Mahecola Barb - Puntius mahecola : Complete Fish Profile & Care Guide
Table of contents
Mahecola Barbs (Puntius mahecola) is a peaceful and captivating species that makes excellent additions to a community aquarium. While uncommon in the aquarium trade, these Barbs are highly sought after by hobbyists who collect native species from India. These fish are relatively hardy and can coexist with various other species, making them a versatile choice for aquarists.
To fully appreciate the beauty of these fish, it is recommended to keep them in groups of eight or more, as they are a schooling species. When maintained in adequate numbers, Mahecola Barbs will be less stressed, and their natural behaviours will be more apparent. Additionally, keeping them in large groups encourages competition between males for female attention, resulting in vibrant displays of colouration.
Mahecola Barbs will thrive in aquariums with soft sand or fine gravel substrate, good oxygen levels, and plenty of free swimming space. In addition, these fish prefer dim lighting and enjoy a moderate current flow. Regarding tank mates, Rainbowfish, Tetras, Livebearers, Gouramis, Catfish, Loaches, and other Cyprinids can all coexist harmoniously with Mahecola Barbs.
During their juvenile stages, Mahecola Barbs possess a fusiform body with dual prominent pigmented markings; however, as they progress into adulthood, they undergo a transformation wherein the secondary spot gradually diminishes, eventually becoming exclusive to the caudal peduncle situated posterior to the anal fin. In contrast, the caudal fin displays a notable bicoloured pattern, characterized by a singular red and a solitary black line.
Mahecola Barb Photos
Distinguishing between male and female Mahecola Barbs is a relatively simple process. Typically, adult males are smaller and slimmer than their female counterparts, exhibiting more vibrant and pronounced patterns of colouration.
|Scientific Name||Puntius mahecola|
|Max Size||7.5 cm|
|Aquarium Level||Bottom - Middle|
|Difficulty||Beginner - Intermediate|
|Best kept as||Groups 8+|
|Diet & Feeding||Omnivore|
|Lifespan||Up to 5 Years|
|pH||6.0 - 7.5|
|GH||2 - 15|
|TDS||90 - 268|
|℉||64 - 75|
|℃||17 - 23|
Mahecola Barbs are a unique and fascinating species found in South India, specifically in the rivers that drain the Western Ghats mountain range, spanning the states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka. These fish are typically found in shallow, slow-flowing rivers, characterized by mud or sand substrates and dense vegetation along their banks.
In addition to natural lakes and lagoons, Mahecola Barbs are also known to inhabit artificial lakes created by damming rivers. Their ability to thrive in such varied aquatic environments is a testament to their adaptability and resilience as a species, making them a fascinating subject of study for ichthyologists and aquarists alike.
Regrettably, there are currently no documented cases of successful breeding of Mahecola Barbs within the confines of a domestic aquarium, and there is limited information available regarding breeding methodologies for this species. However, it is plausible to speculate that their breeding behaviour may bear similarities to other members of the Puntius genus.
Diet & feeding
When kept in a domestic aquarium, Mahecola Barbs are a relatively simple species to feed. However, to ensure optimal health and colouration, providing these fish with a varied diet that includes frequent meals of small live and frozen fare, such as artemia, bloodworm, and daphnia, is recommended. Supplementing these meals with high-quality dried granules and flakes incorporating algal or plant content can also be beneficial. By offering a well-rounded and diverse diet, you can help ensure your Mahecola Barbs remain in excellent health and condition, displaying their best colours and vibrancy.
Frequently asked questions
Other Barbs of interest
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