Size18.5 inches (47 cm)
DietAquatic insects at the surface, larval insects, crayfish, smaller fishes
HabitatRapids and swift-moving streams with good plant cover
- Reticulated hillstream loach is black and yellow, spotted along the head and back. Spots run together along the sides to form long stripes.
- Body is dorsoventrally flattened, and the pectoral and pelvic fins are wide and round.
- This species grows to a maximum length of 2.2 inches (5.7 cm).
The reticulated hillstream loach's body is dorsoventrally flattened, and the pectoral and pelvic fins are wide and round.
- Feeds on benthic crustaceans and algae.
- Reticulated hillstream loach occurs in freshwater rivers in China, Vietnam and Cambodia, particularly the Mekong Basin.
- Commonly found in rapids and swift-moving streams with good plant cover. Also found in deep pools and high-gradient rivers.
- Males develop small spike-like breeding tubercles on the snout and on the pectoral fin rays.
- When the female becomes receptive to a displaying male, she allows him to push her off the rocky bottom into the water column, where the two fish clasp each other’s fins before eggs and sperm are released.
- “Vulnerable” on the IUCN Red List.
- Reticulated hillstream loach is listed as “Vulnerable” due to a decline of at least 30% between the years of 2000 and 2010.
- The main threats to this loach are runoff from deforestation, habitat destruction due to dam building and overfishing.
- This is a primarily diurnal species, unlike many other species of loaches.