Identifying my fish, and giving the best care

Linda6365

Hi! Is anyone able to help identify what type of fish I have? I’m under the impression it’s a tetra, but none of the pictures online seem to match.
I currently have him (her?) in a tank alone, and if he is a tetra, that seems to be inadequate. I’m trying to find the best type of care for him.
 

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PeterFishKeepin

welcome to fishlore :)

IDK what it is but i thinks it would be a long fin varient of a tetra species
 

Bwood22

I'd guess that it's a long finned serpae tetra.
That's exactly what it is.
Hi! Is anyone able to help identify what type of fish I have? I’m under the impression it’s a tetra, but none of the pictures online seem to match.
I currently have him (her?) in a tank alone, and if he is a tetra, that seems to be inadequate. I’m trying to find the best type of care for him.
It's definitely a Serpae...the "long finned" variety.
They are a schooling fish, so I'd get about 5-8 more. The others don't have to be long finned if you can't find them. The regular ones will do fine.

SmartSelect_20220519-232334_Gallery.jpg

They are pretty easy to take care of. Very tolerant to lots of life's problems...and hard to kill. :)
 

JustAFishServant

Agreed, this is definitely a long-finned serpae tetra, likely dull due to stress. Allegedly they can be kept in a 10 gal with 5-8 tetras although it seems small unless temporary. Click the link carsonsgjs made - it brings you a Fishlore-exclusive guide for serpae tetras, created by fellow fish lovers who know their stuff! ;)
 

Linda6365

That's exactly what it is.

It's definitely a Serpae...the "long finned" variety.
They are a schooling fish, so I'd get about 5-8 more. The others don't have to be long finned if you can't find them. The regular ones will do fine.

SmartSelect_20220519-232334_Gallery.jpg

They are pretty easy to take care of. Very tolerant to lots of life's problems...and hard to kill. :)
Thank you! You’re probably right that he’s dull due to stress which is so sad. He’s about 5 and has been alone for probably the past 3. Do you think adding him to a school could put him in any sort of shock since he’s been alone for so long?
That's exactly what it is.

It's definitely a Serpae...the "long finned" variety.
They are a schooling fish, so I'd get about 5-8 more. The others don't have to be long finned if you can't find them. The regular ones will do fine.

SmartSelect_20220519-232334_Gallery.jpg

They are pretty easy to take care of. Very tolerant to lots of life's problems...and hard to kill. :)
If he’s been alone for the past 3 years, would adding him to a school be too stressful for him?
 

V1K

Considering its age, the fish in a store should be much smaller than him so they shouldn't scare him much. To make everyone less stressed, consider adding more plants, ideally live, to hide in. It's not much of the tank to be seen in your photo, but it looks a bit empty. And of course the question is, how big is this tank - can it even accommodate more fish.
 

Linda6365

No I would have to get a new tank. I’m reading that for 6 tetras I should have a 10 or ideally 20 gallon?
Considering its age, the fish in a store should be much smaller than him so they shouldn't scare him much. To make everyone less stressed, consider adding more plants, ideally live, to hide in. It's not much of the tank to be seen in your photo, but it looks a bit empty. And of course the question is, how big is this tank - can it even accommodate more fish.
No I would have to get a new tank. I’m reading that for 6 tetras I should have a 10 or ideally 20 gallon.
 

ProudPapa

No I would have to get a new tank. I’m reading that for 6 tetras I should have a 10 or ideally 20 gallon.

Go for the 20 gallon, and ideally a 20 gallon long instead of the regular 20 gallon tank. Most fish, tetras included, will benefit from more horizontal swimming space over horizontal. Also, more surface area means more gas exchange, which helps with oxygenating the water. Finally, it's easier to work in than a taller tank.

And welcome to the forum.
 

Bwood22

If you add the other serpaes to the tank he might be a bit standoff-ish at first, but he will warm up to them....after about 2 weeks, he will have forgotten that he was ever alone.
 

Linda6365

I have a different question if that’s okay… since he’s 5+ years old and theoretically closer to the end of his lifespan, I’m honestly not super interested in starting a whole new tank with new fish, as when those fish get old I’ll be left with the same issue of a lone schooling fish. Would it be horrible to keep him alone but just make his tank great and make sure he gets good food, etc?

Or is there maybe a different type of fish he would be happy with that would only require adding 1 or 2 fish?
 

PeterFishKeepin

IMO yes because that what they are born to do(school), no because it has done life on its own for most of its life

Decision is up to you
 

Linda6365

IMO yes because that what they are born to do(school), no because it has done life on its own for most of its life

Decision is up to you
Thank you, I feel horrible and I swear I’m not a bad person. Just trying to be realistic that if I establish a new tank, that’s a new 7+ year commitment. Have to think it through.
 

V1K

I have a different question if that’s okay… since he’s 5+ years old and theoretically closer to the end of his lifespan, I’m honestly not super interested in starting a whole new tank with new fish, as when those fish get old I’ll be left with the same issue of a lone schooling fish. Would it be horrible to keep him alone but just make his tank great and make sure he gets good food, etc?

Or is there maybe a different type of fish he would be happy with that would only require adding 1 or 2 fish?
I think this comes down to a simple question - do you like serpae tetras and would like to keep them? If yes, then you can just keep replacing the ones that die with new ones for indefinite time, and when you get bored, you can just give them all away.
However, if this is not the species you'd like to keep, I think at this point it's acceptable to just keep this serpae with something else - provided their needs are compatible and there are no agressive fish, and nothing too boisterous or big - a single schooling fish in a new environment surrounded by unfamiliar species will probably be particularly fearful.
 

Linda6365

I think this comes down to a simple question - do you like serpae tetras and would like to keep them? If yes, then you can just keep replacing the ones that die with new ones for indefinite time, and when you get bored, you can just give them all away.
However, if this is not the species you'd like to keep, I think at this point it's acceptable to just keep this serpae with something else - provided their needs are compatible and there are no agressive fish, and nothing too boisterous or big - a single schooling fish in a new environment surrounded by unfamiliar species will probably be particularly fearful.
It’s not that I don’t like serpaes, I just don’t really want to own fish in general. I was enjoying just having this one guy, but I’m clearly not meeting his needs. I’ve grown quite attached to him so I was hoping there’s some sort of solution/middle ground that would make him happy, but wouldn’t involve me having to buy a whole school.
 

ProudPapa

It’s not that I don’t like serpaes, I just don’t really want to own fish in general. I was enjoying just having this one guy, but I’m clearly not meeting his needs. I’ve grown quite attached to him so I was hoping there’s some sort of solution/middle ground that would make him happy, but wouldn’t involve me having to buy a whole school.

If you don't like fish in general the best solution would probably be to find someone who already has serpae tetras and give it to him or her. However, if you don't want to do that, and want to keep the fish, I wouldn't judge you for keeping it alone but otherwise taking good care of it for the time it has left.
 

Linda6365

If you don't like fish in general the best solution would probably be to find someone who already has serpae tetras and give it to him or her. However, if you don't want to do that, and want to keep the fish, I wouldn't judge you for keeping it alone but otherwise taking good care of it for the time it has left.
I think I’m going to get him a better tank with better plants/food and see how that works out for him. I’m super sad that he is so discolored from what a typical serpae would look like, and that it’s very likely due to my care of him. But I also don’t want to shock him by putting him with a ton of other fish.
It just occurred to me that he did have two tetra friends back in the day, and it definitely could have been because there wasn’t enough of them, but he did not like them.
 

ProudPapa

But I also don’t want to shock him by putting him with a ton of other fish.

I think the chances of that happening are slim if you add fish of the same species, but anything can happen.

It just occurred to me that he did have two tetra friends back in the day, and it definitely could have been because there wasn’t enough of them, but he did not like them.

Were they the same species? There are many species of tetras, and they don't shoal together.
 

Linda6365

I think the chances of that happening are slim if you add fish of the same species, but anything can happen.



Were they the same species? There are many species of tetras, and they don't shoal together.
I believe they were neon tetras
 

V1K

I believe they were neon tetras
Well here you have it, it's a very different looking fish, you couldn't even tell they're related if it wasn't for the name.
 

Linda6365

Well here you have it, it's a very different looking fish, you couldn't even tell they're related if it wasn't for the name.
Yeah that makes perfect sense. Also very different sizes.
 

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