View Full Version : BN question

06-06-2009, 07:00 PM
do females have very small bristles? i bought an albino bn that the fish guy said he was 70% was female. his reasoning was that the bristles on it's face were very small, while the fish itself was up to about 2 1/4 inches in length. he thought at that size, if it were male, the bristles would be more prominent. i see no horns on the sides of it's face. i will post a photo later, after i get back from nephew's little league game

06-06-2009, 10:21 PM
Some females do have "stubble", though more often it's an immature male. My longfin male is about that length and still has short bristles, they seem to grow (relatively) more slowly than he does.

06-06-2009, 10:23 PM
Some females do have "stubble", though more often it's an immature male. My longfin male is about that length and still has short bristles, they seem to grow (relatively) more slowly than he does.

I agree, sometimes they have very small bristles but most of the time, have none at all.

06-06-2009, 10:28 PM
It all depends on the species of BN pleco. All male members of the Ancistrus genus have bristles, and the males of some species have multiple rows of bristles. The females will either have significatly fewer bristles or no bristles at all. With the common BN pleco, the female only has a single row of shorter bristles while the male will have longer bristles with a row of them going up between the eyes.

06-06-2009, 10:59 PM
okay, im working on a photo now...

06-06-2009, 11:06 PM
ok here it is, although i am concerned that perhaps it is another male.

it does appear just to be one row of bristles. i am going to go take a good long look again

06-06-2009, 11:14 PM
A bit difficult to tell from that photo. We really need a good clear picture of the head face on.

06-06-2009, 11:20 PM
i am starting to think the guy at the store was wrong because i think the bristles may even have grown a little over the past 2 weeks ive had it.

it definitely has some small horns on the side of its face...does that mean male for sure? and i can see one bristle that is back from the others a little bit in the middle of it's face

i will keep trying to get a better shot...does that help at all? i have a couple more similar shots

06-06-2009, 11:25 PM
Sure looks like a male to me!
A handsome one too!
The bristles will probably continue to grow at a slow rate as he ages.

06-06-2009, 11:40 PM
yeah, the bristles were totally not as big when i bought him, more of a stubble....and now i see horns coming in on the side. i will be bringing him back to exchange for a female. i wanted to have a breeding pair. he is a good looking fish, though....has a lot of orange whereas my other is more yellow

06-06-2009, 11:41 PM
I agree it looks like a male to me!

06-06-2009, 11:48 PM
Very likely a male, but impossible to be 100% sure without a view of the top of the head.

06-07-2009, 01:37 AM
i will get a photo of the top of his head as soon as i can.

06-07-2009, 02:14 AM
thanks for the help!

06-07-2009, 03:17 AM
My best guess would be that it is male also. He's quite the handsome guy too.:19:

06-07-2009, 03:49 AM
No sign of a second row of bristles and that could indicate female, however this fish is still young and that second row could still come out. The later scenario is what I suspect with this fish. Ancistrus cf. cirrhosus females typically have no bristles at all but some do have a row that is very fine, however the males have a very full set of bristles that are unmistakable. The bristles form as the fish matures from juvenile to adult. This fish is still maturing and you are likely to see more and more bristles develp.

06-07-2009, 05:12 AM
thanks for the help, again. i just had to put this one up because i love it...i just got the shot, followed by a couple others. i think that the third shot may be the most definitive...you can see additional bristles a little back from the center

06-07-2009, 05:31 AM
all this fussing over this fish and ive decided there is no way i am taking him back....i really like him/her. if/when it shows itself as a male for certain, i will pick up a female and put one of the males into my 29 gallon.

again, thanks for all the help