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Hyphessobrycon eques (Serpae Tetra)

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In older aquarium books, this fish is known as Hyphessobrycon serpae, hence the common name "serpae tetra".

A pretty, schooling tetra that is hardy and inexpensive, and consequently widely sold and commonly kept. However, this fish is a notorious fin-nipper, and can become a problem in a mixed community tank. See behaviour notes, below.

In colour these fish are a warm, reddish-orange with black and white markings on the dorsal fin.

Fish information (behaviour and breeding):

A notorious fin-nipper, this fish must be kept in large groups (at least a dozen) or the fish will turn on one another, shredding their fins. This is especially noticeable with the fancy 'veil-tail' varieties.

Serpae tetras will also attack other, slow moving fish in the aquarium, and so must never be kept with fish such as angelfish, gouramis, bettas, or guppies.

Breeding is not difficult. These fish are egg scatterers, and the eggs hatch after about 24 hours. Once free swimming, the fry can be raised easily on newly hatched brine shrimp, powdered flake, and other small foods.

Family Group: Characins
Distribution Brazil and Paraguay
Temperature 23-27C
Size Around 5cm
Water Parameters Adaptable, but prefers soft and acidic water
Water PH 6.0-7.5