What is a Danio Fish?

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  • Written By: Mandi Rogier
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 16 October 2019
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Danio fish are a peaceful species of freshwater aquarium life. There are many types of danio fish, including zebra danios, pearl danios, leopard danios, and gold danios. Zebra danios, with their distinct colorful stripes, are the most common.

Danios are small fish that are, on average, between one and a half and two inches (2.8 to 5 cm) in length. They prefer to live in groups of at least six fish and will school together. This passive species is an ideal choice for an aquarium that has a few more aggressive fish. Danios will not provoke other fish, and may instead serve as a gentle distraction as they meander peacefully by.

These fish prefer an environment that is on the colder side, around 64 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit (17.8 to 23.9 degrees Celsius). They are very tolerant, however, and can adapt to conditions both warmer and cooler. Danios are great for novice aquarium owners because of their adaptability and hardiness.

The ideal aquarium for danio fish will be at least 20 gallons (75 liters) with plenty of open space to allow them to school together and swim around the tank. It should also have some vegetation for them to hide in and swim through. The aquarium should have a lid on it at all times as some types of danio, such as the zebra and leopard danios, will jump.


Danio require a varied diet that provides ample nutrition. A nutrient-rich flake food is a good base. Combine this with occasional feeding of freeze-dried blood worms. Provide frozen brine shrimp from time to time for an additional treat.

The life span of danio fish is typically between two and five years. These fish are very easy to breed, so a vigilant owner may be able to continuously add to his aquarium by breeding them. When breeding danio, the water should be kept at a temperature of 78 degrees Fahrenheit (25.5 degrees Celsius). The adults should be removed from the breeding tank as soon as they have spawned as they will eat the eggs as well as the babies once they hatch.

Compatible tank mates for danio fish include tetras and corydoras. An aggressive male beta can be kept in this type of tank as well, as the passive danio will help keep him calm. Keep in mind that danio come in many varieties and these all are compatible with one another.


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