The Dojo Weather Loach
Weather Loach Fish Facts:
Scientific Name: Misgurnus anguillicaudatus
Origin: North East Asia to China in rivers and lakes
Care level: Easy
Diet: Omnivore – Hearty Eater – quality flakes, freeze dried and frozen foods, live food such as snails, bloodworms, zucchini, spinach, pellets. Accepts most foods.
Breeding: egg layer, difficult to breed in an aquarium
Water Temperature: 65 to 78 F/18.3 and 25.5
Water pH: 6-7.5 pH
The Weather Loach goes by many names
The Dojo Loach, Pond Loach, Weather loach or Weather fish. The common name Weather loach or ‘weather fish’ came about because of this fish’s ability to predict the weather.
It’s sensitivity to changes in barometric pressure causes it to get excited and restless when the air pressure drops. Interestingly, many believe the Dojo Loach can even predict tsunamis and earthquakes.
This fish was originally primarily found in the lakes, rivers and ponds of Asian, mostly in China, Korea, Vietnam and Japan. However, today it can be found throughout most regions of the world on farms for the aquarium industry.
Depending on the area of the world, the Loach may be considered either a food or bait, often used to reel in larger fish.
Dojo loaches live in fresh water, usually rivers or ponds, but sometimes are found living in patty fields. They can thrive when there is not much water and they like the mud-covered layers of soil at the bottom.
Dojo Loaches can breathe through their intestine and have extra pores on their skin which allows them to absorb oxygen. This fascinating fact allows them to live in muddy areas, with no water for a long time.
Dojo Loach for the Aquarium
The Dojo Loach is a popular fish with aquarium enthusiast, usually costing anywhere from $6 to $14, and are available in most fish stores. They are peaceful and very efficient scavengers that will make a welcome addition to any community aquarium.
The Dojo Loach is considered a good fish for the freshwater fish beginner because it generally easy to care for and has a calm temperament. However, they are good escape artists and it’s important to keep a top on the aquarium to prevent them from jumping out.
Importantly, having plants, whether live or artificial, and plenty of rocks for hiding spots in your aquarium goes a long way in making them feel safe and secure.
The loach is usually either greenish grey or golden brown and is looks more like it belongs to the eel family with its elongated body. What’s unique about this fish is that it can be trained to feed out of your hand as they seem to enjoy human contact. They will also often actively seek out the fish keeper’s hands during routine maintenance.
Ideally, you want to provide them with a softer substrate so they can burrow. For example, rounded aquarium gravel or sand should work great for them.
Dojo Loaches grow to about a foot long in the aquarium, whereas in its natural environment it can grow to almost two feet long.
Loaches love to eat snails and can be used to curtail snail infestations in tanks. However, one line of thinking is, because they can’t eat the snails fast enough, they will not completely clean out the snails from an aquarium with a serious infestation. So perhaps, it works better as a preventative measure.
Dojo Loach Tank Mates
In general, Dojo Loaches like to be with fish that swim near the top of the tank. This allows them to have their own space down near the bottom of the tank where they tend to spend much of their time.
Livebearers such as guppies, mollies, platies, tetras and many varieties of goldfish are good options.
Dojo Loach Diet
The Dojo Loach is easy to feed. Since they are hearty eaters and will eat most foods presented to them, it’s better to give them a variety of foods.
Wafers of algae, sinking pellets, flake food and even small earth worms are good options. They also have an interesting love for certain vegetables. They have been known to enjoy skinned green peas, zucchini and many other blanched or cooked vegetables.
Check out the post about the fish food to feed your fish to see some of the foods I feed my community fish.
Feeding Recommendations specifically for Weather loaches are:
- Omega One Veggie Rounds
- Fluval Bug Bites Bottom Feeder Formula
- API Bottom Feeder Shrimp Pellets
- Hikari Algae Wafers
- New Life Spectrum Opitmum Flakes
- Rapashy Soilent Green
See my video on how to make the Rapashy Soilent Green:
Dojo Loach Care
You want to have healthy stable water quality.
pH between 6-7.5
Temperature between 65 and 78
They thrive in cooler environments and they make excellent friends for goldfish.
The Dojo Weather Loach is a great fish for the beginner fish keeper. The loach is easy to care for and has a peaceful demeanor. You will definitely have to move them to bigger tanks as they grow out of their current tanks.