16 inch Clown Loach

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16 inch Clown Loach

Postby redshark1 » Wed May 18, 2016 3:58 pm

In the species index http://www.loaches.com/species-index/cl ... cracanthus it states that Clown Loach maximum size is 16".

I have searched for owners of large and old Clown Loaches for some time now and not found any of this size.

It has been suggested to me that this maximum size may refer to wild fish.

Could anybody tell me if this size has been substantiated and what the source of the information is please.

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Also, there is no guide to life span of Clown Loaches, which I feel is critical when planning long-term care of Clown Loaches.

From my research online (I have the webpages stored) I have found that Clown Loaches occasionally reach 20+ years and rarely 30+ years.

I feel that life span information ought to be added to the species index.

Examples of such fish are relatively few when considering the numbers exported (estimated at 50 million per annum by one source).

The picture is of my Anthia who is 10.5 inches long and 22 years old.
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby Hainguyen » Sat May 21, 2016 11:42 pm

I think clown loach live long time because they actually sleep or maybe hibernation? One night i try to get something out of the driftwood two of my clown loach drop out of the driftwood and on top of my tank. THey dont even know they are out of the water or maybe playing dead on me. I keep touching them and they're not moving at all for 1min, then i pushed them down to the water. Theyre start swimmining slowly and suddenly they rush to the driftwood again. That was hilarious.
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby Diana » Sun May 22, 2016 12:56 pm

http://www.fishbase.org/summary/Species ... ng=English
Fishbase even has a link to show said this (30.5cm), and where you can look it up.

Where is the reference to a 16" Clown Loach?
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby redshark1 » Mon May 23, 2016 1:03 pm

Hi Diana, thanks for responding.

It says Maximum size: 16 inches in bright red near the top.

http://www.loaches.com/species-index/cl ... cracanthus

Regarding your reference, thanks for that info.
6 x Clown Loaches, 1f10.5", 1f9", 4m6", 1995, 6' x 18" x 18" 400l/110usgal.
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby Greek » Tue Jul 19, 2016 10:10 am

I'm curious what is the size of the loach presented here http://www.tropicalaquarium.co.za/showt ... ed-or-real
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby redshark1 » Tue Jul 19, 2016 3:44 pm

The details of the Clown Loach pictured are not stated.

I consider the picture somewhat dubious without further information from the author.

I would think that the fish pictured is a dead one as there is no way I could hold my fish in my hand in that way.

In fact I doubt that I could hold Anthia in any manner even using both hands as the fish is both powerful and slippery.
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby Loachloach » Fri Sep 23, 2016 6:45 pm

Hi redshark1.

I sometimes spend days researching about clown loaches. The only reference to 16 inch loaches that I have seen is anecdotal information in fish forums. I've seen fat loaches alright. And I've seen small loaches that were presented as 7-8 inch ones and weren't. People exaggerate....As far as I know and as far as I am concerned, there is no factual data of the species growing to that 16 inch as a rule. Perhaps there is the old giant that does...but it isn't a guarantee for all.

I recently had to move the clown loaches twice because of my failing old tanks. As you mention in your previous post, the clowns are absolutely powerful, slippery and plain wild. I think by the end of it my hands were trembling...I was so upset handling these fish. I have no idea how one can hold a live loach in their hand...???..!!
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby redshark1 » Sun Sep 25, 2016 1:20 pm

Hi Loachloach and thanks for your post. Would you agree with me that a reasonable guide to maximum size would state that Clown Loaches can reach up to 12" and that Clown Loaches can live for up to 20 years and occasionally up to 30 years.

I would like to email the administrators and suggest that the Clown Loach profile should be amended in line with the forum's mission statement which is copied here from the link at the top of the page:

"Welcome to the new Loach Forum at Loaches Online - The forum for the very best information on loaches, based on our membership's vast experience."

Incidentally, I have since read that native Indonesian fishermen were asked by researchers to estimate the usual maximum size of the Clown Loaches they encounter (presumably for food) and they replied between 8" to 10". Unfortunately I have lost the link to that information but will post it when I next encounter it.
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby Loachloach » Sun Sep 25, 2016 2:21 pm

Loachloach wrote:Incidentally, I have since read that native Indonesian fishermen were asked by researchers to estimate the usual maximum size of the Clown Loaches they encounter (presumably for food) and they replied between 8" to 10". Unfortunately I have lost the link to that information but will post it when I next encounter it.


I read an article mentioning the same information long time ago.
Until further evidence is found, I would not be convinced clown loaches can grow to 16 inch as a rule, even with the best of care.
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby NancyD » Sun Sep 25, 2016 9:59 pm

Well, there's that whole "total length" (tip of nose to very end of tail lobes) vs "standard length" (to caudal peduncle end, no tail fin included)...On big clowns that could be as much as 3 or 4 inches. I don't know that everyone is a bad measurer...but maybe it's a little squishy as to "actual size"?...& then there's the optimistic "palm size" as a measurement...could be anything from 3-5 inches...give or take a lot...& then metric cm vs English inches...with some wiggle room there too.
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby redshark1 » Mon Sep 26, 2016 3:26 pm

So Nancy where do you stand on the debate about the accuracy of the Loaches Online statement that Clown Loach grow to 16"?

Please clarify as it is not clear from your post. Thankyou.
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby NancyD » Tue Sep 27, 2016 10:20 pm

I seems I remember local fishermen saying they'd seen 16 inch wild caught clowns sometimes...somewhere online. But fisher folk are often on the big side of actual (truthful, SL) measurement & always total length, lol. They are "tall" bulky fish, sometimes obese in an indulgent owners tank. Slightly stunted? Still BIG!

So, redshark, which are you asking about? TL or SL? Here on Loaches, I usually go with SL (no tail) as do many & 16 inches SL seems WAY larger than any clowns I've seen (not owned!). But on other sites I've been know to use TL (but usually I say that, lol) But then we all keep clowns in vastly smaller tanks than either a 12, let alone a 16 inch fish "should have" to grow to their maximum wild potential.

So, in theory, 16 inches SL may be "possible" but IMO very, very unlikely in any tank & would be a world-type record in the wild. I'd say 12 inches SL maximum (or so?) is closer to the truth. How long is Athina's tail? I'm going to guess at LEAST 3+ inches.

I think it may be hard to get "admin" here to change the species index...some species are still listed under their now wrong (or at least changed) genus. Even 8-10 inch loaches are impressive & "newbies" researching clowns should be warned, they will outgrow most tanks in ordinary homes. I've seen many a clown loach "maximum" of 6 inches!!! & that's clearly not right!!! I've grown them larger (temporarily) in even 4 ft tanks.
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby Loachloach » Fri Oct 07, 2016 9:53 pm

They are "tall" bulky fish, sometimes obese in an indulgent owners tank. Slightly stunted? Still BIG!


That's the point Nancy....People call any loach less than 10 inch and over 10 years old stunted...just because of all the brainwashing going on...

I've read posts of those that pretend their fish grew to 6-8 inch in 2-4 years without one picture or prove to back it up. And there are those that hunt for large clown loaches and buy them one by one to make that perfect school of large ones, killing lots of them in the process...

Yet, its rare to see a person that managed to keep their fish alive from get go for 15-20 years and even rarer to see all of the clowns, without exception, crossing the 8 inch mark. There is always the "stunted" ones amongst them. And we're talking about fish that supposedly grow double that, to 16 inch....So our full hearted efforts produce half grown loaches using the most advanced tactics.....

The biggest loaches that were shown on this website by the founders...what size were they if you discard bulkiness?...11 or 12 inches? And died prematurely too...And I've never seen a measuring tape against them. So even those that thing they know best, haven't been able to back up their efforts with facts. Though sometimes it is beyond one's control...

In fact I read recently on monsterfishkeepers about 16 year old clown loaches kept by some fish shop owner, the majority of which haven't even hit the 8 inch mark,. Stunted, maybe...How could someone that sells fish for a living not know any better....but they actually look great and are apparently very active and happy.

One thing I agree with though, home raised clown loaches are fatter than the wild caught adult loaches. The same is probably true about humans too...Food availability determines not how tall you grow but how wide you get...
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby chefkeith » Thu Oct 27, 2016 12:45 am

The owner of my lfs said he had some huge clown loaches brought in from a customer years ago. Length wise, they were from his fingertip to elbow and girth was size of a grapefruit. Estimated to be about 18" long. I believe him. In a large pond, with an unlimited food source, good clean water, and no competition, why not?
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Re: 16 inch Clown Loach

Postby NancyD » Thu Oct 27, 2016 10:59 pm

Keith, that's what I'd like to believe!! I do wonder though on the "by eye" measurements (SL vs TL). I've seen what looked like really big clowns (to me) in my MA lfs but they were in a holding tank that by it's size:loach area was small for them , (& some small grapefruit, too, lol). & in the wild with unlimited water area (as compared to even the most monsterous loach tank keeper), might they grow even bigger? More natural impediments to aging well (food supplies, predation, human trapping, pollution, disease), but really so very much more water turnover. Gee, I'd like to know...Can I humanely keep them in what? A 180g (2 x 2 x 6ft), an indoor pond of what dimensions? What water turnover rate, feeding schedule?

I've kept clowns, off & on, with a maximum of ~10 years but in admittedly less than optimal conditions. I'd like them again someday...but not if I need a river sized tank or pond with constant water changes & an almost limitless food supply to do them the "justice" of maximizing their size...or is it longevity that should matter more? 20+ years is a long time without any "blips" in their care that we all know can & might occur.

Maybe they should be on the same list of parrots that can live an extremely long time? & as a woman in her very late 50's, should they either not be kept at all or arrangements made for their owner's post-lifetime? Gee whiz!
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