- Group: Freshwater
- Size: Small
- Temperament: Non-aggressive
- Aquarium Size: Large (50+ gal)
- Swimming Region(s): Bottom
- Suitable Tank Mates: Barbs, Danios, Tetras, Guppies, Mollies, Swordtails, Gourami
- Difficulty Of Care: Weekly care
Loaches General description
Loaches are a large family of highly intelligent freshwater fish. There are over 200 different species of loaches and they are characterized by their eel-like bodies. Most species of loaches also have 3-6 pairs of barbells which are used as feelers. They are an extremely intelligent and sociable species of aquarium fish and make for fascinating additions to your aquarium.
Loaches are a large family of highly intelligent freshwater fish.
Loaches are native to Central and Southern Asia.
Loaches come in colors ranging from red, yellow, gold, brown, and black.
Maintenance and care
Loaches are one of the most sociable species of freshwater fish and should ideally be kept in groups of three or more. They often form very strong bonds with each other and can sometimes suffer from stress if one of its companions dies or goes missing. When given adequate care, some species of loach can live for up to 20 years and make for a very rewarding aquarium experience.
Loaches spend the majority of their time swimming and foraging along the aquarium bottom. They will often uproot plants and disturb rocks, pieces of wood and other tank decorations. This should be taken into account when setting up a loach aquarium. They will often borrow into an aquarium’s bottom if provided with soft substrate. They also like to establish a complex network of hiding places to which they will retreat to often. Most species of loach are nocturnal and also appreciate dimly lit aquariums. Some species of loach can also grow up to 12 inches in length and should be raised in an adequately sized aquarium.
Loaches are an extremely peaceful species of fish and can be kept with most other species of aquarium fish.
Loaches are omnivorous and will accept a wide variety of foods. Since they are bottom feeders, sinking pellet type varieties of aquarium foods should be used to feed them. Their diet should also be supplemented with plenty of fresh vegetable matter like cucumbers and lettuce.
Loaches are one of the most sociable species of freshwater fish and should ideally be kept in groups of three or more.
Breeding loach is extremely difficult and very rare in the home aquarium. They form very strong social bonds and will sometimes engage in a complex courtship dance, spiraling around each other in a vertical movement.
Clown Loach, Kuhli Loach, Dwarf Loach, Yoyo Loach, Zebra Loach, etc.
Photo credit: Vlad Butsky/Flickr; Opencage.com