Barbonymus altus and B. schwanefeldii

14. November 2014

beautiful species of barb are continiously confused in the ornamental
fish trade, because they look much alike as juveniles: Barbonymus altus
and B. schwanefeldii. Both are known in the international trade as
“tinfoil barbs”. In German they are named “bream barb” what refers to
the deep body of adult fish.

main differences in coloration are found in the caudal fin. B.
schwanefeldii has always distinct black stripes on the upper and lower
margin of the caudal fin, which are always lacking in B. altus. This
feature is visible in all sizes of the fish. However, the red coloration
of the fins becomes more intensive with every day the fish grow. In
small juveniles the fins are only light reddish or pink. Both species
attain a length of 15-25 cm, but it seems that B. schwanefeldii tends to
grow larger than B. altus.

we have very pretty Barbonymus altus in stock, which are already 10-12
cm long. At that size they are almost as pretty as the adults, but not
that deep in body. We also have small ones in stock (5-7 cm). B.
schwanefeldii is currently rather rare in the trade. Almost any
specimens listed under the name “schwanefeldi” on the exporter´s lists
in Thailand and Vietnam are in fact B. altus. Both species are wide
spread all over Southeast Asia. They are bred as food fish and for the
ornamental fish trade.

our customers: B. altus with a size of 10-12 cm have code 371405 on our
stock list, the ones with 5-7 cm 371403. Please note that we
exclusively supply the wholesale trade.

Text & Photos: Frank Schäfer