Otocinclus: Oto Catfish Care Guide ...
Otocinclus: Oto Catfish Care Guide & Species Profile

How long until common pleco is full size?

It takes about five years for a common pleco to grow to its full size. A common pleco typically grows 3-5 inches in its first year. After that, its growth rate will slow down until it attains its full size of 20-25 inches.

Several factors can affect your pleco’s growth, including:

  • Genes – Some plecos grow faster or bigger purely because of their genes.
  • Tank size – Your pleco requires ample room to maximize its growth range. While you can keep it in a small 20-gallon tank as a juvenile, it will need a 75-gallon tank or bigger to thrive.
  • Environmental conditions – Your pleco needs the optimal water, temperature, pH, and lighting conditions to support its growth.
  • Feeding – A pleco requires a high-quality diet, especially within the first couple of years of its life.