(not from the net!)
Lovely little fish. Barbs have a bad name because of Tiger Barbs, it is a reputation the rest of the barb family really don't deserve. I set up a tank for my mother about eight/nine years ago, had to be something simple to maintain, colourful and not too 'sensitive' because of location in the hallway. Without hesitation I set up a barb tank with a few pairs of each of Chequers (British spelling!), Cherries and Odessas, with a shoal of 20 Zebra Danios. Decor was simple, just a tangle of bogwood over some attractive pebbles with Anubia nana and Java Fern growing on the bogwood. This tank is still going strong with most of the original barbs and a few geriatric danios. The plants were slow to get established, but have grown into some lovely thickets. All of the barbs are absolutely stunning and just seem to get better and better compared to the rather plain juveniles. The Chequers in particular are much more colourful than they used to be when first introduced with the males having bright orange fins edged with black and dark charcoal grey bodies with big silver scales...stunning!
I love these guys! I have 2 males in a 75 L tank with 4 lemon tetras, 4 cherry barbs, 3 emperors and 1 blue ram. All the tetras and barbs are about 3 cm long right now. The checkers love the big piece of driftwood, and follow the contours over every part, just like Julidochromis do! They check out the whole tank as well, and like to find each other to display. Occasionally the dominant one will chase someone off his fave spot on the driftwood, but they ignore all the others anywhere else in the tank. Very nice community fish!
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