The Kuhli Loach is found in South-East Asia, in Malaysia, Sumatra and Borneo. They inhabit the shallow slow-moving waters of forest streams; a similar environment to old peat swamps with black waters. These habitats are often shaded from direct sunlight by the streams dense vegetation and the tree canopy above the water.
It’s very important to keep the water clean and well-oxygenated.
Kuhli Loaches require a soft substrate such as sand and fine gravel mix. The water should be soft, 0-5 dGH, slightly acidic, pH 5.5-7, with moderate lighting. They are tropical fish and the temperature should be kept between 23-30°F.
They prefer good water movement with a turnover of at least 10 times per hour; you will need a good quality filter for this.
Any filter you use will need a cover over the outlet and inline pipe so your Loach doesn’t swim inside and get trapped.
In the wild they are used to lots of vegetation so include plenty of plants. In the wild, Loaches like spending time in leaf litters so you can spread peat moss inside the aquarium to recreate this.
Some large rocks and a couple of pieces of driftwood can also be used as tank decoration; they will also appreciate twisted roots as a place to hide.
Make sure to have a firm cover on your tank as these fish can jump out of the tank.
Kuhli Loaches are peaceful fish. They are best kept with other small non-aggressive fish such as Corydoras, Danios, Rasboras and Tetras.
They will spend most of their time swimming at the bottom of the tank, scavenging and eating the leftover food that has sunk onto the sand. Therefore ideal tank mates are those fish that occupy the upper regions of the tank.
White Cloud Mountain Minnows, Oto Catfish and shrimps like the Red Cherry Shrimp are also good tank mates.
These fish are at their best when kept together in a group of 6. If kept alone, they will be very shy and will hide most of the time.
Kuhli Loach are omnivorous fish, eating larvae, small crustaceans and plant material found on the river bed.
They usually sieve through mouthfuls of substrate in search of food. They don’t actively hunt for food but instead are known as scavengers. They will wait for the food to sink from the water above and then search for it to eat.
Despite not being fussy, they do prefer a meat-based diet. To give them a balanced diet you can also feed them vegetables and fish flakes or pellets.
Flakes and pellets are ideal as they will easily sink down to the substrate and they will be easily eaten by your loaches – these foods should form the base of your Loaches diet.
In your aquarium you can also feed your Loaches Brine Shrimp and Bloodworms.
- Species – Pangio kuhlii
- Common Name – Chocolate Kuhli Loach
- Origin – South-East Asia
- Diet – Omnivore
- PH Range – 5.5 – 7
- Temperature – Tropical 23-30°c
- Current Size – approximately 4cm (Grows to approximately 10cm)
- Sex – Un-sexed