LARGER TETRAS FOR THE COMMUNITY TANK
Congo Tetra – Not only is the Congo tetra one of the more brightly colored species of tetra, but it also has longer fins than most. This species grows to about 2 ½ inches in length and should be kept in schools of 6 or more. Congo tetras hail from the Congo Basin in Zaire, Africa where they inhabit the middle range of the water column in planted, dimly lit areas. The best tank set-up for Congo tetras is a large tank with an open middle and plenty of java moss along the bottom.
Emperor Tetra – The emperor tetra comes from the rivers and streams of Colombia. This species doesn’t tend to school as much as other tetras, though they will do so if kept with six or more other tetras. Emperor tetras exhibit a creamy silver color on the top half of their body with darker blue/black on the bottom half and yellow-tinted fins. Feed these tetras a rich diet to bring out their natural color.
Diamond Tetra – The diamond tetra is native to Venezuela and it gets its name from the golden reflection bouncing off its scales. These fish grow to 2 ½ inches long or more and they prefer to be kept with 6 or more of their own species. Diamond tetras enjoy dimly lit planted tanks and soft water. They generally don’t have a problem getting along with most community fish.
Colombian Tetra – Named for its homeland of Colombia, this species of tetra is also sometimes known as the red tail mirror blue tetra. This species only became available in 1995 but it has quickly become one of the most popular species. These fish are extremely hardy in the home aquarium, though they can get a little nippy – it is best to keep them in a larger tank with plenty of open swimming space with other fin-nippers like Buenos Aires or Serpae tetras.
Buenos Aires Tetra – This species of tetra comes from the Buenos Aires region of Argentina, as you can tell from the name. These tetras are one of the hardiest species for the home aquarium, though they generally aren’t a good choice for planted tanks. Buenos Aires tetras grow a little over two inches in length and they have a clear body with orange-tinted fins and a thin blue line running from the gills to the tail. These tetras can become a little aggressive so they should be kept in large schools.
Red Eye Tetra – Also known as the Lamp Eye Tetra, this species grows to about 3 inches long and it has a bright red spot placed over the eye and a thick black band running vertically through the tail. Red eye tetras are native to Brazil and Paraguay and they prefer to be kept in schools of 6 or more. These fish tend to nibble at plants and will nip the fins of some species.
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