Maximum size : 5 cm

Eggers Killifish - Nothobranchius eggersi : Complete Fish Profile & Care Guide

Table of contents


The Eggers Killifish (Nothobranchius eggersi) is a captivating and peaceful species known for its remarkable colours and hardy nature. With their small size, these fish are a perfect choice for nano or planted aquarium setups. While suitable for beginner aquarists, breeding and raising the fry of Egger's Killifish can pose challenges that require careful attention.

For optimal care, it is recommended to maintain Egger's Killifish in a species-only aquarium, ideally with one male and 3 to 4 females. Alternatively, they can coexist harmoniously with smaller and more peaceful tankmates such as Rasboras, Danios, smaller Tetras, and Corydoras Catfish, as well as Shrimp and Aquatic Snails. It is advisable to avoid housing them with long-finned species to prevent potential fin-nipping and with larger, more aggressive tankmates that may intimidate and outcompete them for food.

Creating an ideal environment for Egger's Killifish involves providing a very slow-moving to still water current. These fish do not disturb aquatic plants and appreciate subdued lighting, making floating plants a suitable addition. However, ensuring the aquarium has a secure, tight-fitting lid is crucial, as Egger's Killifish are experienced jumpers.

Egger's Killifish exhibit two distinct colour variants: red and blue. The red variant displays a silvery blue body adorned with vibrant red dots and lines. Their dorsal, anal, and pelvic fins exhibit a striking bright red hue with white edging, while the caudal fin is solid red. In contrast, the blue variant showcases a greenish-blue body with occasional red markings, accompanied by greenish-blue fins with subtle red markings and white edging. The females of both variants possess a more subdued appearance, lacking intricate patterning, and featuring transparent fins.

Eggers Killifish Photos

Sexual Dimorphism

Distinguishing between male and female Eggers Killifish is a straightforward task. Males exhibit notable differences that set them apart from their female counterparts. They boast vibrant and eye-catching colours, often showcasing intricate patterning, which can vary in appearance depending on the geographical origin of the fish. Additionally, males tend to be slightly larger in size compared to females. In contrast, the females possess a more subdued and unadorned appearance, with minimal to no colouration and an absence of the distinctive patterning seen in males.

Quick Facts

Scientific NameNothobranchius eggersi
Year Described1982
Other NamesRed Eggers Killifish, Blue Eggers Killifish, Orchid Nothobranch
Max Size5 cm
Aquarium LevelTop
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asTrios
Diet & FeedingOmnivore
ReproductionEgg Depositor
LifespanUp to 3 Years

Water Parameters

Water TypeFreshwater
pH 7.0 - 8.0
GH 5 - 20
TDS 179 -536
Ideal Temperature
73 - 79
22 - 26

Natural Habitat

Eggers Killifish are native to the lower basin of the Rufiji, Kanga, Saadani, Utete, Kigongo, and Ruhoi Rivers, situated in the beautiful country of Tanzania, Africa. These captivating fish have adapted to inhabit slow-moving stagnant waters found in diverse habitats, including pools, marshes, ditches, and swamps. Characterized by muddy substrates and scattered leaf litter, their natural environment undergoes significant changes throughout the year. Specifically, during the dry season, the water levels gradually decline, eventually leading to the complete desiccation of these aquatic habitats for several months. This cyclic pattern of seasonal dryness shapes the unique life history and survival strategies of the Eggers Killifish.


In their natural habitat, the Eggers Killifish face a challenging environment characterized by seasonal dry periods. Adult fish perish During this time, leaving fertilized eggs in the substrate. These resilient eggs possess remarkable resistance to desiccation and remain dormant until the return of the rainy season, which typically occurs around 5 to 6 months later. Once the rains arrive, the eggs hatch and the fry undergo rapid development, reaching sexual maturity in approximately three weeks.

In an aquarium setting, Eggers Killifish exhibit bottom-spawning behaviour, depositing their eggs on the substrate. To simulate this natural process, many aquarists utilize peat as a substrate or employ containers placed at the bottom of the aquarium for egg deposition. During each spawning embrace, the adults release a small batch of eggs, potentially yielding up to 100 eggs when provided with an optimal diet. To foster successful hatching, collecting the peat containing the eggs is crucial, drying it to a pipe tobacco-like consistency and storing it at temperatures ranging from 79 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit for several weeks. The duration of this incubation period varies, influenced by factors such as temperature and the age of the fish. To determine the readiness of the eggs for hatching, a microscopic examination reveals the presence of a discernible eye surrounded by a golden ring. Once the eggs are deemed prepared, rehydration of the peat is necessary. After approximately two hours, the fry will begin to emerge.

Initially, the newly hatched fry will require nourishment from infusoria-type foods such as rotifers or vinegar eels. As they continue to develop, their diet can progress to include microworms and baby brine shrimp. Given the rapid growth rate of the fry, providing an ample food supply is essential to ensure their proper development and well-being.

Diet & feeding

Eggers Killifish exhibit optimal health and reproductive success when provided with a well-rounded diet. These fish thrive on a diverse feeding regimen, primarily comprising live and frozen foods such as brine shrimp, daphnia, and bloodworms. By incorporating these nutrient-rich options into their diet, not only will the overall well-being of the fish be enhanced, but it can also contribute to an increase in egg production. Additionally, with gradual acclimation, Eggers Killifish can be trained to accept high-quality dried foods, including flakes, granules, and pellets, offering a convenient and balanced dietary option.

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