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Robyn's Ozark Minnow Page

Last Updated: 2/19/14

I first obtained some Ozark minnows in the Fall of 1999 and do not know much first hand about them. All of the following information comes from books and internet sources. If you have any information on the Ozark minnow, please send it to me. In the cases where I state "unknown," it means that I do not know but others may know. Let me know if you can fill in the blanks or if any of the following information is incorrect.

Quick Information
Setup and Water Preferences
My Ozark Minnows
Links and Pictures

For information on my Ozark minnows' setup, visit my 153 gallon pond page.

Quick Information

Common names: Ozark minnow, Forbes minnow, Ozark shiner (which is actually another species altogether, Notropis ozarcanus)
Scientific/Latin names: Notropis nubilus
Maximum length: 3 inches
Colors: Grayish-green, white, red/orange
Temperature preference: 33 to unknown degrees F
pH preference: Unknown, neutral probably
Hardness preference: Unknown, low to moderate probably
Salinity preference: Unknown, low probably
Compatibility: Good
Life span: Unknown
Ease of keeping: Moderate
Ease of breeding: Unknown


To me, the Ozark minnow looks similar to a rasbora. They are the perfect fishy shape. A black stripe runs from the mouth to the caudal fin down the lateral line. Their small minnow mouth lacks barbels. Splashes of red grace the fin tips. This intensifies in breeding males. Ozark minnows are not all that common and are becoming more rare. They grow up to 3 inches long.

Setup and Water Preferences

Ozark minnows eat plants and debris. They live in small creeks and tend to congregate near where ground water enters the stream (if it does). Ozark minnows do not like turbid waters.


Breeding males have yellowish orange color on their tummies and fins.


In Iowa, Ozark minnows breed in May and June. I have found no information on which strategy they employ but I would guess that they are simple egg scatterers.

My Ozark Minnows

On 10/27/99, twelve Ozark minnows were added to my 153 gallon pond. They were about 1 inch in length and washed out color wise, most likely due to shipping stress. These were babies of the year.

On cleaning out the filthy (full of earthworms) pond on 3/26/00, I netted about half a dozen Ozark minnows. Some could have evaded the net since I only changed 50% of the water. They are beginning to develop some red color on them and sort of look like rasboras.

When the pond was fully cleaned out on 3/26/01, only a few Ozark minnows were left. I am not sure of the exact count since they were hard to identify compared to the other fast fish but there were at from about 1-6 of them.

I cleaned out the pond on 3/29/02. There were seven live fish left, and they were all Southern redbelly dace. There were also two dead fish. One may have been an Ozark minnow. Anyway, I no longer have any live Ozark minnows. They all died without reproducing.

I cleaned the pond out on 4/3/03 again, and there were three fish left, one Southern redbelly dace and two red shiners. There are for sure no Ozark minnows left.

Links and Pictures

Ozark minnow - picture and some information

Ozark minnow - information

North American Native Fishes Association

Native Fish Conservancy - I am a member since 10/99

North American Freshwater Fishes

The Native Fish Web Ring

Pet Link Banner Exchange:

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