Max Size: 12.5cm

Long Finned Tetra (Brycinus longipinnis)

The Long-finned Tetra grows more extensive than many other well-known Tetra species. Still, they are very peaceful and outgoing fish. Long-finned Tetras make an excellent addition to the larger community aquarium, although small or slow-moving species may feel intimidated by its constant activity and size.

Ideally, it would be best if you kept these Tetras in a dedicated West African setup, with other Characins such as African Red-eyed Tetras or Congo Tetras. Other tankmates could include Cichlid species such as Pelvicachromis or Hemichromis and Synodontis Catfish.

The Long-finned Tetra makes an ideal shoaling fish for big tanks containing South American Cichlids such as Satanoperca, Uaru and Geophagus. Make sure you buy a group of at least six individuals as these fish fare much better when in the company of their own kind.

The Long-finned Tetras have an overall silver body but develop very noticeable greenish-gold iridescent colours on the dorsal surface as they mature. These Tetras also display short yellow-orange and black bands on the caudal peduncle, and males develop an exquisite dorsal fin extension with maturity.


Long Finned Tetra
Long Finned Tetra
Long Finned Tetra
Long Finned Tetra
Quick Facts
Scientific NameBrycinus longipinnis
Other NamesLong-finned Alestes, African long-finned Tetra, Long-finned Characin, Longfin Tetra
OriginsCameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Gambia, Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Togo
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 6+
Lifespan3 - 5 years
Water Parameters
Water TypeFreshwater
PH6.0 - 7.5
GH5 - 19
72 - 79℉
22.2 - 26.1℃


In the home aquarium, the Long Finned 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 additional 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.

Tank Mates

1 interesting tank mate ideas for the Long Finned Tetra could include:

Congo Tetra(Phenacogrammus interruptus)

Sexual Dimorphism

It is relatively straightforward to distinguish male from female Long-finned Tetras. Adult males will develop an elongated, flowing dorsal fin, its anal fin has a unique convex profile, and they are also slightly more extensive and more vibrantly coloured than females. In contrast, females are smaller, duller and lack long flowing fins.

Other Tetras of interest

Adonis Tetra(Lepidarchus adonis)
African Moon Tetra(Bathyaethiops caudomaculatus)
African Red Eyed Tetra(Arnoldichthys spilopterus)
Arowana Tetra(Gnathocharax steindachneri)
Black Darter Tetra(Poecilocharax weitzmani)
Black Line Tetra(Hyphessobrycon scholzei)
View all Tetras
Date Added: 19/04/2021 13:53:11 - Updated: 10/08/2022 15:52:04