Species: Leptobarbus rubripinna
Thai Name: Pla baa
Grows to weight/length: 15kg+/1m+
Stocked at Hookers: to 4kg, caught at 1.2kg
The Mad Barb was widely known throughout Thailand by its English vernacular name of the Hoeven’s Mad Barb (leptobarbus hoevenii) but has now been shown to be a separate species from those near the Thai/Malay border, with the Chao Phraya/Mae Klong basin variety now recognised as leptobarbus rubripinna. They are a herbivorous shoal fish and have a shiny, golden tinge to their scales. It is claimed they attracted the name “mad barb” as a result of their erratic behavior after eating poisonous fruits in rivers!
Fishing for mad barb is relatively straightforward but needs to be done on light tackle with small hooks. Float or ledger tactics work equally as well and hook baits should also be small, such as a single grain of corn, bread paste or poly balls. Keep feeding your chosen area with “little and often” balls of lam and you should have a good chance of catching these pretty little cyprinids.