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Barbus fasciolatus (African Banded Barb, Barbus barilioides, Blue-banded barb)

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A small, shy barb best kept in a species tank or with other small, inoffensive species.

This fish is reddish with a series of blue-grey bands along the flanks. There is an eyespot close to the base of the tail. Males tend to be more slender than females, but the sexes are otherwise similar.

Fish information (behaviour and breeding):

A lively but shy species that can be easily frightened by more aggressive or boisterous species. Keep in a dimly lit aquarium or one with a dark substrate a lots of plants. Must be kept in a group of 8 or more specimens. Suitable tankmates include tetras and other dwarf barbs.

Breeding is uncommon but possible. They are egg scatterers and can be bred in the same way as other barbs. The eggs take about two days to hatch, and the fry are free swimming after a further three or four days. They need tiny live foods, such as infusorians, to begin with.

Family Group: Barbs
Distribution Angola, Zaire, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Temperature 20-26 C
Size 5 cm
Water Parameters Soft, acidic water essential
Water PH 6.0 to 7.0

Useful sources of information:

For a well illustrated and detailed reference guide on this and many other fish, consider the Baensch Aquarium Atlases. Volume 1 contains all the common species, and later volumes cover more unusual species. You can buy these books here.