Dwarf Chain Loaches In 20g High?

Discussion in 'Loaches' started by Fishbeard, Apr 17, 2017.

  1. FishbeardValued MemberMember

    My 20g high (24 by 12 by 16) that I've been working on stocking for awhile is in need of some bottom feeders... currently the bottom half is empty, and I think loaches are the way to go.

    Here's my current stock:

    2 Honey Gouramis
    6 Harlequin Rasboras (thinking about picking up more when my LFS has them)
    3 Endlers
    2 Nerite Snails (1 horned, 1 zebra)
    3 Amano Shrimp

    Would a small school of dwarf loaches be a good idea? The substrate is sand, and I've read that harlequins match up well with them...

  2. 1111aNew MemberMember

    I think that would work good, I would get 2 or more though since they like the company of their species, also do your research on them depending on what kind you get/want. Ghost shrimp are really good bottom feeders to and are cheap! They clean my 20g really good, I usually get 6 or more. Good luck
  3. FishbeardValued MemberMember

    I agree, I'm thinking about getting 5-6 dwarf chain loaches. I want the schooling behavior, and that should match up well with the harlequins I think. Is that too many for the footprint?

    I've tried ghost shrimp before with very little success. The store nearby that carries them seems to have really low quality, and all mine have died within a month. They're sold as feeders, so I wasn't too surprised :( Glad they work well for you though!
  4. 1111aNew MemberMember

    Oh that's a shame..
    To be honest I'm not really sure if that will work out or not.
    I think it depends on what you have in your tank and if all 5 or more will be able to swim around they get about 2 inches, plus they do swim in the middle of the tank not just the bottom.
    I think you could get away with maybe 3 or 4 and add more if you think you can fit more.
    (Just want to let you know I am not an expert, so do your research and ask around)
  5. TexasDomerFishlore LegendMember

    I would not do dwarf chain loaches. They're small, but very active, and may be stressed and/or nippy in a smaller tank.

    What about kuhli loaches instead? Less active, not nippy. You could do 8 in this tank!
  6. FishbeardValued MemberMember

    So as far as I can tell, the nippiness that people have experienced with the dwarf chains has been due to low numbers. That's why I'm thinking that 5-6 would be the best move. Good aspect to consider though... thanks for the input!

    I've thought about kuhli loaches, but I want something that adds daytime activity to the bottom half of the tank, and they don't really fit the bill. Also, my lid isn't 100% secure, with spaces left open for the HOB and some emergent growth, so not the best fit for this tank.

    If there's another species that would work better, I'd be happy to dig in and do some more research!
  7. TexasDomerFishlore LegendMember

    But in such a small tank, you might see more nipping, even in a larger group. I'm not sure this tank is big enough for the larger group either.

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