Plecos have always been one of my favourite fish to keep and breed. These guys are pretty easy to breed and you can even breed them in community tanks or any other tanks as long as you have some pleco caves available within your tanks. Make sure the Plecos are at least 3-4 inches before they are mature enough to breed. Allow the plecos to be at least 7-8 months old. Both the female and the male need to be mature enough to breed. Once the plecos are mature enough, the females will spawn and lay eggs in the pleco caves. There is no external effort or process to follow to breed the plecos as they are easy to breed and they will eventually lay eggs once they reach maturity.
You can either breed them for hobby or you can also breed them for profits and sell them at your nearest fish stores.
How to distinguish between Male and Female Plecos
As per my experience, male plecos tend to be thinner in width and have long bristles on their nose. On the other hand, females tend to have no bristles and are comparatively fat compared to the males plecos.
Here are some points to keep in mind while being able to bring about a sense of breeding process for your plecos.
Things to Keep in Mind while Breeding Plecos
Make sure the Plecos are Mature
The plecos need to be able to reach a size of at least 3-4 inches before they are mature enough to breed. Allow the plecos to be at least 7-8 months old. Both the female and the male need to be mature enough to breed.
Once the plecos are mature enough, the females will spawn and lay eggs in the pleco caves. There is no external effort or process to follow to breed the plecos as they are easy to breed and they will eventually lay eggs once they reach maturity.
Feed enough food to your plecos to stay healthy and necessary nutrients in order to start breeding.
Try feeding some Veggies, Bloodworm flakes, algae wafers or brine shrimps to your Plecos. These items provide necessary nutrients to grow and yield maximum success in the breeding process.
Add Pleco Caves in your tanks
This is the most important aspect of breeding plecos. They need a hiding space in the form of a cave while breeding and it also plays an important role in carrying the eggs till they mature into frys.
Add 1 to 3 Pleco caves into your aquarium to create a healthy breeding ambience for the plecos.
Once the eggs are laid, make sure you perform water change up to 40% of the tank as it is necessary to keep your tank healthy and it will become difficult to do water changes once the frys come out of the eggs.
Male Pleco will guard the Eggs
The male Pleco will take care of the eggs till they hatch. He will make sure that there are no predators or other fish harming the eggs.
It will take up to 3-5 days for the eggs to hatch once they are laid in the pleco caves. The male Pleco will not eat much during this period and only take care of the eggs till they come out as frys.
Shift the frys
You will notice small frys inside the pleco cave once their eggs hatch and now you need to shift them into a different tank to care and nourish them.
The whole process of breeding is easy with Plecos but giving them separate care once they hatch from eggs is important. Feed them brine shrimps, boiled veggies like zucchini, cucumber, and broccoli to give them the right nutrients.