India is home to an impressive array of freshwater fish species, boasting a staggering 2,500 known varieties inhabiting its rivers, lakes, and ponds. These aquatic creatures are of immense ecological and economic importance, with many being highly valued as a source of food or recreation. Among the most prominent species are the rohu, catla, hilsa, snakehead, mahseer, Indian carp, and gourami, each possessing their unique traits, colorations, and habitats. Nonetheless, the habitats of these species are under constant threat from environmental degradation, pollution, and overfishing, which highlights the dire need for effective conservation measures. The freshwater fish diversity of India is a vital resource that must be protected, managed, and preserved for the benefit of both the natural environment and human societies.

Rohu fish, scientifically known as Labeo Rohita, is a freshwater fish species found in rivers, lakes, and ponds across South Asia, including India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Nepal. It is one of the most commonly consumed fish in the region and is highly valued for its delicate and succulent meat. Rohu fish is an important part of the local cuisine, where it is used in various dishes, such as curries, fries, and stews. It is a fast-growing fish that can reach up to 1.2 meters in length and weigh up to 25 kg. Rohu has a distinct appearance with a silver-grey body, reddish fins, and large scales. Due to its popularity, the species has been subjected to overfishing, leading to population declines. As a result, conservation efforts are being undertaken to manage the fisheries and restore the natural habitats of the Rohu fish. Such efforts involve the implementation of sustainable fishing practices, habitat conservation, and education programs for local communities on the importance of preserving this vital aquatic resource.

Serial No.CharacteristicsDescription
1Common nameRohu
2Scientific nameLabeo rohita
3ColourSilver or light grey on the belly and sides with a dark grey or silver back
4Average length in m0.5 – 1 meter
5Average weight in kgs2 – 3 kilograms
6Found in river systems of IndiaGanges, Brahmaputra, Mahanadi, and Godavari
7HabitatFreshwater rivers, lakes, and reservoirs
8Any special characteristicsIt is known for its delicious taste in South Asian cuisine.


Rohu is a freshwater fish species that is widely found in the rivers and lakes of South Asia. Rohu fish has a moderately deep body with a slightly flattened head and a terminal mouth. It has large scales, with the dorsal fin located closer to the head than the tail. It is a herbivorous fish, and it feeds mainly on aquatic plants and algae.The color of Rohu fish varies depending on the age and habitat of the fish. Juvenile Rohu fish have a greenish-brown color on their back and sides with a whitish belly. As they grow, their color changes to a darker shade of brown with a golden tint on the belly. Rohu fish can grow up to 1.5 meters in length and weigh up to 45 kg, although the average weight is around 1-2 kg. The weight of Rohu fish depends on various factors, such as its age, habitat, and diet. The swimming speed of Rohu fish is moderate, and it can swim at a speed of around 3-4 kilometers per hour. However, the swimming speed can vary depending on the age, size, and environmental conditions of the fish.


 It is a tropical fish species that thrives in warm water temperatures, usually between 25 to 32 °C, and it prefers clear or turbid waters with a moderate to fast flow.

Rohu fish is a migratory species that spawns in upstream rivers during the monsoon season and then moves downstream to the lowland areas during the dry season. During the breeding season, Rohu fish prefers to inhabit shallow areas with a gravelly substrate, where it lays its eggs.

River System

The Ganges is the largest river system in India and home to a diverse range of fish species, including rohu. Rohu can be found in the main stem of the river as well as its tributaries, such as the Yamuna and the Ramganga.

The Brahmaputra River System is the second-largest river system in India and is home to a variety of freshwater fish species, including rohu. The river system flows through the northeastern states of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh, and rohu can be found in the main stem of the river as well as its tributaries.

The Mahanadi River System is located in central India and is home to a variety of fish species, including rohu. The river flows through the states of Chhattisgarh and Odisha, and rohu can be found in both the upper and lower reaches of the river.

The Godavari River System is the third-largest river system in India and is home to a variety of freshwater fish species, including rohu. The river flows through the states of Maharashtra, Telangana, and Andhra Pradesh, and rohu can be found in the main stem of the river as well as its tributaries.

Threatened Status

As per the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, Rohu (Labeo rohita) is currently listed as a species of “Least Concern”, which means that it is not currently facing any major threats to its survival as a species.

However, like many other freshwater fish species, Rohu populations are under pressure due to various anthropogenic factors such as overfishing, habitat degradation, water pollution, and the construction of dams and other water management structures.

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