Red Eye Tetra

Published August 6, 2019
Author: Mike - FishLore Admin
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The Red Eye Tetra is a great little tetra that needs to be kept in a school of 5 or more.

This tetra makes an ideal member of a peaceful community tank with aquarium plants and should bring a decent amount of activity to your aquarium. The top of the eye socket is red, hence the name. The first half of the caudal fin is black and the main part of the body is silver.

Moenkhausia sanctaefilomenae Moenkhausia sanctaefilomenae

The Red Eye Tetra is very peaceful if kept in groups, but may get a little fin nippy if kept as a single. Other tetras may pick on them at times, so keep an eye on them. They do make a great freshwater aquarium beginner fish because they can be relatively hardy and their peaceful nature.

Red Eye Tetra Moenkhausia sanctaefilomenae

Breeding them can be challenging if not kept in a separate, bare bottom breeding tank. They are egg scatterers and will abandon the eggs and even eat them if not separated.

They should accept nearly all aquarium foods including flakes, frozen and freeze dried fish food. Give them a variety of vitamin enriched foods for best results.

Moenkhausia sanctaefilomenae

Red Eye Tetra Care

Scientific Name : Moenkhausia sanctaefilomenae

Common Names : Yellowhead Characin, Yellowhead Tetra, Yellow-banded moenkhausia

Care Level : Easy

Size : 3 inches (7 cm)

pH : 6 - 7.5

Temperature : 75°F - 80°F (24°C - 27°C)

Water Hardness : 5° to 20° dH

Lifespan : 3 - 5 years

Origin / Habitat : South America, Brazil, River Basin areas

Temperament / Behavior : A very peaceful tetra that needs to be in a school of 5 or more.

Breeding : They will scatter their eggs on the substrate. The adults may eat the eggs.

Aquarium Size : 30 gallons (114 liters) - this is a schooling fish and should be kept in groups of 5 or more.

Tank Mates : You don't want to keep them with more boisterous or overly aggressive tank mates. They may nip fins if kept solitary.

Fish Disease : Freshwater Fish Disease - Diagnose, Symptoms and Treatment

Diet / Foods : The Red Eye Tetra should eat most common aquarium foods. Flakes, frozen, freeze dried and may nibble at some aquarium plants.

Tank Region : All over, but seems to congregate near protected areas towards the bottom of the tank most of the time.

Gender : May be able to tell a difference in males and females when the female gets "fatter" or fuller.

Fish Lore Forum : Red Eye Tetra Forum

Photo Credit : Photos copyright

Site References :

Red Eye Tetra Comments

From: Stan
I must say that this is one of the best tetras that I've kept. They red eye tetra eye color is incredible and the look of a school of these tetras is wonderful to watch. They keep to themselves most of the time and never bother any of their tank mates. While most of the tetras I keep (rummy nose tetra, neon tetras and glowlight tetras) seem to stay on the bottom of the tank, these red eyes stay towards the top of the tank. They are very easy to feed and quite peaceful. I would definitely recommend them to others!

From: Q.
Indeed, these red eye tetras are very friendly and don't bother the other fishes in a community tank. They do prefer to hang around at the top of the tank. If you are looking for fishes to be active, these are not it.

From: Monica
I started with a school of 6 Red Eye Tetras, four weeks ago in a large community tank with large pebbles for gravel and lots of potted plants. This morning I counted 7! A new little one made his appearance with the adults.

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