subviridisWerneke, D. C., M. H.
Sabaj, N K. Lujan, and J W. Armbruster. 2005
months factsheet (August 2004) takes us into the ichthyologist
minefield of the so called L-Numbers and to a species
which to my mind is a fine starting point if you want
to go into the uncharted waters (so to speak) of the
ever growing and burgeoning world of the L-and LDA
L200 was first
imported in 1995 and was depicted in the Aqualog all
L-Numbers as Loracariidae gen. sp. (similar
L128) and it has been into the Baryancistrus
and Chaetostoma genera and now is labeled
in the Ancistrinae subfamily but may sometime in the
future with the on-going work of Armbruster, be placed
in the Hypostominae (see updated footnote as off 2005
are a lot of grey areas with a lot of the L-Numbers
and it will be many years before an even slight semblance
of order is carried out. This doesn't take away of
course, that in my humble opinion, this is one of
the nicest Loracariids going the rounds and certainly
one of my favourites.
Now you may have
noticed the mention of L128 and there is a quite strong
assumption that this species is actually the same
as our factsheet of the month and is the northern
population. It is depicted in the photograph below
and you can see the resemblance with the body shape
and the spots. The difference of course is the darker
almost blue colouration and more spots which go all
the way through the body and on to the caudal fin.
The further south you go in the Orinoco River system
the lighter the fish gets, and ranges from the blue
in our photo, in the north, to the yellow above in
the south and on our journey the colours range through
black, bluish/green, olive/green, mustard green and
yellow. In the ensuing years we will no doubt find
out whether this assumption of one and the same fish,
is true or not (see updated footnote as off
As stated earlier
this is a fairly easy species to keep as Loracariids
go and does well and looks good in the larger sized
community tank set-up with medium sized inmates such
as the South American Silver Dollars, or even African
Congo Tetras. Furnishings for your tank could include
either sand or gravel for the substrate, driftwood
and rock work for decoration. Plants are not a necesity
as they may eat them, but if Java Fern is used they
will browse the leaves of any build-up of algae. Does
like a bit of water movement in the aquarium from
either internal or external power filters.
As can be seen
from the mouth above, they have two rows of teeth
on each jaw which they use for grazing on soft wood
for Aufwuchs and rasping away on solid food such as
prawns and tablet food.
Update:Only recently (2005) been described
by the above authors. Green phantom plecos (L200s)
are actually two species, Baryancistrus (Baryancistrus
and the other, this months factsheet,
Hemiancistrus (Hemiancistrus subviridis) from
The main difference between
these two similar looking species is that Baryancistrus
has a connecting fleshy skin fold between the posterior
of the dorsal fin connecting it to the fleshy adipose
fin. Hemiancistrus has these two fins separate.
Lemon Spotted Green Pleco, Green Phantom Pleco.
Amazonas, upper Orinoco drainage.
body shape. Forked
caudal fin. Sucker mouth with two rows of teeth on
upper and lower jaw bone.
As stated in article, if
we are not including L128, colours range from
mustard/yellow to yellow with
dark yellow to lemon spots over dorsal, pectoral
and ventral fins and over head and front part of
body up to the posterier end of dorsal fin. Belly
Care & Compatibility
Will do well in your medium
to large aquarium with larger tetra type fish.
No reports, as
with a good many of the larger L-Numbers, but if this
is indeed a Hypostomus species they may lay
their eggs in burrows dug into the sides of larger
rivers. A note on the
sexing of male and female. There is a L200 "Hifin"
which is basically the same as our factsheet of the
month but with a higher dorsal fin. This may represent
the male species against the normal dorsal of the
female, we are not too sure. Body
shape may also play a part with the male being broader
across the head.
This is an Omnivore. In other
words it will thrive on a varied diet. Vegetable food
such as algae tablets, cucumber and courgette (zucchini),
prepared foods such as prawns and mussels, insect
larvae, tablet and pellet foods and it also likes
to graze on soft woods such as driftwood branches
All L-Numbers: Habitat, Care & Diet. Aqualog Special: Loricariidae The
most beautiful L-numbers. www.auburn.edu Werneke, D. C., M. H. Sabaj, N K. Lujan, and
J W. Armbruster. 2005. Baryancistrus
demantoides and Hemiancistrus subviridis, two
new uniquely colored species of loricariids
from Venezuela (Siluriformes: Loricariidae). Neotropical
Ichthyology, 3 (4): 533–542.