Max Size: 4.5cm

Panther Danio (Brachydanio aesculapii)

The Panther Danio is a very captivating, hardy and peaceful fish that makes an excellent community fish as it gets on with most small species. These fish are suitable for beginner aquarists. However, you should note that it can be a fin-nipper, so be careful if keeping them with species that have significant fins. The Panther Danio is a very captivating little fish.

The Panther Danio is a schooling species and should be kept in groups of 8 or more. Keeping them in adequate numbers will not only make the fish less apprehensive, but it will also achieve a more effective, natural-looking display. The males will also display their best colours as they compete with each other for female attention.

The Panther Danio has a torpedo-shaped body that at first glimpse looks a little dull but then displays a variety of colours when the light illuminates the fish on its side giving it an opalescent look with snakeskin-like markings along its flanks. The fins on this fish are all transparent.


Panther danio
Panther danio
Panther danio
Pather Danio
Quick Facts
Scientific NameBrachydanio aesculapii
Other NamesNone
Aquarium LevelTop
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 8+
Lifespanup to 4 years
Water Parameters
Water TypeFreshwater
PH6.5 - 8.5
GH1 - 12
TDS18 - 90
72 - 79℉
22.2 - 26.1℃


In the home aquarium, the Panther Danio 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.

Sexual Dimorphism

It is relatively simple to distinguish male from female Panther Danios. Sexually mature females are usually a little larger and more rounder-bellied than males, and the dark bands in the front portion of the body tend to be noticeably more elongated and thinner in females. Also, the differences are incredibly apparent when the fish are in spawning condition as the males deepen in colour, and the females will fill with eggs.

Frequently asked questions

What do Panther Danios look like?

Panther Danios have a slender torpedo-shaped body displaying a snake-like pattern with its iridescent gold markings across its body from behind their gill plates to the base of their caudal peduncle. Their fins have a vague white leading edge but otherwise are pretty much hyaline.

Do Panther Danios make good community fish?

Panther Danios make an excellent community fish as they get along with most fish species of similar size or smaller. However, these fish can be fin nippers, so be careful if you decide to house them with fish species with extravagant finnage.

What are the ideal water conditions for Panther Danios?

The water temperature in their natural habitat has been recorded between 22 and 27 degrees Celcius throughout the warmer months, so this likely drops during the monsoon's wet months; however, we don't know to what extent. The pH level in their natural waters has been measured between 6.9 and 7.1. Panther Danios inhabit softer waters with a hardness of 18-90 ppm; therefore, it is recommended that you keep the water parameters in your aquarium as close to this as possible.

What is the best aquarium set-up for Panther Danios

Panther Danios look especially striking in a heavily planted aquarium with a dark substrate and appear a little dull in sparsely decorated set-ups. It would be better to set up your aquarium to mimic a flowing stream or river with a substrate of decent sized rocks and gravel and some large smooth boulders. The water needs to be well-oxygenated with a level of flow. However, it would be best to avoid torrent-like conditions since these fish live in calmer stretches of waters in their natural habitat. You can also add hardy aquatic plants, which can be attached to the decor and driftwood.

What is the natural habitat for Panther Danios?

Endemic to the Rakhine Yoma and Arakan mountains in Rakhine state, western Myanmar. These fish have initially been collected from a few streams and rivers of the west interior slopes. However, the individuals originated from the Kananmae Chaung, a coastal creek draining into the Bay of Bengal. These fish inhabit shallow, slow-flowing clear water, and the substrate is usually made of a mixture of pebbles, gravel, rocks and leaf litter.

What should you feed your Panther Danios?

You should feed your Panther Danios a high-quality dried product as the staple diet; however, you should supplement this with frequent meals of small live and frozen fares such as artemia and daphnia bloodworm and suchlike. This will show the best colour and condition of your fish.

Other Danios of interest

Assam Danio(Devario assamensis)
Barred Danio(Devario pathirana)
Bengal Danio(Devario devario)
Black Barred Danio(Danio absconditus)
Blood Tailed Danio(Devario annandalei)
Blue Danio(Danio kerri)
View all Danios
Date Added: 24/11/2020 - Updated: 11/08/2022 15:50:09