View Full Version : Temporary 20g for common pleco???

05-18-2009, 11:57 PM
Ok, so I have a bit of a strange situation with my common pleco. I got him when I first started out with fish a year and a half ago. First he was in my 10g, then moved into the 20g I have when I upgraded. Eventually, when he reached around 5" I got a huge 90g setup and moved him into there so he wouldn't get cramped/sick from the lack of space. Only, he's been in there since november and hasn't eaten. I just got back from school to do some catch up major maintenance when I noticed his poor belly is completely caved in and all his bones are showing. I knew he hadn't been eating his cucumber but there was so much algae and he ate any tubifex worms that I stuck to the glass.

Well, because of his lack of bodyness, hes begun to deteriorate some and the platies began chewing his fins. I just moved him back into my 20g (he's still only 5.5") and started him on pima/melafix to help clear up any fungus/infection in his tail (which looks a little milky) so he can recover. I was nervous he was going to keep fasting but as soon as he got over his surprise, he started snarfing cucumber again!

So now I am really confused. My pleco seems to prefer being cramped. I know he can't stay in the 20g forever because he'll get way too big, but how big can he grow before he has to move back into the 90g? Any ideas what would cause this behavior??

05-19-2009, 12:00 AM
How long has the 90 been running?
Was it an established tank?
Are you sure its a common?

05-19-2009, 12:04 AM
The 90 has been running since late october, early november. I used a combination of some filter media from my long established 20g and a friends 75g to get it started. I even got the platies to boost the tank before I introduced my pleco.

I'm pretty sure he's a common. He's just the brown kinda leopardy spotted kind that lfs' sell as common plecos. Here is an old picture of him. He's a few inches longer but looks the same otherwise.

05-19-2009, 12:12 AM
Certainly looks like a common but I am no expert!
Are the perameters ok.
Its possibly internal.Try and get a look at his belly,see if its discolored.

05-19-2009, 12:24 AM
I guess your pleco didn't get the memo about needing a larger tank :hmm3grin2orange: If hes happy and healthy in the 20 gal, then maybe thats the best place for him to be. I wouldn't worry about moving him until he acts like he needs to move.

05-19-2009, 12:25 AM
Parameters are good. This hasn't been a sudden habit, he pretty much stopped eating his cucumber a few weeks after moving into the 90 way back when.

His belly looks normal color to me. Just really sunken in and you can sort of see his spine bumps on his back. He's eating now though and seems much happier, putting up his dorsal fin a lot.

How big can he get before he has to go back in the 90?

05-20-2009, 02:35 PM
wow, that's really weird. Maybe he just prefers the look of the 20, or he likes a certain part of the 20 that makes it homey? You'd think he'd like the bigger space, but maybe it's too open for him? Maybe cram some more wood to make more crannies for him to feel safe? Good-luck!

05-20-2009, 02:40 PM
That is weird!
Have you got pics of both tanks?
He is still under 6",how much has it grown since you got it?