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Old 12-02-2013, 03:05 PM   #1
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L330 Spotted Royal Pleco Messing up the Tank

I recently got a 10" Watermelon pleco, also known as L330, Spotted Royal Pleco and he's very active all day, the problem is that he keeps stirring up the sand and makes the tank incredibly cloudy, to the point that you can barely see inside the tank.

I'm using ACE Hardware's Pool Filter Sand and underneath the sand I have Mineralized Topsoil for plants. He uprooted all my plants, stirs up the sand and digs it up all the time. It's okay if he wants to dig or even uproot the plants, but stirring up the sand all the time makes my tank look horrible.

He has a few pieces of driftwood that I rarely see him chewing on and also a cave where he goes in for short periods of time. I don't have a lot of algae in my tank, and he's most of the time looking for algae on the glass or mainly on the overflow covers, where there's a lot more algae. I also feed him Hikari Algae Wafers, which have disappeared, but I never seen him eating them. He might also be feeding on frozen blood worms left overs, but again, I never seen him eating that.

Yesterday I've threw in a piece of celery and carrot, but it's been 24 hours and he didn't touch it, I guess it takes a while for him to realize it's food.

I read and it seems that it is normal for some plecos to do this, but I doubt a lot of people would keep them if they have their tank looking like mine. Does he need more hiding spaces? Is he hungry?

Any ideas on how to keep him from stirring up the sand so much? Otherwise I might have to sell him, I really like him, but I don't want to have my tank looking like that all the time. I used to have crystal clear water.

Thanks.
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Old 12-02-2013, 04:18 PM   #2
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I already told you in another thread, watermelon plecos are one of few that are DI-urnal. Meaning no matter what he will be out and about any time of the day. Plecos are constant grazers, so even if he gets fed, he's still going to be swimming around searching for food.

There's really nothing you can do, he's going to keep stirring up your sand, especially since he's a Di-urnal. Hiding places won't change that either. Also, it takes plecos a few tries before they realize veggies and fruits are foods.

That being said, I'll gladly buy him from you. I haven't been able to find another one locally.
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:44 AM   #3
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Just to inform anyone who might read this, it's been 3 or 4 days in a row where the water is getting clearer and clearer and it's almost back to normal crystal clear water. What I did was remove a piece of filter media that I had put in the corner overflow to prevent the cichlid pellets from going into the overflows, when I used to have African cichlids, but I removed them because I'm not feeding pellets anymore. That seemed to have helped a lot and for some reason it looks like the fish has stopped stirring up the sand, which I might be wrong, because it's weird for him to go 4 days without stirring up the sand. Maybe he's comfortable with the way he arranged it? I don't know, but today is water change day and I will re arrange the sand and siphon it, which of course will make it a little cloudy and let's see if it clears up in the next day or two and what the pleco's reaction is.
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