Max Size: 3.5cm

Eight Banded False Barb (Eirmotus octozona)

The Eight Banded False Barb is a very peaceful schooling species that is an excellent fish for the Nano or planted aquarium. These fish are known for their attractive striping and small size. However, these fish are not often available like many other widespread Barb species.

The Eight Banded False Barb typically occupies the top and middle levels of the water column; however, you can also see them occasionally swimming and feeding in the middle and bottom levels.

It would be more beneficial if you kept Eight Banded False Barbs in groups of 8 or more individuals; that way, dominant individuals do not bully those subdominant specimens during breeding behaviour. Also, when you keep these fish in larger groups, they will be less nervous, and the males will display their best colours while they compete to attract females. On the other hand, do not keep these Barbs with much larger aggressive fish or species that will out-compete them for food because they will not battle for it and may starve to death.

These Barbs can be housed with other peaceful, small Cyprinids such as Boraras or Trigonostigma species as well as many small South American Characins, Pygmy Corydoras Catfish or Otocinclus. They may prey on smaller Dwarf Shrimp shrimplets.

Eight Banded False Barbs have a yellowish to a red body consisting of eight dark bars starting from their snout through to the caudal peduncle. These fish have translucent dorsal-fin rays with some black sometimes extending onto the first branched ray; Their other fins are hyaline or have diffused chromatophores on the last dorsal-fin ray.

In addition, members of this genus possess rows of sensory papillae on the snout, cheeks, throat, opercle, and interorbital area lacking in most other cyprinids but present in a few other genera such as Cyclocheilichthys, Oreichthys, Neobarynotus and a handful of different species.

Tank Mates for the Eight Banded False Barb

1 ideal tank mate ideas for the Eight Banded False Barb include:

Indian Hifin Barb(Oreichthys cosuatis)
Quick Facts
Scientific NameEirmotus octozona
Other NamesOctozona Barb, False Eight-Banded Barb
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
Best kept asGroups 8+
Lifespan3 - 5 years
Water Parameters
Water TypeFreshwater
PH5.0 - 7.0
GH2 - 12
TDS18 -143
75 - 79℉
23.9 - 26.1℃

Photos of the Eight Banded False Barb

Eight Banded False Barb
Eight Banded False Barb
Eight Banded False Barb
Eight Banded False Barb
Eight Banded False Barb
Eight Banded False Barb
Eight Banded False Barb
Eight Banded False Barb
Eight Banded False Barb
Eight Banded False Barb
The Eight Banded False Barb


Eight Banded False Barb (Eirmotus octozona) Species Profile & Care Guide

Natural Habitat

Eight Banded False Barbs originated from lake Bueng Boraphet in southern, peninsular in western Thailand in Southeast Asia. However, this species of dwarf barb has not been located there again since. In 2008 these Barbs were collected in Johor state in Peninsular Malaysia.

It is thought that these Barbs may inhabit areas of peat swamp forest surrounding the local town of Ayer Hitam in Johor state, Peninsular Malaysia. However, the swamps in this region have been severely disturbed by human activities and much of the original habitat destroyed, so the current state of many species occupying these areas is unfortunately unclear.

What to feed the Eight Banded False Barb

Eight Banded False Barbs will accept most dried/flaked foods of a suitable size in the aquarium, but you should not feed them these solely. Daily feeds of small live and frozen foods such as Artemia, Daphnia or similar will ensure optimal health and colouration. They will also encourage your fish to reach breeding condition.

This barb can be somewhat weak when first imported; therefore, it is highly recommended that you provide your fish with small live foods as their initial diet, introducing dried and frozen food as the fish settle into your aquarium. It may also help to know that these Dwarf Barbs are shy and reluctant feeders, so it is advisable to keep them in a species only setup or with similar dwarf African barbs such as the Jae Barb or African Banded Barb.

How to sex the Eight Banded False Barb

It is reasonably straightforward to distinguish male from female Eight Banded False Barbs. Adult males are noticeably thinner than females and exhibit a pale red colouration on their unpaired fins when in good condition. In contrast, Mature females appear to be fuller-bodied than males.

How to breed the Eight Banded False Barb

The Eight Banded False Barb is relatively new in the hobby; therefore, little information is available regarding breeding this species. However, it is believed that the water should have a very low pH and negligible hardness is very likely to be required.

Frquently asked questions about the Eight Banded False Barb

Are Eight Banded False Barbs a shoaling fish?

Yes, Eight Banded Barbs are a shoaling fish. They are a timid and delicate species that must be maintained in groups of at least six individuals, preferably more so they feel less nervous. A shoal of these fish will also make for a beautiful display.

How do you tell the difference between male and female Eight Banded Barbs

It is quite challenging to distinguish males from females. However, adult males are somewhat slimmer than females and present a pale red colouration on their unpaired fins when they are in good condition.

What are the most suitable tankmates for the Eight Banded Barbs?

Eight Banded False Barbs are fine with other peaceful, small fish and can also be housed with larger Invertebrates. However, they may prey on smaller Dwarf Shrimp and their shrimplets.

What do Eight Banded Barbs eat?

The Eight Banded Barb requires a varied diet; therefore, it would benefit these fish if you provided them with high quality dried and frozen food remembering they have tiny mouths, so they will need to be suitably sized.

What is the best Aquarium setup for Eight Banded Barbs?

Eight Banded Barbs will do much better in either a heavily planted or forest stream type setup. The aquarium should also have a soft substrate and dim lighting and branches, roots and leaf litter as decor. Strong filtration is not required as they mainly inhabit sluggish waters.

What level of the aquarium do 8 Banded Barbs occupy?

The Eight Banded Barbs typically occupies the middle and the top of the water column. However, you may often see them swimming in the middle and bottom levels when searching for food.

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)
Butterfly Barb(Barbus hulstaerti)
Checker Barb(Oliotius oligolepis)
View all Barbs
Date Added: 28/06/2021 16:25:25 - Updated: 05/01/2022 16:15:30