Coolie Loaches are fishes that have the habit of burrowing in the substrate and they go well with community fish tanks

Why need a beginner’s guide for Coolie Loaches? They have really entertaining behavior but these behaviors are risky too at times. Hence we need the beginners to guide to know how to properly care for and maintain the fish so that we enjoy the fishes for their amusing nature and appearance

Coolie loach Fish – Overview

CategoryDescription
Common NameThey are commonly called Coolie Loach, Kulhi Loach, or Prickly eye
Scientific NameIt was earlier called Cobitis kuhlii which was later changed to Acanthopthalmus kuhlii. It is now called Pangio kuhlii.
Habitat or OriginThey are native widely to Southeast Asia. The places in Southeast Asia include Singapore, Sumatra, Malaysia, Thailand, and Java
Average SizeIn an aquarium, Coolie Loaches grow up to the size of 3 to 5 inches which are around 8 -11 cm
ColorationThe body is yellow or pink in color. They have dark brown bands or stripes around the body
Life SpanThese fishes can live up to 10 years. If taken proper care of, they can live a couple of years more
DietThese fishes feed on live food like bloodworms, glass worms, daphnia, and tubifex. Frozen food of the above mentioned can also be given. They can also feed on flakes foods and tablets but they should sink in the tank
Gender IdentificationWhen the fishes are breeding, the females appear larger than the males. At times, eggs that are green in color can be seen through the skin of the female’s abdomen. The pectoral fins of males are larger than the females
BehaviorThe Coolie Loaches jump out of the tank when they are startled. Hence it is important to keep the tank closed with a lid
CompatibilityThese fishes are very comfortable when they are with their own species. Hence they can be kept in groups of 6 or more. They can also be kept with danios, rasboras and tetras
Ideal Tank ConditionsThe tank where these fishes are kept should have a really soft substrate. The substrate can be sand and not hard rocks or gravel as the fishes might get injured when they are burrowing. The filter should also be covered with a sponge. They also need hiding places which can be provided by plants, driftwoods, and cave
Water ParametersThe temperature of the water could be around 75- 86 degrees F (24 – 30 degrees C). The pH level should be around 6.0 – 6.5.
BreedingBreeding these fishes is difficult. However, under proper conditions like dim lighting, pH of about 6.5 and lowered water hardness will help in spawning the fishes. The female releases green colored eggs and they hatch in 24 hours. Once the eggs are laid, the adults should be removed from the tank. Once the eggs are hatched, freshly hatched brine shrimp and Infusoria are the best first food.
Common DiseasesThey are mostly not infected by any disease as such. If the water is unclean they might be affected by fresh water fish disease. They also might get ich sometimes. But these can be avoided by keeping the water clean.
Approximate Cost10 fishes cost around $5 to $7 and in southeast Asia, they cost half of the prize
What to look when buyingSince they are not susceptible to any major disease just check if the fishes are healthy while buying
Species in the MarketBorneo Kulhi Loach, Eel Kulhi Loaches are other species of Loaches available

Gallery of Coolie loach fish

References

  1. Hellweg, Mike. “Are you ready for the challenge of breeding the Kuhli Loach?”Fishchannel.com