Cyprinids (Barbs)


Barbs, carps, minnows, rasboras, mahseers and goldfish belong to the Cyprinidae family. They are distributed in Asia, Europe, North America and Africa. They are distinguished by having their teeth in their throat rather than their jaws. These teeth, called pharyngeal teeth, are arranged in 1 to 3 rows. Their upper jaws are usually protrusible and most of them have mouth barbels.

Cyprinids are primarily freshwater fishes with only 2 known true marine species. Most of them are riverine. They usually spawn in the beginning of rainy season after a long period of drought.

The Cyprinidae are the largest freshwater fish family with 361 genera and about 2900 species worldwide. Malaysia has about 170 species.


Scientific Name: Balantiocheilos melanopterus  (Bleeker, 1850)
English Name: Tricolor Sharkminnow, Bala Shark, Silver Shark, Tricolor Shark
Chinese Name: 黑鳍袋唇鱼 (Hēi qí dài chún yú), 银鲨 (Yín shā)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Ekor Hangus
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาฉลามหางไหม้ชนิด (Plā c̄hlām h̄āng h̄ịm̂ chnid)
Main Identification Features: Silver body with black margins on dorsal, caudal, anal and pelvic fins.
Size: Maximum standard length can reach to 40 cm, commonly to 35 cm.

Scientific Name: Barbonymus gonionotus  (Bleeker, 1849)
English Name: Java Barb, Silver Barb
Chinese Name | 鱼类中文名: 蓝邦 (Lán bāng)
Local Malay Name: Lampan Jawa
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาตะเพียนขาว (Plā tapheīyn k̄hāw)
Main Identification Features: Compressed and almost diamond shape body. Barbels very minute or rudimentary.
Size: Maximum total length about 40 cm.

Scientific Name: Barbonymus schwanenfeldii  (Bleeker, 1854)
English Name: Tinfoil Barb, Goldfoil Barb
Chinese Name | 鱼类中文名: 河蓝邦 (Hé lán bāng)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Kepiat, Lampan Sungai
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลากระแห (Plā kra h̄æ)
Main Identification Features: Compressed and almost diamond shape body. Red dorsal fin with black blotch tip. Red caudal fin with white margin and black submarginal stripe lobes.
Size: Maximum total length about 40 cm, commonly 24 cm.

Scientific Name: Cyclocheilichthys apogon  (Valenciennes, 1842)
English Name: Beardless Barb, Redeye Barb
Local Malay Name: Temperas, Chemperas, Emperas, Keperas, Mata Merah
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาตาแดง (Plā tā dæng)
Main Identification Features: 10 conspicuous longitudinal spotted stripes formed by black spot on each scale. Iris red blood in colour and fins pale reddish in live specimen.
Size: Maximum total length 25 cm.

Scientific Name: Cyclocheilichthys heteronema  (Bleeker, 1854)
English Name: Carp, Barb
Local Malay Name: Temperas, Chemperas, Emperas, Keperas
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลากะทิ (Plā kathi)
Main Identification Features: Plain colour body and fin transparent. Dorsal originates opposite to origin of ventral fin. Fourth dorsal spines is bony and strongly denticulated.
Size: Maximum total length 15 cm.

Scientific Name: Hampala macrolepidota  Kuhl & Van Hasselt, 1823
English Name: Hampala Barb
Chinese Name | 鱼类中文名: 水马溜鱼 (Shuǐ mǎ liū yú), 大鱗裂峽魮 (Dà lín liè xiá pí)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Sebarau
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลากระสูบขีด (Plā kra s̄ūb k̄hīd)
Main Identification Features: A blackish band across the body from anterior base of dorsal fin. Caudal fin lobe with black band.
Size: Maximum standard length to 70 cm, commonly to 35 cm.

Scientific Name: Leptobarbus hoevenii  (Bleeker, 1851)
English Name: Hoven's Carp, Mad Barb, Red Finned Cigar Shark, Sultan Fish
Chinese Name | 鱼类中文名: 细鲃 (Xì bā), 白苏丹 (Bái sūdān), 苏丹鱼 (Sūdān yú)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Jelawat
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาบ้า (Plā b̂ā), ปลาโพง (Plā phong), ปลาสุลต่าน (Plā s̄ult̀ān)
Size: Maximum standard length to 110 cm, commonly to 60 cm.

Scientific Name: Osteochilus vittatus  (Valenciennes, 1842)
Synonym: Osteochilus hasseltii  (Valenciennes, 1842)
English Name: Hard-lipped Barb, Bonylip Barb, Silver Sharkminnow
Local Malay Name: Ikan Terbol, Terbul, Puyou
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาสร้อยนกเขา (Plā s̄r̂xy nk k̄heā)
Main Identification Features: Mid-upper lip covered by a fold of skin. Eyes small and closer to snout than to operculum.
Size: Maximum standard length 32 cm, commonly about 20 cm.

Scientific Name: Probarbus jullieni  Sauvage, 1880
English Name: Isok Barb, Jullien's Golden Carp, Seven-line Barb
Local Malay Name: Ikan Temoleh, Temelian
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลายี่สก (Plā yī̀s̄k), ปลาเอินตาแดง (Plā ein tādæng)
Main Identification Features: Body with 7 longitudinal black stripes. Eye iris is red.
Size: Maximum total length 200 cm, commonly about 28 cm.

Scientific Name: Tor tambra  (Valenciennes, 1842)
English Name: River Carp, Malayan Mahseer
Local Malay Name: Ikan Kelah, Semah, Punguk
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาเวียน (Plā weīyn)
Main Identification Features: Median lobe on lower lip very short. Origin of dorsal opposite to 7th scale of lateral line and slightly before that of ventral fin. Anal fin tip pointed. Scales in lateral series 21-24. Juveniles silvery, pelvic fins yellow with white lateral margin. Adults without lateral stripe, predominantly yellowish-green in colour.
Size: Maximum total length 100 cm.