Calico Bushynose Pleco Small
Common name: Bushynose pleco, bristlenose pleco
Scientific name: Ancistrus sp. (probably cirrhosus)
Distribution: Amazon and Rio Negro basins in Brazil
Habitat: Shallow, flowing water near river shores littered with submerged brush, root tangles, and sunken logs
Temperature: 76 – 82°F
pH: 6.0 – 8.0
Adult size: 4 inches
Sexing: Mature males have dense, often branched bristles all over their faces, while females only have a few small bristles around their mouths.
Diet: Omnivore but diet leans more towards the vegetable side. Will take algae wafers and blanched vegetables, but should be supplemented with some meaty foods such as frozen or live invertebrates. This fish is a wood-eater and driftwood should be available in the aquarium for it to rasp on.
Conspecifics: Can be territorial with other members of its species. If keeping multiple, provide ample hiding spots and pieces of driftwood.
Tankmates: Peaceful with small community fish, though its timid nature might mean it is outcompeted by large or aggressive tankmates.
Notes: Ancistrus species are excellent algae eaters appropriate for most community tanks due to their small adult size. Like all plecos, they should not be expected to subsist solely off of algae and must be fed a varied diet. Ancistrus should have access to driftwood in their tank as they not only hide in it, but rasp away its surface to feed on wood fibers and the various microbial biofilms growing on them.
The common bushynose pleco and its related morphs are likely Ancistrus cirrhosus, although the 70+ similar and widely distributed species in the genus means that there may be multiple species representing the “common bushynose” in the hobby.
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