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Lepidocephalichthys tomaculum

by Martin Thoene last modified Mar 04, 2007 12:04 PM


Lepidocephalichthys tomaculum

Scientific name: Lepidocephalichthys tomaculum (Kottelat & Lim 1992)

Common name: Peppered Loach, Pepper Loach

Synonyms: None

Distribution: Malaysia.

Specimen shown was caught in forest stream near Mersing, Johore.

Sexual Dimorphism: Females are generally larger and longer.

Maximum size: 2 Inches (5cm)

Similar to: Other Lepidocephalichthys species.

Care: Same as other Lepidocephalichthys species. A peaceful loach that likes lots of hiding places with soft substrate. This species is a very active burrower to the point where many owners only see their face/eyes beneath the sand substrate. Sand substrate will be best to protect their delicate skin. The aquarium should feature good filtration with some water movement. Best kept in groups. Three fish is the recommended minimum that should be kept together. At times they like each other's company when sheltering under plants and bogwood. At times they prefer to be left alone while they burrow under the substrate.

Feeding: Easily fed. Accepts good quality flake, sinking pellets, thawed frozen mosquito larvae, brine shrimp, Daphnia etc. Occasionally feeds on some algae. Eats zooplankton and algae in nature.

Water parameters: pH:6.5 -7.5. Hardness: Medium Soft to Medium. Max dh range:5

Temperature: 72ºF to 80ºF (22-27°C)

Breeding: None reported in aquarium.


Lepidocephalichthys tomaculum - Head closeupInhabits slow-moving, shallow waters of canals and inundated floodplains. Often found on or in muddy substrates. Lives in swamps and rivers including peats. They are peaceful and a good aquarium fish, but seldom exported for the aquarium trade.

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