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The Loach Forum Archives (2)
Re: On a serious note ...regarding stress and Botia
Posted By: Dave Guest <email@example.com> In Response To: On a serious note ...regarding stress and Botia (BB)
Date: Monday, 7 February 2000, at 5:09 a.m.
In Response To: On a serious note ...regarding stress and Botia (BB)
Well I must admit that I cheated and looked at Mickie's response first and her list is identical to what I would have written. Here's a general overview on my preferred loach artificial habitat:
1) Hiding places: At least 2 and preferably 3 holes or caves per fish. I use PVC pipe buried underneath slate masses and piles of bogwood but also leave the front of the tank open because they need somewhere to have a good swim without bumping into things :-)
2) Good filtration: Most loaches don't live in stagnant ponds so I'm in favour of high powered canister or internal filtration. My 40G has two Fluval 4's and my river tank (35G) has two Aquaclear 402 powerheads. The loaches *love* it and activley swim around in the current all day.
3) Numbers: minimum of 3 but any number above that is fine. Despite popular opinion most of my loaches are kept in groups of 4 (not 5 which seems the most common recomendation after 3).
4) Goes with 2) Water quality: regular water changes (I've started doing 25% weekly and noticed the difference) and a lot of aeration or surface disturbance. Of course this rules out most plants but java moss and fern still seem to grow fine and that's all I need.
5) How many was I supposed to some up with again? :-) You didn't say 10 did you BB cos I think I've run out :-) OK: dither fish if your loaches are shy and retiring. Mine aren't because in all 4 of my tanks the loaches are the main residents and they know it. I don't keep tanks full of tetras or whatever and then add a couple of loaches and expect them to shoal up and down the glass all day. IMHO dither fish are space consumers and loach food eaters. I have rainbows in my two largest tanks but their population is on the decline. The large Boesemani's now number 2 instead of 4 because on two occassions I ran out of bloodworm so didn't feed them for a couple of nights. On each occassion after two nights without food the hymenophysas decided that the big fat blue and yellow fish would make a nice meal. So I learnt my lesson and now buy frozen bloodworm in bulk. I'm down to two praecox in the river tank after the 4 new females I got last year all went down with dropsy in the space of a week. The following week 2 of my originals suffered from the same. I think the indirect cause was the harassment they were receiving at feeding time from the shark pack (dario, striata and nigrolineata) which ultimately led to them succumbing to something they would otherwise have been relatively immune to. I also tried tiger barbs but the loaches killed all but four of them too so I've decided that tank can do without dithers.
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