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Old 07-26-2004, 11:02 AM   #1
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Plecostomus Injured

I have a 100 gal tank, 3 oscars, orginal, tiger and splash. 3 Jack demps and 1 fire mouth along with my 2 plecostomuses.
The bigger of the 2 plecos is roughly a ft long with the smaller 1 ranging around 7 inches however I noticed the larger one eating the armor off of my little one. Anyway along with this her fins are mangled badly and she's been in the tank for about 4 months now and has been fine. At the moment I have moved her out of that tank into a smaller one hoping I can change the final outcome to a good one but my question remains,
Is the Plecostomuses aggressive as I have read on some pages or non aggressive as I've read on some pages??? Never seen them attack live fish before.
I am assuming she got into a fight with an oscar or jack but then again why would the plecostomus attack a live fish?
Is there a certain chemical I can put on her to help her regrow her armour? Or will she ever regrow it?
Could she have been sick and they just thought kill it? I'm reaching now

Anyway any advice would be appreciated.
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Old 07-26-2004, 11:12 AM   #2
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[center:0eabde2817] Welcome to AA, Becca!! [/center:0eabde2817]
I would start with some Melafix for the injured pleco. Usually plecos can defend themselves, so it is odd that this one is so badly hurt. I know plecos will suck the slime coating off slow fish--they think it's tasty! A few members here have reported plecos as territorial, but this has not been my experience with the smaller varieties--so far. However, I only keep one common pleco in with my Mbuna cichlids in an 80 gal. I could well imagine that two in a 100 gal is a bit cozy. I know sometimes it's hard to believe that after 4 months of calm, then things go haywire, but I have seen it too often in my cichlid tank and read that from other members.
How long have you had all the fish? Are they all full grown?
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Old 07-26-2004, 12:17 PM   #3
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Thanks for the welcome
I've had them since my mom gave me the 100 gal tank. So roughly 8 months or so. They were all babies and then about 6 months I added the fire mouth and he did really good so 4 months ago I added the pleco and she's been doing very well grew up nice.
My oscars are the biggest main fish I have and they are about 8 inches the jacks and fire mouth range from 4 inches to 7 inches. But they all grew up together from babies. So they have awhile to grow yet. But like I said earlier my pleco is a foot long and the injured 1 is about 7 inches long.
At one point when about 3 months after I got the tank up my jacks started fighting and I had to take 1 of them out so he could heal but they get along well and my oscars I have 2 female and 1 male so it's a nice tank. And since they have found out I'm not all that bad they grew to trust me, both my plecos are handled by hand along with my oscars and jacks and fire mouth.
When they were babies I played in the tank alot moving things so now I can pet them all but this one pleco that is injured was the one that would come up to the top of the tank and swim across the top so I could pet her and she did that every time I got near the tank, I can't lose this one.

What is Melafix and who would carry it?
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Old 07-26-2004, 12:32 PM   #4
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Melafix is made from tea tree oil. Here’s what the manufacturer says:
Antibacterial Remedy
Rapidly Repairs Damaged Fins
Heals Open Wounds and Ulcers
Stops Mouth Fungus
Treats Fin and Tail Rot

It's not the be all and end all, but it works nicely if you don't need meds for bacteria or fungus.

It sounds like that is all the pleco needs--right now. You need to keep a close watch on it to see that a bacterial or fungal infection does not crop up.

Melafix can be found in just about all LFS and megapet stores that I know of. It is in a blue bottle and something you should have around anyway Google it to see a pic of it, before heading to the store, so you know what you are looking for and don't let the sales staff talk you into a bunch of heavy meds--they are not needed right now.
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Old 07-26-2004, 12:35 PM   #5
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Sorry to hear about your pleco.

Plecos can be territorial and aggressive towards other plecos. Many people have success in keeping multiple plecos in their tank, but others don't. I suspect that your foot long pleco was feeling a bit crowded and decided to do the other one in. However, with the other tankmates you have, it's possible that one of the others could have injured your smaller pleco as well, and the larger pleco just took advantage of the situation.

As suggested melafix may help and it's all natural, but be on the look out for other fungal or bacterial infections at the injury sites. BTW, you can usually get melafix from most LFSs or PetSmart or Petco.

I don't know how much in the way of structure you have, but providing more hiding places for your small pleco is the only thing that may help him survive future aggression. Another problem is going to be that your tank is still too small to handle the size and territory requirements of your oscars and jacks at full size. So you may want to start thinking about future living accomodations
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Old 07-26-2004, 12:41 PM   #6
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Are these just common plecos? Some species of plecos become very territorial when they get bigger especially if they are both the same sex. A friend of mine had two common plecos in a 29-gallon tank and once one of them hit 6 inches he took out the smaller pleco. I try not to keep more than one of any species in my tanks. Royals and scarlet plecos are some of the worst for being territorial once they get bigger. I just got a Xingu royal and put him on my 60-gallon tank. The new pleco is just a bit bigger than my broken line royal and he keeps picking on the little guy. I ended up having to separate them.

Melafix is an antibiotic and prevents secondary bacterial infections.
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Old 07-26-2004, 01:35 PM   #7
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In the future I will deal with them looking at some huge wall tanks but won't be doing that for a little while yet.

Thanks for the help and the advice but she died. At least I learned something right.

But I think my fish are to big to even try to get another one now.
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Old 07-26-2004, 01:57 PM   #8
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I am so sorry to hear that. Between the stress and the injuries, it was too much.

I would definitely not add any other fish to that tank and keep a close eye on all of them. Just because they grew up together, doesn't mean they will stay peaceful. I would make sure the Jacks don't start taking over the tank. If two of them form a mating pair, the other fish will be at risk.
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Old 07-26-2004, 02:17 PM   #9
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yes the pleco is a very aggresive fish i have rare albino marble gibbiceps that has knocked out a large discus 2 large angels and ate them to the bone and 4 large ancestrius.
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Old 07-26-2004, 11:39 PM   #10
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Quote:
yes the pleco is a very aggresive fish i have rare albino marble gibbiceps that has knocked out a large discus 2 large angels and ate them to the bone and 4 large ancestrius.
Woah!!

I have noticed my still unidentified gibbiceps pleco, become terriotorial with my common lately, and the common is twice his size! Hopefully he won't take out my angels...cause we start to fight then..
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Old 07-27-2004, 11:21 PM   #11
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My little clown pleco is very aggresive. There is a small cave he likes to stay in and whenever my dojo comes by the pleco will dash out and start ramming it away. Same with the frogs. However he doesn't mess with "the beast" my spotted raphael catfish (he eats my shrimp and has a huge stomach). <-- he's only 4.5 inches long but the width of his head and stomach is at least 1.5 inches. Back to my pleco, I'm starting to think it's not a clown cause after I got him he grew like an inch and his pattern changed, with much bigger fins now.
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