King Tiger Pleco
Common Name: King Tiger Pleco
Scientific Name: Hypancistrus sp.
Wild Origin: South America
Average Shipped Size: 1.2-1.3in
Adult Size: 5-6in
The King Tiger Pleco belongs to the South American suckermouth catfish family. This particular species is easily recognized by its distinct striped pattern that spans its entire body. The King Tiger Pleco is smaller than the Common Pleco, making it suitable for most standard-sized aquariums. Plecos are relatively peaceful and do not generally bother other tankmates, but may prey on dwarf shrimp from time to time. King Tiger Plecos tend to prefer warmer temperatures that may not be suitable for other popular livestock options.
The King Tiger Pleco tends to be active at night, but once it adapts to an aquarium featuring ample driftwood, rock formations, and hiding spots, it can display activity during the daytime. While not known for being a heavy wood consumer like certain plecos, it may benefit from supplemental wood consumption and has been observed to feed on bio-film that grows on driftwood. It typically doesn't disturb most plants and isn't a proficient algae consumer.
Key Features & Important Notes
- Unsexed juveniles
- Bright, bold pattern
- To increase survival rates, please allow 2-3 business days after an order is placed to properly prepare live animal shipments.
Listed information should be treated as general guidelines only. We encourage you to do thorough research before committing to keeping any livestock.
- Temperature Range: 72-84°F
- pH: 6.5-7.5
- KH: 6-10
40 gallons. Tank size is relative and various factors should be considered when determining tank size. Factors include maintenance schedules, tank mates, desired colony size, and more.
Requires a mainly carnivorous diet. Feed meaty and high-protein foods like bloodworms or tubifex worms. Supplement with driftwood for biofilm-grazing. Commercially-available protein-rich foods like Repashy Gel Diets and Fluval Bug Bites will also be accepted.
Juvenile King Tiger Plecos are impossible to differentiate by sex, but as they mature, distinct gender characteristics emerge. Males develop prominent odontodes on their pectoral fins and heads, while females might have smaller, less noticeable ones. Females display rounder body shapes, while males possess broader, shorter heads. Full maturity might take up to 2 years, so patience is necessary if you're looking to form breeding pairs from a group. To prepare for breeding, ensure the adult breeders are well-conditioned with a diet of live and frozen foods beforehand.
The simplest breeding method involves isolating a pair in a dedicated tank filled with ample caves. Pipes or plant pots make great make-shift "caves". Cave entrances should be slightly larger than the fish so the female has enough room to lay her eggs. Maintain well-oxygenated water and keep the pH under 6.5. The spawning of the fish is induced by factors such as low air pressure and water changes.
The male picks a preferred spawning site and actively defends it. He entices the female to the site, though egg-laying might occur days later. Post-spawn, the female plays no further role and is chased away by the male. He handles parenting duties, safeguarding, and fanning the eggs with his fins. Once hatched, fry feed off their yolk sacs initially. Once consumed, provide newly hatched fry with algae wafers, baby brine shrimp, micro-worms, or crushed flakes.