Re: do plecos eat plants

The larger 'Hypostomus' shaped plecos seem to be happy enough eating plants
at least stiff enough to support their weight. This includes fish like
Hypostomus, Pterygoblichthys, Panaque. I've seen them eat Anubias and
Echinodoras, but ignore Vallisneria, Ceratophyllum, Cryptocoryne.

Whiptail catfish and twig catfish (Farlowella, Loricaria, etc...) don't
seem to eat plants.

I've not kept Ancistrus.

At least some cyprinids, like siamese algae eaters and flying foxes are
cheap, widely available and do a good job with moderate algae growth. There
are a lot of Garra spp. available in shops in the UK right now, which are
small algae eating fish and would be worth a try. Although rather drab
(though cheap) they seem hardy providing the water is well aerated. All of
these are fine with plants.

The "sucking loach" Gyrinocheilus aymonieri is useful when young but
becomes less so with age; although adults are useful target fish in large
cichlid aquaria. These fish are *very* hardy and can even be kept in
coolwater aquaria.

There are also a number of "hillstream loaches", small flattened fish that
look rather like a cross between a barb and a flounder! They need coolish,
well aerated aquaria (or at least good oxygenation and filtration), so tend
to be short lived in community tanks. They feed almost exclusively on green
algae and small invertebrates.

Hope this helps,



From  Neale Monks' Macintosh PowerBook, at...

Department of Palaeontology, Natural History Museum, London, SW7 5BD
Internet: N.Monks at nhm_ac.uk, Telephone: 0171-938-9007