Neon tetras are famous for their vibrant colors and they reflect fluorescent blue color in dark light.

Why spend time reading Neon tetras – beginner’s guide? The reason why you have to spend time reading beginner’s guide is, it has precise information such as what to feed them, the right water conditions, appropriate tank size, compatible fishes, nature of the fish.

Neon Tetra – Overview

Common NameNeon Tetra
Scientific NameParacheirodon innesi
Habitat or OriginSpecies are native of the Amazon basin of South America.
Average SizeAn adult grows up to 3 cm or 1.2 inches
ColorationThe natural coloration of Neon Tetra has bright red stripe which flows all way to the tail and has bright neon blue stripe along with a white stripe in its belly
Life SpanIn captive they live up to 5 years and in wild up to 8 years
DietOmnivorous, in wild, they feed on mosquito larva, and in captivity, they are fed on a variety of food such as frozen bloodworms, daphnia, and flake foods
Gender IdentificationIt is not very easy to identify the gender, however not impossible. Male have slender body and blue line is straighter and female are bit rounder and have bent blue lines
BehaviorNon-Aggressive & Shoaling
CompatibilityIdeal community fishes and they tend to shoal. They are compatible with Discus fish, Corry fish, Dwarf Gourami, Dwarf Cichlids, avoid neon tetras with Angelfish, Betta Fish, and Cichlids.
Ideal Tank ConditionsThe recommended size is 20 Gallon tank with good filtration, they enjoy good water flow. Would be good to keep in planted aquariums. They will do fine with bright and medium lighting conditions.
Water ParametersIdeal pH is 6.0 to 6.5 and the water hardness should be less than 9 dGH. Ensure the water temperature is between 70 to 81 Degree Fahrenheit or 21 to 27 Degree Celsius. 20% water change on a daily basis would simulate the rain effect in natural habitat.
BreedingBreeding is considered difficult for the reasons, to identify the right pair and removing the laid eggs from the breeding tank. Once the pair is identified, keep them in a breeding tank without light and feed them with mosquito larva. Get the water hardness level to less then 4 dGH and the magic should happen within a weeks’ time. As soon as the eggs are laid, remove the eggs carefully from the breeding tank and they will hatch in 24 to 48 Hrs. The best food for young fries is egg yolk, infusoria.
Common DiseasesFinrot, NTD (Neon Tetra Disease) are the most common ones and this could be avoided by keeping the tank clean and water parameters intact and removing the diseased fish from the tank.
Approximate CostThis depends on the country and the quality of the strain; in the USA the average price is between 1 USD to 3 USD and in Asian countries, it is available at 1/2 of the price of the USA.
What to look when buyingCarefully examine for any fin damages, look for any infections. Last but not least, pick the ones which are active ones, buy them in a minimum of 8 numbers.
Similar SpeciesSimilar popular fishes like neon tetra available in the local fish stores – Emperor Tetra, Congo Tetra, Cardinal Tetra.
FAQCheck out the 7 most asked questions about neon tetra

Neon Tetra Gallery