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Loach Tank advice please!
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Joined: 25 Mar 2007
Location: Lancs UK

PostPosted: 2014.09.20(Sat)14:31    Post subject: Loach Tank advice please! Reply with quote

Hi Guys,

I've really wanted a loach tank for a while and will be moving soon, so can have one, however the largest tank I can squeeze in is 30L x12Wx18H tank (about 23 gallons apparently), with help and research I've narrowed my stocking choices down to 2 loaches, both of which I can source from a good local shop.

My first option is the rosy loach with celestial pearl danios, both about an inch long and from the same area, according to the old rule of 2 inches of fish per gallon in a tropical tank I could keep 20 of each, obviously I think this is a bit much I was thinking 15 each, would this be OK?

The other option I am considering is the Hovering Zebra Loach and Glowlight danios (wasnt able to find a small mid water swimmer from the same area so searched for small with similar water requirements) using the same rule I am looking at 12 loaches and 15 danios.

So background done, my first question is how realistic is this stocking? The tank will be run off an internal power filter and a pair of smaller air driven sponge filters for additional biological action and aeration, however if extra filtration is required I do have an external I can easily use.

My second question is can anyone suggest a small (<1.5inch) dither that is regionally appropriate for the hovering zebra (vietnam)?

Tank setup wise I plan to use a dark sand substrate and bogwood and some piled larger rocks to create caves and hiding places for the loaches does this sound appropriate? Id really like to include some plants and plan to use some duckweed maybe to slightly diffuse the light to mimic the natural environment of these fish more closely. I know nothing about plants really though so I need some recommendations for low light easy to maintain plants that basically grow (biotope accuracy is second to ease and hardiness), I plan to put java moss on most of the bogwood pieces and rocks but would like other suggestions especially for leaved plants for loaches to rest on

Thanks in advance guys
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Joined: 25 Mar 2007
Location: Lancs UK

PostPosted: 2014.09.21(Sun)16:03    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm really confused about stocking levels now browsing the web for stocking levels for a tank like this I have come across this information 40 inches of fish with internal filter (104cm),65 inches with external (166cm),73 inches with external oversized (187cm) and using the volume and flow figures on aquadvisors stocking calculator this matches.

I have calculated this at in the rosy loach set up being either 40, 64 or 73 fish respectively, and in the zebra tank idea being (with 1.2 inch dither) 36, 48 or 54 fish ( these are with different numbers of loaches but the increasing trend is still big)

I plan to run the tank on an oversized external (rated for a 200L tank on a 104L), obviously some volume will be lost to d
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Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Location: bedford, virginia

PostPosted: 2014.10.19(Sun)19:50    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Alex--

I think you're looking at a 29 gallon tank, not a 23.

Inches of fish per gallon is not a good system.. especially not 2 inches per gallon as you've stated.

With a loach tank, water quality is of the highest order. Adding too many fish (or too many too fast) will make keeping it stable impossible.

I think your first option stock list is OK. I would go heavier on the danios (they're so beautiful!).. 15-20, added 10 at a time first--- and a little lighter on the loaches (7-12 add half at a time if you can) until you see how everything's going. Make sure your tank is well established before adding the loaches! Remember that while you may be gung-ho at first about water changes, if you stock too much, you'll be in real trouble if you miss a week. I always ere on the side of under stocking.. but that's me.

I don't think you'll need a separate dither as the danios should do that fine.

Your tank setup plan sounds good with the caves and such. So far as low light plants go, any of the Anubias' could work in this setup. Loaches love moving water and so do anubias, so if you want, add a power-head or air stone in there. Using an external filter is probably a good thing too! Externals tend to have better biological filtration IMO, and your fish will thank you for that.

I hope this helps, best of luck-- and remember to take it slowly!
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