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Maximum size : 5 cm

Fire Bar Danio - Devario maetaengensis : Complete Fish Profile & Care Guide

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Fire Bar Danios (Devario maetaengensis) are a beautiful addition to any community aquarium, boasting a peaceful demeanour and impressive hardiness. Their compatibility with various popular tankmates, such as Barbs, Tetras, Cichlids, Loaches, and Catfish, makes them an excellent choice for aquarists of all levels. However, avoiding housing them with more significant or more aggressive species is advisable to prevent intimidation and food competition.

In their natural habitat, Fire Bar Danios thrive in groups, displaying their full splendour when kept in eight or more numbers. This promotes a sense of security and allows them to exhibit their natural behaviours while enhancing their vibrant colours. Creating a flowing river or stream-like environment in the aquarium is ideal for these energetic fish. Sandy or gravel substrate, along with carefully positioned rocks and driftwood, will help replicate their native habitat. Hardy aquatic plants like Anubias or Microsorum can further enhance the visual appeal.

Maintaining water quality is essential for the well-being of Fire Bar Danios, as they originate from pristine environments. Regular water changes are necessary to prevent the accumulation of organic waste. While they do not require fast currents, ensuring high oxygen levels in the aquarium is crucial. However, be mindful of providing a secure lid, as these Danios tend to jump.

The distinctive features of Fire Bar Danios include their stocky, copper-coloured bodies adorned with a solid dark lateral line extending into the caudal fin. Vertical bars, varying in depth and length, add an extra touch of elegance. Transparent fins complete their unique appearance.

Fire Bar Danio Photos

Sexual Dimorphism

Distinguishing between male and female Fire Bar Danios is a relatively straightforward task. Males exhibit distinct characteristics, such as a slender physique, smaller size, and vibrant colouration, particularly when approaching breeding readiness. In contrast, sexually mature females possess a deeper body structure, less pronounced colouration, and slightly larger size compared to males.

Quick Facts

Scientific NameDevario maetaengensis
Year Described1997
Other NamesMaetaeng Danio, Tiger Danio
Max Size5 cm
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 8+
LifespanUp to 5 Years

Water Parameters

Water TypeFreshwater
PH6.0 - 7.0
GH3 - 10
TDS36 - 268
68 - 79
20 - 26

Natural Habitat

Fire Bar Danios are native to the mesmerizing waters of the Metang River, a tributary nestled within the Ping River Basin. These captivating fish have also been discovered in the Nam Mae Taeng, an enchanting tributary that meanders through the upper Chao Phraya River Basin in the beautiful landscapes of Thailand and Southeast Asia.

Within their natural habitat, Fire Bar Danios find solace in the crystal-clear waters of small streams characterized by a moderate to fast-flowing current. These lively fish navigate a diverse substrate composition consisting of sand, gravel, and rocks, showcasing the simplicity and beauty of their surroundings. Surprisingly, the absence of aquatic vegetation in their native habitat only enhances the mesmerizing allure of these remarkable creatures.


Fire Bar Danios (Devario maetaengensis) follow the pattern of other Danios as egg-scattering spawners, exhibiting no parental care for their offspring. In a well-maintained and densely-planted aquarium, these fish will often spawn naturally, resulting in the appearance of small numbers of fry without human intervention. However, for those seeking to maximize the fry yield, a more controlled breeding approach is advisable.

To begin, conditioning the adult group together remains a crucial step. Simultaneously, the aquarist should set up a dedicated breeding tank, partially filled with water. Dimming the lighting within the breeding tank and covering the bottom with a suitable mesh, with openings wide enough for eggs to fall through but small enough to prevent adults from accessing them, is recommended. Alternatively, employing artificial grass matting or incorporating ample fine-leaved plants or java moss can yield favourable outcomes.

Optimal breeding conditions necessitate relatively soft, slightly acidic to neutral water, with the temperature set towards the higher end of the suitable range for the species. Initially, introducing a small air-powered filter and positioning it to create a gentle current along the length of the tank is advisable. Alternatively, a mature sponge-type filter can serve the same purpose effectively.

Once the adult fish are in prime condition and the females show signs of being full of eggs, it is time to introduce one or two pairs to the dedicated breeding tank. Spawning can be stimulated by providing small amounts of live and frozen foods to the pairs and periodically adding small quantities of cooler water, gradually topping up the tank. The spawning process typically occurs the following morning. An easy indication of successful spawning is observing a noticeable slimming of the female's appearance.

To prevent the adults from consuming the eggs, they should be removed from the breeding tank after a couple of days. At this stage, replacing the power filter with a sponge-type unit is recommended to safeguard the fry from being drawn into the filtration system. The incubation period for the eggs varies depending on the temperature but typically lasts around 36 hours. Once hatched, the fry will become free-swimming within 3 to 4 days. Initially, feeding them with Paramecium or a suitably small-grade proprietary dry food is ideal. As the fry grows, they can be introduced to microworms and baby brine shrimp, which serve as suitable nutrition for their development.

By following these carefully curated breeding steps, aquarists can experience the joy of successfully rearing Fire Bar Danio fry, allowing them to observe the fascinating lifecycle of these captivating fish and contribute to their conservation in the aquarium hobby.

Diet & feeding

In the confines of the home aquarium, Fire Bar Danios can be nourished with premium-grade dried foods, such as flakes and granules, as the primary component of their diet. In addition, it is advisable to augment this staple with regular offerings of small live, frozen, or freeze-dried foods, such as brine shrimp, daphnia, and bloodworm. This balanced approach to feeding ensures optimal health for these fish and enhances the vibrancy of their colours, allowing them to thrive in their aquatic environment.

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