Odessa Barb Aquarium Care, Feeding and Native Habitat Information
The Odessa Barb is a very colorful and boisterous barb species that while not the most common fish available at the local pet store it can be found from time to time. It is worth the wait to obtain some of these delightful fish as they will bring unmatched color and movement to any tropical community freshwater aquarium. Odessa Barbs originate from Southeast Asia where they live in a variety of tropical waters with varying water chemistry. They are a relatively long lived species that can commonly live for 5 years in a well maintained aquarium. This flexibility helps make the Odessa Barb an excellent specimen for the freshwater aquarium hobbyist.
As with most barb species, it is very important to keep this species in groups of 6 or more. Although the Odessa Barb is not known to be overly aggressive towards other tankmate species, they will truly thrive when kept with a group of their own kind that they can playfully chase and nip at each other. When kept in a group, this species will gladly ignore other more slow moving or long finned species in the aquarium such as gouramis, angels or Betta in turn sticking with their own kind. An ideal tank for this species would be a long moderately planted tropical aquarium with warmer water temperatures and plenty of space for this active fast swimming species.
Odessa Barbs are very easy to take care of as they are tolerant of a range of aquarium conditions and will eat any type of tropical freshwater flake, pellet, frozen or live foods.
Males of this species have a very pronounced wide red stripe that runs from their head to the caudal fin, with very defined black outlined abdominal scales. Females do not have the red stripe and have bodies that are more grayish in color with less prominent black markings on the body and outlining the scales. Both sexes possess a vertically elongate dark humeral blotch and a small, inconspicuous dark blotch on the side of the caudal peduncle.