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Clown Plecostomus

Last Updated: 4/1/24

Quick Information
Setup and Water Preferences
My Clown Plecos
Links and Pictures

I am new to these fish, so most of the sections below are empty until/unless I have time to fill them in.

Quick Information

Common names: Clown Plecostomus
Scientific/Latin name: Panaqolus maccus
Maximum length: 3.5 inches
Colors: Brown and yellow
Temperature preference: 73 to 82 degrees F
pH preference: 6 to 8
Hardness preference: Soft
Salinity preference: Low to medium
Compatibility: Good
Life span: 10 years
Ease of keeping: Moderate
Ease of breeding: Moderate


Setup and Water Preferences



My Clown Plecostomus

On 2/23/21, I bought two clown plecostomus. I put them in a 20 gallon quarantine tank with 12 other new fish to eventually go in my 65 gallon tank which I recently renovated. I put a small piece of driftwood in with them from my 20 gallon tank since they need to eat driftwood as well as regular foods. So far, they just spend their life hiding as best as they can.

On 3/6/21, I moved them to the 65 gallon aquarium where there are two large driftwood pieces. They each claimed one and stay stuck to them like glue. The man at the aquarium store said they were algae eaters but I have come to find that they really are not. They mostly live off of driftwood and what grows on it. They are interesting and worthy in their own right but not useful for eating attached algae for the most part. The tank is low on such algae at this point so that is fine.

On 9/12/21, I saw both of the clown plecos at the same time for the first time in months. I thought I had lost one but they are good at hiding in a tank without many hiding places!

In early 2022, my three discus became more and more damaged. It looked like someone was biting and/or sucking on their sides and shredding their fins. I watched them off an on all weekend for weeks but never saw anyone harming them. I decided on 2/19/22 to move the two clown plecos and one ram to my 50 gallon aquarium out of desperation. I moved the largest piece of driftwood with the plecos who joined a colony of rosy barbs who had already de-finned a small albino bristlenose in the tank. I did not want to move the clown plecos but, if there is a chance they harmed the discus, it was the better choice for the discus at least. The internet says that clown plecos never harm discus.

I saw one of the clown plecos on 5/27/22. Before that, I had not seen them in over a month and thought they might have passed away but at least one is still alive. They hide very well, and the tank is fully planted.

Update 11/1/22: I have not seen a single clown pleco in almost six months so the presumption is that both have passed away. Moving them from the other tank sealed their fate. It was all for naught as the last discus died on 10/31/22.

Surprise! I saw a clown pleco in the 50 gallon tank on 2/8/23! I tried to catch him/her to put him/her back in the 65 gallon tank but he/she got away. I cannot believe I have not seen this fish in over eight months!

On 6/24/23, I saw both clown plecos while cleaning the 50 gallon tank! I saw one again on 12/30/23.

I saw them both on 3/30/24 so it had been 9 months since I confirmed they are both still alive.

Links and Pictures

Photos of my clown plecostomus:

Photos are listed from newest to oldest.

I have not processed any photos as of yet.

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