead; he must have jumped out. I picked him up by his tail thinking he was dead, I almost decided to just flush him but I took a chance and put him back into the small bowl...he swam around like nothing even happen to him. I love this fish. :)

Contributed by (no name given)

We have 3 Leopard Sailfins and they're wonderful! They've grown to be almost 20 cm long, and they're healthy and vibrant, feeding on algae and leftover food which falls to the gravel. They have a beautiful coloring, and they're fun to watch. These are not sluggish fish!

Contributed by Michelle Zagari

I have one of these guys in my community aquarium, along with a common plec, chinese algae eater, and various cichlids. We don't see much of him during the daytime, as they are nocturnal feeders, and some people would complain that the species lacks activity, but turn the tank lights out, wait about an hour, and he comes to life, patrolling the tank for food, and displaying his authority. He's gotta be my favourite fish, because he's just so damn impressive! Make sure you feed them well though, because if you just rely on the algae as his diet, he will soon starve. Mine seems to like sinking catfish pellets. And they grow FAST! In the space of about 6 months, he has doubled in size to about 15-18 cm.

Contributed by Dave

I have a 25 cm long Leopard Pleco. His name is 'Saviola'. He is my favourite fish, and I think he is more active than any other plec I've had. He is always moving in the day time and like any other plec he is active at night. He is very happy and he lives with some large American Cichlids, Silver Dollars, and 2 more common plecs, 18 cm each. He is very well behaved. His favourite time is at feeding time, when he can fit about 4-5 pellets at a time in his mouth. It is funny and you sometimes think they might all just get stuck. My plec also doesn't like to be disturbed. About 4 times now, he has been eating and the giant Oscar (30 cm) bashes him out of the way to get more food. That's something my plec doesn't like. He bashes the Oscar in the face constantly, making the Oscar back off. The Oscar widens his mouth and spreads his fins but my plec still doesn't back off. The Oscar in the end is forced to retreat. I haven't heard of this case before, but it shows any other big fish that messes with my plec, it is not clever!

Contributed by Oliver Ho

I have the two sailfin Pleco's in my 690 liter aquarium. My sailfin Pleco's are both 30 cm long. I got them from a guy that had no more space in his aquarium to keep them. I am very happy with them as they keep my aquarium spotless clean. I am also keeping two turtles (both about 25 cm long) in the aquarium and some goldfish. All these animals are getting along great. I expected the turtles to be aggressive towards the Sailfin Plecs and the goldfish, but I found out that they will not be hunted upon as long as the fish are big enough. The Sailfin Pleco's are very friendly towards the goldfish and the turtles. They even suck onto the turtle shells to clean them, that is a very strange sight to see I can assure you. So it does not seems to matter what kind of animals and fish you have in the aquarium, a sailfish Pleco is always a very nice addition as long as the aquarium is big enough.

Contributed by Foeke van der Bij

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