How many bristlenose plecos should i get? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-04-2020, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
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How many bristlenose plecos should i get?

Hello everyone!
In September of 2019 me and my father set up a new aquarium and in December we got shrimp.(Amanos and cherries)
I have done my fair share of research on bristlenose plecos and eventually started to think about how many bristlenose plecos should I get. My father 4 bristlenoses because they are recommended to be a group, but I personally think 2 bristlenoses would be better because the aquarium we set up is about 54 liters(62cm wide) and they can get up to 15cm long. I'd appreciate any type of opinion, tip and/or criticism.
Thanks,
Breeze.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-05-2020, 02:52 AM
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Honestly 1 is too many is that size tank. Should be 20 gallons (75 liters) or larger tank for 1. They need a lot of filtration and aeration. If its a planted tank they may not intentionally eat plants but they will crash through and damage/uproot delicate/lighter stuff (stems for example).
What do you want the pleco for?
It will be a massive poop monster. If you are after a clean up crew nerite snail will take care of several algae include diatoms (brown aglae) and green spot algae, but won't eat fish food leftovers. Mystery snail will eat leftover food but not as good at algae cleaning (mostly works on diatoms and not as good as nerite). Both make a lot of poop but its less than a pleco!
I just keep 'pest' snails (bladder and ramshorn snails) to clean most of the algae/uneaten food and manually clean any leftover algae.

If you just want a bristle nose pleco as a pet/breeding tank I'd recommend getting a larger tank and more filtration (can't have too much with them!) Be prepared to clean your filter (what ever the type) often ad the poop will accumulate quickly.
I had a larger species of pleco-leopard sailfin and at 13" (38cm) it was pooping SOOOOO much it would clog the monster eheim xl3 canister filter a few times a week x.x
Basically you trade cleaning out algae/leftover food for cleaning up poop!

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 01:10 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you, and FYI I have been trying to come up with a plan B. So far it's not the best, because we have a 240 liter tank that has a pterygoplyht or something like that, 5 angelfishes and 5 clown loaches. I'm more worried that if they get too big we will have to put them in that tank and that the bristlenoses will be attacked by the pterygoplyht. Best case scenario is that we manage to clean up a certain area of our basement and do everything else and what not. After all that is done me and my father have planed to possibly get a 960 liter tank (2m wide).
not
But yeah, thank you
Breeze

Also the reason why we chose the bristlenose pleco is because we had a big algae issue that the shrimp couldn't handle. (we did also add a lot more plants)

Last edited by Darkblade48; 01-15-2020 at 05:26 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 06:58 PM
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Honestly, as you've asked for any advice/criticism, the tanks you currently have are much too small for their stock (barring maybe the angelfish).

If you want to keep the clown loaches and sailfin plec, you will need the 960 liter tank ASAP.

Clown loaches reach up to 1ft long and stunt very easily, so they'll need to go in the 960L. Same for the sailfin plec.

Depending on the dimensions of the 240L, the angelfish could be okay, but they're not something I have any experience with.

The bristlenoses will not be okay in a 54L, and are not particularly gregarious, I'd be surprised if you didn't see aggression between 4 adult bristlenoses in that size tank, or even 2. These will need to go in the 240L.

Once you've sorted out your 960L, I'm sure you could have some lovely sterbai or jullii corys in the 240L, like you mentioned in one of your other posts. Please do not add any other fish into these tank as they are currently though.

If you're not guaranteed the 960L, you really need to look at what's best for the fish and return those that you cannot give adequate care. Once you have either rehomed or sorted the stocking of the tanks, I'm sure you'll have some wonderfully happy fish and a beautiful planted tank. You can always start a journal on this forum if you like, it's great fun for others to follow along

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 03:11 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you very much for your criticism and opinion. I really hope that everything will get sorted and I won't have to rehome them but if the worst happens then it most likely will be the best option. I'd NEVER consider putting them in a lake, pond or any water that is in the wilderness as that could have a dangerous effect on the ecosystem.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 06:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thelongsnail View Post

The bristlenoses will not be okay in a 54L, and are not particularly gregarious, I'd be surprised if you didn't see aggression between 4 adult bristlenoses in that size tank, or even 2. These will need to go in the 240L.

I'm going to emphatically second this. When I just sold babies/juveniles I thought they were a placid L cat but once I bred some and kept adult Ancistrus, I'd argue that adults really behave like little armored cichlids. I tried putting a group of 2 males and 4 females into a 125 gallon and one of the males did absolutely nothing but chase the other until I removed the bullied fish. And then he turned his ire to unreceptive females. Just this weekend I moved a small male from one of my 45 gallon cubes and he immediately began chasing an established royal pleco that's 4 times his mass easily. This happened within 5 minutes of being netted and moved. Males in particular can be jerks towards similar fish.
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Nothing good happens fast in an ecosystem.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Breezkillr View Post
Also the reason why we chose the bristlenose pleco is because we had a big algae issue that the shrimp couldn't handle. (we did also add a lot more plants)

BN plecos are not the answer here, nor are snails, shrimp or any other critter.


The solution to the problem lies with you.


Causes of Algae in tanks.
1 Overstocking
2 Overfeeding
3 Too much light
4 Not enough light
5 Too much Fertilizer
6 Not enough Fertilizer
7 Poor tank maintenance
8 Poor filtration.


Or any combination above, Fix that and you algae is gone.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-15-2020, 06:32 PM
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Hi @Breezkillr

Not sure why you directly messaged me regarding your fish, but I'm going to answer both your reply and message here:

1. I'm glad you would never put your fish in the wild and hope you don't think I'm suggesting that? However, the worst is already happening and you need to get your stocking sorted out yesterday.

2. I'm really very surprised that your clown loaches are 6 years old and 7-10cm (as stated in your message.) If they are actually clown loaches then they have been stunted by their living conditions. This will have shortened their lifespan and will continue to do so until you put them in an appropriately sized tank.

3. A 25cm long plec is much too large for a 240L tank and needs to be moved ASAP, not "if" it reaches 35-45cm. Again, these conditions can and will stunt it, shortening its life etc.

4. The reason why you have nitrates of 75mg/L is because you have overstocked your tank with unsuitable fish. The best way to rectify this is by increasing water changes until you get an appropriately sized tank or rehome the fish. What is your current water change schedule?

I hope this helps and that you get an appropriate tank for your fish soon

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-15-2020, 07:06 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for high lighting that, I'll try to fix their living conditions and attempt to find a bigger aquarium to expand their lifespan as I really don't want them to suffer.

Thank you for the info

I think the problem that I have is that there might not be enough lighting. I am definitely sure that I am not overfeeding or at least I think that I am not overfeeding.

Oh and also I meant to say that the nitrates are 50. The current water changing schedule is about 3 times a day but I think that actually might be too much. I want to try to see what would happen if we didn't change the water every 8-14 days but I'm a little worried that, that might affect the fish in someway.
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Last edited by Darkblade48; 01-17-2020 at 02:13 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-17-2020, 08:38 AM
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@Breezkillr, the algae will be down to the high nitrates from overstocking, so although light may also be a factor, a new light probably won't fix this.

How much water are you changing in these 3 daily changes?? That does seem a lot, but if nitrates are still showing at 50 in this tank and 20 in the other (as you stated in the message), then this is a problem. Have you tested the nitrates in your tap water? I wouldn't change the water change schedule until there's more information, imo.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-17-2020, 06:31 PM
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I think he meant 3 times a month, atleast that's what a 8-14 day change schedule would roughly equal.

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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-18-2020, 12:50 PM
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If it's 3 times a month then that's less than typically recommended for a well-stocked tank, more definitely required in this situation.

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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-18-2020, 08:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thelongsnail View Post
If it's 3 times a month then that's less than typically recommended for a well-stocked tank, more definitely required in this situation.

I would go with 50 to 75% water change every 7 days. Never be afraid of clean treated water its the fish keepers best friend, Just like Malaysian Trumpet snails are your best friend if you have plants.
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