Clown Loach Feeding
Clown loaches are omnivorous. When feeding your clown loach keep the idea of mimicking their natural environment in mind. Clown fish are bottom feeders, so they would be exposed to a great variety of food as they travel to different parts of a natural river. Variety is the operative word. Aquarists commonly feed clown loaches frozen bloodworms (always thaw frozen foods to aquarium water temperature before feeding), brine shrimp and mosquito larvae, small snails, freeze-dried worms, mysis, daphnia, shrimp mix, algae tablets, salmon/discus/goldfish pellets. Large clowns appreciate chopped prawns. Note: bloodworms are a favourite of clown fishes, but many humans are allergic to them. So if your eyes itch or you get a rash after touching blood worms I recommend not using them for clown loach feeding.
Clowns also indulge in manufactured wafers, fresh or blanched vegetables (zuchinni, cucumber, lightly boiled peas, slices of squash, brusselsprouts). Also, clowns have been known to nibble on various aquatic plants. Even though they are bottom feeders, they're known to swim up to higher strata of the aquarium to feed (probably because other fish in the community feed at higher levels and not very much food makes it to the bottom). Sometimes they will eat only after the lights are out (I believe this goes back to their origins in south-east Asian backwater rivers where the bottom is usually dark).
Clown loaches feed often and in large amounts. It is sometimes tempting to over-feed them, but that may degrade the water quality which is not good for fish health. The best thing to do is feed small amounts many times a day (an automatic dispenser may be a great addition to your clown fish tank) so that there are no leftovers that can ruin water quality. If you are observing good clown loach feeding habits but the clowns are losing weight you should read the clown loach diseases page.
Between the months March-May some aquarists have reported that clown loach feeding sometimes turns into a frenzy where they fight their way to the food as if they haven't been fed in months. An interesting behaviour to look out for.
Go to clown loach breeding(next page).