Bristlenose Pleco

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Species group:

Other common names: Bristlenose Plecostomus; Big-fin Bristlenose; Bristle Nose Pleco; BN Pleco; Bristle Nosed Pleco; Bristlenose Catfish; Bushynose Catfish; Bushy Nose Plecostomus; Bristle Nose Plecostomus

Scientific name: Ancistrus spp.

The basics:
The Bristlenose Plecostomus is native to fast flowing tributaries of the Amazon River basin in South America. Like other Plecos, the Bristlenose Plecostomus is a bottom-dweller which grazes on algae and insect larvae. The Bristlenose Plecostomus is a popular freshwater aquarium fish because unlike the common pleco the Bristlenose stays under 4 inches.

They feed on algae but also appreciate flakes, pellets, and freeze-dried tubifex worms.

Like most Plecos, the Bristlenose Pleco has a large, flat head. Bristles grow randomly near the snout and over the face. The bristles also grow longer as the fish ages. The body base colors are usually shades of brown with light markings of spots or blotches. The mouth, situated under the head, is round and suction-cup-shaped. The whole body, except the belly, is covered with large bony plates. Bristlenose Plecos are available in albino form that are yellow with orange markings, and have red eyes.

4 inches

Bristlenose Plecos are peaceful and a good addition to community tanks. Avoid housing with cichlids because they will attack the pleco.

The best aquarium for the Bristlenose Pleco is at least 20 gallons. They prefer a strong current and plenty of live plants to nibble on in case algae is not sufficient. A piece of wood decoration is needed for them to chew on and hide in, without it they tend to not do as well.

74.00-82.00 °F

6.0 - 7.5


different colours, great cleaners, best algae eater, community tank, beautiful blush spots, peaceful


territorial issues, larger gravel substrate


smaller pleco varities, bristles, Scum suckers

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