Owning clown loaches has the potential to be great. These fish are pretty and they’re easy enough to take care of so that beginners can buy them.
Since many beginners buy these fish, sometimes mistakes are made when caring for them. They’re hardy fish that don’t necessarily die easily, but they can die for various reasons.
If you’ve been trying to care for the fish to the best of your ability, then you’ll likely be surprised when some of them start dying. Why would your clown loaches suddenly die?
Keep reading to learn about several reasons why clown loaches might die. This will help you to better understand what might be happening so that you can make necessary adjustments to get better results in the future.
Why Do My Clown Loaches Keep Dying?
There isn’t just one reason why clown loaches might die. You’ll find that there are several things that could be happening.
You’ll have to consider several possibilities and then try to match things up with your situation. Knowing the potential reasons should help you to better understand what is likely happening to your fish.
1 – Poor Water Quality
The most likely reason why the clown loaches are dying has to do with the water. If the water quality in the fish tank is poor, then it might cause the fish to die.
Since clown loaches are considered to be hardy, many people make the mistake of not checking the water parameters often enough. Although clown loaches can withstand quite a range of different temperatures and pH balance levels, they still have levels that they prefer.
To keep these fish healthy, you’re going to want to keep the pH balance between 6.0 and 7.5. The water temperature can be anywhere from 72 degrees Fahrenheit to 86 degrees Fahrenheit and the fish should be fine.
If you want to give the fish optimal care, then the best temperature for the water is between 78 degrees Fahrenheit and 79 degrees Fahrenheit. Remember that you want to keep the tank clean as well.
Clean the tank regularly and do weekly water changes. If you don’t do water changes, then the water can get really dirty.
Dirty water will make it tough for the poor fish to breathe. There’s a good chance that bad water will cause your fish to die.
2 – Sickness
Of course, the clown loaches could be dying due to getting sick. There are various types of illnesses that can impact clown loaches.
Ich is one of the most common problems that these fish have to deal with. If you’re noticing white spots on your fish, then they almost surely have the disease.
Look for signs that your fish might be sick. Is the fish acting unusual or has its appearance changed?
Recognizing that a fish is sick early on will give you the best chance of being able to nurse it back to health. You can try to diagnose what is wrong so that you can help it to get better.
If you need assistance, then you can enlist the help of an exotic veterinarian. Such an expert will be able to easily diagnose the fish and help you to find the best treatment options.
3 – Incompatible Tank Mates
Putting clown loaches in a community aquarium with fish that they aren’t compatible with will be dangerous. Clown loaches are considered to be excellent community tank fish, but they aren’t compatible with every freshwater fish out there.
You need to research things ahead of time to keep all of the fish safe. If you put the clown loaches in a tank with aggressive fish that will bully them, then they could wind up dying.
Take the time to ensure that all of the fish in your community tank are compatible. If they aren’t, then you should separate the incompatible fish as soon as you can.
4 – Nutritional Issues
Have you thought about whether nutritional issues could be to blame? If you aren’t doing a good job of feeding the clown loaches, then they might wind up dying eventually.
To keep clown loaches healthy, you’re supposed to feed them twice per day. They should be able to go a few days without eating if necessary, though.
If you forget to feed them all the time, then they could die of starvation. Also, you could be feeding them the wrong things.
You need to feed these fish foods that give them the right nutrients. Most fish tank enthusiasts feed them algae wafers, sinking nutritional pellets, live bloodworms, freeze-dried brine shrimp, and snails.
How Do I Know If My Clown Loach Is Dying?
You should try to pay attention to how your fish looks. Does the fish appear to have a different color than usual?
Is the fish acting sluggish and not moving much? These could all be signs that the fish is dying.
There could also be signs of disease that will indicate that the fish is close to death. Take all unusual behavior seriously and see if you can help to treat the fish or nurse it back to health.
Even if the fish won’t be able to survive, it often makes sense to try to help it. Hopefully, you’ll be able to figure out what you’re doing wrong so that your fish will stop dying.
Why Do Clown Loaches Play Dead?
Sometimes clown loaches will lay down on their sides. They do this a lot when they’re sleeping.
Since clown loaches sleep during the night, you won’t often see them doing this. You might catch a clown loach resting and laying on its side or back occasionally, though.
Some refer to this as the fish playing dead. It’s really just resting, but it can be alarming for fish owners who don’t know that this is normal behavior for clown loaches.
You should have a better idea of why your fish are dying now. It could be that they’re getting sick or it might be as simple as you needing to fix water quality issues.
Check to ensure that you’re feeding the fish properly. Try to avoid putting clown loaches in community tanks with fish that they aren’t compatible with, too.
So long as you’re trying to correct mistakes that you’re making, it will be possible to turn things around. Even if your current fish dies, you can endeavor to take better care of any future fish that you purchase.
Jeff has always enjoyed having pets, but as a child, he was drawn to his family’s fish tank. Being able to maintain a small ecosystem and observe the behaviors and interactions in the underwater world peaked his interest early on and has kept him hooked until this day. On Avid Aquarist, Jeff shares everything he’s learned about helping aquatic life survive and thrive in a home aquarium.