Black Ruby Barb

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Puntius nigrofasciatus - (Günther, 1868)
Black Ruby Barb

One of many commendable barbs, always best kept in schools or groups of at least three fish. Aaron Norman


A school of barbs with their prominent, light-reflective scales, brings flash and color to any community aquarium. The short whiskers or barbels near the mouth are used for finding food in the substrate and give these fish their common name.

Family: Cyprinidae

Other common name(s):

Native range:

Habitat: As with most Cyprinids (minnow-type fishes), habitat for the Black Ruby Barb is more about providing sufficient open areas for swimming than actual decor. They are best kept in a long, rather than tall, aquarium, with plants restricted to the sides and back or a layer of floating plants at the surface. Decorate sparingly with driftwood and provide a dark fine-grade gravel substrate to help show off their bright colors.

Maximum length: 6 cm (2 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 76 L (20 gal)

Water: Freshwater 22 °C (72 °F) - 26 °C (79 °F)

General swimming level: Midwater


Omnivore. Barbs are easy to feed and will accept a wide variety of meaty aquarium fare, as well as frozen and live foods and herbivore foods.

Aquarium Compatibility

Like other barbs, this is an active schooling species best kept in groups of at least three, with a variety of community tank residents like other barbs and danios.


During spawning, males develop a bright crimson-red body and a red tail fin. Egg scatterers that spawn adhesive eggs among plants and will greedily eat their own eggs.


Susceptible to poor water quality, so regular water changes are a must.

Reference: 101 Best Tropical Fishes
Image credit: AN
Text credit: KW