L027A Xingu 'Platinum' Royal Pleco
The L027A Xingu 'Platinum' Royal Pleco, also known as the Platinum Royal Pleco and Long Nose Royal Pleco, is a variant of the Royal Pleco that stands out due to its unique coloration and body shape. Native to the Rio Xingu area in Brazil, this variant is characterized by a lighter, almost silvery coloration, which becomes more pronounced as they grow. This, coupled with a more elongated body compared to other Royal Plecos, makes the L027A a stunning addition to any aquarium.
Like its counterparts, the L027A is a fascinating wood-eating suckerfish that captivates many aquarists with its impressive size, reaching up to 17 inches in adulthood. Its striking patterns, combined with its distinctive body shape and color, give it a truly unique look. Despite its different appearance, the L027A shares the same robust nature as the L190, being able to adapt to a variety of water conditions, making it a popular choice among aquarists.
Royal Plecos are peaceful and nocturnal creatures. They are mostly solitary and prefer to have their own space, making them ideal for larger tanks where they can establish their territory. They are not aggressive but can become territorial with other bottom-dwelling fish, especially those of the same species. Fish that are suitable with Royal Plecos are Headstanders, Silver Dollars, Festivum Mesonauta Festivus, Jaguar Cichlid, Silver Arowana, Flag cichlid, and African cichlids.
When it comes to diet, Royal Plecos are wood-eaters. They have specially adapted teeth for rasping at wood, which forms a crucial part of their diet. In an aquarium setting, their diet should be supplemented with driftwood, along with high-quality algae wafers and fresh vegetables such as cooked peas, blanched zucchini, spinach, lettuce, kale, green beans, and cucumber. Since Royal Pleco’s are nocturnal, remember to feed them in the evening or at night.
Creating a suitable habitat for Royal Plecos revolves around incorporating ample driftwood. This serves a dual purpose: it forms a crucial part of their diet and offers preferred resting spots. However, care must be taken to ensure that the placement of wood doesn't obstruct water flow, as stagnant zones can be detrimental to these large fish that produce significant waste.
To maintain water quality, robust power filtration is essential, and the use of powerheads can further enhance water circulation and waste management. If you're housing multiple Plecos, arrange the driftwood to mimic a natural river setting with fallen trees, providing multiple hiding spots.
While Royal Plecos don't require the typical clay caves favored by some species, they do tend to damage plant leaves. Therefore, omitting real and artificial plants from their environment is advisable. This also allows for lower lighting levels, making the Plecos more comfortable and active. Despite their origin in soft, acidic waters, they often fare better in aquariums with basic, moderately hard water.
The Royal Plecos, like many species that naturally live in flowing waters, need a clean environment to thrive. It's sensitive to the buildup of organic waste, so maintaining pristine water conditions is crucial for its well-being. The water should have brisk movement and a high level of dissolved oxygenation.
The water parameters for keeping a Royal Pleco are specific. The minimum aquarium size for one Pleco is 125 gallons due to their large size. The water pH should be kept between 6.5 and 7.5, with a 5-15 dGH hardness range. The temperature should be maintained between 72-86°F (22-30°C).
The Royal Pleco is truly a unique and beautiful addition to any large freshwater aquarium. With the right care, diet, and environment, this stunning fish can thrive and become a standout in your aquatic community.
To learn more about this fish, be sure to check out the Additional Information tab.