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Pleco food recipe - suggestions wanted!

Discussion in 'Food, Water & Health' started by chriscoli, Jan 9, 2011.

  1. chriscoli

    chriscoli Vice President
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    So I have this huge pleco (~9" nose to tip of tail, looks like a common pleco) that came with the tank when I bought it used. Well, it's a big...and kind of cranky fish...and it thrashes around in the plants, but we kind of like him/her. It's one of the few fish that we've named (Sir Poopsalot) and my niece and nephew find it entertaining to watch this fish when I put a piece of zucchini in the tank. So, my point being, that although it's a big huge pain in the butt...we like the fish enough to keep it.

    So, as I mentioned, this fish will practicaly do tricks for zucchini. Not lettuce, not kale...just zucchini. And occasionally, I also find it eating the shrimp pellts I put in for the cories and the botias.

    But the problem is that I'm a very very very lazy person when it comes to making sure that Sir Poopsalot has zucchini. It can go through 1/4 of an average zucchini a day, if I were to provide it every day. But I find that I often forget and a few days later, I go to give it another 1/4 zucchini, but it's gotten slimy and brown.

    I was looking online at some home made pleco food recipes and came across something that made sense to me. But it's far from perfect.

    So the first question was: do I go frozen or dried. Well, I may change my mind and try the dried route, but for the time being, I wanted frozen. This fish responds so well to fresh zucchini flavor that I didn't want to mess too much with that.

    Also, I saw a lot of recipes made with either gelatin or agar. Well, agar doesn't freeze well, but gelatin does. Since the pleco isn't in a veggie eater tank, I wasn't as worried about the gelatin, but I'm not 100% convinced yet.

    Into the blender went:
    1 average-sized zucchini
    3 medium leaves of kale
    1 medium carrot
    handfull of frozen soybeans (they were already open...next time will be peas)
    4 large cooked shrimp

    This made ~3 cups of puree.

    I bloomed 4 packets of gelatin in about 1/2 cup cold water, then dissolved that in 1 cup boiling water. Then added the puree. Then I dispensed it into two silicone mini-cupcake molds that we have. Let cool in the fridge, then poped them out and froze them.

    The pleco LOVES them and now comes out of hiding and to the front of the tank nearly every time I walk by the tank.

    So my questions are:
    1. is there anything else that should go into the mix (or go in instead)?
    2. any warnings about gelatin as fish food? Everyone in the tank looks ok so far, but I worry about it being so soft and gooey in their gut.
    3. it's messy. The gelatin is still sort of soft and when the pleco eats, quite a bit spews around the tank. Any reason not to add more gelatin?
    4. any other suggestions?

    Thanks for your help!
     
  2. chriscoli

    chriscoli Vice President
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    Here's the pleco eating one.

    DSCN2182.jpg
     
  3. Reel Addiction

    Reel Addiction Members

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    Thanks for the idea, I cant offer any info because mine only eats sinking pellets that 4 other fish in the tank eat. Maybe as a treat I will try it!
     
  4. chriscoli

    chriscoli Vice President
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    Oh, yeah, I forgot to mention that detail. My Pleco used to eat the sinking pleco pellets...but not anymore. If it still ate them, I would have left it at that rather than go to all the effort.
     
  5. Reel Addiction

    Reel Addiction Members

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    Hopefully mine wont get that picky, I may have to trade him in if he does lol!
     
  6. mab

    mab CCA Members

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    Try Mazuri in place of the gel. That's what they use at the Amazonian exhibit and the National Aquarium.
     
  7. chriscoli

    chriscoli Vice President
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    I just checked it out Mazuri. Very interesting, I like the idea! Thanks!
     
  8. Sonny Disposition

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    You can also grind up zucchini and other stuff and add it to the mazuri mix. Not too much, or it won't gel.

     

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