Abstract This study investigated the involvement of H 1 and H 2 histaminegic receptors on the acquisition of a new task in Carassius auratus by using an inhibitory avoidance paradigm in which the animals had to learn to avoid an aversive stimulus. Before training, the fish received injections of H 2 antagonist zolantidine at a dose of 20 mg/kg, or H 1 antagonist chlorpheniramine at a dose of 4 or 16 mg/kg. Control animals were injected with distilled water. A facilitatory effect of chlorpheniramine was observed at the dose of 16 mg/kg. On the other hand, the administration of 20 mg/kg of zolantidine inhibited acquisition. Place preference conditioning was used to observe the aversive or reinforcing effects of the drugs, which could interfere with the inhibitory avoidance procedure; however, no effects were observed. Thus, it can be suggested that both receptors, H 1 and H 2, are involved in the acquisition of a new task in this species.