Animal Stories - People Talking About Loaches


Animal-World info on Dojo Loach
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Erin - 2009-12-29
These are one of my favourite fish of all time. They may not be colourful, but with their ugly-cute faces, gentle temperaments, otter-like playful personalities, and their affinity for human contact, they really can grow on you. These fish have become more like pets to me than any of the other fish I have kept, and are reported to be long-lived, from 12-15 years. All of these things are the markers of an ideal pet. Over time, they can become fairly large. I now have 4 Dojo Loaches. Of the four, one is the Gold variety, and the other three are the regular Browns. I have had the original Brown pair for almost two years. My second-largest, Whiskers, is 7 inches long and fairly slender with a distinct lateral line; the upper half being golden with brown spots and the lower being lighter. The tail of Whiskers is spade-shaped. The largest of these, Tickles, is over 8 inches long and probably close to an inch in diameter. I believe this one is female. She is grayish brown with all-over darker spots, and has a rounded tail. I have wondered if these two are slightly different species, though I purchased them at the same time. The final two Loaches are my babies; Jackie and No-Feet. Jackie is the one of gold variety. His body is peach-coloured, and very slender compared to that of No-Feet, who is about the same length at 4", and resembles Tickles most in looks and body type. Jackie is a standout among the bunch. He got this name from Jackie Chan, as he is always moving about the tank and performing curious antics such as draping himself over plants and hanging there in odd positions. Jackie and No-Feet can often be found swimming together throughout all levels of the tank. Tickles and Whiskers used to be more active, but it seems as they have aged, they have become more sedentary, spending their days resting near or under a log. Sometimes I will find all four of my Dojos resting on top of eachother. When I bought the first ones, I knew nothing about them. I was told they could be kept together or alone. I got one, but before even leaving the store, changed my mind and got another on a hunch. I now know these fish are at their best in groups, and each time I introduce a new member, it is immediately accepted and brought into the Loach Clan. The Dojos have been nothing but gentle towards my other fish, and have a special relationship with their nonspecific Loachmates, especially the Kuhli Loaches and the Peppered Loaches (Lepidocephalichthys). Both these other types from time to time will join on the Loach Pile. This is funny and entertaining to watch. I am currently keeping them in a 55 Gallon Community, but am planning to upgrade to a 75 soon so they can have more room. This new tank will take into consideration their requirements for hiding spots, resting spots, and places to explore. In my experience, robust plants are best, as Dojos like to redecorate. Sometimes this is purposeful (that PLANT is in my favourite spot!), and sometimes it is not. Any finer-leaved or stemmed plants are usually knocked around unintentionally. I have found Amazon Swords, larger Cryptocoryne, and Giant Vallisneria are excellent for having extended root systems less likely to be dug up or disturbed. Other good plant choices include ones you can tie down to wood such as Anubias or Java Fern. Ideal tankmates for these fish are larger Barbs and Rainbowfish who, like the Dojo, enjoy cooler temperatures. If you would like something smaller, Danios or Rasboras might fit the bill, but I would stay away from the Giant Danio. I brought a trio of these home once, and though they were not aggressive, their constant racing around the tank was unsettling to my Loaches. They began to burrow and hide until only their eyes were showing. It has been a wonderful experience having these fish, and they are my main concern when designing this new tank. Enjoy your Loaches!

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Animal-World info on Clown Loach
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Chuong - 2009-12-23
I love these guys!! The local aquarium had four of them, I didn't want to split them up so I bought all 4. It didn't take them too long to get comfortable in my tank; they hid for the first 30 minutes or so, but now they're all out swimming the full length of the tank.

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Animal-World info on Chinese Golden Zebra Loach
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Joes - 2009-12-23
Hi
I have 5 Sinobotia robusta in a 120 gallon tank. They are together with a group of Clown, 15 harlekin tetras, 15 dwarf rainbow fish and probably more than 100 shrimps. I got some 15 four years ago, they have multiplied since, despite the group of loaches in my tank. There are enough places to hide, both for the big and smaller species, provided by rocks, wood and lots of Java ferns growing on the woods and the back.
The Sinobotia seem to be very social fish, they swim together, often lay close to each other, touching each other. Not so shy at all, as I can see them very often during daytime. I have not seen them going after other inmates. So according to me, rather peaceful fish. they are a curious species, come out to see what we do. beg for food with all the other fish. A species I would recommend to have in a group.

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Animal-World info on Dojo Loach
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Trish S - 2009-11-23
I've had dojo loaches for several years now. I used to have a pair, but the female died a year or so ago along with several other fish. The male, though, is still going strong. The funniest thing about this pair was their personalities. The female was forever bullying the male. His growth even seemed to be stunted while she was in the tank hen-pecking him. Once she died, though, his growth increased significantly. He'll never be as big as she was, but he filled out quite nicely. Now, though, the chinese algae eater tends to pick on him some. He's just so laid back, that he doesn't really seem to care much.

My dojo is in a 26 gal planted community tank with mollies, neon tetras, upside down catfish, and the algae eater. He's probably six to eight inches long (I haven't bothered to try to measure him). With the exception of the algae eater, he gets along wonderfully with his tank mates. He's one of the most interesting fish in the tank that can be seen regularly (since the upside down cats like to hide during the day), and I can't imagine not having him in my tank! He likes to kick back and relax on the heater (which isn't currently on, because winter has not really hit our area yet). He can also be found darting up to the surface to take a gulp of air now and then - especially when the weather is unsettled. Since I'm in Missouri, that's fairly frequently! He's very friendly with me, and he seems to enjoy being "petted". I don't do it frequently, though, because I worry about messing up his slime coat. I don't let the kids do it, because I worry about their dirty hands in my tank!

He does burrow down in the gravel, and there has been more than once when I thought he'd died because all I saw sticking up out of the gravel was his tail. After a few minutes, though, he'd wiggle his way out and swim up to the top! It's awesome to watch. I don't panic so much now when I can't find him, because it usually just means he's doing what dojos do. I don't let myself get attached to my fish very often, but I can honestly say that I love this fish. I would be heartbroken if something happened to him.

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Animal-World info on Yoyo Loach
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Mike - 2009-09-07
I have two YoYo Loaches who have lived happily in a Cichlid tank for a couple of months. Yesterday, I saw their behaviour change from amusing to bizarre! They chased each other for about twenty minutes, circling and almost digging a hole in the gravel - at high speed. What really surprised me was that one of the loaches almost completely lost its colour, becoming nearly totally white. As soon as it had begun, the "ritual" ended and they swam off happily to continue eating. The one who had lost its colour regained its normal look within a couple of hours.

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Animal-World info on Dojo Loach
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Amy - 2009-08-26
I've had my dojo loach for about 2 months but I did not know it needed sand of fine gravel, is this a major problem because I have never seen it try to dig into it.
Also he never seems to want to interact when I feed him or clean the tank, does this mean there's something wrong or is it just his personality?
Amy, 12

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Animal-World info on Clown Loach
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Amy - 2009-08-04
We have recently bought a clown loach - despite being told at the shop they can be shy and reclusive, ours is one of the liveliest fish in the aquarium! He is always out and about, we only have one at the moment but he seems happy enough on his own, and gets along well with all the others, especially the small corys. Would like another, they are beautifully marked.

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Anonymous - 2009-07-17
Tiger loaches are any loach with the Syncrossus genus. Calling a Clown "Tiger" is an insult to their peaceful, playful nature. Read the comments and description about the Berdmores Loach to find out what Tiger loaches are like, whereas Clowns will be playful even when they're 8+ inches long and 30+ years old. Also, putting Clowns into a 30 gallon tank (which is actually a small tank, not a 'fairly large' tank) will probably begin to stunt its growth after a couple years, causing stress and lower quality of life, they are recommended by actual loach experts to never be bought unless you are able to put them in a 180 gallon tank once they hit a certain length. They are very fast swimmers and require a lot of room for zipping around the tank playfully. Also, don't be alarmed if you find them piled up, squished inside a small hole. They like to do that, and part of why they got their name... they act like clowns.

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Animal-World info on Dojo Loach
Animal Story on Dojo Loach
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fishlover16 - 2009-07-14
I am going to pick up two dojo loaches tomorrow and was wondering if regular beach sand will do??

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AR - 2009-07-11
The bit about them resting on other fish is true. Tesla, the largest and laziest of my loaches, will actually ride my telescope eye goldfish to the surface of the tank when I feed them. Very amusing to watch.

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