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How to make tile caves for your Bristle Nose Plecos

By MPP

I don't remember where I got the first one but once I did, they're so easy to make. A cheap piece of floor tile might run you 50 cents at the hardware store and you can get a couple caves out of it (even with breakage) See if one of your friends has a tile snapper, measure out an inch and a half and snap off a piece. Split that piece equally into two 6 inch pieces and you've got the floor and ceiling. Snap off another 1 or so strip and split that one equally. Now you've got the two walls. Take some silicone (without any mildewcide or added "protective" chems) and glue them together, sides placed on top of the floor and roof placed on top of the sides. Once you break a piece as you're splitting out the walls or floor and roof, just trim it down to 1 inch or so (depends on your wall size) by 1 and a half. Glue that to one end. Cave done, let it cure for a couple of days and trim it up if necessary and it's ready for the tank.
 
The Cave doesn't need to be 6 inches long. It's just easier and offers less cutting. The cave has got to be wide enough and tall enough (just barely) for mom & dad to squeeze in and do their thing. You'll need to size your caves to your adult fish sizes so some of the measurements may have to be adjusted a little.
 
Avoid the tiles that have the embedded patterns, they're tougher to get to snap cleanly. The cheaper the tile is, the more likely it's exactly what you need to make a tile cave. You could also probably use wall time, and again, cheaper is better for our purposes. There's less decoration and they're less thick in the cheaper tiles. All we care about is making the cave and that the cave sinks like it's supposed to right? As far as sexing the BN's, for my younger "sex-still to be determined" ones, caves help decide that a little bit. Females rarely enter the caves and males will just hang out forever in the caves.
 


 



and when they're happy, this happens!



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