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FAQs on Loricariids, South and Central American Suckermouth Cats: Genus Hypancistrus

Related Articles: Loricariids, OtocinclusFrom Pan-ack-ay to Pan-ack-zee, A Detailed Look at the Bizarre But Beautiful Panaque Catfishes by Neale Monks

Related Catfish FAQs: Loricariids 1, Otocinclus
Ancistrus, Baryancistrus, Genera Farlowella, Loricaria, Sturisoma, Rhineloricaria: Twig Plecostomus, Genera Glyptoperichthys, Liposarcus, Pterygoplichthys, Sailfin Giants among the Loricariids, The Zebra Pleco, Hypancistrus zebra, Hypostomus, Peckoltia : Clown Plecostomus, Lasiancistrus, Pseudacanthicus, Scobanancistrus, L-number catfish, Loricariid Identification, Loricariid Behavior, Loricariid Compatibility, Loricariid Selection, Loricariid Systems, Loricariid Feeding, Loricariid Reproduction, Loricariid Disease, Catfish: Identification, Behavior, Compatibility, Selection, Systems, Feeding, Disease, Reproduction Algae Eaters

QUEEN ARABESQUE PLECOS L-260; stkg.; sys.; comp.         9/24/14
Have been seriously considering getting this fish but am finding conflicting information.
<Indeed? Do try PlanetCatfish.com. It's by far and away the biggest and best repository of up-to-date catfish information. Has an excellent forum, too.>

I have hard water and have read both that they prefer soft to medium hard and also that they are ok in hard water?
<Hypancistrus species generally prefer softer water. They're less adaptable (or hardy) as, for example, Ancistrus ("Bristlenose Plecs") or Pterygoplichthys ("common Plecs"). That said, if you have the warmth,
excellent water quality and lots of oxygen, they can do well in fairly hard water. I wouldn't keep them above 20 degrees dH, pH 8 though, and ideally 2-12 degrees dH, pH 6.5-7.5 would be about right.>
Secondly, I have read they should be kept as a single specimen but also that they should be kept 1 male to 2 females.
<Quite so. They're territorial. Singletons are easy to keep. Multiple females per male can also work given space for the "harem" to spread out.
Allow about a square foot per specimen and you won't go far wrong.>
I have also read stocking is 1 fish per square foot regardless of sex.
<Indeed, I'd agree with this. Certainly spread any caves or bogwood roots around the tank so the fish can have breathing space apart from each other, especially males.>
I plan on keeping them in a lightly planted tank, 55 gallon with a school of Corydoras and Celebes Rainbows.
<Corydoras potentially excellent companions, but do note more Corydoras prefer rather cool water, 22-25 C/72-77 F, whereas Hypancistrus are happier around 25-28 C/77-82 F. So while "hothouse flower" Corys like Corydoras sterbai would be good, the usual sorts like Corydoras aeneus won't enjoy that level of warmth, and conversely, too cool conditions will weaken your Hypancistrus. Celebes Rainbows dislike acidic conditions and need neutral to hard water chemistry to do well (even thriving in low-end brackish) so they aren't obvious companions for Hypancistrus at all.>
I realize some of the conflicting information is due to the wide range of Loricariidae available, but I would like to get this right for them. I am hoping some of you have kept this fish and can give me some guidance.
<Hope this helps.>
<Cheers, Neale.>

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