freshwater community4


Black Ruby Barb

black ruby barb

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Scientific Name:   Puntius nigrofasciatus      
Min. Tank Size:   20 gallons      
Personality:   Peaceful      
Temperature:   70-82°F      
pH:   6.0-6.5/2-10°dGH      
Size:   2.5"      
Diet:   Omnivore      
Breeding:   Egglayer      


Other Cyprinids, Rasboras, Livebearers, Tetras, Corydoras, Loaches and Gouramis.

Black Ruby Barb

Endemic to Sri Lanka, these fish are found in the cool, still waters of forest streams, tributaries and ponds. Though juveniles of this species may be yellowish gray in coloration, adults have a dark red body with black vertical stripes. In males of the species, the dorsal fin is black and the pelvic fins have a reddish tint. Females of this species grow slightly larger than the males who undergo a dramatic color change during breeding seasons, developing a dark maroon coloration around the head while the rest of the body becomes almost black. Females of this species grow slightly larger than the males and both sexes grow to a maximum length between 2 and 3 inches.

Tank Set-up

Black Ruby Barbs show best in heavily-planted tanks with dark substrate - they are likely to appear washed out in tanks that are sparsely decorated. These fish do well in community setups and thrive best in groups with 8 to 10 of their own species. Black Ruby Barbs are sensitive to poor water quality, so regular water changes and maintenance are a must. Tank water should be kept slightly acid with no heavy currents to best mimic their natural environment.


In nature the Black Ruby Barb feeds on algae and other matter. In the home aquarium, they are relatively unfussy and will accept a variety of foods. For the best health and coloration feed a varied diet consisting of bloodworms, Daphnia, brine shrimp and an algae based food such as Spirulina flakes. You may notice the Black Ruby Barb nibbling on any algae you might have in the aquarium, but don't let this prevent you from supplementing their diet with vegetable based foods.


This species breeds readily in the home aquarium but are likely to eat their own eggs and fry if you do not remove the parents after spawning. Black Ruby Barbs are egg scatters, so they need a breeding tank decorated with Java moss and clumps of fine-leaved plants on which to deposit their eggs. The breeding tank should be outfitted with dim lighting and the water should be kept at a pH between 6.0 and 7.0 with a temperature around 75 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. After spawning, the eggs usually hatch in between 24 to 48 hours and they fry will becoming free swimming after another 24 hours.

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