Maximum size : 2 cm

Ember Tetra - Hyphessobrycon amandae : Complete Fish Profile & Care Guide

Table of contents


The Ember Tetra (Hyphessobrycon amandae) is a dazzling fish that adds a touch of radiance to any aquarium. These little gems are full of life, vigour, and entertainment, making them an ideal choice for any aquarist, whether new or experienced. The Ember Tetra's peaceful nature makes it an excellent resident in any community aquarium, and its small size makes it suitable for nano tanks. These Tetras get along with many community species, including shrimps, snails, and other peaceful fish.

To create optimal habitat for Ember Tetras, it's best to keep them in heavily-planted aquariums with dark substrates, floating plants, driftwood branches, and dried leaf litter. Gentle air-powered sponge filters can provide adequate filtration, and a degree of water movement is acceptable. 

Ember Tetras have an elongated body shape accompanied by a merged anal fin, a small dorsal fin, and a large caudal fin. There is a slight greyish-black angle to both the caudal and dorsal fins, with reddish pigmentation around the mouth and above the eyes on the upper part of the head. The scales on these fish are compact and close together, resulting in a somewhat translucent appearance. Ember Tetras exhibit a golden maple to a fiery red colour, sometimes with a saturated orange inclination and orange rims around their eyes.

Ember Tetra Photos

Sexual Dimorphism

Determining the sex of Ember Tetras can be challenging for those without much experience. Male Ember Tetras exhibit a more vivid and vibrant colouration than the females, while females tend to be slightly larger and have a rounder body shape compared to males.

Featured Male
Featured Female
Female Male

Quick Facts

Scientific NameHyphessobrycon amandae
Year Described1987
Other NamesFire Tetra
Max Size2 cm
Aquarium LevelBottom - Middle
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 6+
Diet & FeedingOmnivore
LifespanUp to 3 Years

Water Parameters

Water TypeFreshwater
pH 5.0 - 7.0
GH 5 - 17
TDS 18 - 179
Ideal Temperature
73 - 84
22 - 28

Natural Habitat

Ember Tetras are native to the vibrant Araguaia River Basin in South America. These remarkable fish can be found mainly in Central-Western Brazil, where they inhabit rivers, lakes, and streams with slow-moving and low currents. The waters in which Ember Tetras live are enriched with branches, fallen logs, and leaf litter, causing the water to be slightly acidic due to the abundance of tannins. This gives the water a dark, almost black appearance, earning it the name "blackwater." This unique water condition also serves as camouflage for the fish, allowing them to blend in seamlessly with their surroundings.

In their natural environment, Ember Tetras are often surrounded by lush plants and trees, providing them with ample shade and shelter. Recreating the perfect environment for Ember Tetras in your home aquarium requires a bit of effort, but the results are well worth it. With their vibrant colours and playful personalities, Ember Tetras are an excellent addition to any aquatic community. 

 Araguaia River - Brazil
Brazil Flag


Breeding Ember Tetras is a relatively straightforward process that occurs naturally without much intervention. To begin, prepare a separate tank with females and males, dim lighting, and maintain a pH of around seven, with the temperature a few degrees higher than their usual range. It is also important to provide some plants or mesh at the bottom of the tank for the female to lay her eggs on.

Conditioning the fish with live foods for a few weeks before spawning can also help to encourage the process. After spawning, both parents will leave the fry to fend for themselves. To ensure the safety of the babies, it is recommended to move them to a fry tank where you can help them grow and prevent them from being eaten before introducing them to the main tank. The juvenile fish will be free-swimming after about three days and will start to search for their food.

Diet & feeding

To maintain the health and vibrancy of Ember Tetras, a balanced diet is essential. These fish are not finicky eaters and will readily consume tropical flakes or granules as their main diet. However, to enhance their colors and provide them with a variety of nutrients, offering occasional treats such as frozen, freeze-dried or live foods like brine shrimp, daphnia, mosquito larvae or bloodworm is recommended. A well-rounded diet will help to ensure that your Ember Tetras remain healthy and continue to thrive in their aquarium environment.

Other Tetras of interest