Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Nilet699 12-23-2012 04:57 AM

loach selection
I'm torn between zebra loach and polka dot loach ( Botia kubotai ) for my planted community tank....

Just wondering peoples personal pros/cons to either species if they have them.

fish monger 12-23-2012 05:45 AM


Originally Posted by Nilet699 (Post 1359421)
I'm torn between zebra loach and polka dot loach ( Botia kubotai ) for my planted community tank....

Just wondering peoples personal pros/cons to either species if they have them.

They are both very nice looking fish; however, my choice would be the Zebra Loach. They're a little smaller and everything I've read says they are peaceful, playful, active, and good community fish. Also, they are said to be a good beginner loach. One source that I have says they should be kept in a minimum group of 3; however, most sources say 5 or 6 is best. A very smooth substrate is recommended. I would go with play sand.

Nilet699 12-23-2012 06:36 AM

Well at current I have very fine gravel, took it to a friend who also works at a lfs and he said no need to change that for sand, so for now I'll stick with what i have.

As for th loaches I did think this as they were slightly smaller, though it's only around an inch and I have plenty of room to play with in the tank. Another member here also said to me about zebras a while back which is what got me thinking as when I saw the polkadots on Thursday I nearly bought them instantly but thought to wait and think.

The pros you listed from reading are listed for both in profiles though it must be said, so I suppose maybe it just comes down to personal preference. Of which I'm still torn. There both very attractive fish.

Canadian Fish 12-23-2012 07:14 AM

I keep zebras and they're a lot of fun. They do not restrict themselves to the substrate, and frequently swim along with my Rainbowfish when I approach the tank. They are very active and never hide. They have gotten along with everything I ever put in that tank. They quickly became one of my favorites when I brought them home.

I have never kept polka dots, so I can't say anything other than they are a great looking fish!

Byron 12-23-2012 11:00 AM

I have both species together in my 90g. Botia striata (Zebra loach) and Botia kubotai (make sure this really is the "polkadot" as common names can be confused) are both relatively peaceful for loaches. A group of no less than 5 of either species or there will likely be trouble.

Boith species, like all Botia loaches, have a high social interaction. My B. kubotai have spawned several times, though the eggs never escape predation in a community tank. But the twirling for hours by the two fish is amazing to watch.

Of the two, B. kubotai is probably slightly more restrained with respect to their "aggression." Sometimes a male will get a bit feisty, though in a sufficient-sized group (5+) and in sufficient space this doesn't amount to physical damage.

B. striata tend to be out and about more, but my B. kubotai may be more withdrawn due to the B. striata. Both need lots of wood with tunnels.

Check our profiles for more data. And on the substrate, a fine gravel that is not at all sharp is fine for these species. The B. kubotai especially will burrow under wood or stones and come up in a different spot.:-)


Nilet699 12-23-2012 11:14 AM

Well I dashed there after work and my Mrs who said she wanted no impact on this tank (despite having a marine biology degree btw!) was pumping me to get the "stripey ones" as "I don't like polkadot". We got there. She wanted the polkadot. Haha. So seeing as her choice matched where I was erring this came out well.

I also asked for 5, but as this is the place my friend of sorts works, I got home to discover I had 6. Joy :-)

Lights are off, they've been adjusting to temp for about 30 mins so just dropped in my first bit of water! I'm like a kid with a new fire engine. Haha

Canadian Fish 12-23-2012 11:22 AM

Wow. My poor fish rarely get acclimated that long. I'm too impatient.

Looking forward to some pics (or even better, videos) of the rascals.

Were the stores crazy this close to Chirstmas? My LFS has Balas on sale today, and I need two, but they're in a shopping complex that is notoriously busy this time of year.

I'm just going to wait and hope they don't sell them all to schmucks with 24" tanks that want to raise a school of Bala Sharks. Since there are sales all week long, that is probably what is going to happen.

Being on the same page as the wife is always great, so is a bonus fish. That's what I have 11 Black Skirts.

Nilet699 12-23-2012 11:38 AM

I'll throw up some pics when they're in there. I tried just now but with no night, I'd need the flash, and well.....

Try and get a vid later too, it's the first night work has let us both be able to put up the xmas tree tonight. Lol.

As for patience, yeah I know, this is sooooo hard! Haha.

And I walked in 8 mins before closing, we were the only 2 there! Which was nice. She also wanted some green barbs but that was a no no in this tank!

My gouramis right now keep swimming up to the bag and having a peek then drifting down on a repeat which is cool. It's one good point of having 2 and a half feet of tank height as they love doing this.

As for the schmucks, let's hope a few of them visit here like me and get taught a little something like I did about balas in my first thread :-)

Canadian Fish 12-23-2012 11:43 AM

Wow, you have a lot of work ahead if your tree isn't up yet. We have everything up and everything is wrapped. Ready for the main event.

My wife wants some green tiger barbs as well, she thinks they look like camo. I have previously mentioned she is from the country, where they think camo is a color. Unfortunately, they don't fit in any of our tanks.

I was surprised at how many fish take advantage of the 30" tank height, swimming up and down in addition to back and forth.


Originally Posted by Nilet699 (Post 1359684)
As for the schmucks, let's hope a few of them visit here like me and get taught a little something like I did about balas in my first thread :smile:

Now I have to go read this thread, lol. Open Mouth. Insert Foot. It's not the schmuck's fault, it's the LFS' fault for selling people fish they have no hope of caring for. But hey, retail is retail and a sale is a sale I guess. I'm no hippie, but you would think when live animals are involved, making the sale would not always come first and foremost.

I sound like a bloody hippie. Must be Christmas.

Nilet699 12-23-2012 11:44 AM

1 Attachment(s)
Not sure if you can really tell but that's my gourami being nosey!

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