All FishesLoricariidaeHypostominaePanaque

Hop to next section All Fishes Data Sheet
Scientific NamePanaque nigrolineatus  (Peters, 1877)
Common NamesL190, Royal Pleco
Schwarzlinien-Harnischwels (Germany), Stribet Sugemalle (Denmark)
Type LocalityCalabozo, Venezuela.
Synonym(s)Chaetostomus nigrolineatus
Pronunciationpan ah KAY. - nih GRO lin e AT us
EtymologyThe generic epithet "panaque" is a Venezuelan common name for this fish. nigro = black; lineatus = lines or stripes alluding to the fishes black stripes.
Hop to next section Species Information
Size 430mm or 16.9" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.
IdentificationThe genus Panaque is identified by the teeth, which are spoon-shaped. This means that the teeth are noticeably wider at the tip than at the base. Other loricariidae have teeth that are similar width all the way from one end to the other. A second distinguishing feature is the lack of a buccal papilla, which is a "flap of skin" on the inside of the mouth. See pictures in this PDF on Pterygoplichthys.

These fish are imported in all sizes and in a number of colour forms. Interestingly the colour of the eye varies from bright orange to dull red. Although described from Venezuelan material, the colour forms that have given rise to L027 are from different locations such as the Rio Tocantins, Xingú and Tapajos, Brazil. It appears that the juveniles of Brazilian populations have solid or plain as opposed to barred caudal fin rays. So, a juvenile with barred caudal fin rays is from Colombian or Venezuelan stock.
SexingUndocumented, although with most ancistrine plecos the genital papilla of the female is round and blunt, that of the male by comparison is smaller and pointed. It is not known at what size this method of sexing can be used on Royal Plecos.
Hop to next section Habitat Information
DistributionWide distribution range from Colombia and Venezuela to South Central Amazon basin.
Amazon, Lower Amazon (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Amazon, Middle Amazon (Solimoes) (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Orinoco (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Orinoco, Middle Orinoco, Apure, Guarico (click on these areas to find other species found there)
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pH6.5 - 7.5
Temperature22.0-30.0°C or 71.6-86°F (Show species within this range)
Hop to next section Husbandry Information
FeedingClassic ''pleco diet'' of greens. Can be acclimatized onto most vegetables; tinned peas seem a favourite. The fish also appear to eat bogwood. Some prepared foods should also be offered to supplement this diet.
FurnitureBogwood is essential - both for dietary reasons and because it seems to be the Royal Pleco's preferred hide-out - although any suitably sized dark refuge will be utilized. When larger, Royal Plecos will re-arrange the tank to their own liking; ensure rocks are well secured and cannot be toppled against the glass.
CompatibilityTerritorial with conspecifics and other similarly sized catfish although otherwise peaceful with smaller fish. This fish can be a fussy feeder and only once it is feeding well should be mixed with large, boisterous fish.
Suggested TankmatesMost community fish, this fish is very secretive and so you will want more active fish around to provide something to watch.
BreedingNo published information exists, but I have heard that the fish has been spawned in captivity using some form of tube in a large tank (approx. 125 US Gallons). A false dry season of two weeks (low, warm, still water) was used. Then the tank was topped off with cooler rainwater (refilling about 80%). Lots of meaty and veggie foods were offered. The pair spawned within days.
Hop to next section Further Information
ReferencesMonatsb. Akad. Wiss. Berlin 1877 - pp471 - Unnumbered pl. following p. 556. Aqualog shows a number of colour variations. L027a (commonly known as the watermelon pleco or L330) is the spotted variety, L027b is the olive green variety and L027c is the golden variety. Whether or not these are distinct species or not remains unknown.
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Breeding ReportsNone.
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Last Update2017 Dec 11 00:22 (species record created: 2001 May 05 00:00)