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Zebra Loach

zebra loach

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Scientific Name:   Botia striata    
Min. Tank Size:   40 gallons      
Personality:   Peaceful/Very social      
Temperature 73-80°F    
pH:   6.0-7.5/2-10°dGH      
Size:   4"      
Diet:   Omnivore     
Breeding:   Egglayer    


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

Zebra Loach

These fish are named for their dark and pale striped coloration. Zebra Loaches have a base coloration of pale or golden yellow ornamented with seven to nine dark green, gray or black bars. These dark bars may be interspersed with thin, light-colored bars. Due to their distinctive coloration, Zebra Loaches are one of the most recognizable species of loach in the aquarium hobby. These fish are native to India and are frequently found in the mountain streams of the Western Ghats.

Tank Set-up

In the home aquarium, Zebra Loaches prefer sandy substrate, smooth stones and driftwood roots or branches. Like most loaches, Zebra Loaches thrive best in well-structured tanks with clean water and stable water parameters. In order to keep the water clean, weekly 30% to 50% water changes are recommended. Because they are naturally found in flowing streams, these loaches prefer some degree of flow to their tank water. Though they are typically more peaceful than other loaches, Zebra Loaches may still nip at long-finned fishes and could intimidate smaller species with their size.


Zebra Loaches are carnivorous by nature but will also feed on some vegetable matter. In captivity, 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. You may also offer your loaches chopped earthworms as an occasional treat and fresh fruits and vegetables will help these fish achieve their best coloration.


There are no known reports of success in breeding these species within the aquarium hobby. Like other loaches, however, there has been some success with commercial breeders inducing spawning through the use of hormones.

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