Leopard Cactus Pleco L-600/LDA-73 (Pseudocanthicus leopardus)

The Leopard Cactus Pleco L-600/LDA-73 (Pseudocanthicus leopardus) is also known to tropical fish keeping enthusiasts as the Redtail Leopard Plecostomus and is found in the rio Branco, a tributary in the rio Negro basin in the Amazonas state of Brazil.

The Leopard Cactus Plecos L-600 is one of the sharp, spiked pseudo species that become extremely boisterous and territorial as they become adults. They are very similar to L-114 which is found in the Rio Demini in Brazil, but grow larger and are more startling in color.

This a shy species that prefers dimly lit conditions and requires pristine water quality.   Juveniles in particular are extremely sensitive to ammonia and nitrite spikes.

Leopard Cactus Plecos L-600 (Pseudocanthicus leopardus)

Leopard Cactus Plecos L-600 (Pseudocanthicus leopardus)

The Leopard Cactus Pleco L-600 has a brown to yellowish brown body that is covered with dark brown to black spots that extend to the fins.   Their fins are a bright red orange to scarlet color.   As the fish grow into adulthood, the body color leaches into the red fins making the fish look somewhat duller in appearance.

Males have a broader head and fins that are more pointed than females.

The Leopard Cactus Pleco L-600 is best housed in an aquarium of at least 70 gallon capacity with a dark sand or fine gravel substrate, several rocky caves or clay pipes for them to hide in, some driftwood or bogwood, some floating plants to diffuse overhead lighting, and plenty of free swimming space. v  Because of their boisterous behavior, live plants are not recommended.

Leopard Cactus Plecos require spotlessly clean, highly oxygenated water conditions with some water movement.   Over filtration and a powerhead or two is highly recommended along with weekly water changes to keep them healthy.   As stated, they are extremely sensitive to ammonia and nitrites in the water.

The Leopard Cactus Pleco L-600 is a cave spawner however there are no reports of this species being successfully bred in an aquarium environment.

The Leopard Cactus Pleco is a carnivore but not a predator.   In their natural habitat they feed on shrimp, small crabs, sails, various larvae, worms, small pieces of fish and plant matter.

In an aquarium environment they do well on prawns, shrimp, small pieces of fish, and vegetables to round out their diet. Once acclimated to their surroundings they will eventually accept a quality omnivore or bottom feeder pellet or wafer.

Pseudacanthicus leopardus L600/LDA73 are seldom available to tropical fish keeping enthusiasts and demand a high price when found.   Most enthusiasts who purchase Leopard Cactus Plecos online or from specialty fish shops buy the more common L-114 species which are considerably less expensive.

Leopard Cactus Plecos L-600 (Pseudocanthicus leopardus)

Leopard Cactus Plecos L-600 (Pseudocanthicus leopardus)









Minimum Tank Size: 70 gallons
Care Level: Moderate
Temperament: Peaceful
Aquarium Hardiness: Hardy
Water Conditions: 73.4-82.5°F, GH 4-13 ° , pH 6.0 – 7.4
Max. Size: 12″
Color Form: Black, Brown, Yellow
Diet: Omnivore
Compatibility: Territorial
Origin: Rio Branco, Brazil
Family: Loricariidae
Life Span: 10-12 years
Aquarist Experience Level: Intermediate

One Response to “Leopard Cactus Pleco L-600/LDA-73 (Pseudocanthicus leopardus)”


  1. […] Leopard Cactus Pleco is occasionally confused with Pseudacanthicus leopardus L600/LDA73 which is found in the Rio Branco, in Brazil and grows to 12″ in […]

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