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The Checkerboard Barb, scientifically known as Puntius oligolepis, is a lively and visually striking freshwater fish that adds vibrancy to aquariums. Recognized for its distinctive checkerboard pattern and active swimming behavior, this barb species is popular among freshwater enthusiasts.



  • Average Size: 2.5-3 inches
  • Max Size: Up to 3 inches
  • Tank Size Required: 20 gallons or larger


Temperament: The Checkerboard Barb is generally peaceful and can be kept in community aquariums with other similarly sized and non-aggressive fish. It thrives in the presence of conspecifics, so keeping them in small groups is advisable.


Unique Traits: Distinguished by its checkerboard pattern, the Checkerboard Barb features alternating black and white squares along its body, giving it a captivating appearance. It has an elongated and streamlined body, typical of barb species.


Origin: Native to Southeast Asia, the Checkerboard Barb is found in various river systems, including those in Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia.


Other Names:

  • Harlequin Rasbora (Note: It's sometimes confused with the similar-looking Harlequin Rasbora, which belongs to a different species.)


Care Level: Easy


Diet: The Checkerboard Barb is omnivorous and accepts a variety of foods. Provide a well-balanced diet that includes high-quality flake food, pellets, and live or frozen foods such as brine shrimp and bloodworms. A mix of vegetable-based and protein-rich foods ensures their nutritional needs are met.


Characteristics and Looks: The Checkerboard Barb exhibits a striking checkerboard pattern on its body, with alternating black and white squares. Its fins are typically transparent, and the overall appearance is sleek and streamlined. This species is known for its energetic and active swimming behavior.


Water Parameters:

  • pH: 6.5-7.5
  • gH (General Hardness): 5-12 dGH
  • kH (Carbonate Hardness): 3-8 dKH
  • Temperature: 73-79°F


Disclaimer: "Please note that these are general guidelines, and for more accurate values, we encourage you to contact Living Aquarium by phone or in person. Within store hours, our team of experts is always happy to answer any questions you may have and provide personalized guidance on care."

Checkerboard Barb

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