The Nonindigenous Occurrences section of the NAS species profiles has a new structure. The section is now dynamically updated from the NAS database to ensure that it contains the most current and accurate information. Occurrences are summarized in Table 1, alphabetically by state, with years of earliest and most recent observations, and the tally and names of drainages where the species was observed. The table contains hyperlinks to collections tables of specimens based on the states, years, and drainages selected. References to specimens that were not obtained through sighting reports and personal communications are found through the hyperlink in the Table 1 caption or through the individual specimens linked in the collections tables.

Glyptoperichthys gibbiceps
Glyptoperichthys gibbiceps
(leopard pleco)

Copyright Info
Glyptoperichthys gibbiceps (Kner, 1854)

Common name: leopard pleco

Synonyms and Other Names: Ancistrus gibbiceps, Pterygoplichthys gibbiceps.

Taxonomy: available through www.itis.govITIS logo

Size: 50.0 cm TL (Fishbase 2007).

Native Range: South America: Middle and upper Amazon and Orinoco basins (Froese and Pauly, 2012).

Hydrologic Unit Codes (HUCs) Explained
Interactive maps: Point Distribution Maps

Nonindigenous Occurrences:

Table 1. States with nonindigenous occurrences, the earliest and latest observations in each state, and the tally and names of HUCs with observations†. Names and dates are hyperlinked to their relevant specimen records. The list of references for all nonindigenous occurrences of Glyptoperichthys gibbiceps are found here.

StateFirst ObservedLast ObservedTotal HUCs with observations†HUCs with observations†
FL200920091Santa Fe

Table last updated 6/13/2024

† Populations may not be currently present.

Ecology: The Leopard Pleco can be found in tropical freshwaters from 23–27 °C (Froese and Pauly, 2012). The Leopard Pleco is nocturnal. It feeds on algae (Ferraris 2007), although it will also feed on dead animals. Egg rearing is also presumed to take place in burrows dug into mud banks, similar to many related species.

Means of Introduction: Aquarium release.

Status: Reported from Puerto Rico.

Impact of Introduction: Unknown, but probably similar to Pterygoplichthys spp. (a synonym of the genus).

Remarks: As of 1989, this species was the second most imported Loricariid, after Pterygoplichthys anisitsi (Burgess, 1989). That probably is no longer the case.

References: (click for full references)

Burgess, W.E. 1989. An atlas of freshwater and marine catfishes: a preliminary survey of the Siluriformes. Tropical Fish Hobbyist Publications, Inc, Neptune City, New Jersey. 784 pp.

Ferraris, C.J. Jr., 2007. Checklist of catfishes, recent and fossil (Osteichthyes: Siluriformes), and catalogue of siluriform primary types. Zootaxa 1418:1-628.

Froese, R. and D. Pauly (eds). 2012. FishBase. World Wide Web electronic publication. Available from: http://www.fishbase.org.  Version (08/2012).

Grana, F. - Puerto Rico Department of Natural & Environmental Resources, San Juan, PR

Other Resources:
FishBase Summary

Author: Fuller, P.

Revision Date: 8/7/2013

Peer Review Date: 8/7/2013

Citation Information:
Fuller, P., 2024, Glyptoperichthys gibbiceps (Kner, 1854): U.S. Geological Survey, Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL, https://nas.er.usgs.gov/queries/FactSheet.aspx?SpeciesID=2637, Revision Date: 8/7/2013, Peer Review Date: 8/7/2013, Access Date: 6/13/2024

This information is preliminary or provisional and is subject to revision. It is being provided to meet the need for timely best science. The information has not received final approval by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and is provided on the condition that neither the USGS nor the U.S. Government shall be held liable for any damages resulting from the authorized or unauthorized use of the information.


The data represented on this site vary in accuracy, scale, completeness, extent of coverage and origin. It is the user's responsibility to use these data consistent with their intended purpose and within stated limitations. We highly recommend reviewing metadata files prior to interpreting these data.

Citation information: U.S. Geological Survey. [2024]. Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database. Gainesville, Florida. Accessed [6/13/2024].

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