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Burmese Loach

burmese loach

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Scientific Name:   Botia histrionica    
Min. Tank Size:   60 gallons      
Personality:   Peaceful     
Temperature:   75-82°F      
pH:   6.0-7.5/2-10°dGH      
Size:   5"      
Diet:   Omnivore      
Breeding:   Egglayer      


Best kept with at least 6 of its own species; can be kept with Rasboras, Danios, Catfish and other Loaches.

Burmese Loach

Also known as the Golden Zebra Loach and the Silver Striped Loach, the Burmese Loach has a striking appearance. These fish have light brown or cream-colored bodies ornamented with five broad, dark bands. These bands are typically offset with a spot along the lateral line and along the back. The fins of these fish may also exhibit dark bands and black tips. Males of the species tend to have an elongated snout while females are more full-bodied and have a rounded snout.

Tank Set-up

The Burmese Loach is most frequently found in India, China and Burma but has also been found in parts of Thailand. These fish tend to inhabit slow-flowing waters that are clear and shaded by marginal and submerged vegetation. Burmese Loaches, like most loaches, thrive best in a well-structured tank setup. Tanks for these loaches may be decorated with sand or fine gravel substrate and driftwood branches. These loaches prefer subdued lighting and require plenty of cover in the form of aquatic plants and rocks. Burmese Loaches tend to form complex hierarchies and, as a result, are best kept in groups with at least six of their own species. These loaches are not aggressive by nature but may nip at long-finned fishes.


Burmese Loaches are carnivorous by nature but may consume some vegetable matter. In the home aquarium, these loaches should be offered a staple diet of high-quality sinking foods supplemented with live and frozen foods such as bloodworms, Daphnia and Artemia. Burmese Loaches also enjoy chopped earthworms as an occasional treat and may also feed on aquarium snails. Fresh fruits and vegetables will help these fish achieve their best coloration.


This species has not been known to breed in captivity. These fish have been commercially bred, however, through the use of hormones. Unfortunately, the use of hormones in breeding these fish has also resulted in several hybrids of the species.

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