The Clipper Barb (Eneromius callipterus) is a member of the family Cyprinidae better known as the carps or minnow family. These fish grow to be around three and a half inches long and have beautiful, bold scales on a silver gold colored body while the prominent dorsal (top) and caudal (tail) fins have a touch of red to them.
Clipper Barbs are native to costal drainages in Western Africa from Cote d’Ivoire (What was once commonly known as the Ivory Coast) to Equatorial Guinea. Despite the costal nature, the Clipper Barb is always found in pure freshwater.
Clipper Barbs will appreciate some flow and for a group, a larger aquarium; 40 gallons could be considered a minimum for a small group. A 55 or 75 gallon aquarium would be a better choice for a 6-8 of these fish, which is what we suggest as a group size. They would make a good choice for an African community tank requiring a peaceful, mid sized schooling fish. A planted aquarium, with a large, open, midground area for them to be active in would be a perfect scenario. They prefer subdued lighting, and so having dense plants, floating plants and dark substrate all help to reduce light stress. A cover is also a good idea for these aquariums as these fish are known jumpers.
Clipper Barbs are omnivorous and not difficult to feed; readily accepting any standard aquarium fare. A high quality flake or pellet would be a great foundation and adding some frozen meaty foods, along with a little algae or veggie matter such as spirulina enhanced brine shrimp would round out a good diet.
These fish often breed readily in captivity. Place a grid for them to spawn on in the aquarium and remove it after the eggs are laid as they are also known egg eaters. Eggs should hatch a little over one day later, and can be fed small live foods until they are large enough to start taking crushed up pellets and flakes.
The Clipper Barbs' bold scales and shiny colors paired with their active nature make this an excellent schooling fish for a peaceful community tank. They offer this dither activity while also being larger than many of the other community schooling fish choices. Call your local fish store and ask them for a sustainably sourced group of Clipper Barbs from Aquatropic Today!