Breeding L046 Imperial Zebra Plecostomus

breeding plecostomus

Image of a colony of six imperial zebra plecostomus adults. These catfish show a beautiful zebra like pattern with a white body and black stripes.
Breeding colony of L046 Imperial Zebra Plecostomus (Hypancistrus zebra). All of the zebra plecostomus were purchased from different sources and are captive bred, some domestically in the United States, others from Malaysia. Becuase they are captively bred, we simply used dechlorinated tap water (never checked PH, probably should) and put in no extra needs aside from a single powerhead on the opposite side of the return pump from the sump filter. We added two lucky bamboo (Dracaena sanderiana) past the weir in the overflow chamber and well as pothos (Epipremnum aureum) grown hydroponically in a basket; aquatics plants consist of multiple Anubias species. The tank has no lights aside from ambient light from the sun. Captive bred zebras are hardy fish with no real signs of distress from "unnatural" parameters opposed to where their ancestors were found; infact, when we were constantly trying to match parameters, we suffered losses with adult zebras likely from unstable fluctuations. The only special care that may be needed is that zebra plecos are quite shy and will not compete well with other bottom dwellers as we experimented with other Hypancistrus like L102, L129, L333.
Stocking List | 80 Gallon | 83°F | Sump Filter + Sponge Filter
L046 Imperial Zebra Plecostomus x6 (Hypancistrus zebra)
Rummynose Tetra x12 (Hemigrammus bleheri)
Japanese Ricefish x10 (Oryzias latipes var.)
Amano Shrimp x3 (Caridina multidentata)
Image of two zebra plecostomus engaging in fake spawning within a ceramic pipe attacking each other. These catfish show a beautiful zebra like pattern with a white body and black stripes.
Breeding? Apparently not after searching online, it was merely a territorial dispute with one being injury in the aftermath. The two fish were in this position for 2-3 days until we figured out something wasn't right. After a while, I was thinking of whether they wouldn't breed in just dechlorinated tap water, the setup for breeding was mostly based on Ancistrus breeding using terracotta/cermaic/PVC caves and pipes; the tank was rearranged multiple times experimenting with different shapes and sizes of caves.
Image of eleven zebra plecostomus babies inside of a terracotta cave. These catfish show a beautiful zebra like pattern with a white body and black stripes.
When? How? Why? We gave up and neglected the tank for a while and there was at least 7 dead zebra fry that went through the weir and stuck to the lucky bamboo roots in the overflow chamber; 3 more zebra were found later in the overflow chamber the next day alive alongside 3 in terracotta cave. However a completely different younger spawn found in a separate terracotta cave with the male still guarding the fry. Total of 18 zebra fry removed from main 80 gallon tank into a 25 gallon tank bought a day later once the male left the cave.
A colony of month old zebra plecostomus gathered underneath the base of a sponge filter with an Indian almond leaf sunk in the back. These catfish show a beautiful zebra like pattern with a white body and black stripes.
With the exception of one unfortunate causuality (crushed by a siphon while cleaning), 17 zebra fry are healthy and eating baby brine shrimp and powdered carnivore pellets mixed with algae pellets. An Indian almond leaf was added alongside 2, later 4 small amano shrimp. A spongefilter is used alongside a bubble wand. The babies are fed 3-4 time a day alongside a daily 30% water change at around 3-4 PM PST; the older zebra appeared to be dominating the tank occupting the base of the spongefilter while the rest cling on to the sides or within the terracotta plate.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published