Photos: Haakon Haagensen
Not all new-imported Loricariidae species are undescribed and queued into the L-number system! In late 2015, Green Fish Aquarium in Peru exported Ancistomus furcata to Northern Lights Aquatics, Norway. This species was described by Fowler in 1940, and is found in the Rio Napo, Rio Marañon, Rio Itaya and Rio Ucayali systems in Peru. It has an obvious similarity to the well-known Peckoltia sp. L205 from the same area, so it’s not impossible that A.furcata has been traded as L205 already. However, A.furcata can be told apart from L205 by its very large, forked caudal fin (hence the name), and more slender bodyshape. In my opinion, the physical features of A.furcata points to it belonging to the genus Ancistomus, not Peckoltia. Nonetheless, A.furcata is an interesting new addition to the hobby.
Name: Ancistomus furcata (Fowler, 1940)
Trade names: Forktail Pleco
Origin: Rio Napo, Rio Marañon, Rio Itaya and Rio Ucayali, Peru
Maximum size: 20 cm / 5”
This species is apparently rare. The Forktail Pleco is an easy to keep omnivore, that should be fed a various diet and kept under normal good conditions with good water hygiene. Adult males are territorial towards each other, and can be told apart from the females by their bigger, broader head and more excessive odontodal growth. Since its pretty much brand new to our hobby, no breeding reports are in yet.