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Loach Species Profiles

Discussion in 'Profiles' started by Lupin, Oct 19, 2008.

  1. Lupin

    Lupin Registered Member

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    Angelicus Loach (Botia kubotai)

    Scientific Name: Botia kubotai
    Common name: Angelicus Loach
    Care Level: easy
    Size: 6 inches
    pH range: 6.0-7.0
    Temperature range: 24-28 degrees Celsius (76-82 degrees Fahrenheit)
    Origin:
    Temperament: peaceful
    Compatible Tankmates:
    Slow moving and long finned specimens will not be able to handle the feisty nature of these loaches so keeping them with barbs, danios, rasboras and other fast moving species is hugely recommended.
    Diet: Meaty foods such as bloodworms, earthworms, snails, mussels and shrimps are appreciated greatly.
    Tank Size for Adult: 30g for a group of 3.
    Narrative:


    Photo by Jeremy Smith.
    [​IMG]
     
    #2 Lupin, Oct 19, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  2. Lupin

    Lupin Registered Member

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    Banded Tiger Loach (Syncrossus helodes)

    Scientific Name: Syncrossus helodes
    Common name: Tiger Loach, Green Tiger Loach, Banded Tiger Loach
    Care Level: easy
    Size: 12 inches
    pH range: 6.0-7.0
    Temperature range: 24-28 degrees Celsius (76-82 degrees Fahrenheit)
    Origin: Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia
    Temperament: extremely aggressive
    Compatible Tankmates:
    Usually feisty tankmates that can handle their aggression are recommended as tankmates with this fish such as tiger barbs, arulius barbs and garras.
    Diet: Meaty foods such as bloodworms, earthworms, snails, mussels and shrimps are appreciated greatly.
    Tank Size for Adult: Due to their slow growth rate, a 75g can handle 6-8 of these fish. An upgrade in tank size will be needed once they reach six inches in length as they tend to cover large areas as they clash to settle territorial disputes.
    Narrative:
    Syncrossus helodes is one of the loaches of the Syncrossus genus that is available from time to time although not as popular as the others like the Yasuhikotakia morleti. They are the largest in their genus growing to 12 inches looking more bulky in appearance as they mature. Their color fades away slightly as they mature. Just a few hints, they can be distinguished from Syncrossus hymenophysa by counting the number of stripes which is 10-11 vertical stripes whereas the latter has more than that. The stripes of Syncrossus helodes from the head to dorsal fin are slanted towards the tail whereas it is otherwise in the case of the Syncrossus hymenophysa.

    These fish tend to burrow crevices under boulders so make sure the rock placement is stable otherwise you will know what disastrous consequences will be if you do not follow the precautions stated above.


    [​IMG]
     
    #3 Lupin, Oct 19, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  3. Lupin

    Lupin Registered Member

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    Berdmore's Tiger Loach (Syncrossus berdmorei)

    Scientific Name: Syncrossus berdmorei
    Common name: Berdmore's Tiger Loach
    Care Level: easy
    Size: 10 inches
    pH range: 6.0-7.0
    Temperature range: 24-28 degrees Celsius (76-82 degrees Fahrenheit)
    Origin:
    Temperament: extremely aggressive
    Compatible Tankmates:
    Usually feisty tankmates that can handle their aggression are recommended as tankmates with this fish such as tiger barbs, arulius barbs and garras.
    Diet: Meaty foods such as bloodworms, earthworms, snails, mussels and shrimps are appreciated greatly.
    Tank Size for Adult: Due to their slow growth rate, a 75g can handle 6-8 of these fish. An upgrade in tank size will be needed once they reach six inches in length as they tend to cover large areas as they clash to settle territorial disputes.
    Narrative:
     
    #4 Lupin, Oct 19, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  4. Lupin

    Lupin Registered Member

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    Chinese Loach (Leptobotia pellegrini)

    Scientific Name: Leptobotia pellegrini
    Common name: Chinese Loach
    Care Level: easy
    Size: 8 inches
    pH range: 6.0-7.0
    Temperature range:
    Origin: China
    Temperament: extremely aggressive
    Compatible Tankmates:
    Due to their large size, these fish are best kept with fish of similar size or even larger such as datnoids, fei fengs and giant gouramis.
    Diet: Meaty foods such as bloodworms, earthworms, snails, mussels and shrimps are appreciated greatly.
    Tank Size for Adult: 100g for a pair.
    Narrative:
     
    #5 Lupin, Oct 19, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  5. Lupin

    Lupin Registered Member

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    Clown Loach (Chromobotia macracanthus)

    Scientific Name: Chromobotia macracanthus
    Common name: Clown Loach
    Care Level: easy
    Size: 16 inches
    pH range: 6.0-7.0
    Temperature range: 26-30 degrees Celsius (78-86 degrees Fahrenheit)
    Origin: Indonesia
    Temperament: peaceful
    Compatible Tankmates:
    Recommended tankmates usually include large species of danios, barbs and peaceful cichlids as long as they can handle the powerful currents the clown loaches require. They should not also be mixed with extremely aggressive cichlids as they cannot take brutal beatings easily.

    Angelfish and discus may not be suitable tankmates at all as clown loaches are rather inquisitive fish and their actions may simply stress the cichlids and even possibly nip their fins.

    Diet: Meaty foods such as bloodworms, earthworms, snails, mussels and shrimps are appreciated greatly.
    Tank Size for Adult: Due to their slow growth rate, a 75g can handle 6-8 of these fish. An upgrade in tank size will be needed once they reach six inches in length.

    Narrative:
    Clown loach is considered to be the most gregarious of all well-known loaches. It has been the most popular member in the loach family yet a lot of people fail to realize how large this fish actually grows and very few aquaria can readily accommodate their requirements. Allow a bare minimum of 75 gallons when keeping a small group of clown loaches. They require very powerful and efficient filtration systems, strong currents provided by the powerheads, frequent water changes and more attention to the cleanliness of their environment.

    Tank should have subdued lighting, soft substrate and numerous hiding places. Plants should also be strong enough not to be easily uprooted. Do not expect most of your plants to survive. Clown loaches (including all other botiine loaches) have a habit for punching holes on the foliage thus damaging the plants. Plants with soft foliage are more vulnerable to such damage in comparison to tougher ones. Java ferns and vallisneria species are almost always guaranteed to survive the loaches' nasty habit along with anubias species.

    Clown loaches have little or no scales at all so they fall under the category of scaleless fish where all scaleless fish will succumb easily to various medications if use at heavy doses. It is always advisable to treat with only half of the recommended dosage so as not to further endanger the health of the fish. Do not use salt if you intend to treat the loaches. The same thing applies to almost all bottom dwellers as salt can burn their skin.

    When buying clown loaches, please be very observant with their behavior and body structure. You are advised to avoid at all costs clown loaches that appear to have chronic skinny disease. Symptoms will include their obvious skinny appearance where the skull and spinal column are almost visible and concaved stomach. Recommended treatment for this is Levamisole hydrochloride. Ask your local fish store for their sources. This should be applicable to all loaches and more particularly, those that are caught directly from the wild.

    Sexual dimorphism is not apparent until spawning season wherein females are often perceived to be taller in body shape comparative to the males if well-fed. Clown loaches do not reach sexual maturity until several years.

    Breeding: There has been a few breeding records however a lot of this were not properly documented or successful.

    Discussion thread on how to distinguish between the two variants from Borneo and Sumatra.
    http://www.monsterfishkeepers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=204026

    [​IMG]
     
    #6 Lupin, Oct 19, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  6. Lupin

    Lupin Registered Member

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    Dwarf Chain Loach (Yasuhikotakia sidthimunki)

    Scientific Name: Yasuhikotakia sidthimunki
    Common name: Dwarf Chain Loach, Sids, Dwarf Pygmy Loach
    Care Level: easy
    Size: 2–2.5 inches
    pH range: 6.0-8.0
    Temperature range: 24-28 degrees Celsius (75-82 degrees Fahrenheit)
    Origin: Cambodia, Laos, Thailand
    Temperament: peaceful
    Compatible Tankmates:
    These fish are suitable for community setups due to their diminutive size however, these are a very active loach and should not be kept with slow moving or long finned specimens who may be harassed by the constant movements of these fish.
    Diet: Accepts most small foods offered including flakes, but prefers meaty foods like frozen bloodworms, frozen mosquito larvae and live foods such as white, black or microworms, daphnia,and baby brine shrimp. They may sometimes eat small soft shelled snails.
    Tank Size for Adult: 20g for a group of 6.
    Narrative:
    Critically endangered in the wild, possibly extinct. This species is protected and is listed on the IUCN Red List.

    Dwarf Chain Loaches are the smallest members of the Botine loach family. They grow only 2-2.5”. They are a shoaling loach and therefore should be kept in groups of at least 6. The larger the shoal, the more entertaining the loaches. They are peaceful, inquisitive and active and make an excellent addition to the community tank. Their very high activity levels may bother more docile or shy fish, especially those that share the same areas of the tank. They often exhibit the unusual behavior of shoaling midwater openly during daylight hours. Large water changes prompt many of them to begin a group “loachy dance” which is quite a sight with large groups. Their life span is believed to be 8-12 years.

    The aquarium should consist of a fine smooth sand substrate, or very small smooth rounded gravel, plenty of driftwood that contains numerous holes and tunnels to play and sleep in, rocky caves to hide in, subdued lighting and lots of aquatic plants. These loaches like to be able to poke their heads out of their caves or driftwood and see other fish swmming about. After this watchful lookout, they will know whether or not it is safe to come out and play.

    They will uproot smaller, less established plants while they dig in the substrate looking for food bits. While care should be taken to preserve the loach’s barbells, they do tend to prickle other fish with their barbells which elicits a bit of a jump and a fast swim away by the unsuspecting fish. The dwarf chain loach seems to enjoy a moderate amount of flow in the tank, although in nature, they are sometimes found both in flowing water and standing flood puddles and flooded fields. Regular water changes are essential as ammonia and high nitrates are not well tolerated.

    IMG_3675%20%28Small%29.jpg
     
    #7 Lupin, Oct 19, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  7. Lupin

    Lupin Registered Member

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    Golden Zebra Loach (Botia histrionica)

    Scientific Name: Botia histrionica
    Common name: Golden Zebra Loach
    Care Level: easy
    Size: 6 inches
    pH range: 6.0-7.0
    Temperature range: 24-28 degrees Celsius (76-82 degrees Fahrenheit)
    Origin:
    Temperament:
    peaceful
    Compatible Tankmates:
    Community setup.
    Diet: Meaty foods such as bloodworms, earthworms, snails, mussels and shrimps are appreciated greatly.
    Tank Size for Adult: 30g for a group of 3.
    Narrative:
     
    #8 Lupin, Oct 19, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  8. Lupin

    Lupin Registered Member

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    Green Tiger Loach (Syncrossus hymenophysa)

    Scientific Name: Syncrossus hymenophysa
    Common name: Green Tiger Loach
    Care Level: easy
    Size: 10 inches
    pH range: 6.0-7.0
    Temperature range: 24-28 degrees Celsius (76-82 degrees Fahrenheit)
    Origin:
    Temperament: extremely aggressive
    Compatible Tankmates:
    Usually feisty tankmates that can handle their aggression are recommended as tankmates with this fish such as tiger barbs, arulius barbs and garras.
    Diet: Meaty foods such as bloodworms, earthworms, snails, mussels and shrimps are appreciated greatly.
    Tank Size for Adult: Due to their slow growth rate, a 75g can handle 6-8 of these fish. An upgrade in tank size will be needed once they reach six inches in length as they tend to cover large areas as they clash to settle territorial disputes.
    Narrative:
     
    #9 Lupin, Oct 19, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  9. Lupin

    Lupin Registered Member

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    Hillstream Loaches (covering all species available)

    Scientific Name: Beaufortia kweichowensis
    Common name: Hillstream loach, Borneo sucker, China sucker, Butterfly pleco, Stingray pleco, Hong Kong pleco
    Care Level: easy
    Size: 2.5 inches
    pH range: 6.5-7.5
    Temperature range: 18-24 degrees Celsius (68-76 degrees Fahrenheit)
    Origin: Borneo, Sumatra
    Temperament: peaceful
    Compatible Tankmates:
    Tankmates should be able to tolerate very low temperatures and fast flowing currents. White cloud mountain minnows and several species of danios and devarios make suitable tankmates along with peaceful Schistura species and other hillstream loach species.
    Diet:
    Diet consists mostly of algae and aufwuches which harbor the algae. This, in short, makes us think hillstream loaches are indeed omnivores. They have been fed so far with bloodworms, mosquito larva, shrimps and plenty other foods. Small artificial foods will also be appreciated by this fish.

    Tip: In order to ensure the continuous supply of algae, the use of sunlight, fertilizers/fish food and dechlorinated tap water in a bucket/spare aquarium (not the main river aquarium!) are very important and will be sufficient enough to grow algae in a few days. Simply place a few rocks inside the bucket of water. Put a pinch of fish food or dose it with fertilizer designed for aquarium plants. Once you are done with the above, place the bucket under direct sunlight. Wait patiently for a few days and you should expect green algal growth among the rocks. Alternately use the rocks by placing a few ones at a time in the main aquarium for the hillstream loaches to feed. Return the rocks to the bucket and use the others thus ensuring you will not run out of the supply of algae which is very important to the well being of the fish.
    Tank Size for Adult: 20g minimum for a group of 8-10.
    Narrative:
    There are several species of hillstream loaches available all around Asia, however, details will be posted for specifics. They are easily distinguished from Gastromyzons by their smaller mouth shape and wider body appearance. A lot of these species can reach to 2-3 inches maximum size although smaller in captivity.

    This fish has long been called in several other names including Borneo Sucker, Stingray Pleco, Butterfly Pleco and China Sucker. While they do closely resemble the plecos, the truth is they are neither plecos nor can they be considered as catfish. They are loaches thus falling under the cyprinids category.

    Hillstream loaches inhabit fast-flowing streams with boulders and this must be replicated in captivity to satisfy their needs. In short, a tank with substrate and smooth rocks coated with algae make a suitable environment for them. Keep them at a temperature ranging 65-76 degrees Fahrenheit. Higher than that can result in inactivity and reduction of oxygen supply. Plants may be recommended as well to ensure excellent water quality as this fish actually prefers very clean water as evident in their habitat. Provide powerful currents and surface movements to ensure very high oxygen supply and continuing comfort in their home. They will not last long enough if the oxygen is greatly depleted or if any of their requirements are not met at all.

    Sexing is not easy and may actually vary depending on the species. As far as breeding, some species have been successfully bred. One species worth mentioning is Sewella lineolata, one of the species well known for its beautiful reticulated patterns.

    On tank maintenance, doing 20-30% water change on daily basis is recommended. Small frequent water changes are far more safer for this fish than big water changes at different time intervals as they will not be happy with the tremendous changes in water conditions.

    Lastly, it has been acknowledged so far that hillstream loaches can last as long as five years provided they are not deprived of the requirements that will allow them to thrive in your tank happily.

    [​IMG]
     
    #10 Lupin, Oct 19, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009

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