My Loaches - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 12 Old 07-21-2009, 10:21 AM Thread Starter
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My Loaches

Right now I have 3 cardinal tetras, 1 sailfin molly, 1 zebra loach, and 2 clown loaches. My zebra loach is always chasing my two clown loaches whenever they eat and dig into the rocks. He also nips at them sometimes. I've heard that loaches like to be in groups and like to hide. I was thinking about going to the store today and getting two more zebra loaches and one more clown loach so there will be three of each. And I was going to buy some sort of cave and driftwood so they can hide and maybe buy a few plants. Do you think this would be better for them and maybe the one zebra loach would stop chasing the others.
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post #2 of 12 Old 07-21-2009, 11:17 AM
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I would stick with zebra loaches unless you have very large aquarium. Providing lot's of hiding areas as opposed to one or two will help curb fin nipping.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #3 of 12 Old 07-21-2009, 12:47 PM Thread Starter
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The clown loaches I have do NOT get huge like most peoples. At the store on the shelf it said these get up to 1-2 inches. The guy that works there also said that. Here is where I got them and it says 1-2 inches. I got the tiny ones. Exotic Aquatics :: Freshwater Life :: Loaches
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post #4 of 12 Old 07-21-2009, 12:58 PM
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These fish can and do reach lengths of twenty inches when full grown and with proper care. Don't take my word for it ,or fish store. Google info on the fish and judge for yourself. Do read or research their care while you are googlingf info. I may be wrong but I am unaware of any clown loaches that remain two inches long except dead ones.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #5 of 12 Old 07-21-2009, 03:41 PM
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when they say 1-2 inches, they are talking about the size of the fish when you purchase it.
Larger & older clown loaches tend to cost more.

I am with 1077, I have not heard of any clown loaches that stay small.
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post #6 of 12 Old 07-21-2009, 04:44 PM
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i did a google on the Latin name of your fish you have...Botia Marcantus.....(Sorry for spelling)........Most of the sites are saying anywhere from 7 to 24 inches at adulthood......Thts quite a large gap in sizes, but i'm on board with everyone else and saying you got a regular old clown loach thats gonna get very large for an aquarium of most sizes......How large of a tank do you have?............unless its over a 100 gallons, i wouldnt add any more clown loaches, but thats just my opinion.......
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post #7 of 12 Old 07-21-2009, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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Whatever. Next time I go to the store I'll ask him about it. If they do get huge, I'll get rid of them somehow. Return them or find some place for them.
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post #8 of 12 Old 07-23-2009, 11:09 AM
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Originally Posted by fish5 View Post
The clown loaches I have do NOT get huge like most peoples. At the store on the shelf it said these get up to 1-2 inches. The guy that works there also said that. Here is where I got them and it says 1-2 inches. I got the tiny ones. Exotic Aquatics :: Freshwater Life :: Loaches
I checked this link; this is how retailers sell fish, they indicate the current size because with some fish the size dictates the price. As an example, if you buy neon tetras when they are small, you might pay less than a dollar; but if they are medium size, they might sell for $2, and very large neons (full grown) will usually sell for more, say $3. It has nothing to do with how large the individual fish will grow, just the size at which they are selling them. The price difference has to do with how much it costs them to maintain them, and the survival chances (larger fish tend to survive better than fry).

As for the clown loaches, they are 12-inch at maturity. When large fish are maintained in less than adequate sized tanks, they do not grow properly. They develop internal problems, often with the immune system. They are under continual stress due to the water conditions. It is not so much the "size" of the aquarium that is the problem, but the condition of the water. In a smaller tank the water deteriorates more rapidly due to the biological processes of the fish and these processes increase as the fish ages even if it remains stunted in growth size; the internal processes are still "growing", hence the organ problems. If the water could be changed every hour or two, a larger fish would 'survive" in a smaller tank. But the space causes other problems then.

People in pet stores sadly do not always know much. As suggested in previous posts, research your fish before you buy them. A concensus of opinion on fish size indicates the information is probably accurate, and as noted every website will tell you about clown loaches growing to 12+ inches. Keeping these fish in a 30 g tank is not healthy and frankly cruel. It is like keeping a golden retriever dog in a 3x3 foot cage; it will "survive" but hardly "live" in such conditions.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #9 of 12 Old 07-23-2009, 11:24 AM
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fish5, this is a quote from the clown loache webpage you linked to...

"Care: This is a wonderful loach, but too large for most hobbyist aquariums."

The sizes you see listed are the sizes of the fish when they ship them to you, not their final adult size.

All that being said, you can still keep and enjoy them. They are not too big for your tank right now aparently. When they do grow to a size that comes close to outgrowing your tank just take them to your LFS and donate them. Then you can get something else or start over with more baby clown loaches. Don't let them stay in your tank once they even get close to being too big.

"The beauty of the second amendment is that it will not be needed until they try to take it." -Thomas Jefferson

Last edited by rgs1975; 07-23-2009 at 11:27 AM.
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post #10 of 12 Old 07-23-2009, 01:19 PM Thread Starter
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OK, Thanks. The guy at the store had no idea what he was talking about then. Or he did know and he just wanted to make money and sell some fish. I guess I'll return them and get different fish.

But I do have one question about zebra loaches. Whenever I put food in the tank and watch them eat my zebra loach chases the clown loaches around for a while. I've heard alot about zebra loaches chasing other fish. Is this just his personality, is he territorial, or is it because hes by himself. I was thinking it was because he was by himself so I was maybe going to buy 1 or 2 more. What do you think? I know I'm asking this again but I only got one answer before.

Last edited by fish5; 07-23-2009 at 01:21 PM.
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