Checker Barb (Oliotius oligolepis)
The Checker Barb is a small, enthusiastic, active, but peaceful fish and an ideal choice for the community aquarium with other non-aggressive community fish species. This fish is suitable for both the beginner aquarist as well as the more experienced as they are relatively hardy and a joy to keep.
These fish should be maintained in schools of 6 or more, preferably with more females than males as the males may occasionally scrap amongst themselves, but no real damage will occur.
The Checker Barb gets its title from the black marks along the side of its body, thought to resemble a checkerboard.
The Checker Barb usually have two colour varieties. One has a red colouration and the other a more greenish colouration. Both colour morphs are attractive, and both display the checkered scale pattern.
|Scientific Name||Oliotius oligolepis|
|Other Names||Checkered Barb, Chequer Barb, Checkerboard Barb, Island Barb|
|Aquarium Level||Bottom - Middle|
|Difficulty||Beginner - Intermediate|
|Best kept as||Groups 6+|
|Lifespan||up to 8 years|
|PH||5.5 - 6.5|
|GH||1 - 10|
|TDS||36 - 215|
|68 - 75℉|
20 - 23.9℃
In the home aquarium, the Checker Barb will readily accept most good quality dried foods such as granules, flakes and sinking pellets. These modern food products have been developed to provide all adequate nutrition to maintain your fish's health and dietary requirements.
Providing additional foodstuffs such as live, frozen, and freeze-dried meals such as bloodworm, daphnia, and tubifex once or twice a week will provide additional benefits to your fish's health and well-being but is not a must for this fish.
It should be noted that bloodworms should only be given as an occasional treat and should not be used as the staple diet as they are difficult for fish to digest and can potentially cause blockages.
This fish is an omnivore in the wild, meaning it will consume some vegetable matter. Although most modern fish foods take this into account and include them in their products, you can still supplement your fish's diet with blanched vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, and zucchini. Ensure you do not overfeed your fish and remove any leftovers the following day.
2 interesting tank mate ideas for the Checker Barb could include:
It is straightforward to determine the sex of these Barbs. The males have a more intense colour and display reddish-brown dorsal and anal fins edged in black. The females are less dynamic, often rounder, and have yellowish-brown dorsal and anal fins without the distinct black edges seen in males.