Not sure which Hillstream loach I have & need care info

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JaneGael
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Joined: Mon May 23, 2016 10:01 pm

Not sure which Hillstream loach I have & need care info

Post by JaneGael » Tue May 24, 2016 10:19 am

The owner of my LFS said they were Sewellia lineolata, but I scooped one up to get a good look and it's grey speckled with the stripes on the tail. Google isn't being very helpful and Sewellia pterolineata looks the closest but another search at Seriouslyfish http://www.seriouslyfish.com/species/sewellia-sp-sew01/ said that they are Spotted Butterfly Loaches and is awaiting classification because the genius pterolineata is defunct. Loaches.com http://www.loaches.com/species-index/se ... sp-spotted pretty much confirms this. Another search horrified me that Sewellia pterolineata is on the Red List.

The shop owner told me they were tropical fish and could go in my 29g with my betta and glowlight tetras. They were adorable so I bought two of them. And then started doing some research... Sigh. The store owner was very defensive about selling them to me and said he'd kept them in normal tropical tanks. I wondered how long they had lived. Fortunately, I'm way over-filtered with a 50g HOB + a 20g rated sponge filter, so I have a lot of water movement. I've added a long airstone I had laying around, so they aren't dead yet.

I got a 20 long on Craigslist yesterday and want to set up a better tank for them. We named them Thing 1 and Thing 2 so you know if they have names you have to take the best possible care of them that you can. I have to wait for a stand to be shipped as no one had one locally (well, unless I wanted to spend over$100 that is.) I looked up care and saw the schematics for building a river tank but I don't have the tools or the skill to do that. What can I cobble together that will work for them?

I ordered them some Soylant Green from Amazon and have no idea what or if they are eating right now. I'm putting down both Hikari Tropical and Tropical Algae wafers but have not seen either fish go near them. So I worry about these guys and hope they will be okay until I can get their tank set up.

And I just wanted a couple of really neat fish for my tropical tank...

JaneGael
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Joined: Mon May 23, 2016 10:01 pm

Re: Not sure which Hillstream loach I have & need care info

Post by JaneGael » Wed May 25, 2016 8:34 am

Not anyone? I'm a novice who has accidentally gotten in way over her head. I guess I will just continue to google for information and do the best I can for these two little fish.

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redshark1
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Re: Not sure which Hillstream loach I have & need care info

Post by redshark1 » Wed May 25, 2016 12:21 pm

Hi and welcome to our forum. Apologies, this is no longer a busy forum but still worth keeping an eye on and searching for info. I drop in regularly to share Clown Loach information.

I'm not very experienced with Hillstream Loaches and certainly not well qualified to advise but am replying so you get a friendly response.

Firstly, I would think that as grazers they would be better off in a mature tank than something newly set up for them. Mine were lucky in this regard and had algae covered wood and glass to browse but they were also very able to locate and eat normal fish foods such as flakes and frozen bloodworm.

I kept a trio of what were called Gastromyzon borneenis in a 48" tank with other small fish at 73F. Two climbed out and dessicated fairly early on as the tank had cut outs for the cables that the loaches could fit through. However, when this was attended to the third fish lived for many years, eleven years in fact (I looked it up in my records).

I would give them current. This is easily provided by careful siting of filter and powerhead outlets and a little experimentation. The fish will choose their favourite locations.

My substrate was sand and mine had no difficulty visiting the sand to feed. It was a lively fish and well able to compete for food with Corydoras, Whiptails, Lepthoplosternum, Pareutropius Cats and small tetras.

This tank was a very healthy one and all fish lived very long and healthy lives with not one instance of disease. It had a filter and heater at each end, no lights just filtered daylight from the north (so no direct sunlight), Java Fern growing on arched driftwood branches and benefited from a daily 2 gal water change and regular rinsing of the filter media.

Sorry I can't give much help but I hope you appreciate me taking 30 mins out of my busy schedule to ensure you at least get a friendly welcome.
6 x Clown Loaches all twenty-six years of age on 01.01.20, largest 11.5", 2f4m, aquarium 6' x 18" x 18" 400 ltr = 110 US gal.

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gulogulo
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Re: Not sure which Hillstream loach I have & need care info

Post by gulogulo » Wed May 25, 2016 1:21 pm

Also not an expert on Hillstreams but I have kept them and can give you a few tips. First read Martin's article on hillstreams on the main site- absolutely fantastic information that will help immensely. While most hillstreams live in tropical locales they are found at higher elevations where the temperatures are much cooler. If you have a heater in the tank remove it, they don't need it and cooler water holds more oxygen so your fish will be healthier as a result. You cannot have too much flow, adding a powerhead or two will make a big difference. Your fish should eat algae wafers without too much coaxing and may sample other foods as well, a treat of blood or black worms occasionally will also be appreciated. If you want to get some good natural browse for your fish some peolp will take a bunch of relatively flat stones and place them on their porch or other sunny spot in a shallow dish of water. Before long there is usually a good growth of algae and if you rotate groups of stones you can keep a steady supply for your fish.

Hope this helps and welcome to the loach world!
Current loach residents- 14 Pangio semicincta, 2 P. doriae, 4 P. myersi, 1 P. shelfordi, 5 P. anguilaris, 6 P. oblonga, 8 P. cuneovirgata 5 Chromobotia macracantha, 3 Gastromyzon ctenocephalus, 3 Gastromyzon species unknown

JaneGael
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Joined: Mon May 23, 2016 10:01 pm

Re: Not sure which Hillstream loach I have & need care info

Post by JaneGael » Sat May 28, 2016 11:18 am

Thank you for the replies. Did I post to the wrong forum or is it just that no one keeps hillstream loaches?

I finally identified them. They are Sewellia SWE01 - aka the Spotted Butterfly Loach. They aren't even studied enough to have a proper Latin name. I have read Martin's article and am using his updated version of tank building to create my own tank. It will be a semi-new tank in that I have two large pieces of driftwood that hopefully have some biofilm on them. I also have a lot of capability to put in substrate and filtering material that will get the tank balanced relatively quickly. I also ordered Repashy Soilent Green which is a direct replacement for aufwuchs, although I plan to try to grow some algae in an outside tank.

I am putting a 70g Aquaclear filter in the 20 long as well as a powerhead. My biggest problem at the moment is finding some river rocks to stock the tank. I don't live in an area where they are common.

Thanks for the replies and if there is a better forum for my Sewellia, let me know.

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gulogulo
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Re: Not sure which Hillstream loach I have & need care info

Post by gulogulo » Sat May 28, 2016 7:03 pm

This is going to be the best place and forum for hill streams. The forum is not as active as it once was so it takes longer to get replies. I have kept hill streams in the past just not for a while and not Sewellia in particular. I know there are more experienced hill stream keepers on this forum. They must just not be as active as they used to be. It sounds like you are well on your way to keeping your hillies in a great tank designed for them.
Keep us posted on your tank!
Current loach residents- 14 Pangio semicincta, 2 P. doriae, 4 P. myersi, 1 P. shelfordi, 5 P. anguilaris, 6 P. oblonga, 8 P. cuneovirgata 5 Chromobotia macracantha, 3 Gastromyzon ctenocephalus, 3 Gastromyzon species unknown

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Jim Powers
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Re: Not sure which Hillstream loach I have & need care info

Post by Jim Powers » Sat May 28, 2016 7:38 pm

Congratulations on your find! I first found this species as a contaminant in a shipment of Sewellia lineolata. There was only one in the shipment so it took me many months to find another. Not long after I added the other fish, I started seeing fry all over the place. I have since given some away and still have too many. I find this species to be more reclusive than the other Sewellia species I have (lineolata, marmorata, and Sp. 3). They will do well in a heavily filtered and oxygenated tank. One powerhead should work fine to provide the flow. While I would recommend unidirectional flow created by Martin Thoene's design, it is not necessary. There is no reason to over do the current since too much will blow the food all over the place. I never have problems feeding mine. They eat just about anything I feed them including algae wafers, frozen brine shrimp and bloodworms and spinach leaves. I prepare the spinach leaves by putting them in a bowl and covering them with boiling water. I leave them in the bowl for about 20 minutes or so occasionally topping off the boiling water. I put the leaves in the tank and anchor with a rock. They usually go crazy over the spinach. Sometimes, though, it may take them up to a day to start feeding on the leaves. I would recommend you create some low current areas in the tank by using rocks or driftwood and use these as feeding areas. In some of my tanks I even shut off the powerheads temporarily to allow them to feed. Be mindful of the temperature though as powerheads can heat up the water to some degree. I try to keep all my tanks around 75F. They can take higher temperatures, but I believe that prolonged exposure to these higher temperatures (which contain lower dissolved oxygen) is not good for their health.
I hope this has been of help. Don't hesitate to ask if you have anymore questions. As the others said, this forum is not as active as it once was. I am one of the last of the "old timers" on here and I don't get on here as much as I used to.
I think you will enjoy your hillstreams.Most people (myself included) tend to get hooked once you start keeping them. I presently have about 15 species of hillstreams and have had several others over the years. I have had 5 species spawn and have had a couple of fish for 15 years. They are my favorite group of loaches.
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