Kelvin K P Lim and Peter K L Ng
Asia, Europe, Morocco. Mainly small, elongate, bottom-dwelling fishes with ventrally-placed mouths fringed with short barbels.
Primarily freshwater fish; oviparous; omnivorous; usually found in large numbers at a single spot; benthic. Formerly, and better known under the genus name "Acanthophthalmus", these eel-like fishes have the habit of concealing themselves in thick clumps of vegetation, or within accumulations of leaf-litter. They seem to be nocturnal in habits, and feed on benthic organisms (e.g., worms) and detritus.
They are popularly called "Coolie Loaches", because one of the earliest known species is named P. kuhlii (from Java). The name "kuhlii" happened to rhyme with "coolie". It has nothing to do with the local male labourers which also bear the name "Coolie". Despite this fact, the name "Coolie Loach" has stuck fast!
Banded Eel-loach or
Fishes in Singapore
Amazing Fishy Facts
About the guidebook
From A Guide to Common Freshwater Fishes of Singapore by Kelvin K P Lim and Peter K L Ng
Published by the Singapore Science Centre and sponsored by BP
@Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research and Singapore Science Centre