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Thread: Floating common pleco...

  1. #1
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    Floating common pleco...

    I got a new tank a while back and it came with some convicts and an 8" or so common pleco. Everyone seems fine, except the pleco seems to float to the surface... Ive actually thought he was dead a couple times until closer inspection when he went back to swimming around. But he seems to be a little bit buoyant, like hes fighting a bit to stay down and eventually gives up and just hangs out on his side at the top stuck to the glass. A couple times ive seen him belly up floating around, but when he sees movement he swims around again. Anyone see this before? He was in kinda rough shape when i got him, but other than the floatiness he seems to be coming around...
    125g. Jaguar pair.... 75g. Jaguar male....
    45g. L002 Pleco pair.... 30g. Danios....
    55g. Iridescent shark.... 33g. Marble crayfish....
    6x20g. Shrimp/Guppies/Breeding/Fry....

  2. #2
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    What size is the tank? What is the filtration? Is the tank(filter/s) cycled? What is your water change schedule?

  3. #3
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    Its a 55g, well established, 405 and small hob for filtration. Plenty of air and a circulation pump for a bit of current. May be a little slack on the water changes and havent been testing, but everything is quite similar to the rest of my setups. There are also a pair of medium sized convicts as well as half a dozen inch long young ones.
    125g. Jaguar pair.... 75g. Jaguar male....
    45g. L002 Pleco pair.... 30g. Danios....
    55g. Iridescent shark.... 33g. Marble crayfish....
    6x20g. Shrimp/Guppies/Breeding/Fry....

  4. #4
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    He otherwise seems happy and healthy, he just... floats a bit...
    125g. Jaguar pair.... 75g. Jaguar male....
    45g. L002 Pleco pair.... 30g. Danios....
    55g. Iridescent shark.... 33g. Marble crayfish....
    6x20g. Shrimp/Guppies/Breeding/Fry....

  5. #5
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    Aside from doing a few extra water changes, I would suggest adding some epsom salt.

    If he's bloated or blocked up it could be affecting his swim bladder. I've used 1-2 tablespoons per 10 gallons to help with similar issues.
    108g Planted - Discus, Royal Plec, Featherfin Syndos
    5.5g planted - Assorted shrimp

  6. #6
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    Update on the floating pleco... I came to the conclusion it was the type of food. When i first got him i was feeding the tank mostly sinking pellets. When they ran out i started with flakes, and started to notice him floating towards the surface (but didnt put it together yet). When the flakes ran out i went back to sinking pellets and after a week or so he wasnt floating and could stay on the bottom more easily. Tried flakes for a couple days and hes floating again. My theory is that the flakes dont sink for quite a while, and he comes to the surface to get them, swallowing bubbles of air in the process. After a while back on pellets the air works its way out and hes back to normal.
    125g. Jaguar pair.... 75g. Jaguar male....
    45g. L002 Pleco pair.... 30g. Danios....
    55g. Iridescent shark.... 33g. Marble crayfish....
    6x20g. Shrimp/Guppies/Breeding/Fry....

  7. #7
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    DevonC's Avatar
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    Very interesting , thanks for the update!
    My Aquariums *Updated Feb. 2016
    180g- Scleropages aureus
    100g- 4x Channa Pleurophthalma , 1x Erpetoichthys Calabaricus, 2x Synodontis Eupterus, Polypterus ssp.'s Lapradei, Delhezi,Ornatipinnis ,Endlicheri & Angsorii x2
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    80g 1x Channa Aurantimaculata (for sale...inquire)
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    35g- 3x Channa Gachua,
    35g- Pair of Channa Bleheri
    25g- 3x Channa Bleheri

  8. #8
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    I cant take all the credit either... The tank is in the basement of my shop temporarily, and a buddy of mine was over for a beer one evening watching me feed them some flakes. We had talked about the floating pleco before (talked about writing a childrens book about Floaty the Pleco lol). He says to me "well thats why hes floating, hes swallowing air and cant burp"... Eureka moment from a guy who knows nothing about fish ha ha.
    125g. Jaguar pair.... 75g. Jaguar male....
    45g. L002 Pleco pair.... 30g. Danios....
    55g. Iridescent shark.... 33g. Marble crayfish....
    6x20g. Shrimp/Guppies/Breeding/Fry....

  9. #9
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    Poor guy was just a little gassy. :) Glad to hear he is doing better.
    108g Planted - Discus, Royal Plec, Featherfin Syndos
    5.5g planted - Assorted shrimp

  10. #10
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    That's a very interesting discovery!

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