Schistura mahnerti: The so called subfasca loach
Recently i started a thread looking for answers on this mysterious loach that appeared in my lfs. When i asked the employees about this loach, nobody seemed to know much about it other than the fact that it was, a loach.
I decided to purchase one of these guys, observe it's behavior and search the ac for answers. With help from other forum members and research of my own, i compiled some information on this loach in order to help others who may run into this little guy in the future.
To my dismay, this little guy was not the peaceful loach i thought he was.
The name subfasca, comes from Schistura subfusca which is an older no longer used of Nemacheilus subfusca which has been moved to the genus Schistura mahnerti.
This loach hails Salween basin in Thailand, near the eastern slopes of the Himalayas. It has also been found in other locations. This is a highly territorial loach from the hillstream areas. It is not recommend to be be housed with smaller, peaceful bottom dwellers such as corydoras. The can be very nippy when defending their territory. I experienced this myself when noticing aggression towards my yoyo loach, and nipped fins on my corydoras. Slow moving, long finned tankmates should also be kept away from this species.
They grow to be a maximum size of around 3" (7.6) and should be given plenty of hiding places to create their own territories and boundaries.
They are known to develop brighter red tails, although my species hasn't seemed to develop these yet.(i may have a hybrid of sorts seeing as the fish is somewhat rare in the aquarium hobby)
They will thrive in Brook/Hillstream aquarium setups in groups of 4-6, so long as they are kept solely as they only bottom dwellers. pH should be from 6-6.9, and temperatures from 73-79 degrees F.
They are omnivorous and in the wild their diet consist of small insects and worms. In aquria they will accept dried food and foods such as frozen bloodworms.
To help further aid in the identification of these loaches i'll post pictures.
Here is one in my tank, without the bright red tail.
Another, in an unknown location
Also, i will provide links to a few profiles i have found.
Hopefully this will help clear up some speculation.