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Kuhli Loach And Shrimp | 11 Secrets You Need To Know |

Today we are going to discuss one secret of the fish world. If you are or wish to rear kuhli loaches and shrimp together, this will be the most valuable topic for you. I am going to describe it under 11 interesting topics. Keep reading!  

Kuhli Loach And Shrimp

Kuhli Loach And Shrimp Compatibility 

There is a possibility that kuhli loaches eat shrimps. Generally, kuhli loaches eat shrimps in their tank as it devours other food. On the other hand, if you want to keep kuhli loaches and shrimps together in the same tank, you should go for a large tank. You should provide enough hiding spaces for your shrimps. But kuhli loaches are naturally designed to search out and eat shrimps. 

However, I am not recommended to keep these two species in the same tank. You can keep them together without any issue until the kuhli loaches grow large enough to eat shrimps. So, if you want to be a happy owner of both kuhli loaches and shrimps, what should you have to do?

The only thing is that you have to take another tank and keep your shrimps and kuhli loaches separately.  It is the only way to keep your shrimp without any stress. Anyhow this case is not applicable to all loaches. For instance, some Hillstream loaches do not tend to eat shrimps. That is because their main diet consists of algae and microscopic life living in the algae. 

Do Kuhli Loach Eat Shrimp? 

Yes. If you keep kuhli loach and shrimp in the same tank, surely kuhli loaches eat your tiny innocent shrimps. This can easily happen when your shrimps are small enough to fit your kuhli loaches’ mouth. So, if you leave your shrimp in the kuhli loach tank, there is a risk of losing your shrimp forever. 

Imagine there is a bar of chocolate on your table. So, if you are a chocolate lover, what do you do? Can you stay without taking a single bite? If not, do you ever keep a lion and dear in the same cage? Yes, you can’t. These are the simple examples that I can give for you to understand why I try to tell you again and again about the risk. 

Can Kuhli Loach And Cherry Shrimp Live In The Same Tank?

Similarly, kuhli loaches eat cherry shrimp. If you have a lot of cherry shrimps, yes, you can keep kuhli loaches and cherry shrimps without mass murdering. However, if your cherry shrimp is larger than the kuhli loaches’ mouth, there is a possibility to live with kuhli loaches without any issue. But do not forget, whatever your shrimp variety, kuhli loaches will eat shrimps if they fit their mouth. But why do you put your shrimp at risk? Generally, as an aquarist or animal lovers, we know the value of single life of animals. Isn’t it? 

Kuhli Loach And Shrimp

Can Kuhli Loach And Amano Shrimp Live In The Same Tank?

Kuhli loaches eat Amano shrimp. But there is an exception. If your Amano shrimps are large enough to protect themselves from the kuhli loach’s mouth, they will be safe in your tank. However, baby Amano shrimps are difficult to save from kuhli loaches due to their size. Furthermore, if you need to keep kuhli loaches and Amano shrimps in the same home, you should consider the dimensions of your Amano shrimps. The same goes for ghost shrimp. Unfortunately, they also can not live peacefully with kuhli loaches.

Do Shrimp Equal To Kuhli Loach Food?

Yes, mainly kuhli loaches are primarily carnivores, and they eat animals matters. Therefore, kuhli loaches eat shrimps that are fit for their mouths in your tank. But if you do not care about the shrimps and their reproductions or only keep adult shrimps, keeping both these species together is ok. However, definitely kuhli loaches eat your tiny size baby shrimp, if they fit loaches mouth.

Does Kuhli Loach Eat Snails?

There is a chance to kuhli loaches eat snails. But here you should remember, kuhli loaches tend to eat small size snails but not giant snails. Generally, kuhli loaches are a type of opportunistic creature. So, they tend to eat anything that fits their mouth. If you have giant size snails, there are no issues. But if you have any small size snail variety, there is a high risk. Further, many hobbyists use kuhli loaches to control or reduce the snail population of their tanks. However, if you have small snails, the best solution is to go for another tank. It will allow your snails to live happily without risk. 

What Are The Kuhli Loach Foods?

kuhli loaches are mostly carnivores, and they like to eat animal matters. Mainly they prefer to eat sinking foods. Here I listed the foods that kuhli loaches love to eat. 

  • Brine shrimp
  • Sinking pallets
  • Bloodworms
  • Live daphnia
  • Mysis shrimps
  • Frozen foods
  • Chopped meaty foods
  • Veggie matter
  • Algae tablets

In addition to that, like most tropical fish, kuhli loaches eat flake fish food. Sometimes they eat algae that are growing at the bottom of the tank and on the gravel. Few fish foods can be recommended for your kuhli loaches. 

  • Tetra PRO PlecoWafers for Algae Eaters, 5.29 ounce 
  • OMEGA One Freeze Dried Brine Shrimp 1.28oz
  • OMEGA One Freeze-Dried Bloodworm .96oz, Yellow 
  • OMEGA One Color Mini Pellet 3.5oz
  • TetraPro Tropical Color Crisps, Fish Food With Natural Color Enhancers 

What Fish Species Can Live With Kuhli Loaches

You can keep other kuhli loaches with your kuhli loach. Generally, if you can keep five or more kuhli loaches in your tank, it allows them to live more actively and happily. On the other hand, of course, you can keep your kuhli loaches from other fish species because kuhli loaches do not show aggressive behavior with other fish species. They are a pretty peaceful species. So, you should keep them with other non-aggressive fish species. 

Generally, kuhli loaches love to stay their time at the bottom of the tank. So, if you like to have a multi-species tank, you can select the fish that prefer to live in other areas of the tank environment. For instance, you can keep your kuhli loaches with fish species that like to stay in the middle of the tank. These fish have good compatibility with kuhli loaches.

  • Gourami 
  • Tetra 
  • Rasboras 
  • Danios 
  • White cloud mountain minnows
  • Oto catfish 

On the other hand, kuhli loaches can coexist with other peaceful bottom dwellers like Corydoras. But you should remember to provide enough space for them to live happily. Not only that, there are some fish species that you should avoid to keep your tank with kuhli loaches. Generally, do not try to keep aggressive and territorial fish species with your kuhli loaches such as;

What Is The Lifespan Of A Kuhli Loach? 

On average, kuhli loaches can live around 10 years. Some of the kuhli loaches can live more than 10 years. There are records about kuhli loaches and they were able to live around 14 years. But the lifespan of all fish, including kuhli loaches, can change based on how you treat them. However, if you look after your kuhli loaches properly, there is a possibility to live them more than their expected lifespan. But if you do not put proper care, poor water conditions, a stressful environment with aggressive tankmates, and suboptimal diets may cause to shorten kuhli loaches lifespan. 

Can You Keep Kuhli Loach Alone? 

Yes. You can keep your kuhli loach alone in the tank. Also, kuhli loaches are better for household aquariums. But think, as a human being do you like to live in a home alone, is it a happy life for you? So, Just like you. kuhli loach is a social fish. They live happily and actively when they are in a group. If not, when they live alone, your fish tends to become stressed and live unhappily. 

Can You Keep Kuhli Loaches In A 5 Gallon? 

No. keeping your kuhli loach in a 5 gallons tank is not a good idea. Also, the water quality of a small tank can fluctuate rapidly. Typically, adult kuhli loaches are about 7 cm or 2.5 inches in length. However, kuhli loaches can grow up to 10cm or 4 inches in size. Therefore, you should have to go for at least about a 15 gallons tank. So, if you want to keep a healthy and happy kuhli loach, do not try to keep them in a small tank due to any reason. 

Can Kuhli Loaches Live With Neon Tetra 

Yes, kuhli loaches can live with neon tetra in the same tank. Fortunately, kuhli loaches are peaceful fish species in nature. However, when you keep more fish, make sure your tank has enough space to live them. 

Do Kuhli Loaches Eat Dead Fish

Yes. kuhli loaches eat any dead fish body eagerly. Because kuhli loaches are mostly carnivores and love to eat animal matters, that’s why you miss dead fish bodies in your tank. 

Can Kuhli Loaches Eat Algae Wafers

Yes. You can feed your kuhli loaches with algae wafers or tablets. But do not feed them only using algae wafers. Because it does not have the ability to fulfill the nutrient requirements of the kuhli loaches.  Also, they love to eat meaty foods. Therefore, it is good to provide algae wafers or tablets two times per week. When considering the amount, it is better to provide one tablespoon or wafer per 10 kuhli loaches. 

Will Kuhli Loaches Eat Guppy Fry 

Yes, the general rule is kuhli loaches tend to eat fish fry that will fit their mouth. So, guppy fry also has a great chance of experiencing the same fate.  Therefore, do not keep guppy fry and any fish fry with kuhli loaches in the same tank. 


Usually, kuhli loaches and shrimps are peaceful species. So, why can’t we keep them together in the same tank? Because it is not a good idea. Why am I saying so? The kuhli loaches have a carnivorous diet and they eat any animal matter that fits in their mouth. Mostly, if your shrimps are fit for kuhli loach’s mouth,  they will eat shrimp quickly. As a hobbyist, do you like to keep your fish in a stressful environment? The choice is yours. But try to make your fish happy. It is my opinion!

Credit to: serkocinja

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About Dr.Chamika

Hello, I'm Dr. Chamika. I am a Researcher in Water quality, Aquatic organisms, and Environmental chemistry. I am a passionate fish keeper, with10 years of experience. My mission is to help other aquarists experience the joy of fish keeping.