I am very pleased to announce introduction of
the new, redesigned and improved Generation II Pleco Cave!
These professionally handmade caves are now lighter,
sturdier, smoother, and are at nearly half the price of the
Generation I caves. For those who are serious about
breeding the Green Dragon Plecostomus, this is THE cave
They are also excellent for other cave spawning species of
that are from 2 to 7 inches in length.
The design was developed after 4 years of breeding many
thousands of the Green Dragons, testing a wide variety of
commercially available caves, bells, and PVC of various
sizes. There were many desired aspects that are
made into the caves currently available. Mature males
consistently showed a preference for a specific style, color and
texture of cave, and these Gen II caves were
designed so that each of these preferences have been met. Males
take possession of these caves within 48 hrs. of being put into the
7 different types of the most popular commercially made
pleco caves were tested over many months, and all were generally
avoided by the breeding Green Dragons, including caves
claimed to be used by other pleco breeders. Over 4 years, we
made and tested caves of many colors, shapes, and
textures, carefully documenting which traits were preferred by
and which styles produced the most spawns.
We needed a cave that the fish sought out to spawn in -
as opposed to hoping that the fish would eventually spawn in
we provided. The Gen I caves were first produced in
2015, and we knew we were on to something when the males would
over this cave, even when other caves were present!
With the new GEN II caves, by using new materials we were
produce a lighter and sturdier cave that is even easier
on the fish's fins, and at nearly half the cost of the previous
The Fish Showed Us What They Wanted:
- They prefer a darker cave interior, but not so dark
that the male could not see the back of the cave. The interior
appearance of the cave by its shape,
clay color and finish are very important. These plecos will
not enter a cave
that does not feel secure or safe to
them. When the Green Dragons cannot see the back, they often
not enter it.
- Many types of
clays were used, and the new Gen II cave is a made of a finer,
smoother, porous terra cotta to be both attractive
to the plecos, but also to limit the
amount of fin tearing and damage that occurs during
breeding within the cave.
- The exterior had to be within a certain color range to be
secure for them, and the interior had to reflect light correctly
be dark enough to feel
secluded, yet light enough so the males could see the back.
- The cave is angled
with a pedestal to help prevent eggs from being kicked out.
- The cave's size
will handle the largest adults. Large pairs here will often
exceed 6 inches.
- The outside texture is made so that algea and food will
collect and grow on the surface. Rough striations
are attractive to the females that
then graze on the outside of the cave, staying nearby when ready
- Each cave has a
hole drilled in the side, and made watertight so the cave can be
gently and easily removed from
the tank to harvest the eggs or new fry,
with as little disruption and trauma to the tank and breeding male as possible.
- As we introduce
these caves to our breeding pairs, younger plecos being grown
out to be sold are raised with smaller
smaller versions of these caves so they are
accustomed to them as they approach breeding age.