09-02-2010, 02:07 PM
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Loaches are lovely fish, but in the confines of a 23g tank your choices are very limited. All loaches must be in a group, minimum 3 if that is absolutely necessary due to space, but 5 is better for the fish, they have a very high social structure. The only species suitable for a 23g would be the two dwarfs, Yunnanilus cruciatus (Banded Dwarf Loach) or possibly Yashuhikotakia sidminthuki (the common dwarf loach), both are in our profiles (click on the shaded names). The former would be better but are more demanding of soft acidic water which with your livebearers I assume you do not have.
None of the other common species in Botia should be in a tank under 3 feet, and that only applies to maybe the Zebra, a 4-foot is minimum for most. Clown loaches are large-tank fish, 6-feet or more. This considers their attainable size but they grow quickly (if they are healthy in suitable tanks that is).