Fish, Tanks and Ponds

Fish, Tanks and Ponds
A comprehensive guide to fish

Microrasbora rubescens

Red dwarf rasbora

Red dwarf rasbora, Microrasbora rubescensRed dwarf rasbora, Microrasbora rubescens
Photos by Andy Rapson


Microrasbora: Greek, mikros = small + Rasbora, a word used in India and Malay

General Notes:

Microrasbora rubescens is a shy timid fish and so it is best kept in a species tank with fairly hard alkaline water and which is well planted. Microrasbora rubescens is very peaceful and can be kept with other small and gentle species, they shouldn't be kept with very bold lively fish as this is likely to make them even more timid. Larger fish shouldn't be trusted however peaceful the seem, Microrasbora rubescens is a tiny slender fish which makes them very easy prey. Ideally these fish should be kept in a shoal which helps to reduce their shyness. Microrasbora .sp thuzari is very similar looking to Microrasbora rubescens and the two could easily become confused.


In the wild Microrasbora rubescens probably feeds on plankton, small crustaceans, worms and detritus. In captivity they aren't to fussy and will accept flake food, small live or frozen food such as cyclops.


Female Microrasbora rubescens are slightly larger and have more rounded abdomens, the males are more brightly coloured.


Microrasbora rubescens are egg scatterers and do not guard their brood after spawning. They can be spawned in pairs or in groups, the adults will prey on their own eggs and so should be removed after spawning has finished.

Wild status

Microrasbora rubescens is endemic to Lake Inle and the surrounding streams, the lake is under growing pressure from an increasing human population, pollution, deforestation and drought. The health of the wild population of Microrasbora rubescens hasn't been assessed.

Information at a glance

pH: 6.8 - 7.8
dGH: 4 - 20
Temperature: 21 - 25°C (70 - 77°F)
Diet: Omnivore
Size: 3cm (1.25in)
Min tank size:60 litres
Difficulty level: Easy
Aquarium type: Community
Swimming level: Middle

Distribution and habitat

distribution map for Red dwarf rasbora, Microrasbora rubescens

Origin: Myanmar: Salween River drainage: Inle Lake, Taungdo

Habitat: Found in in ponds, marshes, streams and pools


Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Cypriniformes
Family: Cyprinidae
Sub-family: Danioninae
Genus: Microrasbora
Species: M. rubescens Annandale, 1918

Common name:
Red dwarf rasbora

Synonyms: None