L401 Royal King Alenquer Pleco (Hypancistrus sp.), Tank-Raised!!!
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The L401 Royal King Alenquer Pleco is a very rare and very beautiful Hypancistrus species that is a wonderful candidate for the community planted aquarium!
The L401 Royal King Alenquer Pleco (Hypancistrus sp.), also known as the Rio Curuá Pleco, is a very rare and recently identified member of the Loricariidae family of South American suckermouth catfishes. Its entire body is covered in black and white/yellow “maze-like” stripes, making it a very striking fish for the planted or nano aquarium. In the past, it was considered to possibly be a significantly different geographic variant of the L333 King Tiger Pleco, but it has since been determined to be its own distinct species. Like many plecos, the Royal King Alenquer Pleco has generally been a wild-caught species, but we are proud to be among the first stores to offer superior tank-raised juveniles at a MUCH lower cost than wild-caught specimens (and much lower than many other stores’ tank-raised specimens)!
A generally peaceful and hardy species, the Royal King Alenquer Pleco is an excellent, undemanding candidate for most aquariums. Unlike the widely-seen Common Pleco (Hypostomus plecostomus) and Trinidad Pleco (Hypostomus punctatus), which easily reach a monstrous size of 18 to 20+ inches (45 to 51+ cm), the Royal King Alenquer Pleco grows to a size of only 3.9 inches (10 cm). This smaller size makes for a much more manageable (and less messy) pleco that can thrive permanently in a well-maintained aquarium as small as 30 gallons. Male plecos may be somewhat territorial with other males of their species, but disputes can usually be diffused by providing ample territory and hiding places for each fish. All other fish tankmates will be generally ignored, although it is possible that juvenile and subadult dwarf shrimp will fall prey to the Royal King Alenquer Pleco. However, ornamental snails will not be bothered and large Amano, Green Lace, Flower, and Vampire Shrimp are generally unthreatened by the Royal King Alenquer Pleco. Please note that this fish requires a significantly warmer temperature than some other fish and invertebrates, especially subtropical species. Some shrimp will not thrive in these high temperatures.
The Royal King Alenquer Pleco is primarily nocturnal, but will often become active during daytime hours once established in an aquarium with plenty of driftwood, rockwork, and other hiding places. It is not known to eat wood heavily like some plecos (Panaque sp., etc.), but it may benefit from some supplementary wood (or bio-film on driftwood). The Royal King Alenquer Pleco will not bother most plants and it is not an effective algae eater. Feed the Royal King Alenquer Pleco a diet heavy in both meaty and vegetable matter, including high-quality vegetable flakes, sinking algae wafers and pellets. Like most Hypancistrus species, the Royal King Alenquer Pleco is omnivorous, but but it leans heavily on the carnivorous side. It will also appreciate being fed some fresh vegetables such as shelled peas, spinach, zucchini and cucumber. Meaty foods such as bloodworms are definitely necessary for this species, especially in comparison to some other “pleco” species. This species also requires a very clean, well-maintained aquarium with moderate to high water flow in order to thrive.
The L401 Royal King Alenquer Pleco is a reclusive species, but it will typically be increasingly outgoing in a heavily planted and decorated aquarium with peaceful tankmates.
What We Like About This Fish:
- The Royal King Alenquer Pleco is an extremely beautiful and very peaceful, hardy addition to almost any aquarium.
- At a maximum size of 3.9 inches, this is a very practical and manageable fish.
- This fish will not bother most plants. It will also scavenge and consume a great deal of uneaten fish food.
- The Royal King Alenquer Pleco is an aquarium fish with a striking appearance as well as plenty of personality.
- Diet: Omnivorous, so a varied diet is necessary. This species is more carnivorous than many other “pleco” species.
- Social behavior: Generally solitary, but will socialize somewhat, especially during breeding.
- Origin: Tank-raised, but indigenous to Rio Tapajos, Brazil, South America.
- Average adult size: 3.9 inches (10 cm)
- Average purchase size: 1+ inches (2.5+ cm)
RECOMMENDED TANK PARAMETERS:
- pH level range: 5.5 - 7.5 (flexible as long as sudden changes are avoided.)
- Temperature range: 77 – 84.2° F (25 - 29° C)
- KH: 6 - 10 dKH
- Minimum tank size: 30 gallons