post icon

Who’s your Clown Loach?

Before I had a daughter (when I actually had some money!) I used to be a very keen tropical fish keeper and even bred certain fish. I started like everyone with some of the more hardy fish like Guppies and Swordtails etc. but soon moved onto more challenging fish to keep.

Fish keeping is a really delicate hobby. You alter one thing and many things change, one slight 0.5 degree rise in temperature can change the behaviour or health of one or many fish. Now I kept Discus Fish (known as King of the Aquarium!) these fish are notoriously hard fish to keep healthy due to their sensitivity to changes in the quality of water. They are from the Amazonian River System, they live and breed within the roots of trees in the little tributaries in muddy water. Not only don’t you see these fish in pet shops but if you do ever see them in specialist aquarium suppliers you will notice that adults are anything from £60 – £150 and a quality breeding pair can cost anything up to £1000.

I did what many amateur Discus Fish keeper did and bought 10 when very young, fed them well, work hard to keep the water balanced and as stable as possible. However, to protect my investment, I also bought a couple of Clown Loaches. Now these little fish are hardy things but are VERY sensitive to changes in water conditions and will display signs very quickly when things are not right. they turn very dark and hide away when the temperature of the water drops of rises, or the hardness of the water changes quickly. I would keep a close eye on these Clown Loaches and on a couple of occasions, they have actually given warning of a ph crash (which would have killed all my Discus Fish!) I was able to act quickly, identify the problem, change the water and restore a healthy balance to the water resulting in a very happy aquarium.

Bare with me…

I often think life in school is like life in an aquarium! Yes we have people tapping on our glass and we feel like we’re going round and round in circles sometimes but what I’m trying to say is this…

As a leader in a school, there are often small signs that things aren’t right! For me, I have found a Clown Loach, a certain someone that I can read quickly and quite accurately that displays little changes that indicates that something somewhere isn’t right. If that certain something isn’t identified quickly then the problem quickly escalates.

For any of the Heathfield Staff reading this – ask me and I’ll tell you!

For everyone else – Does your School/Dept have a Clown Loach?


Leave a comment
  1. Lou
    December 17, 2010 at 9:42 pm #

    Oooh, Mr M! I think I know. Not a bad thing though!

  2. Soraya Entwistle
    December 19, 2010 at 7:30 pm #

    Hi! Mr M, I would love to know who our Clown Loach is.


  1. Tweets that mention » Who’s your Clown Loach? Mr. Mitchell's Blog – -- - December 17, 2010

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Roger Neilson and David Mitchell, David Mitchell. David Mitchell said: 'Who's your Clown Loach?' Possibly my strangest blog post to date! Does it make any sense? Absolutely does to me! […]

Leave a Reply