Barbus barbus


The bar, also barbel, Barbel or Pigge (Barbus barbus ) called, is a European freshwater fish of the carp family (Cyprinidae ), and eponym of the subfamily barbel ( Barbinae ). It was in 2003 in Germany fish of the year.


It is used in Europe from the Pyrenees before until the Pregel and the Dnepr. You're missing south of the Alps, in Scandinavia, in the largest part of Greece and in southern Bulgaria. In the UK, it lives only in the extreme southeast. In addition to the nominate three subspecies are distinguished, B. b. gallicus in the Garonne, B. b. macedonicus in Dalmatia and B. b. Thessalus in Thessaly. The barbel in oxygen-rich streams with sandy or gravelly ground, referred by their barbel region.


The bar has an elongated body, the abdominal line is almost straight, the back slightly arched. Your body is filled with a medium large scales along the lateral line has 55-65 scales. The barbel has a proboscis -like, under constant mouth with fleshy lips and thick four barbels on the upper lip. The back is brown or green -gray, the flanks lighter, greenish to gray- yellow or golden yellow shining, the abdomen whitish. Thoracic, abdominal and anal fins, and the lower part of the tail may be reddish. The dorsal fin and the upper part of the tail fin colorless or greenish. The pharyngeal teeth are arranged " three rows " at the bar. Males get to spawning numerous, arranged in rows of white nodules on the top of the head and neck, the tuberculate. The bar reaches a length of 25 to 75 cm, in exceptional cases, it is up to one meter long.

Fins formula: dorsal fin III-IV/7-9, anal fin II-III/5-6, pectoral fin I/15-16, ventral II / 8, tail 19-20

Way of life

The barbel sociable and keeps mostly to near the ground in strong currents. She walks at night in search of food and feeds on fish spawning, insect larvae, clams, snails, worms, and small extent of vegetable-based foods Larger barbs also small fishes. The fish hibernate in large groups under roots or stagnant bodies of rivers.

During the spawning period which falls in the months of May to July, draw the barbel upstream in swarms. The release of the slightly sticky eggs (diameter 2 mm; 3000-9000 pieces) occurs at shallow, gravelly places.

The roe of the bar and the surrounding him belly meat are harmful to humans when consumed.

Hazardous situation

The World Conservation Union IUCN leads the bar in the Red List of Threatened Species as not threatened (Least Concern ). It is a common species and had to cope with drastic changes as a result of pollution and water regulations, but their situation is improving again.


The fish spawn is inedible and leads, in raw or uncooked state to nausea.