Max Size: 5cm

Drape Fin Barb (Oreichthys crenuchoides)

Drape Fin Barbs, Oreichthys crenuchoides are relatively active, peaceful fish. These Barbs, however, can be quite sensitive to fluctuations in water, so the conditions must be ideal. Furthermore, Barbs are not suitable for most community aquariums due to their sensitivity and small size; therefore, they are more appropriate for more advanced aquarists instead of beginners. In aquascaped or planted aquariums, these Barbs make impressive centrepieces when they are grouped together.

In the aquarium, rival males of Drape Fin Barbs will display some exciting sparring behaviour as they develop a pecking order. Ideally, you should keep them in groups of at least eight; however, you should make sure there are many broken lines of sight in the aquarium. The dominant fish may bully subordinate fish perpetually if kept alone, in a small group, or in cramped conditions.

It is possible to keep Drape Fin Barbs either in an aquarium with only their species or in an aquarium with other small peaceful fish. For example, micro Rasboras, Tetras, Dwarf Gouramis and other Dwarf Barbs, as well as Khuli Loaches and Catfish, would be ideal tankmates. The Barbs, however, should not be housed with larger, more aggressive or boisterous species. Consequently, they will be intimidated and outcompeted.

It appears that Drape Fin Barbs thrive best in neutral, slightly alkaline water with moderate hardness and aquatic vegetation. Adding floating plants reduces the aquarium's light, and adding dried leaf litter adds a natural feel to the aquarium. There should be a relatively slow flow of water, and the substrate should be soft.

Silver bodies with prominent scales are characteristic of Drape Fin Barbs. There is a large black blotch on the caudal fin of these Barbs, and the dorsal fin of the male has black splashes scattered throughout. Females have a yellow dorsal fin with a black blotch on the tip; all other fins are transparent.


Drape Fin Barb
Drape Fin Barb
Drape Fin Barb
Drape Fin Barb
Drape Fin Barb
Drape Fin Barb
Quick Facts
Scientific NameOreichthys crenuchoides
Year Described2009
Other NamesIndian high fin Barb, Drape Finned Barb
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
Best kept asGroups 5+
Lifespan3 - 4 years
Water Parameters
Water TypeFreshwater
PH6.5 - 7.5
GH2 - 8
TDS50 - 180
72 - 82℉
22.2 - 27.8℃

Natural Habitat

The Ganges River
Brahmaputra River Drainage


In the home aquarium, the Drape Fin 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.

Tank Mates

2 interesting tank mate ideas for the Drape Fin Barb could include:

Banded Gourami(Trichogaster fasciata)
Cherry Barb(Puntius titteya)

Sexual Dimorphism

A simple distinction can be made between males and females of the Drape Fin Barb. A male's dorsal fin is much longer than a female's and hangs back over the caudal fin. Additionally, males exhibit stronger colouration and larger size than females. Contrary to males, females have a duller appearance, a smaller and more rounded dorsal fin, are slightly smaller, and become more rounded when they are carrying eggs.

Frequently asked questions

Are Drape Fin Barbs a shoaling species?

Although Drape Fin Barbs are sociable species by nature, they are a shoaling species rather than schooling fish that develop distinct pecking orders. Rival males will display some impressive sparring behaviour in captivity. It would be best if you kept drape Fin Barbs in groups of 8 or more individuals; however, the aquarium should be designed so that you provide many broken lines of sight. If you keep them on their own, in a very small group, or in crowded conditions, they can become withdrawn, and subdominant fish may bully them regularly.

Are Drape Fin Barbs suitable for a community aquarium?

Unfortunately, Drape Fin Barbs are unsuitable for most community aquariums as they may be outcompeted for food or intimidated by more boisterous, larger tankmates. However, small, peaceful Cyprinids such as Boraras or Trigonostigma species, as well as many South American Characins, would make ideal tankmates for Drape Fin Barbs.

How big do Drape Fin Barbs grow?

Drape Fin Barbs usually reach lengths of up to 5 cm in the aquarium, with the males growing slightly larger than the females.

What aquarium setup do I need for Drape Fin Barbs?

Drapefin Barbs need a relatively good-sized aquarium, so 75 litres would suffice. The substrate needs to be softer to mimic the rivers muddy bottom, so using sand or very fine gravel would be ideal. You should also use several large leaves on the bottom and have several driftwood pieces mixed in with plants. You could also combine some floating plants to reduce the lighting in your tank. The flow of water does not need to be great and will depend on your filter choice. However, you must remember these Barbs need pristine water, so bear that in mind when choosing your filter. Lastly, the water temperature needs to be between 73 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit and the pH level should be between 6.0 and 7.5.

What should you feed Drape Fin Barbs?

Drape Fin Barbs will accept good-quality dried foods such as flakes or micropellets of a suitable size; however, you should not feed them this exclusively. It would be better to offer your fish daily meals of small live and frozen fares such as artemia, daphnia and mosquito larvae; this will result in the best colouration and health and will encourage your fish to get into breeding condition. You should note that Drape Fin Barbs are shy, reluctant feeders.

Where do Drape Fin Barbs originate?

Drape Fin Barbs are endemic to the tributaries of the Brahmaputra River in West Bengal state, in eastern India. This species comes from the Jorai River near the border of Assam, but they have also been collected elsewhere, including the Ghoti Ganga River, in the Cooch Behar district. Drape Fin Barbs are also known to be found in the Buxa Tiger Reserve, a forested area in the sub-division of Alipurduar in the Jalpaiguri district. These fish inhabit slow-flowing, clear waters with a muddy substrate.

Other Barbs of interest

African Banded Barb(Barbus fasciolatus)
Arulius Barb(Dawkinsia arulius, Puntius arulius)
Black Ruby Barb(Pethia nigrofasciata)
Blue Spotted Hill Trout(Barilius bakeri)
Borneo Red Fin Silver Shark(Cyclocheilichthys janthochir)
Butterfly Barb(Barbus hulstaerti)
View all Barbs
Date Added: 28/05/2020 - Updated: 11/08/2022 13:24:54