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Reticulated Hillstream Loach Spawn

Lowells Fish Lab

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Hi all,

I had a nice surprise today when I found my first fry from reticulated hillstream loaches. They are so small that it's a little hard to get good pictures but here are a few:






Here are some of the adults in the middle of some breeding behavior:




I'll continue to take pictures as they develop. I'm sure the detail will improve as they grow.

This was a 10 gallon tank holding a small group of adults about 50/50 male and female. It's unheated and temperature fluctuates from 70-74. The substrate is coarse sand with some smooth river rocks scattered around. I use a sponge for filtration and occasionally turn on a small submersible pump to give them some current. I've been feeding them live BBS (that's why I don't use the pump much) in addition to occasional frozen blood worms and repashy soilent green. There is very little algae in the tank. pH is fairly neutral and hardness is fairly soft in both gH and kH.

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After initially counting 8, I assumed I was probably underestimating but now it's become easier to see how many there are. At last count I can see something like 28 at one time. If you scan the tops of these rocks you can see the tank is just infested with them.





When these fry were freshly hatched I was interested to see that their pectoral and (someone help me here, anal?) fins were oriented vertically like any other fish. Now while looking closely at them after 4+ weeks, I can see that those fins have rotated to be parallel with the length of their bodies just like the adults. I was curious when that would happen. I'll be very interested to see how the fin growth progresses into adulthood.

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