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Maximum size : 5 cm

Golden Dwarf Barb - Pethia gelius : Complete Fish Profile & Care Guide

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Golden Dwarf Barbs (Pethia gelius) bring a touch of allure to nano aquariums or community setups comprising smaller, peaceable species. Due to their petite stature and docile nature, these Barbs are best suited for environments specifically tailored to their needs rather than being incorporated into general community aquariums. Larger, more robust fish are prone to view them as delectable morsels or outcompete them for food. To ensure harmonious coexistence, consider selecting miniature companions such as micro Rasboras, Danios, Dwarf Loaches, and Dwarf Shrimp as ideal tankmates for the Golden Dwarf Barbs.

As naturally schooling species, maintaining Golden Dwarf Barbs in groups of at least eight individuals is crucial. This arrangement fosters a sense of security and enables the fish to exhibit their most vibrant colours, accompanied by beautiful behavioural displays while vying for the attention of females. Creating an environment that emulates their native habitat is paramount. An abundance of lush aquatic vegetation, including floating plants, coupled with strategically placed driftwood roots or branches to provide diffused lighting, enhances the aquarium's appeal. Bearing in mind that Golden Dwarf Barbs originate from slow to still waters, minimal filtration and gentle water flow is recommended to prevent any undue stress associated with excessively fast currents.

These Barbs exhibit sensitivity to fluctuations in water chemistry, underscoring the importance of introducing them into a biologically mature aquarium. Patience in establishing a stable environment is key to their well-being. The golden-hued bodies of Golden Dwarf Barbs are accentuated by delicate black stripes along their lateral line, contributing to their visual allure. Notably, three distinct black blotches adorn their bodies, with one located behind the opercle, another positioned below the dorsal fin, and a third marking just above the anal fin. Additionally, their anal, dorsal, and pelvic fins dazzle with vivid yellow pigmentation, while a striking black spot graces their dorsal fin, adding an extra touch of elegance to their appearance.

Golden Dwarf Barb Photos

Sexual Dimorphism

Differentiating between male and female Golden Dwarf Barbs (Pethia gelius) is a relatively straightforward task. Males possess distinct characteristics that set them apart from females. They typically exhibit a slimmer physique, smaller size and boast more vibrant and intense colouration in comparison to their female counterparts. Conversely, females tend to be slightly larger in size, displaying a rounder belly and possessing less striking colouration when compared to the males. This notable sexual dimorphism enables observers to discern between the genders easily.

Quick Facts

Scientific NamePethia gelius
Year Described2013
Other NamesGolden Barb
OriginsPakistan Nepal Bangladesh India
Max Size5 cm
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
Best kept asGroups 8+
LifespanUp to 6 Years

Water Parameters

Water TypeFreshwater
PH5.5 - 6.5
GH8 - 15
TDS18 - 179
68 - 77
20 - 25

Natural habitat

Hailing from the captivating regions of Asia, including Nepal, Bangladesh, and Pakistan in India, Golden Dwarf Barbs trace their origins to the enchanting realm of inland waters. Within these diverse aquatic landscapes, comprising ditches, ponds, lakes, and rivers, these Barbs find solace in the tranquil embrace of murky, slow-moving shallow waters. In addition, the specific substrates of silt or mud that compose their habitats further shape their unique characteristics, including intriguing colour patterns and distinct morphology. These ancestral influences infuse Golden Dwarf Barbs with a remarkable essence that captivates the discerning observer.

How to breed the Golden Dwarf Barb

Golden Dwarf Barbs exhibit an egg-scattering spawning behaviour, often initiating the process within a carefully arranged, densely planted shallow aquarium. However, if the goal is to optimize fry production, a more controlled approach becomes necessary. While conditioning the adult fish together remains an important step, it is recommended to establish a separate breeding tank to facilitate the desired outcome.

The breeding tank should incorporate an ample amount of java moss or provide a few spawning mops, offering suitable surfaces for the fish to scatter their eggs. Alternatively, maintaining a bare bottom in the tank for ease of maintenance is also an option, with the understanding that filtration is not an essential component in this particular setup. Ideally, introducing a single pair of well-conditioned adult fish to the breeding tank is advisable, taking care to execute the transfer gradually to minimize stress levels. If the conditions prove favourable, spawning activities are likely to commence. Once spawning begins, it is expected to occur at irregular intervals on a daily basis. The presence of plants or spawning mops becomes particularly beneficial during this period, serving as hiding spots for the female to seek refuge from the amorous advances of the eager male. After the spawning process concludes, promptly removing the adult fish becomes imperative to prevent them from preying on the eggs.

Upon hatching, the fry will initially rely on their yolk sacs for sustenance, ensuring their survival for a few days. Once they have exhausted their yolk sacs, providing suitable nourishment such as paramecium or other microscopic foods is essential. As the fry grows in size and becomes free-swimming, introducing microworms and newly hatched brine shrimp into their diet is recommended. Raising the fry can present challenges due to their small size and delicate nature, necessitating careful attention and appropriate care to ensure their well-being and development.

In summary, successfully rearing the fry of Golden Dwarf Barbs requires meticulous handling and consideration, owing to their diminutive size and fragile disposition.

Diet & feeding

Golden Dwarf Barbs exhibit a versatile feeding behaviour, showing a willingness to consume various food types. A diverse and balanced diet is essential to ensure optimal health and vibrant colouration. These Barbs readily accept high-quality dried foods, such as flakes and pellets, which serve as a suitable staple. Supplementing their diet with frozen, freeze-dried, or live foods further enhances their overall well-being. Offerings such as brine shrimp, microworms, Tubifex, and chopped bloodworms provide valuable nutrients and contribute to their vivid appearance. By providing a combination of these nourishment options, Golden Dwarf Barbs can thrive and maintain their captivating colours.

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