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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless otherwise credited.
Copyright ゥ Ecology Asia 2022

 
 
     
   
   

 

   
   
 
Sumatran Tiger Barb
   
   

Fig 1


Fig 2

  
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Order : Cypriniformes
Family : CYPRINIDAE
Species : Puntigrus tetrazona
Maximum Length : to around 7 cm

Puntigrus tetrazona (Sumatran Tiger Barb, or simply 'Sumatra Barb'), which also occurs on the island of Borneo, inhabits freshwater systems of neutral pH (6.0-8.0) i.e. it appears unsuited to acidic, freshwater swamp habitats.

The species has been farmed widely for the aquarium trade and, as a consequence, introduced populations of non-native, ornamental strains occur in a number of territories.

Its body shape is rhomboid, and laterally compressed. Its overall body colour is yellow-brown to silvery. Its fins and the top of its head are reddish.

It bears 4 vertical dark bars on its flanks; the first bar passes obliquely through the eye, the second is vertical, the third occurs just behind the dorsal fin (this sometimes merges with a dark bar on the dorsal fin), and the fourth is at the base of the forked tail fin.

In the wild its diet comprises aquatic plants and a variety of invertebrates. It sometimes joins mixed shoals with other species.


Fig 1 : Example from a sunlit stretch of a shallow forest stream, with sandy substrate. Seen in Singapore, where Puntigrus tetrazona is an introduced species.

Fig 2 : Another example (flash photography) in a mixed shoal with Spanner Barb (Barbodes lateristriga) and Two-spot Rasbora (Rasbora elegans).

Thanks to Kelvin Lim for confirming the identity of the fish in these images.


References :

Fishbase