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Maximum size : 2.5 cm

Blueberry Tetra - Hyphessobrycon wadai : Complete Fish Profile & Care Guide

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The Blueberry Tetra is a relatively new aquarium addition. It was only scientifically described in 2016. However, it belongs to a well-established genus with many popular species. These fish are named after Brazillian aquarist Luiz Wada and have become popular despite being available in captivity for several years. Tank-bred specimens are now the norm in the trade and have been around for several years. Blueberry Tetras are a peaceful species that make excellent members of the well-planted community aquarium and will get along with most fish species. In addition, these Tetras are relatively hardy, making them an ideal fish for the beginner aquarist. These Tetras are sociable schooling fish, so it is crucial that you keep them in a group of at least six individuals alongside other schooling fish to provide security, and you will be rewarded with a more natural-looking display. Occasionally, you may find your fish arguing amongst themselves in a group. However, as long as your aquarium is spacious and there is plenty of hiding places or visual barriers for them to retreat into if necessary, no actual harm should follow. You can house Blueberry Tetras with similarly sized fish and the same peaceful temperament, such as other small Tetras, Pencilfish, Hatchetfish, non-predatory, small to medium-sized Cichlids, Corydoras Catfish, and small Loricariids. However, these Tetras will not compete well with the more boisterous or much larger tankmates. As an adult, these Tetras have beautiful purple-blue bodies and orange fins. Typically, there is an orange lateral line, some red in the eyes, and a soft white tip on the unpaired fins. Additionally, this fish has a single humeral blotch, which means it has a dot on its shoulder, behind its gills, and above its pectoral fins. The body's pigment extends all the way to the tail fin, and there is no caudal peduncle blotch on its body. It's easy to see why these fish are called Blueberry Tetras since their bodies can change from blue to purple depending on the lighting.

Blueberry Tetra Photos

Sexual Dimorphism

It is relatively simple to differentiate between the male and the female Blueberry Tetra. The males will generally be slimmer and more vibrantly coloured than females. In contrast, females are usually stockier and have slightly higher bodies. Also, the females have much duller colouration than the males.
Featured Male
Featured Female
Male Female

Quick Facts

Scientific NameHyphessobrycon wadai
Year Described2016
Other NamesNone
Max Size2.5 cm
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 6+
Lifespan3 - 5 years

Water Parameters

Water TypeFreshwater
PH5.5 - 7.0
GH1 - 6
KH1 - 2
68 - 79
20 - 26.1

Natural habitat

In South America, Blueberry Tetras are initially from Rio Tapajos and have been popularized by Brazilian aqua scapers and breeders. Interestingly, this fish was named after a Brazilian breeder, Luiz Wada. As these fish come from streams with a relatively constant flow, it is imperative to keep the water moving when keeping them. Although these Tetras are not found with many plants in the wild, these fish enjoy having a planted tank with some hardscape to hide behind. They live in the wild on a sandy substrate, so you might consider the same when setting up their tank.

How to breed the Blueberry Tetra

Breeding Blueberry Tetras is similar to breeding other species in the genus. The best way to raise fry is to set up a separate tank. The area should be dimly lit and contain clumps of fine-leaved plants, such as java moss or a spawning mop, where the fish can deposit their eggs. Alternatively, you could cover the tank's base with mesh. The water should be soft and acidic with a slightly higher temperature than usual. Using RO water and filtering the water through peat are valuable methods. As far as filtration is concerned, a small sponge filter that bubbles away gently is all that's needed. A half dozen of each sex is a good number of specimens to spawn in a group. It should not be too challenging to breed these Tetras if you provide them with plenty of live food. You can also spawn your Tetras in pairs. Using this technique, the males and females are conditioned in separate tanks. After the females are full of eggs and the males display their best colours, select the fattest female and the best-coloured male and transfer them to the spawning tank at dusk. The following morning, they should begin to spawn. If given a chance, adults will eat the eggs, so you should remove them as soon as eggs are observed. It takes 24 to 36 hours for the eggs to hatch and 3 to 4 days for the fry to become free swimming. Until they are large enough to accept microworms or baby brine shrimp, you should feed them on an infusoria-type food for the first few days. In the early stages of life, eggs and fry are light-sensitive, so the tank should be kept in darkness.

Diet & feeding

In the home aquarium, the Blueberry Tetra will readily accept most good quality dried foods such as granules, flakes and sinking pellets. These modern food products have been developed to provide all adequate nutrition to maintain your fish's health and dietary requirements. Providing additional foodstuffs such as live, frozen, and freeze-dried meals such as bloodworm, daphnia, and tubifex once or twice a week will provide other benefits to your fish's health and well-being but is not a must for this fish. It should be noted that bloodworms should only be given as an occasional treat and should not be used as the staple diet as they are difficult for fish to digest and can potentially cause blockages. This fish is an omnivore in the wild, meaning it will consume some vegetable matter. Although most modern fish foods take this into account and include them in their products, you can still supplement your fish's diet with blanched vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, and zucchini. Ensure you do not overfeed your fish and remove any leftovers the following day.

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