Do you plan to look after pleco catfish in your aquarium? If so, take in mind that it is essential to learn the proper way of feeding and caring for them. Needless to say, one of the most vital facets of fish keeping is being able to provide your aquatic pets with the right type of food exclusively designed for them and mastering the appropriate method of fish feeding.
It is crucial to know precisely what kind of food they consume and the frequency of feeding them. The reason for this is because it is in this manner you can ensure that they could live healthily and thrive inside the fish tank. So, why does it matter to buy the best pleco food?
Feeding your plecos with specific fish foods can guarantee that they are obtaining the required nutrition they need to survive daily. The best combination of food for this type of fish includes fish food and live plant-based kinds of foods. Since they are omnivores, you can feed them with some meat and veggies too.
This post aims to share exhaustive reviews regarding the most top-rated foods that were particularly manufactured for feeding plecos. Hence, if you want to learn more about the right fish food options for your pet fish, continue reading the rest of this article and learn more about feeding and maintaining this fish species.
Table of Contents
- Best Pleco Food Reviews of 2021
- 1. Tetra Algae Wafers
- 2. Hikari Tropical Algae Wafers Fish Food
- 3. Omega One Veggie Rounds
- 4. Zoo Med Laboratories Pleco Banquet Block
- 5. Repashy Morning Wood
- 6. Aqueon Algae Rounds Algae Eater Fish Food
- 7. Fluval Bug Bites Sticks for Plecos
- 8. API Algae Eater Wafers
- 9. Aquatic Foods Inc. Wafers of Algae & Spirulina
- 10. Invert Aquatics Micro Mix
- What to Look for When Buying Pleco Food
- Other Important Factors to Consider
- Frequently Asked Questions
Best Pleco Food Reviews of 2021
1. Tetra Algae Wafers
Vegetable-fortified basic foods for all kinds of bottom-feeding fish like plecos are essential to consider because aside from meat, your finned buddies also need some plant-based foods for them to thrive. These foods are easy to digest and are known to contain generous amounts of fiber.
This product is formulated with all-vegetable protein contents such as potato, wheat germ, soybean, algae, oatmeal, and zucchini. It is also specially designed with clean water formula which means that it can ensure no dusky residue so long as the food is used as directed.
If you feed your fish tank residents with these algae wafers, then you need to expect that the tank water would turn dusky and greenish in color. Also, these foods are not that appealing to some plecos and other algae eaters. These are a couple of potential problems that you may encounter with this product.
2. Hikari Tropical Algae Wafers Fish Food
If you want to provide your fish tank residents with foods that are enriched with nutrients, proteins, and other essential vitamins and minerals; this product can be one of your most excellent picks. These seem too big to be swallowed whole and a lot of omnivorous fish are so keen with these algae wafers.
Such food also comes with stabilized vitamin C that is good at eliminating fish stress and helps boost more vigorous immune system functions for your aquarium pets. Many fish keepers prefer this product because it is packed with pure cultured spirulina that can offer a number of health perks for your finned friends.
Once you feed your fish tank pets with these algae wafers, you could notice some positive changes in their behavior and color. And, you’ll have aquarium dwellers that are happier and brighter to entertain you every time.
Howbeit, this is not a highly recommended option for surface feeders and the unconsumed portion of these foods must be rid of after 2 hours to avoid messy tank water. In line with this, you must carefully check the list of ingredients of this product because there are some contents that may be toxic to some specific aquatic pets.
3. Omega One Veggie Rounds
This pleco fish food’s first five primary ingredients include salmon, seafood mix, spirulina, halibut, and kelp. It is free of any digests, pre-processed proteins, hydrolysates, and no meals. This is a good choice in that it can keep the tank water clean and clear, helps lessen fish waste and does not come with starch contents too. These veggie rounds are designed as naturally insoluble.
This food is beneficial for omnivores and herbivores. It can be fed to any size fish, especially for bottom feeders. See to it that the foods soften up a little bit before you feed your fish. If you want your finned pets to develop more vigorous resistance against ailments and stress, then this option can do wonders for them.
A few factors that would make you feel unhappy about this product are the inconsistencies of tablet density; some float incessantly while others sink quite fast and the product comes with more terrestrial legumes or grain contents. Make sure to check these drawbacks out before purchasing one.
4. Zoo Med Laboratories Pleco Banquet Block
It is fundamental to search for types of foods that are not only palatable but are also filled with nutrients when feeding our aquarium inhabitants. As fish owners, it is our sole responsibility to feed them right, keep them healthy, and maintain a good shelter for them while they are in our care. Luckily, there are lots of good quality products that we can rely on when feeding our aquatic pets.
The time-release food block is an outstanding aid as a vacation feeder and if you want to properly handle difficult feeders, this product would serve as a reliable supplemental food source for them. Aside from this, it offers bottom feeders one great chance to wear mouthparts in a natural approach.
Notwithstanding, the issues that fish keepers would need to deal with if they feed this food to their finned pets include the necessity to clean the filter more frequently especially if you go on vacation and expect to encounter some horrible mess inside the tank after your feeding activity.
5. Repashy Morning Wood
For those who are still feeling baffled about what to feed pleco; then you can keep your worries away because one of the most appropriate food options for them is already right in front of you.
What makes this food a great choice is that it is relatively easy to make and you can even mix or match it according to the manufacturer’s direction. After that, all you need to do is to fill up the ice cube and then freeze the food. For sure, you would be delighted to see your plecos go nuts about this food.
Fish keepers with a limited budget would surely find this product a little overpriced than other available options out there. And, it comes with weird and not so good smell which may be irking to those with a very sensitive sense of smell; this is not a big problem to aquatic creatures though. Be sure to consider these downsides before you end up complaining in the end.
6. Aqueon Algae Rounds Algae Eater Fish Food
A premium quality plecostomus fish food must contain an adequate amount of nutrition that would support maximum health for your aquarium occupants. Fortunately, choosing the right food that would guarantee this does not need to be complex nowadays. This product can serve as the best food that would provide the nutrition your fish tank dwellers need to enjoy a healthy and long life.
The size of this package is sufficient enough to last a while and it is important to feed the tablets and rounds in amounts that your fish tank residents would eat in one to two hours. Meanwhile, the pellets must be provided in amounts that would be eaten in less than a couple of minutes. As you can see, this is a very cost-effective product that you can always count on.
Two negative aspects that go with this product are its potentiality to produce nasty smell inside the tank. Indeed, the unconsumed foods that get stuck on the bottom section of the aquarium may require fish keepers to deal with full tank water cleaning more frequently. Hence, you better follow the manufacturer’s directions when feeding your finned buddies to avoid this.
7. Fluval Bug Bites Sticks for Plecos
Apart from providing homemade pleco food to your most precious aquarium residents, you can also consider feeding them with premium quality commercial fish foods like this product. This option can provide your fish tank inhabitants with great levels of proteins they exactly need to survive dwelling in a confined habitat.
Unlike other products sold on local fish or pet stores or online; this option is not formulated with any artificial color, filler, and preservatives that may be toxic to your finned pets. They would enjoy munching a palatable and nutritious food every feeding session so you can ensure that they won’t be malnourished and prone to ailments.
Withal, since this food comes with a very pleasant yet quite strong smell, this would also attract other pets like dogs and cats; so you better store it in a safe area if you do not wish to run out of fish food to feed your aquatic friends. Moreover, some fish simply ignore this food during feeding sessions.
8. API Algae Eater Wafers
These can be touted as one of the best pleco wafers because they are formulated with essential nutrients that are sourced from plant-based foods like vegetables and algae. Unquestionably, these are perfect options because they can help sustain vibrant fish coloration, boost stronger immune system functions, reduce poor digestion and stress-related concerns, as well as improve metabolic functions. It is amazing that even though its price tag is really cheap, it can offer your fish with lots of health perks.
If you are troubled about looking for a complete and well-balanced fish diet, then you don’t have to feel anxious anymore because the right companion to achieve your goals is finally here for you. All you need to do is to feed your aquarium settlers with this food two times a day and provide them the food amount that they could finish within two hours.
For all that, if you feed your finned chums with this food; you better prepare yourself dealing with tank water duskiness problems. Additionally, you also need to be patient dealing with the horrible smell of this product. These are a few of the possible concerns that you won’t be happy about if you buy this product for your aquarium settlers.
9. Aquatic Foods Inc. Wafers of Algae & Spirulina
This product is highly acclaimed for being one of the best pleco food brands at present. Hence, if you want to ensure getting the real worth of your hard-earned money, then you can fully rely on this brand. In fact, in terms of well-balanced and complete fish diet options, these algae discs are regarded as one of the top-rated ones.
Regardless, just like most foods designed for diverse fish species out there, these foods also tend to slightly foul the tank water so frequent tank cleaning or water replacement may be necessary. Likewise, some algae discs sink fast and other floats. That said, close monitoring is highly advised.
10. Invert Aquatics Micro Mix
Many shrimp, snail, and bottom fish feeders’ keepers prefer this product over other options because it is made with a blended formula of essential vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that these aquatic creatures precisely require to stay healthy and vigorous. More than that, feeding is made a lot easier since this food is palatable enough to attract even the pickiest eaters inside the aquarium.
This food comes with a very inviting smell, so it is a must to store it properly and away from cats and dogs if you don’t want your fish to starve. Furthermore, these tend to create some mess inside the aquarium so it won’t be the top choice for those who are too concerned about maintaining clear tank water.
What to Look for When Buying Pleco Food
When searching for and purchasing the most appropriate foods for your plecos, before the final shopping decision; of course, there are some buying considerations that you need to carefully analyze and some of these consist of the following:
- Does the product contain safe, well-balanced, and all-natural ingredients?
Sure thing, fish can be sensitive if not fed with the right type of food. Take note that your fish food choice could have a great impact on their overall health; so you must choose wisely. Opt for products that are free of any fillers, preservatives, and other contents that could detriment the wellness of your finned buddies.
An excellent quality product should contain all the vital nutrients, minerals, and vitamins that your fish tank residents seriously require to stay healthy, livelier, and live a longer life. They must also contain some other additives that could produce other benefits such as radiant fish coloration.
Check out if the ingredients of the product are safe and nutritious enough for your fish to consume. Examine the pros and cons before adding the product in your shopping cart. See to it that the food is exclusively manufactured for the type of fish you are currently keeping.
- Is the food highly digestible and helps avoid fish waste?
To avoid digestion issues and ensure that the nutrients are completely absorbed, inspect if the product is soft, naturally insoluble, and easy to digest. This way, it won’t cause constipation or any digestive system concerns. If the food is highly digestible, your fish can finish them in a few minutes and ward off the emergence of more fish waste inside the tank. Therefore, the tank water clarity and quality can be preserved.
Additionally, you won’t have to consume more time and energy doing frequent tank cleaning and water replacements. You can also save your fish tank pets from being contaminated. The tank water would remain in its good condition all the time.
- Is the product manufactured by a reputable brand that’s trusted by most fish enthusiasts and aquarists?
Purchase fish food products that were manufactured by prestigious brands only. A lot of brands are full of unnatural additives, fillers, and other unhealthy content. For sure, you do not wish to feed your aquarium inhabitants with trash.
While it is true that reputable brands are priced higher; still you can be guaranteed in terms of quality and safety. Do not merely be concerned about the price tag if quality and your satisfaction are compromised.
Other Important Factors to Consider
What is the best food for pleco?
A well-rounded diet for this fish species must comprise of sinking algae wafers and algae. And, it is necessary to supplement these with raw vegetables such as cucumbers and zucchini as a special treat at least once or twice per week.
Please be guided that raw veggies must be anchored close by the underneath section of the tank.
What do pleco eat?
Since plecos are categorized as omnivores, they can be fed with various types of meat such as bloodworms, earthworms, and shrimps; these can be obtained as fresh or frozen. Plecos can also consume different veggies including kale, cabbage, broccoli, lima beans, celery, shelled peas, and zucchini.
It is also vital to keep driftwood in the fish tank. This is because this type of fish requires more fiber in their daily diet, and fiber can be obtained from driftwood. See to it to feed them with some pieces of driftwood in the fish tank so your pet fish could suck and scrape the driftwood off. This would be beneficial in supporting good digestion.
Instead of gathering driftwood all by yourself; consider picking real driftwood products that are offered by aquarium or fish supply stores. This way, you can be guaranteed that these are safe to be consumed by your plecos.
In addition to this, you can provide your aquatic pets with algae wafers. It is essential for plecos to be provided with an adequate amount of fiber in their diet so it is a must to supplement the algae in the aquarium with algae wafers. Your finned buddies can find the wafers instantly because these sink on the underneath portion of the aquarium.
You can also feed them with various types of fruits such as papaya, cantaloupe, breadfruit, and honeydew melon; however, be sure that the fruits are thoroughly washed, cut or sliced into tiny pieces before feeding your fish.
Why do you need pleco fish food? (Benefits)
In essence, the health of your fish tank dwellers largely relies on good nutrition. Put simply, the frequency of feeding and what you feed your aquatic pets would have a significant repercussion on the ecosystem of your aquarium.
It is crucial to feed your plecos with fish foods that were primarily formulated for them because this would provide them the nutrition they need to thrive in an artificial setting and live longer lives. Once you feed them with the right types of foods and strictly adhere to proper fish care and maintenance, then you can ensure that you are the best owner for them.
Here are some of the advantages you and your fish can enjoy if you provide them with the right nutrition:
- Help your finned buddies to become healthier, more active, happier, and more vigorous.
- Allow them to develop more robust resistance against infections, ailments, and other diseases that could lead to death.
- Make their color become more vibrant and flashy; thus, improving their overall appearance.
- Help support extended lifespan and transform them into a livelier and attractive companion that would not stop in entertaining you.
- Promote healthier digestion, stronger fish immunity, and healthier metabolic functions.
- You can take pleasure in having a nice-to-behold and relaxing fish tank that is filled with healthy and flashy fish that not only you would enjoy but your loved ones and guests as well.
- Make fish feeding a not so burdening and time-consuming task for fish keepers to handle every feeding session.
- Ensure that your fish are fed with the right foods that would not only satisfy their hunger but would most importantly satisfy their nutritional requirements.
- Allow your fish to delight in consuming highly digestible and palatable foods that would suit their taste and appetite.
- Fish keepers would be at peace knowing that their fish tank occupants are provided with the best possible care.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the most trusted pleco food brands?
If you are in the hunt for high-quality foods for your plecos, then one of the most foolproof means for you to end up getting the right option is buying from renowned brands that have been proven to be efficient and outstanding at providing the nutritional requirements for various fish species.
While these brands are generally more costly than their competitors, when it comes to ingredients; these are certified safe, all-natural, and nutritious products that would provide a lot of health benefits to your finned pets.
A few of the most distinguished food products for fish that you can select from include:
- Omega One
- Invert Aquatics
- Zoo Med Laboratories
Will pleco eat leftover food?
Yes. Plecos are known for being suckers, janitor fish, and poo-eating aquatic creatures. They can survive in many different conditions; and surprisingly even in harsh conditions. While they consume most foods, it is highly suggested to provide them with algae pellets or those that were exclusively manufactured as sinking pellets. The reason behind this is because they do not obtain adequate food to consume on their own at times.
What is more, they consume feces as well. They break the feces up first and then consume the edible parts while throwing out the rest. In this manner, it assists to disintegrate unwanted fish waste and allow them to go into the filter as particles.
It is worth noting that these fish species are also labeled as “garbage disposal” due to the broad array of foods and leftovers that they eat and they tend to clean up on the bottom portion of the tank.
Can plecos eat carrots?
Yes. But it is important to ensure that the carrot is soft for your pleco to consume. Consider blanching it first before feeding it to your fish. See to it to cut the carrots into tiny pieces too.
What vegetables can plecos eat?
Plecos can thrive well by feeding them with some tiny pieces of vegetables such as romaine lettuce, kale, cabbage, broccoli, lima beans, tops of celery, shelled, or parboiled peas, zucchini as well as other types of leafy veggies. These are great sources of plant foods that your aquarium occupants would surely love and they can serve as special treats or nutritious supplements.
How often should you feed a pleco?
As for the most appropriate feeding seclude for plecos, consider the size and age of your finned pets. If you have small juvenile ones, then they must be capable of subsisting on the algae inside the aquarium, some scraps leftover from feeding other types of fish, and a few algae wafers.
But, if the pleco is the only fish dwelling inside the aquarium, it would call for more frequent feeding. As this fish grows and gets older; it would require more variety in its daily diet and its owners need to provide it with more food amount than usual.
Young ones can survive with only one algae wafer daily; on the other hand, once it grows into 24-inches, the fish would already be regarded as mature so it would require more.
It is necessary to observe your pleco after you provide him some foods, watch if he munches the food immediately; if so, this means that he is seriously hungry and necessitates to be fed more frequently. But, if he simply ignores the food you feed him, then you only have to feed him less often.
How to feed pleco?
There are a few very important things to remember when feeding your plecos and these consist of feeding them daily usually at night time because they are nocturnal, and some of them need driftwood as a vital component of their diet. Since these fish species are omnivores, they require some protein. It is necessary to provide them with some regular fish foods more often.
And, since they like to stay often at the underneath section of the aquarium, plecos tend to consume up crustaceans; hence, these also form part of their diet.
It is also beneficial to provide your plecos with algae tablets before the fish tank lights go off. This aids in impeding other fish in eating these algae tablets. Essentially, the tablets need to fall all the way to the underneath portion of the tank so that the bottom feeders can consume them. As you might already know, other types of fish tend to steal them when possible.
An Important Reminder: Due to this fish species’ nocturnal habits, a majority of expert enthusiasts target feed their plecos once or twice per week with disc food or tablet that is preferably provided at night.
To obtain the best possible results, it is highly suggested to feed plecos with a variety of premium quality foods and be sure to rotate your aquatic pets’ diet daily.
Where to buy?
Different foods specifically made for plecos can be purchased from local fish supply or pet stores. At times, you can also find them in many leading and heavily-stocked supermarkets. Buying such products in local stores can offer you the chance to check out the ingredients of the product personally and all at once.
Nonetheless, if you think shopping for fish food products is more convenient if done online; then a few of the most reputable online shopping sites options that you can completely trust include Live Aquaria, Amazon, PetCo, and PetSmart. These sites are well-known for offering limitless fish supplies and products that are hard to find in local stores.
Additionally, shopping online can offer their customers with a number of special offers and promos that make online shopping even more exciting and economical. With lots of options to pick from, it becomes easier to find the one that meets your specific requirements.
What are the most notable traits of plecos?
- They commonly attach to rocks, glasses, and other solid or hard surfaces with their mouths.
- They are more active at night. Thus, they are labeled as nocturnal creatures.
- They are quite territorial over other plecos.
- Plecos spend most of their time hanging from the edge of the fish tank or on the underneath section of the aquarium.
- They would consume most live plants or uproot them.
What are the indications that plecos are in good condition?
- They stay on or close by the underneath portion of the aquarium.
- They consume their food more vigorously.
- They possess clear and bright eyes.
- They usually attach to the edge of the tank décor or fish tank.
Please be guided that it is crucial to avoid jam-packed conditions as these are typically the primary causes of stress and other fish ailments. It is essential to sustain good tank water quality and ensure regular water replacements and sufficient filtration.
On the other hand, a few indications that plecos are not in good condition include:
- Feed during the day
- Difficulty in breathing
- Cloudy eyes
- Loss of color
- Frayed fins
- Fungus or spots in mouth and body parts
How to properly shelter plecos?
It is crucial to keep them in an appropriately-sized fish tanks and provide them with proper filtration so they could sustain peak health. Please be guided that acrylic tanks are not highly recommended for large-sized plecos because they would scratch the acrylic.
More than that, driftwood is typically utilized to sustain pH at slightly acidic levels. Stable water temperature, good water quality, and pH levels are quite important to the health of aquarium pets. So, if you are uncertain of your pH levels and water quality, consider testing your tank water.
When plecos are sheltered in a fish tank, they tend to grow up by up to roughly 15 inches and they can live approximately ten by up to fifteen years. That said, such type of fish is regarded as one of the longest and biggest living fish in the aquarium and; thus most pleco keepers prefer to have them in their aquariums at their residence.
How to maintain plecos’ habitat?
- Inspect the water temperature, filtration, and other aquarium equipment daily.
- Examine the tank water quality at least once per week.
- Every two to four weeks, make sure to replace at least ten by up to twenty-five percent of the total volume of water. Or, this may be done if necessary.
- It is highly advised to introduce new fish tank dwellers gradually.
In substance, plecos are highly recognized as algae eaters. And, all the algae that accumulate inside the fish tank would be consumed by them. However, this does not necessarily imply that there is no need for you to feed them with other types of fish foods. For a fact, this type of fish requires well-balanced nutrition for them to thrive; so it is highly recommended to provide them with the best pleco food products.
As you have learned in this post, a fish tank won’t have a sufficient amount of algae in it that could suffice the nutrition needs of your finned pets. Since you filter and clean the tank water regularly, the algae won’t emerge in such a huge quantity. Your aquatic pets would starve if you expect them to survive only on the algal bloom inside the aquarium.
There are other food types that you can provide your fish tank dwellers such as meat and other plant-based foods. And, the good news is that there are a lot of commercial fish foods that are readily available these days and all these are designed to help provide the nutritional requirements of specific fish species and make fish feeding a less hassle task to handle all the time.
Read the product reviews carefully so you can come up with the best choice for your fish tank residents.