Have you started looking into cherry barbs lately? These fish can be great additions to your home aquarium if you want to buy more pretty fish.
People think that cherry barbs look nice in their aquariums, and they aren’t too hard to care for either. For most, these fish will be great options.
Of course, you might want to know more about them before buying them for your tank. How long do cherry barbs live on average?
Will cherry barbs live for many years in your tank? Or are they fish that have fairly short lives?
Continue reading to learn about cherry barb lifespans. You’ll also learn how to help your cherry barbs live for as long as possible.
How Long Do Cherry Barbs Live?
Cherry barbs are known to live for an average of four years in most fish tanks. However, they can live for as long as seven years under the right conditions.
It’s more common for these fish to live up to six years, but there have been cases where the fish have lived seven years in captivity. If you do a fantastic job caring for the fish, they can live for a long time.
Since cherry barbs are generally hardy fish, it’s not that tough to keep them in good shape. These fish are good for beginners since they can easily be kept happy and healthy.
Even so, there are things that you need to do to keep the fish in good health. If you don’t focus on taking care of the basics, your fish won’t even make it to the average four-year lifespan.
How to Maximize Their Lifespan
1 – You Must Keep These Fish in a Large Enough Group
It’s imperative to keep cherry barbs in a large enough group. These fish are schooling fish that live in fairly large groups in the wild.
In captivity, you need to keep these fish in groups of six or more. As long as you have at least six cherry barbs in the tank, they will feel secure.
Keeping fewer cherry barbs than this in the tank will lead to poor results. Cherry barbs that are kept alone or in groups that are too small will become severely stressed.
The stress can lead to the fish getting sick. Eventually, the fish will die if you don’t make the necessary changes.
Consider it a requirement to keep at least six cherry barbs in the tank if you’re interested in owning some. It’s best to keep a good balance of males and females in the tank, too.
2 – Give the Fish Enough Space
Giving the fish enough space in the tank is another thing you should be focusing on. You need to avoid overcrowding the tank because cherry barbs don’t like being cramped.
When you try to cram too many fish in a small tank, it gives the fish many problems. It makes it harder to keep the water clean, and it causes them stress.
Ideally, you want to keep six cherry barbs in a 29-gallon fish tank. You might be able to fit a few more in a tank of that size since they’re only two inches, but it’s better to give these fish more space than they need.
The minimum tank size for cherry barbs is said to be a 25-gallon fish tank. Go with a tank that offers a bit more space to give the fish a better experience.
3 – Focus on Water Quality
Water quality is of the utmost importance when you’re trying to keep cherry barbs healthy. If the water quality is poor, they won’t be able to survive for nearly as long as you’d like them to.
Getting the water parameters right is important, of course. Cherry barbs like to live in water temperatures that range from 73 degrees Fahrenheit to 81 degrees Fahrenheit.
The pH balance is supposed to stay between 6.0 and 8.0. Water hardness should be kept between 5 and 9 dGH.
To keep the tank in good shape, you will need to focus on tank maintenance. You should change 25% of the water every two weeks.
Test the water often enough to ensure that the water parameters are in the right range. As long as you’re using a good filter, cleaning the tank, and doing regular water changes, it won’t be hard to maintain good water quality.
4 – Feed the Fish Well
Feeding the fish well is another part of keeping them alive. Cherry barbs should be fed two to three times per day.
Each time you feed them you’re supposed to give them as much as they can eat in three minutes. You’re not supposed to feed them too much, but it’s also not good to feed them too little.
Forgetting to feed the fish can cause them stress. Stress issues might eventually lead to sickness.
Feeding these fish won’t be difficult since they’re omnivores. They’re not overly picky fish.
Most people feed cherry barbs tropical fish flakes on a daily basis. This makes up the bulk of their diet, but they also need to eat supplemental foods.
You should give the fish live or frozen foods from time to time. They love eating brine shrimp and bloodworms, and it’s good for them since it provides them with protein.
5 – Pick Tank Mates Carefully
Be very careful when you’re choosing tank mates for cherry barbs. Cherry barbs are excellent community fish.
So you don’t need to avoid putting these fish in community aquariums or anything like that. It’s simply important to research the best tank mates for cherry barbs to keep them safe.
Cherry barbs are generally peaceful fish and they only grow to be two inches long. If you’re not careful, you might put them in a community tank with fish that will bully them.
Luckily, there are many excellent tank mate options to consider. Many people like to put cherry barbs in community tanks with other peaceful fish such as otocinclus catfish.
They’re also known to get along with popular fish such as dwarf gouramis, neon tetras, kuhli loaches, and molly fish. So you’re not going to have a tough time finding good tank mates for your cherry barbs.
6 – Watch Out for Diseases
Keep an eye on your fish to make sure they stay healthy. Sometimes fish might get sick, and you’ll need to take action.
Typically, you can prevent diseases by keeping the water quality high. Mistakes might happen and the fish might get sick, though.
Cherry barbs are hardy and don’t get sick often. They can get certain diseases such as ich and gold dust disease, though.
Knowing to look out for symptoms such as sluggishness and a lack of appetite will help you to catch things before it’s too late. Look for changes in appearance as well as changes in behavior.
Proactive fish owners pay attention to their fish and take action when something seems amiss. Even when fish get sick, it’s often possible to treat the issue and get things back to normal.
Your cherry barbs should live for at least four years in your fish tank if you do a good job caring for them. They might live for six or seven years if you do an excellent job.
Do your best to provide your cherry barbs with the best fish tank environment. Keep the fish tank clean, feed the fish well, and monitor the fish regularly.
If the fish get sick, treat them as fast as you can. Be sure to avoid situations that will stress the fish, such as overcrowding the fish tank, so they won’t be as likely to get sick.
Now that you know more about what you can do to help cherry barbs live for as long as possible, it’ll be easy to get good results. Enjoy caring for your fish.
Jeff has always enjoyed having pets, but as a child, he was drawn to his family’s fish tank. Being able to maintain a small ecosystem and observe the behaviors and interactions in the underwater world peaked his interest early on and has kept him hooked until this day. On Avid Aquarist, Jeff shares everything he’s learned about helping aquatic life survive and thrive in a home aquarium.