Cherry barb

The(Puntius titteya) belongs to the carp family(Cyprinidae). The freshwater fish is native to Sri Lanka and is found mainly in smaller rivers and forest streams. Due to the destruction of its natural habitats, the cherry barb el is already threatened with extinction in its native country.

What are the characteristics of the cherry barb ?

cherry barb els are known for their lively nature and peace-loving nature compared to other fish species. This freshwater fish is especially suitable for smaller aquariums and therefore also well suited for beginners. The small schooling fish feel most comfortable in a group of at least six animals. As males can often be a little quarrelsome, never keep more males than females. It is even recommended to keep more females.

In nature as well as in the aquarium Puntius titteya only live a few years.

The appearance of cherry barb s

sannse, Male Cherry Barb 700, CC BY-SA 3.0

The small freshwater fish reach a maximum size of five centimetres. Their whole body is more or less strongly coloured red – however, young fish show a beige colouring. Different colour variations of the animals are possible, but in aquaristics basically only the red form is represented.

Both sexes are characterized by a dark stripe, which extends from the mouth to the caudal fin. However, this is hardly recognizable in adult animals. Above this dark stripe there is usually a lighter one, which is also not visible depending on the colouring.

The fins of the cherry barb s also shine in a rich red. In addition the fish have a pair of barbels.

Sex differences

Probably the most striking differences are in stature and colour: Females have a full body and are generally coloured yellow. Males are characterised by their bright red colour, which is further intensified during the mating season. Males also have larger fins than females.

Water values for cherry barb s

The ideal water temperature for cherry barb s is between 22° C and 28° C. As far as the pH value is concerned, it should always be between 6 and 8. The basic total hardness of the water should not exceed 12° dGH.

Food and nutrition for cherry barb s

cherry barb s belong to the group of omnivores. Flake food or a granulate can serve as a basis and be given to the fish daily. Nevertheless, live or frozen food should be used once or twice a week.

The ideal aquarium for cherry barb s

The size of the aquarium for the peaceful barbels should have at least an edge length of 60 cm and hold 54 litres of volume. For the small fish it is important to pay attention to a dense vegetation and to have some retreat places made of leaves, stone or wood ready. A dark and sandy ground can also contribute to the well-being of the animals.

As cherry barb s are considered to be very active, there should be sufficient hiding places as well as sufficient space for swimming.

Housing conditions

cherry barb s are lively creatures and are considered to be peace-loving towards other species. They are ideal for beginners, as they do not need much care. Together with the following keeping conditions, the barbels will really feel at home in the aquarium.

  • Aquarium size of at least 60 cm
  • Temperature between 22° C and 28° C
  • PH value between 6 and 8
  • GH not higher than 12° dGH
  • Dense vegetation in the aquarium
  • Enough hiding places – leaves, wood or stones
  • Dark floor
  • Varied diet
  • Keeping in a group of at least six animals – more females than males

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