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Is my Flash pleco (L204) male or female?

Posted: Mon May 03, 2021 10:51 pm
by Stephen59
I already have a virtually fully grown male Flash pleco L204 (Panaqolus albivermis).
I also have another Flash pleco L204 but unsure of it's sex, initially I thought was female (hoping) but I'm now leaning towards being male.
They are my only plecos and can sometimes be seen on the glass near each other or even sometimes on the same piece of bogwood but generally one is usually towards one end of the aquarium (near a clay cave) and the other near the other end (near the other clay cave).
The virtually fully grown male has been investigating the cave (on the right) and swishing his tale to clear the sand in front of the cave.
The younger pleco has recently been investigating the cave (on the left) and has also recently been clearing sand with its tale.
Both plecos possess odontodes.

Here are pics of the pleco in question. (male or female?)
(click image to enlarge)
Thank you

Re: Is my Flash pleco (L204) male or female?

Posted: Tue May 04, 2021 12:44 am
by bekateen
Hi Stephen59,

How large (standard length) is the new fish? A mature male is easily sexed by the odontodes they develop on the posterior half of their body. As I look at your two pictures, it's difficult to see in detail, but I see either no odontodes, or the faint traces of the start of odontode growth. Basically, I'm not sure if that's a young (or subordinate) male, or if it's female.

A close-up of the animal from a dorsal view might help. Sometimes you can tell by differences in head shape, but that doesn't always work and it really only works best when fish are side-by-side so you can see the differences.

All that aside, the specimen is lovely!

Cheers, Eric

Re: Is my Flash pleco (L204) male or female?

Posted: Tue May 04, 2021 8:52 am
by Stephen59
Thanks Eric for the reply.

My two Flash plecos are of different ages and sourced separately.
My original male Flash pleco was acquired about 9 months ago when close to being fully grown (we call him George).
The one in question is about 2/3rd the size of the other one but growing and was acquired about 2 weeks later (we call this one Mildred).
I'm not one for naming fish, although these plecos do deserve a name, it was the wife's idea to name them, I just played along. ;)
Although I am an experienced fish keeper I'm new to keeping plecos, they are my first ever plecos, I'm still learning about the species.

I'll try to get an overhead shot of this lovely pleco, that may mean catching it first, they are fast movers when they want to be.
I will attempt to catch him/her later this week and post new images.

All help is greatly appreciated

Re: Is my Flash pleco (L204) male or female?

Posted: Tue May 04, 2021 7:45 pm
by Stephen59
This is a photo taken today inside the aquarium together with a slightly closer crop of the same image. Does it help?

(click to enlarge)

Re: Is my Flash pleco (L204) male or female?

Posted: Thu May 06, 2021 10:08 am
by Stephen59
Based on the recent images posted I have come to the conclusion that this Flash pleco is male.
Anyone looking for a male Flash pleco (L204) ? I'm willing to sell or exchange for a female ;)
I live in the UK (Hereford HR4)