Pleco or "Armored Catfish" as they used to be called are said to live an average of 8-10 years in captivity but can exceed 15 years in the wild. Our girl, called The Catfish, is 20 years old. We got her in '95 or '96. That alone makes her pretty special.
I tend to not name fish as I have the superstition it tends to doom them. She's been around long enough that we've tried a name now and then but nothing stuck. She's The Catfish.
The Catfish's favorite treat is celery. She won't touch cucumbers even though a fish guy told us they are supposed to love them. Lettuce and fresh spinach are okay in her eyes. A rare carrot has been munched on if left long enough to get a bit soft.
When she was younger she sometimes ate other tiny fish. She outlived all her tank mates and she was alone for many years. We recently upgraded her tank size and so added a few other tropical fish. She had not seen another fish in so long she panicked and dashed to the other side of the tank and ran into the wall. She quickly got used to them though.
She is very nocturnal in her golden years and prefers to only come out once the lights go out at night. She gets mad if the lights get turned back on due to someone coming back through the room. We love our old lady!
So after some research she really is a catfish, Amazon Sailfin Catfish – Pterygoplichthys pardalis
Her same pattern and the way to tell it from the similar looking pleco species is number of spines in the backfin and size. All I remembered was the store saying catfish then everyone over the years who saw her calling her a pleco.
Here's the blue gourami hanging out with The Catfish a more recent photo than the mini article.
The Blue Fish likes to hang out by The Catfish. by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr
My father keeps over feeding her but other than that we can't have done too bad for her to live this long.
Oh I recently tried butternut squash she liked that.