Details of all species referred to in these Fish Care Sheets can be found in the FBAS Booklet No 6 - National Show Fish Sizes. Click HERE for information.
Genera: Botia, Gyrinocheilus ,Nemacheilus, Pangio.
Family: Balitoridae, Cobitidae.
Geographic Origin: Virtually worldwide distribution with the exception of
South America and Australia.
Common Names: Chinese Algae Eater, Chain, Clown, Tiger Loaches.
Compatibility: Generally quite peaceful fish, that are well suited to a
community aquarium. Many are nocturnal by nature, hiding away
during 'tank-lit' hours. Large specimens of the Chinese Algae
Eater (which actually isn't a Loach) may become aggressive, as
may groups of five or more of the Botia species.
Minimum Aquarium Size: Should not be kept in tanks of less than
600mm x300mm x 300mm (24” x 12” x 12”).
Bigger aquariums are much better as the fish
tend to move around the tank searching for food.
Temperature: With a few exceptions, all are quite happy at temperatures
between 20o/27oC 70 o/80oF.
Habitat: Most are found in rivers or hill streams (these are often considerably
cooler and may be fast flowing). Like a well planted tank with
rockwork or places to hide.
Water Parameters: Undemanding, providing it is clean and clear.
A weekly water change of 25% is recommended.
Health: Some - particularly the Clown Loach (Chromobotia macracanthus) - are
often susceptible to White Spot. Treat with proprietary medicines
but be aware that fishes with very small scales may be adversely
affected by the remedy.
Diet: Dried,frozen and live foods such as Daphnia and Tubifex are all readily
accepted. Algae wafers are beneficial to their diet.
Plants: All tropical plants are acceptable in the aquarium.
Breeding Notes : An area shrouded in mystery, although some spawnings,
especiallyBotia macracanthus, have reportedlyoccurred
naturally in aquariums.
Availability: Many different species are available.
Show Class: Usually FBAS Show Classes L or La. Some in Class M or W.
© FBAS 2002. PWC/RDE. Fish Care Sheet 20 1/1