Cherry Barb 1: Care, Tank Mates, Diet, Breeding & More

Cherry barbs require a well-maintained aquarium, a varied omnivorous diet, and peaceful tank mates. Breeding them can be challenging, but with the right conditions and attention, it is possible.

Cherry barbs (puntius titteya) are popular freshwater aquarium fish with distinctive red and gold coloring. These small, peaceful fish are native to sri lanka and do well in community tanks with other peaceful species. However, they are best kept in a school of at least six individuals to reduce stress. Cherry barbs are relatively easy to care for, as long as the water quality is maintained and their nutritional needs are met. This omnivorous species will benefit from a varied diet of both live and prepared foods. Breeding cherry barbs can be challenging, but if provided with the right conditions and plenty of hiding spots, they will spawn readily. In this article, we will cover all you need to know about cherry barb care, tank mates, diet, breeding, and more.

Cherry Barb Care

Cherry barbs are tiny and beautiful fish that are perfect for aquariums. These fish are ideal for beginners and experienced fish keepers alike due to their hardy and peaceful nature, which makes them easy to care for. Cherry barbs are best kept in schools of six or more individuals, allowing them to establish a pecking order and providing an excellent display for the aquarium.

In this blog post, we will focus on the subheading, cherry barb care.

Tank Size:

Cherry barbs require a minimum of 20 gallons of water in their aquarium to thrive. When they are kept in smaller aquariums, the water parameters deteriorate faster, which can be harmful to their health. This minimum requirement also helps to create a stable and controlled environment for the cherry barbs.

Water Conditions:

Maintaining the right water conditions is crucial for the health and well-being of cherry barbs. The ideal ph level should be between 6. 0 and 7. 5, ensuring a neutral to slightly acidic environment. The temperature of the aquarium’s water should be between 72 and 82°f, while the water hardness should be kept between 5 and 15 dh.

It’s essential to maintain consistent water parameters to ensure the fish thrive in their environment.


Cherry barbs require adequate filtration to keep the tank clean and maintain water quality. A filter system with a turnover rate of at least four times the aquarium’s water volume is recommended. Good filtration helps to remove harmful toxins and debris from the water, promoting healthy fish that thrive in their environment.


Provide hiding places and plants in the aquarium for cherry barbs to hide and play. Hiding places help the fish feel secure, especially during breeding or stressful situations. Live or artificial plants, wood, or rocks can provide excellent hiding spots for the fish.

Additionally, decorations provide an interesting and attractive display for the aquarium, making the experience more enjoyable for fish keepers.


Cherry barbs are omnivorous fish that require a balanced diet to stay healthy. Feed them high-quality flakes and pellets daily, supplemented with live or frozen food once or twice a week. Offering a variety of food types such as brine shrimp or bloodworms can also help to promote natural feeding behaviors.

Avoid overfeeding the fish, as it can lead to health problems and cause the water quality to deteriorate.

Cherry barbs are relatively easy fish to care for and can bring life and color to any aquarium. By following these care tips, you can create a healthy and stimulating environment for your cherry barbs to thrive in. Adequate tank size, maintaining water conditions, proper filtration, decorations, and feeding are essential for their health and well-being.

Tank Mates For Cherry Barbs

Cherry Barb 1: Care, Tank Mates, Diet, Breeding & More

If you plan to keep cherry barbs in a community aquarium, it is crucial to select appropriate tank mates as they can be sensitive to aggressive and large fish. Here are some compatible tank mates for cherry barbs.

Corydoras Catfish

Corydoras catfish can coexist with cherry barbs in the same tank because they have a peaceful and calm temperament. These catfish are bottom-dwellers, and they love to hide in the plants, adding another layer of interest to your aquarium.

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Key points:

  • Peaceful temperament
  • Bottom-dwellers
  • Enjoy hiding in plants

Neon Tetras

Neon tetras are the perfect tank mates for cherry barbs because they are small fish with similar peaceful temperaments. They can bring an exciting pop of color to your aquarium with their bright neon blue and red colors.

Key points:

  • Peaceful temperament
  • Small fish
  • Colorful addition to the aquarium


Guppies are also compatible tank mates for cherry barbs. They share a peaceful disposition and don’t bother each other. However, it is crucial to ensure that the males don’t fight with each other.

Key points:

  • Peaceful temperament
  • Males can be problematic

Harlequin Rasboras

Harlequin rasboras are another excellent choice for tank mates for cherry barbs. They are easy to care for, and their peaceful nature makes them pleasant roommates for the cherry barbs.

Key points:

  • Easy to care for
  • Peaceful temperament

Platy Fish

Platy fish, with their vibrant colors, make for wonderful tank mates for cherry barbs. They can coexist with one another, as both species have similar behavior and are easy to care for.

Key points:

  • Beautiful colors
  • Easy to care for

Remember to select tank mates that have similar needs to cherry barbs, matching your aquarium’s size and ensuring they don’t exhibit aggressive behavior. Happy aquascaping!

Cherry Barb Diet

Maintaining a healthy and balanced diet for cherry barbs is essential to keep them thriving. These peaceful freshwater fish are omnivores, and their diet should comprise of a variety of food types, including high-quality flakes and pellets, frozen or live foods such as brine shrimp, bloodworms, and daphnia, and vegetables such as blanched zucchini, cucumber, and spinach.

High-Quality Flakes And Pellets

Cherry barbs will readily accept high-quality flakes and pellets, but it’s essential to choose products that are formulated for their dietary needs. Ensure that the food is fresh and of high quality, and feed them at least twice a day, in small amounts.

Benefits of feeding cherry barbs with high-quality flakes and pellets include:

  • They are nutritionally balanced and offer a wide range of essential vitamins and minerals.
  • Flake foods float on the surface, simulating the feeding habits of cherry barbs in their natural habitat.
  • Pellets, sinking to the bottom of the tank, encourage the fish to forage, keeping them active and healthy.

Frozen Or Live Foods: Brine Shrimp, Bloodworms, And Daphnia

Cherry barbs will also benefit from a varied diet that includes frozen or live foods. These are excellent sources of protein and smaller nutrients that are essential for their health and growth. Frozen or live foods can be fed to the fish once or twice a week, either as a treat or a regular part of their diet.

Some popular frozen or live foods for cherry barbs include:

  • Brine shrimp: these tiny shrimp are rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids, essential for healthy growth. They come in a frozen block or can be live.
  • Bloodworms: these are worms that are in their larvae stage and are an excellent source of protein for the fish.
  • Daphnia: these are tiny crustaceans that are known to clean up the water by consuming algae and other small particles.

Vegetables: Blanched Zucchini, Cucumber, And Spinach

Lastly, vegetables are an essential part of a cherry barb’s diet, especially for the herbivorous ones. Feeding them with a variety of blanched vegetables will help keep them healthy and thriving.

Some popular vegetables that can be fed to cherry barbs include:

  • Blanch zucchini: slice the zucchini, blanch it in hot water for a few seconds, and add it to the tank. They are a good source of vitamins a, c, and e.
  • Cucumber: slice the cucumber, blanch it, and add it to the tank. Cucumbers are an excellent source of vitamin c and calcium.
  • Spinach: blanch the spinach, chop it finely, and feed it to the fish. Spinach is a great source of iron, calcium, and magnesium.
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Feeding your cherry barbs a varied diet of high-quality flakes and pellets, live or frozen food, and vegetables will keep them healthy and happy. Remember to feed them in small portions, at least twice a day, and make sure the food you offer is fresh and of high quality.

Happy feeding!

Breeding Cherry Barbs

Breeding cherry barbs is an exciting process, and with the right care, it can be a successful one too. Here are some important points to keep in mind when breeding cherry barbs, from gender identification to fry care.

Gender Identification

Cherry barbs have distinct color differences between males and females. Males have bright red coloration, while females are duller with a silver belly. It’s important to be able to identify the gender of your cherry barbs since only males will develop the bright red coloration during breeding.

Breeding Tank Setup

When preparing the breeding tank, provide at least a 10-gallon tank with spawning mops and leaf litter to simulate their natural habitat. Cherry barbs tend to prefer softer water with a ph range between 6. 5-7. 0, so keep an eye on the water parameters to ensure they are in the appropriate range.


Raise the temperature of the breeding tank to 78-80°f to stimulate breeding. This will also accelerate the hatch time of the eggs.


Cherry barbs will lay eggs on the spawning mops or leaves. After spawning, remove the parents from the breeding tank to prevent them from eating the eggs. You can also raise the eggs in a separate tank.

Fry Care

Feed the fry with infusoria and baby brine shrimp until they are large enough to eat adult food. Make sure to perform water changes frequently to maintain good water quality, and ensure that the temperature remains in the appropriate range.

Breeding cherry barbs can be an exciting and rewarding experience for any aquarist. As long as you provide the right setup, temperature, and care for your cherry barbs, you should be able to successfully breed them and watch their fry grow into happy and healthy adults.

Frequently Asked Questions For Cherry Barb 1: Care, Tank Mates, Diet, Breeding & More

What Is The Best Tank Size For Cherry Barbs?

A minimum of 10 gallons for a small group of 6 cherry barbs is recommended.

Can Cherry Barbs Live With Other Fish?

Yes, they can live with peaceful fish like tetras, guppies, and corydoras.

How Often Should I Feed Cherry Barbs?

Feed them once or twice a day, with small amounts of flake or pellet food.

How Can I Distinguish Between Male And Female Cherry Barbs?

Male cherry barbs are more colorful and have sharper fins compared to females.

How Often Do Cherry Barbs Breed?

They breed regularly, once every two weeks, all year-round.

What Are Some Compatible Tank Mates for Cherry Barbs?

Cherry barbs make great tank mates for cherry shrimp. These peaceful fish coexist well with cherry shrimp, creating a harmonious aquatic environment. However, it is essential to ensure proper cherry shrimp care and feeding to maintain their well-being alongside the cherry barbs. Providing a balanced diet and suitable tank conditions will promote the health and vitality of both species.


In sum, taking care of cherry barbs can be a rewarding experience for beginners and seasoned aquarists alike. These small fish are easy to feed and maintain, making them a resilient species that can thrive in a variety of tanks.

Be sure to keep them in schools and provide ample hiding spots and vegetation. To keep these fish healthy and happy, tailor their diet to their needs and monitor water quality regularly. Cherry barbs are quite social and enjoy the company of other peaceful fish such as corydoras, guppies, and tetras.

Their breeding habits are fascinating to observe and may result in beautiful, colorful fry. Overall, the colorful and engaging cherry barb can make a wonderful addition to any home aquarium.

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