Scientific Name(s): Botia Dario, Cobitis dario
Common Name(s): Queen Loach, Bengal Loach, Dario Loach, Indian Loach
Species Type: Asian Loaches/Catfish
Maximum Size: 6 inches
Life Span: 6 years
Natural Habitat: Asian Rivers
These fish are a social fish so do better in small groups. This fish is one of the truly delightful loaches and a favorite fish of all who have kept it. When acquired in groups of at least three, the Bengal Loach will provide the aquarist hours of entertainment, swimming in the characteristic loach “dance,” as it is commonly referred to, in which a group swims up and down in the water in figure-eight patterns.
Tank Setup :
These Loach are bottom dwellers that burrow in the substrate, the Bengal Loach tank should consist of fine-grained, round-edged gravel. Include numerous hiding places in the form of driftwood or inverted flowerpots to make them feel secure enough to exhibit their natural behaviors. And Minimum aquarium size is should be about 208 L (55 gal)
Although These fish don't require the very turbulent conditions favoured by many balitorids/nemacheilids they do best when the water is well-oxygenated with a degree of flow, are intolerant to accumulation of organic wastes and requires spotless water in order to thrive. For this reason they should never be introduced to biologically immature set-ups and adapt most easily to stable, mature aquaria. In terms of maintenance weekly water changes of 30-50% tank volume should be considered routine.
They are carnivorous by nature they will also eat vegetative matter if available, often including soft-leaved aquatic plants. They're largely unfussy feeders but must be offered a varied diet comprising quality dried products, live/frozen bloodworm, Tubifex, Artemia, etc. plus fresh fruit and vegetables such as cucumber, melon, blanched spinach or courgette. Chopped earthworm can also provide a useful source of protein but should be used sparingly, and home-made, gel-based foods using a mixture of natural ingredients are highly recommended. They'll also prey on aquatic snails though should not be considered a solution to an infestation since if other options are available they will take them. Once settled into an aquarium they're bold feeders, often rising into midwater.
Full grown females will be rounder.
These fish are mostly bottom dwellers, but will occasionally swim in the middle or upper parts of the aquarium.
There are no detailed reports concerning the breeding habits of the Bengal Loach in the aquarium.
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