How many of you keep Clown Loaches in your planted tank?
Have you had any problems with them bothering your plants?
Clown loaches are very strange things. More often than not they will decimate the plants, sometimes in a matter of days. Oddly enough sometimes they won't touch them.
You take your chances but I'd be inclined not to put them in.
Depends a lot of your goal and scape design, building methods.
If it's heavy driftwood, java fern, open spaces with sand, lower light, Anubias, other tough things to move or uproot, yes.
But a 6-10" loach is a large critter.
And they should get that big in a few years if properly cared for.
I've been fairly lucky with mine so far. Not much uprooting. But they do like to punch the occasional holes in leaves (leaves a slight V shape hole). My biggest is about 5" currently but I'll be putting them soon in an 8' planted tank so they can grow to there full potential I hope. Substrate is sand, which I fear might be easier for them to dig up plants, time will tell. I am trying to stick to heavy duty & well rooted plants for the most part, mosses, ferns, crypts. Should be planted soon and I'll give the plants a chance to establish before introducing the clowns.
I have three of them in my planted tank. Two of them are around 3.5-4" and the other is probably closer to 3". They've been in there just about since the beginning of this tank (~8-9 months). I have some nice driftwood that they hide under, but many times I see them out and about. Interestingly enough, (despite the concerns people expressed) I have a group of cherry shrimp in there that had grown from 10-15 to up over 100. I've never seen the loaches touch them, but I feed everyone well and there are plenty of hiding places (although the shrimp are out and about many times as well).
It's something to ponder. Maybe fish have different personalities and temperments (within species), like people do. If that's that case, perhaps I just lucked out.
Keeping 10 in two tanks
Added the clown loach's after gaining ramshorn snails with new plants. The snails were starting to over run the tanks. The clowns seem well suited to snail control They maintain a good reduction in the numbers so far. They haven't bothered or uprooted any of my plants as yet (5 months).
I've used clown loaches for snail control. They did not seem to bother plants, but they can get aggressive with smaller fish as they grow. When they get big I trade them in.
I've used them with good effect for snail control but ultimately removed them because they were bullying my cories so much.
In the tank where I had clowns they never once bothered the other fish at all (rasboras, neons, cats, dwarf turquoise rainbows, SAEs, ottos) Just played around. I primarily kept them because I like their personalities and antics but I did have a snail infestation that was erradicated.
I had crypts, java, anubias, lobelia, ludwigia repens, green rotala and hygro. Occaisionally, like maybe once every couple months I'd noticed several bites in the hygros as they have soft leaves. But that's it...and hygros grew so fast it didn't matter. Another thing is that I occaisionally threw in some algae wafers for the algae crew, and then the clowns might of filled up on them a bit--maybe the clowns weren't getting the veggies they needed in their diet??
I'm growing HC and glosso emersed right now and I'm not planning on putting in clowns because I suspect they do too much rooting around and might nibble at some of HC. Though I'm not sure as now the HC is firmly rooted into the substrate....
However I love clowns so much I think I'm going to setup a low light tank with java and anubia varieties and throw in JUST clowns. They grow quickly and get huge if treated right and they are fun to watch. Also always get them in groups of at least 3 or 4, they hide out and get reclusive and skittish with just a couple or one.
Last edited by DaveSurfer; 04-06-2009 at 01:29 AM.
My yo-yo loaches shredded some Hygrophila but the other plants haven't been touched; Ludwigia, java fern, Rotala rotundifolia, echinodorus