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Roselin Shark (AKA Dension Barb): Everything You Need To Know

As the name suggests, Roseline Sharks are peaceful creatures. This makes them a perfect addition to any community aquarium, as they make excellent neighbors and thrive in groups. With their colorful bodies that feature shades of red, yellow, or blue on their fins, you’ll fall in love with these fish at first sight!

After reading this Roseline Shark 101 guide, you’ll have all the information you need to help these little guys thrive!

Species Summary

As a result of their high oxygen content and fast-flowing water, the Pamba-Achenkovil and Chaliyar rivers in Southern India are home to one of our most popular Indian fish: the Roseline Shark. The common name “Miss Kerala” is sometimes used for this particular type due to its popularity among Indian consumers while they call it “Chorai Kanni” which translates into English as “bleeding eyes”.

The Roseline shark is a freshwater fish species discovered quite some time ago in 1865 that has only seen popularity recently. In 1996, there was an extensive collection and export of this species out of India which resulted in this fishing winning 3rd place at “Aquarama 1997”.

Since then, these spectacular sharks became more and more popular in the aquarium trade. In 2007-08, Roseline sharks made up 60 to 65% of all live ornamental fish exported from India. The Roseline shark is in danger of extinction due to uncontrolled fishing and exporting.

In response, the Indian government placed a ban on the fishing and exportation of this endangered fish species. It now falls under protection from National Wildlife Protection Act which prohibits capturing or killing these sharks except by special permit issued for research purposes only.

Consequently, most Roseline sharks obtained through aquarium trade are commercially bred in fishery farms, while those who managed to evade poachers caught them off-shore with permits reserved for scientific study only.

These lively creatures are a wonderful addition when kept with other larger species that appreciate an active swimmer like themselves, or they can be placed in smaller aquariums if you’re more interested in observing their elaborate coloration than keeping them too busy.

Life Span

In captivity, Denison water hooks are known to have a moderate lifespan and can live between 4 and 5 years. However, certain factors such as water quality and food affect their lifespan more than others.

It’s said that higher oxygen levels in the tank will increase their life expectancy, as they’re constantly feeding on it. High-quality food also helps to keep them healthy, which ultimately affects their life expectancy.

Roseline Shark Appearance
Roseline Shark Appearance


The Roseline Shark is a deep-sea predator. These sharks have an elongated, torpedo-shaped body, earning them the nickname “torpedo barb”. Their silvery skin and longitudinal black lines make them one of the most beautiful species in this class.

The upper line which runs from the snout to the tail is bright scarlet at every point where it intersects with the other three colors on either side, making them look like red stripes on either side of the shark’s back.

The name Roseline Sharks comes not only from their long shape but also from how beautifully colored these fish are – they’re true works of art that few people get to see who’s been lucky enough to find them among incredible waterfalls at the Western Ghats in India.

The Roseline shark has different colored dorsal and caudal fins that give it a colorful appearance. The tail fin has a black and bright yellow color. The dorsal fins of these Denison barbels have a bright red coloration.

When fully grown, some of these fish have developed a greenish coloration on the head. There are also golden Roseline Sharks varieties that have a higher value. They’re artificially created and have red lines without the black stripes.

Roseline Shark Size
Roseline Shark Size

Average Size

The Roseline Sharks vary in size and can grow up to 6 inches long. Because of their size, they require a large aquarium – larger than the standard 10-gallon tank that many people buy for fish tanks at home.

Size of Tank

One of the smallest and tamest sharks around, the Roseline Shark is an active swimmer that needs plenty of room to breathe. You’ll need 55-gallon tanks or larger if you plan to put them with other fish since they’re so active.

Any tank size smaller than the recommended might be okay while they are still juvenile. However, as they grow it will become uncomfortable for them to live in such a small space and this could lead to many harmful effects that would not happen if you had gotten a larger one from the start.

A rectangular aquarium is best for keeping Roseline fish, as it provides the largest swimming area. Since the fish can jump out of an open tank, some precautions are needed to protect them inside the aquarium. A tight-fitting lid or cover slide will prevent escapees from entering your home.

Roseline Shark Tank
Roseline Shark Tank

How to Acclimate to Home Aquarium

You just got your new pet shark home from the store. Immediately introducing them into a tank is harmful to their health! Take out about 20 minutes of time and acclimate them to Tank water conditions for best results with this process:

  1. First, take out the bag containing the fish and empty it into a sizable bucket. Next, use water from your tank to fill up this bucket halfway with clean water.
  2. Keep doing this until the bucket is halfway filled with water. Then, dump half the water out and repeat step one.
  3. Once the fish have adapted to the water, about 20 minutes, carefully remove the fish from the bucket and place it in the aquarium. 
Roseline Shark Tank Decorations
Roseline Shark Tank Decorations


Roseline sharks live and thrive best in a habitat that mimics their natural environment They love the feel of coarse sand or fine rocks underneath, but they also appreciate additional decorations like live plants as an added touch.

Not only do these decorations provide fun hiding places, but they’ve been shown to help enhance colors and prevent stress in these graceful animals when it’s time to relax in your tank.

When introducing a Roseline Shark to your aquarium, it’s important not to clutter or overcrowd the space with unnecessary items. Add small pebbles and smooth rocks for natural scenery, along with caves like shells or rocks that can serve as hiding places in case of danger.

They’ll also be happy to have plants like guppy grass, but make sure their roots are firmly anchored to the ground so they don’t get uprooted by too much movement!

Here are some plants that would be perfect for the Roseline Shark:

Java Moss: Java Moss is an undemanding aquarium moss that can be cultivated in any kind of water. The plant has a deep green color and small leaves, making it the perfect starter plant for beginners. Java Moss branches out extensively with rhizoids surrounding tiny stems and leaves to create a beautiful underwater forest.

Fern: Ferns are a beautiful, hardy plant that can be used in both foreground and background of an aquarium. Fern leaves provide excellent cover for fish to hide from predators as they make their way around the tank.

Anubias: The Anubias Barteri is a popular freshwater aquarium plant that can thrive in your tank. It features strong roots and durable leaves, which makes it easy for beginners to grow plants like this.

Plants of Bolbitis: The Bolbitis is a fern found in fast-moving tropical waters. It anchors itself to rocks and wood, but not most plants because it needs rough surfaces for support so that its delicate leaves don’t get punctured by the sharp vegetation around them. This plant can grow tall quickly if given enough time, making it perfect as an anchor on the bottom of your aquarium against algae buildup or other unsightly growths caused by pollutants from fish food and waste products building up over time.


Roseline sharks are active and healthy in oxygenated water. They require an external canister filter to keep the tank water pristine, well-oxygenated, and with moderate flow. This is because Roseline sharks originate from tropical waters that require a temperature between 60F and 75F for optimal growth; they are sensitive to cold temperatures.

A pH between 6.5 and 7.8 will keep the barbels healthy, and a water hardness of 5-25 dKH will maintain their health for a long time.

It is important to keep a watchful eye on your tank, in order for it not to become contaminated. If you don’t, the water quality could decrease and lead to adverse effects like algae blooms or more bacteria that can harm fish.

Keeping an aquarium clean, will help maintain good water conditions which are essential for preserving this natural habitat. We enjoy having as our own happy little aquatic community.

Food & Diet

When it comes to diet, the Roseline Shark is a picky eater. They prefer high-quality food with nutritional value, such as vegetable pieces and meat proteins, which they can eat in addition to their usual diet, which consists mainly of small crustaceans found on or near the bottom.

Sharks must always eat healthy food to stay active and avoid digestive problems. Therefore, they should never be fed cheap fish food that contains more fillers that have no nutritional value to sharks as this type of food is unhealthy. It is best to stick to pellets, which are a staple food.

Sharks can also get other high-quality foods like carotenoids with their daily meals. Feeding these types of supplements will increase the health and color of the sharks.

There are several things you can feed Roseline Shark to change their diet. You can offer a mixture of live and frozen foods, blanched vegetables, bloodworms, brine shrimp, daphnia, or spirulina at feeding time with two servings per day.

Roseline Shark Behavior
Roseline Shark Behavior

Behavior & Temperament

Barbs are perceived by many to be aggressive fish. Fortunately, Roseline Sharks is a species of barb that is generally considered peaceful and tolerant. They get along well with other aquarium inhabitants and are often found in community aquariums.

However, even these sharks will sometimes show aggression if they feel threatened or overwhelmed in their tank. This usually happens when the shark’s habitat is not large enough for them. This type of behavior is less common when there is enough space.

Roseline sharks like to stay in groups or “schools”. Usually staying in the middle tiers but occasionally straying, especially if they are feeding on prey together. These fast and active swimmers can sometimes get a little too boisterous for being shy, slow-moving fish as they dart back and forth in the tank.

But do not worry about them getting lonely if kept singly; these species enjoy spending time alone just as much, if not more, than when they are with other Roseline Sharks like them.

Roseline Shark Tank Mates

Roseline sharks are social creatures. They live in schools and want to be with other species of fish, that they can form a relationship with. To keep them healthy, you should keep at least five or six schools of Roseline Sharks together in a tank so they have plenty of friends to have fun with.

On close observation, you might notice some demonstration of aggression among the school members. This is to establish hierarchy within the group until a leader emerges and they become more peaceful with each other.

Thus, as their color becomes brighter when together in this new social order; it will be evident that they are happier swimmers than before when fighting for dominance over one another.

Many species of fish can thrive in the Roseline Shark tank as companions to this gentle fish. For example, cherry barbs, red mullets, large tetras, sky pearlfish, and armored catfish are good choices. For those who prefer more vibrant colors, there are rainbow fish or neon tetras that will complement their natural environment well.

You must also be cautious and avoid putting the Roseline Shark with other fish that are its natural enemies. Here are three fish you should not put together with this particular shark:

  • The Oscar: The Oscar is a beautiful and vibrant fish from the cichlid family. You can find it in tropical South America, where it goes by many names including tiger oscar, velvet cichlid, or marble urchin.
  • The Discus Fish: The discus fish is a genus of cichlids that can be found in the Amazon river basin. The bright colors and patterns on their body make them popular as aquarium pets, which has led to an industry where they are farmed all over Asia.
  • The Angel Fish: The Pterophyllum genus is a small, beautiful fish. These freshwater creatures are found in the Amazon Basin and Guiana Shield of South America as well as various rivers throughout this region that people commonly refer to them as “angelfish.”


Take Note of Sexes

It is important to know the sex differences among your Roseline sharks. Especially if you are considering breeding them.

Now it can be quite difficult to tell male from female of this species as they look alike until sexual maturity when females will develop a more rounded body and males maintain slim and well-shaped bodies that keep their shape even after mating with several partners in succession.

Breeding Recommendations

Breeding Roseline sharks is a difficult endeavor. They are almost impossible to successfully breed in the aquarium, and if you try to do it yourself in the tank, they get stressed.

he Roseline sharks you buy in the store, come from professional breeders, who provide offspring through expensive hormone treatments or by taking them from the wild such as rivers, lakes, or streams.

Even though there have been reports of isolated incidents in which a Roseline Shark was successfully bred, the breeding instructions for this shark species are not clear. There is still no sure way to breed these sharks at home and keep them alive long enough until they can start reproducing.

The Chester Zoo in England believed that the Roseline shark would need a larger group to spawn in order for their species to survive. This belief was validated after they managed a successful spawning process within an enclosed environment where there were more sharks than usual.

In a recent German experiment, the Roseline Shark was successfully bred in soft and acidic water. Proving that their spawning process is not dependent on certain conditions but can be achieved with what they have available to them.

The scientists did this by adding pieces of peat into the tank which gradually decreased its pH level—sparking successful breeding between 15 sexually matured sharks.

In Conclusion

We hope this guide was helpful in demystifying the beautiful Roseline Shark. Next time, you are thinking about adding a new fish to your tank, consider what kind of personality suits you best and whether it’s suitable for someone who keeps their tank tidy!

What kind of fish do you want? I know I am going to get a whole bunch of these little guys! They are a great addition to my tank and I can not wait to see them swim and interact with the other fish!

About Rencel Leyran