Max Size: 6cm

Zebra Danio (Brachydanio rerio)

Zebra Danios are a favourite hobbyist because of their ease of care, charm, and grace. These fish are easy to recognize by their distinctive horizontal stripes. Blue-purple horizontal lines that run from gill to tail, setting off the slim, compressed, golden-silvery body of this attractive fish that looks similar to that of a zebra

Zebra Danios are peaceful and will get along with most tankmates; however, they may nip fins of individual species such as betas and angelfish, but that aside they make a great addition to the community tank.

They are very hardy and can withstand an impressive range of water conditions and temperatures.

This species will do just fine without a heater as they are pretty comfortable at low temperatures.

Tank Mates for the Zebra Danio

2 ideal tank mate ideas for the Zebra Danio include:

Dwarf Gourami(Trichogaster lalius)
Frail Gourami(Ctenops nobilis)

Zebra Danio Variants

GloFish Longfin Zebra Danio
GloFish Zebra Danio
Gold Longfin Zebra Danio
Longfin Zebra Danio
Quick Facts
Scientific NameBrachydanio rerio
Other NamesZebra Fish, Striped Danio
OriginsBangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
Best kept asGroups 6+
Lifespan2 - 4 years
Water Parameters
Water TypeFreshwater
PH6.5 - 7.0
GH5 - 12
KH1 - 5
TDS100 - 500
64 - 74℉
17.8 - 23.3℃

Photos of the Zebra Danio

Longfin Zebra Danio
Zebra Danio
Zebra Danios
Zebra Danio
Longfin Zebra Danio
Longfin Zebra Danio
Longfin Zebra Danio
Longfin Zebra Danio

Natural Habitat

The Zebra Danio inhabits moving waters with a silty and densely vegetated substrate in streams, ponds, rivers and channels in Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar and Bhutan.

In the wild, the places you will find them depends on the season; in the dry season, you will encounter them in flooded rice fields and puddles where they will eat and spawn, and after the rainy season, they will return into the rivers, streams etc.

What to feed the Zebra Danio

Zebra Danios will eat most food such as flakes, pellets, tablets, live or freeze-dried, but it does need to float on the surface because that's where they prefer to eat. They will go after food that starts to sink, but they will not touch food at the bottom of the tank.

Balance the diet by also feeding them vegetable matter.

These fish will do best when offered food several times a day.

How to sex the Zebra Danio

There isn't much that defines a male from a female species except that the female is more rounded and slightly larger than the male.

In contrast, the male is more streamlined and torpedo-shaped.

You will not be able to differentiate until they are adults as they look identical to juveniles.

How to breed the Zebra Danio

Zebra danios are prolific breeders; therefore, they are ideal for beginners looking to breed their first aquarium fish.

Mated pairs of Zebra Danios remain together for life; they hardly ever spawn with others even after the partner dies. The best way to succeed with a mating couple is to have six or more young zebras and let them choose their mate.

Your breeding tank should be pretty shallow and decorated with fine-leaved plants such as java moss, and you should also have course gravel, small rocks or marbles at the bottom as this is where the eggs will be dropped and protected from the adults. Once spawning has occurred and the eggs have been scattered, remove the mating pair as they will more than likely eat their eggs.

The female can usually lay from 50-500 eggs, and it usually takes around two days for them to hatch.

The Zebra Danio has been featured on the following stamps

Vietnam - 1984

Frquently asked questions about the Zebra Danio

Are Zebra Danios a shoaling fish?

Yes, Zebra Danios are shoaling fish that need to be housed in groups of six or more individuals.

Are Zebra Danios aggressive?

You may notice that Zebra Danios chase each other around the tank; you do not have to worry as this is a hierarchical arrangement of dominance settled through playful non-aggressive behaviour. However, whilst Zebra Danios are peaceful, social fish, they can exhibit aggressive behaviour towards slow-moving or long-finned fish species, and you may see them frequently biting at their fins.

Are Zebra Danios compatible with other fish species?

Yes, Zebra Danios are a peaceful community fish; however, it would be better if you did not keep them with fish that have flowing fins or are slow-moving as they may harass them and fin nip.

How do you sex Zebra Danios?

Sexing Zebra Danios is pretty straightforward. Males will have torpedo-shaped bodies with illusive golden stripes between the zebra stripes. Males also have a prominent genital papilla in front of their anal fin. In contrast, females are silvery in colour. They have more rounded, plumper bodies, and their stripes are silver rather than golden like the males.

What should you feed your Zebra Danios?

Zebra Danios are not fussy when it comes to food; however, if you would like your fish to be as happy and as healthy as possible, it's continually advised that you try to mimic the diet they would naturally live on in the wild. In nature, their diet consists of crustaceans, small insects, worms and algae. However, not every fish keeper will have the funds nor the inclination to feed their fish nothing but live foods; therefore, high quality dried foods such as flakes or granules will more than suffice. Nevertheless, we highly recommend that you supplement their diet with the occasional live food or frozen foods.

What size aquarium is required for Zebra Danios?

The ideal aquarium for Zebra Danios would be 45 litres or more; this will give them plenty of swimming space to shoal. Zebra Danios can grow up to 6 cm in length and are very active species. In smaller tanks, Danios will be unhappy and will become frustrated bullies.

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: 27/07/2020 - Updated: 05/01/2022 16:59:07