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Exploring Under Water

The Loach is a small (6-7 cm) brownish fish with grey spots across its upper body and head. It is only found in two countries, Turkey and Greece, and is very rare. The Loach lives only in freshwater and eats a diet of insects, crustaceans, tiny mollusks and some aquatic plants. It has three barbels at the front of its face – much like the “whiskers” on a catfish.

Did you know?

  • The Loach is a critically endangered species.

  • The species name of the Loach, puncticulata, comes from a Latin word that means “small dot,” and refers to the spotted pattern on this fish.

  • The female Loach is bigger than the male.

  • The Loach was first discovered less than twenty years ago.

  • Scientists think the actual range of the Loach is larger than the areas where they have found it living so far.

  • Because the Loach was so recently discovered, there is not a lot of scientific information about it available yet. However, we do know that there are not very many of these neat little fishes in the wild. The rivers and streams in Turkey and Greece where the Loach lives are used as a water source for humans, so this means there is less room for the Loaches to live whenever the water gets taken out for drinking water. Habitat loss is another threat to the Loach.

Learn more about the Loach in today's Exploring Under Water!

Click HERE to download this activity as a printable PDF.

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