- Scientific name: Paracheirodon innesi
- Common name: Neon tetra
- Group: Characins
- Habitat: South America; Western Brazil, Northern Peru and Colombia
- Size: 4 cm
- Biotope: Found in the Iquitos and Amazon rivers and some of their tributaries.
- Social behavior: The Neon Tetra are ideal for a community aquarium with other peaceful fish. It is best not to keep them with larger fish like angels. They are most comfortable and show their best colors when kept in a school of 6 or more fish.
- Diet: Since they are omnivorous the Neon Tetra will generally eat all kinds of small or finely ground foods; live, fresh, and flake. To keep a good balance give them a high quality flake food everyday. Feed brine shrimp (either live or frozen) or blood worms as a treat.
- Breeding: Hard.
- Tank: Minimum 70 litres
- Population: 10-14 fish for 90 litres
- Decoration: Dark stones, roots, lot of plants and room for swim.
- Temperature: 20-24°C
- pH: 6,5-7,2.
- Hardness: 10-15 NK°
- Lifespan: 5-8 years
Description: A slender fish somewhat spindle shaped with little lateral compression. The nose is blunt and the belly area seems to be rounded in the females and concave in the males. They can reach a length of about one and one half inches (4cm).
Starting at about the center of the body, there is a wide bright Red band extending to the start of the Caudal fin. Above this is a Blue band with a green sheen that runs from the upper part of the eye to the Adipose fin. The upper-side is Olive Green and the underside is Silver in color. The Anal fin is milky white to transparent. The striking contrast or the Red and Blue makes the Neon one of the most colorful and popular of the fish we keep.
Neons are happiest and show off their colors best in a tank with subdued lighting and a dark substrate. The water should have a pH of 7.0 and the temperature maintained between 68° and 79°f, hardness to 20°. The tank can be small and decorated with live plants and some driftwood. Stock the aquarium with equally peaceful species and keep them in as large a school as possible. Neons are now bred in large numbers and are able to tolerate a wide range of aquarium conditions, however this mass scale breeding has weakened their natural robust-fullness and losses are usually high when first bought. Once established they are easily fed and cared for with flake and frozen food.
Egg scatterer, requires soft, very clean water. Failures in breeding are in most cases due to unsuitable water conditions. To spawn them, you will need a small tank placed in a dark spot as the eggs seem to be light sensitive, a 2 inch layer of half inch rock and some bunches of fine textured live plants like Myriophyllium are suitable as the spawning medium. Only young fish should be used for breeding and at least 5 fish (with a ratio of 2-1 males) that have been separated (put the females in the tank that will be used for spawning) for 2 days and fed some live foods. The temperature should not rise above 75F (21 to 23 °C) Keep a lid on this container as they will jump out. Keep the breeders together for 24 hours and then remove them. They usually spawn early in the morning. The clear eggs are laid among the plants and barely stick to them. In 22 to 26 hours the eggs hatch and the fry are very hard to spot, but appear 3-4 days later at which time they are free swimming and will need to be fed infusoria. The species is not very prolific and A good spawn would be 40-50 fry.