Barbus Denison (Puntius denisonii) was first described in 1865, but became known only in 1997 after the appearance of several individuals at an international exhibition in Singapore. Named in honor of Sir William Thomas Denison – Governor of Madras (India), 1861-1866
This species is encountered in amateur aquariums so far infrequently due to the high cost associated with breeding difficulties. However, popularity is growing rapidly.
Endemic to the states of Kerala and Karnataka in southern India.
Its current distribution is highly fragmented with small populations remaining in the river systems of Valapatanam, Calyar, Kallar, Karyangod, Kuttiyadi, Chandragiri, Sullya, Kuppam, Iritti, Anjarakandipuzha, Bhavani and Bharatapuzh.
Most often found in the pristine, oxygen-rich upper reaches of mountain rivers and streams with dense coastal vegetation. Presumably, it is more active at dusk and at dawn than at daytime.
Oblong lanceolate body painted in silver-gold color. The back is olive.
The middle of the body is traced by a black stripe, over which another passes — a red one, starting at the snout and ending under the base of the dorsal fin.
On the lobes of the forked tail fin there are transverse black and yellow stripes. On the dorsal fin, the first rays are red.
All other fins are colorless, transparent.
In nature, it reaches 15 cm, in captivity it is slightly less than 9 – 11 cm.
Quite demanding and difficult to keep the fish. It can live only in a group of at least 7 individuals, and the more the flock, the better.
They are naturally shy, and with a single content they are absolutely not capable of normal existence and behavior. Any movement in front of the aquarium causes the fish to panic, and it tries to jump out of the aquarium.
Juveniles easier to adapt to new conditions.
An aquarium for a group of 7 barbs will require from 200, and even better from 400 liters. This is due to the large activity of the fish, swimming very rapidly and their adult size.
For the same reason, it is desirable that the container be extended in length and be sure to close the lid.
Middle-sized pebbles, river sand or granite chips are suitable as soil. You can combine several types of substrate.
The main thing is that the soil used does not have chemical impurities. Dark soil color better emphasizes the color of the fish.
Not superfluous will be a few snags and grottoes installed near the side walls. It does not cause harm to aquatic plants, the list of permissible plants is quite wide: elodea, vallisneria, cryptocoryne, peristristum, rogolodnik, etc.
It does not impose any special requirements on lighting, but, taking into account the natural habitat conditions, it is better to provide the fish with sufficiently bright light, which is also necessary for the growth of plants.
Temperature: 22-25 ° С (minimum and maximum limit 15-27 ° С)
pH: slightly acid or neutral water – 6.5-7.8
Stiffness: 8-12 ° dH
Living in the nature in the mountain rivers, small fishes need oxygen, therefore powerful aeration is necessary. The same applies to the filter, it must be able to ensure the purity of the water in the aquarium almost like in a mountain stream.
Barbus Denisoni does not tolerate organic pollution and turbid water. Every week you need to add a third of clean settled water heated to the temperature of the water in the aquarium.
It will not be out of place to install a pump that provides a stream of water that is familiar to fish.
These barbs are peace-loving, but extremely shy creatures and can comfortably exist with the same non-aggressive species.
Omnivores and in nature eat insects, their larvae and algae. In the aquarium take any food. Meals should be varied: dry gammarus and daphnia, live and frozen artemia, tubule, bloodworm, daphnia, etc ..
From plant foods – scalded lettuce leaves.
It is said that red pigmentation can be enhanced by adding carotenoid-rich foods such as astaxanthin to the diet.
Sex differences are practically absent, except for the characteristic of almost all types of fish – a more rounded abdomen in females.
This fish has recently appeared in the decorative aquarism, so there are no specific recommendations for breeding it yet. However, there is information about more than one successful case of breeding in captivity.
To do this, you need a large capacity of 200 liters, which runs the whole flock of 7-15 fish at once. The temperature rises to 28 ° C. Stimulates the spawning of a sharp decrease in acidity to 5.7.
This can be achieved by adding to the spawning of peat. The bottom is covered with Javanese moss.
Many fish during spawning change the color of the back, which becomes bluish.
Adult spawning fish are removed from the spawning aquarium.
Fry are fed infusoria with the gradual addition of larger feed. It is necessary to sort the fry and gradual equalization of water indicators to the norm, necessary for adult fish.
Barbus Denison lives up to 8 years.
P. denisonii was artificially crossed with a representative of the genus Dawkinsia and a selectively derived “golden” color form appeared.
The very similar only relative Barbus Chalacuda (P. chalakkudiensis) is sometimes sold as P. denisonii and is known to be more aggressive. Adult size up to 19 cm.