Close-up of mouth
Close-up of mouth (albino)
Ventral view (albino)
Close-up of eye
Close-up of underside of head
Close-up of head (adult)
Adipose fin (albino)
Superb dorsal fin!
Lower Rio Branco, Brazil
Habitat: Lower Rio Branco
|Cat-eLog Data Sheet|
|Scientific Name||Pterygoplichthys gibbiceps (Kner, 1854)|
|Common Names||L083, Sail Fin Pleco
L165, Gibby, Leopardplettet Sugemalle (Denmark), Sejlfinnet Leopardmalle (Denmark), Waben-Schilderwels (Germany)
|Type Locality||Upper Rio Negro near Marabitanos, Amazonas State, Brazil.|
|Synonym(s)||Ancistrus gibbiceps, Glyptoperichthys gibbiceps, Liposarcus altipinnis|
|Pronunciation||terry gop LICK thees - gibb EE seps|
|Etymology||Greek, pterygion, diminutive of pteryx = wing, fin + Greek, hoplon = weapon + Greek, ichthys = fish. This specific epithet refers to the hump (gibbus=hump) on its head (kephale=head).|
- CotM 1997 July
|Size||450mm or 17.7" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.|
|Identification||Pterygoplichthys can be identified by the number of rays in the dorsal fin. Ten or more dorsal rays (usually more than 10) indicates that it's a Pterygoplichthys. Most other plecos have 8 or fewer rays (in particular the larger Hypostomus species that are most likely to be confused with Pterygoplichthys).
The trademark spotted sailfin makes this a distinctive species.
|Sexing||Comparison of the genital papilla in mature fish shows the differences in the sexes to the trained eye. In males this is a small yet thick stump which noticeably protrudes from the fish's undercarriage. In females it is less obvious and is recessed or lies flat with the body.|
|Distribution||Widespread throughout the Peruvian & Brazilian Amazon. Also known from the Rio Orinoco.
Amazon (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Orinoco (click on these areas to find other species found there)
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|pH||6.5 - 7.8|
|Temperature||23.0-27.0°C or 73.4-80.6°F (Show species within this range)|
|Other Parameters||Larger fish require heavy filtration, not because they are fussy about water quality, but because of the high volumes of waste they produce.|
|Feeding||Lettuce, Peas, Frozen Spinach and any prepared food that reaches the bottom. Larger fish enjoy prawns or pieces of freshwater trout. Algae (especially soft brown) will be eaten immediately.|
|Furniture||An appropriately sized shady retreat is all this fish requires. Will not eat plants, but any individual larger then 100mm or so may inadvertently pull up plants that are not entirely established. Larger fish require heavy filtration, not because they are fussy about water quality, but because of the high volumes of waste they produce.|
|Compatibility||Larger individuals are territorial to conspecifics however not predatory and able to look after itself with all but the most violent tank mates.|
|Suggested Tankmates||Hardy and stoic, a good companion fish for most larger fishes. Not a good pleco to keep with other similarly sized, less gregarious plecos as the P. gibbiceps will usually win any competition for food.|
|Breeding||Although commercially farmed, spawning in a home aquarium would be very difficult to achieve as a large wall of mud (I.E. a river bank) is tunnelled into and used for the incubation / hatching process. Large tunnels and fish would be required in a super-size aquarium.|
|Breeding Reports||There is no breeding report.|
|Reference||Denkschriften der Kaiserlichen Akademie der Wissenschaften in Wien, Mathematisch-Naturwissenschaftliche Classe. v. 7, pp 284 , Pl. 5 (fig. 2)|
|Registered Keepers||Keeping this species? Why not .
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|Spotters||Spotted this species somewhere? Click the binoculars!
There are 29 records of this fish being seen, view them all.
|More on Pterygoplichthys gibbiceps|
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|Last Update||2019 Sep 14 06:05 (species record created: 2001 Apr 28 00:00)|