New Fish Tank Tips: Learn about the fish tank nitrogen cycle. This is a crucial process that you must understand if you want to have long term success with tropical fish.
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The cherry barb, Puntius titteya is a tropical fish belonging to the spotted barb genus of the Cyprinidae family. It is native to Sri Lanka, and introduced populations have become established in Mexico and Colombia. The cherry barb was named Puntius titteya by Paul E. P. Deraniyagala in 1929. It has also been referred to as Barbus titteya and Capoeta titteya.
The cherry barb is an elongated fish with a relatively compressed body. It is fawn-colored on top with a slight greenish sheen. Its sides and belly have gleaming silver highlights. A horizontal stripe (brownish black to deep bluish black) extends from the tip of the snout through the eye to the base of the caudal fin. Above it is an iridescent, metallic line, gold at the front turning to blue or sea green toward the tail. Males are redder than females, and they attain a very deep red color when breeding. Females are lighter, with yellowish fins. The cherry barb will grow to 2 inches (5 centimeters) in length.
The Cherry Barb’s natural environment is one of heavily shaded, shallow, and calm waters. Their native substrate is one of silt with leaf cover. They are from a tropical climate and prefer water with a pH of 6.0 – 8.0, a water hardness (dH) of 5.0 – 19.0. and a temperature range of 74 – 81 °F (23 – 27 °C).
This peaceful cherry-red fish is most often kept in community tanks by fish keeping hobbyists. The cherry barb is less of a schooling fish than other Barbs and is best kept in groups of five or more individuals. It is also best to keep a ratio of two females to one male. The male will constantly harass the females to breed, and by this ratio, it gives the females a small break. They live an average of 4 years, with a maximum lifespan of 5-7 years. They prefer a tank with abundant plants (about two-thirds to three-quarters of the tank), but they still need open space to swim. They tend to hide and will often withdraw under the cover of plants. Younger males are generally peaceful, but they can be aggressive in spawning with females. Appropriate tankmates include Rasbora and similar peaceful fish.