Family Cyprinidae is the largest fresh water fish family in Sri Lanka, which includes 39 indegenous species with 27 endemics.

1. Amblypharyngodon grandisquammis (Jordan & Starks,1917)     Large cilver caplet      S:Gangiliya

2. Chela cf. ceylonensis (Hamilton,1822)           Blue laubuca      S: Kara Edaya



3. Devario pathirana  (Kottelat & Pethiyagoda,1990)         Barred danio                   S:Pathirana Salaya



Occurs in streams (from still pools to swift-flowing water) with a pebble or boulder substrate. Found only in the Opatha area in the Nilwala River basin but numerous there. Restricted to the region they are found. Used as a aquarium fish.

 IUCNSL 2007 List:CR   /  IUCN 2002 Global Red List:CR   /    FARSII


4. Esomus thermoicos (Valenciennnes, 1842)        Flying barb                  S: Ravul dandia

Fast moving  fish, more common in muddy pools than in flowing water.Widely distributed throughout the low country areas of both zones, but more abundant in the north eastern dry zones. Common. Moderately used in aquarium fish trade.

IUCNSL 2007 List:CR

5. Garra Ceylonensis  (Bleeker 1863)          Stone sucker                S: Gal pandi

It has a sub-terminal mouth suited for scraping off algae from submerged objects. Associated more with rock substrates than with sand.Widely distributed throughout the island. Not used for food. Popular with the aquarium fish trade.

6. Labeo fisheri (Jordan & Starks, 1917)        Mountain labeo                        S: Gadeya
Stay close to the bottom of rocky, fast-flowing mountain streams. Found only in a few rocky streams and sreams descending from the Knuckles range in the Mahaweli River basin. In 1950s it has found in the Mahaweli river near Gatabe - Peradeniya commonly.

IUCNSL 2007 List:CR  / IUCN 2002 Global Red List:EN   /  FFPO: Protected   /    FARSI


7.Labeo lankae (Heckel, 1838)       Orange fin labeo                        S: Thambalaya
IUCNSL 2007 List:CR    /    FFPO: Protected   /    FARSI  


8. Puntius cumingii  (GÜnther,1868)         Cuming’s barb                S: Pothaya

Usually found only in flowing water and stay close to the substrate. The red finned variety usually occurs in slow flowing waters, associated with a mud or silt substrate in marshy areas adjacent to the Kelani Valley foothills. The yellow finned variety associated with substrates ranging from sand to boulders in flowing water. Distributed in the south western wet zone from the Kelani to the Gin basins. Exported in large numbers in aquarium fish trade.

IUCNSL 2007 List:VU   /   IUCN 2002 Global Red List:LR/cd   /   FARSII

Adult Male   

Adult Female


9. Puntius asoka, (Kottelat & Pethiyagoda, 1989)    E: Asoka barb  S: Asoka pethiya

Occupy in relatively deep (1-2 m) fast-flowing water with gravel or sand substrate. Juveniles found in very shallow waters. Distribution very restricted to two or three locations in the upper reaches of the Sitawaka River and tributaries, at elevations of 120-250m and in the Kelani river near Kitulgala. Used in aquarium fish trade.

IUCNSL 2007 List:CR  / IUCN 2002 Global Red List:EN   /  FFPO: Protected   /   FARSI


10. Puntius bandula   (Kottelat & Pethiyagoda, 1991)    Bandula barb                  S: Bandula Pethiya


IUCNSL 2007 List:CR  / IUCN 2002 Global Red List:CR  / FFPO: Protected   /  FARSI


11. Puntius martenstyni  (Kottelat & Pethiyagoda, 1991)        Martenstyn's barb     S: Dumbara Pethiya


UCNSL 2007 List:CR  / IUCN 2002 Global Red List:EN  / FFPO: Protected / FARSII



12. Puntius nigrofasciatus  ( GÜnther,1868)  Black ruby barb              S: Bulath Hapaya

Found in clear, shady streams in forested areas, associated with gravel and sand substrate. It sometimes occurs in pools of quiet water in clear streams and rivers, where it inhabits mainly the margins. Restricted to forest streams from the Kelani to Nilaweli basins. Perhaps Sri Lanka’s most popular fresh water export fish.

IUCNSL 2007 List:EN   /   IUCN 2002 Global Red List:LR/cd
13. Puntius pleurotaenia       (Bleeker, 1863)             Black  lined barb                        S: Hitha massa
Occurs in undisturbed, larger, clear and heavily shaded streams within the range. Stays in the middle of the water column. Distributed in the lower south western hills of the central massif, within the catchments of the Kelani and Nilwala Rivers. Used in fish export trade. Larger fish are eaten.

IUCNSL 2007 List:VU    /   IUCN 2002 Global Red List: LR/cd  


14. Puntius singhala      (Bleeker, 1863)             Filmented barb      S:Dankola Pethiya





15. Puntius srilankensis  (Senanayake, 1985)               Blotched filmented barb      S:Dankudu Pethiya


A mid-water fish found in areas of rapidly flowing water with a substrate of pebbles. Show territorial behavior. Has a very restricted range, for very recent times it has been found in about 2km of a single river in the eastern slopes of the Knuckles hills, at levations of between 300 and 500m.

Actually is found about 7km area of the river, and the adjoining streams in very low numbers. Another surviving population is found in Meemure- Knuckles range,  in another river and is spreaded about 3km, and low population density. Agricultural practices along the site and usage of agrochemicals may be an upcoming threat to the present population. (Unpublished data-Y.E.S.)

IUCNSL 2007 List:EN   /    FFPO: Protected   /   FARSII


16. Puntius titteya                    (Deraniyagala 1929)       Cherry Barb  S: Lay titteya

Common. Considerable variation in color can be seen from cherry-red to pale orange-yellow colour. Found in heavily shaded streams and rivulets, preferring shallow, slow-flowing water with silt substrate and leaf debris. Found only in the low-country wet zone up to elevations of about 300m from the Kelani to the Nilwala basins.

IUCNSL 2007 List:VU   /   IUCN 2002 Global Red List: LR/cd  



17. Rasboroides vaterifloris    (Deraniyagala, 1930)               Golden Rasbora S: Hal mal Dandiya

It is found in shallow, clear, heavily shaded forest streams, usually with a silty substrate, and often in areas with a large amount of leaf debris in the water. Found only in the middle catchment area of basins Kalu to Nilwala. Threatened by over fishing for export in aquarium fish trade.

IUCNSL 2007 List:EN  /   IUCN 2002 Global Red List: LR/cd /  FARSII



18. Rasbora wilpita (Kottele & pethiyagoda, 1991)                  Wilpita Rasbora    S: Wilpita Dandiya


IUCNSL 2007 List:EN  /  IUCN 2002 Global Red List: EN   /   FFPO: Protected   /   FARSI



A new Puntius Species.

FARSI - Fisheries and Aquatic Resource Act No:01 of 1996 - Export Prohibited

FARSII -Fisheries and Aquatic Resource Act No:02 of 1996 - Export Restricted  


























































































































"Ellangaawa" A unity care for community & Nature | No:1/112, Hapugoda | Ambatenna | Sri Lanaka. 20136.