Maximum size : 3 cm

Montags Tetra - Hyphessbrycon montagi : Complete Fish Profile & Care Guide

Table of contents


Montag's Tetras (Hyphessbrycon montagi) is a stunning addition to the ever-evolving world of Tetras. These mesmerizing fish have quickly gained recognition for their peaceful nature and lively demeanour, making them the perfect residents for a meticulously crafted community aquarium. However, to truly appreciate the enchanting charm of Montag's Tetras, it is advisable to maintain them in groups of no fewer than eight individuals. By surrounding themselves with fellow schooling fish, these Tetras not only find comfort in the security of their numbers but also create a visually stunning spectacle that emulates the wonders of their natural habitat. While occasional skirmishes may arise within the group, a spacious aquarium adorned with ample visual barriers and hiding spots ensures that no lasting harm befalls these charismatic fish.

When selecting tankmates, it is essential to consider species of similar size and peaceful temperament. A harmonious community can be established by combining Montag's Tetras with other small Tetras, Hatchetfish, Pencilfish, non-predatory Cichlids of small to medium size, Corydoras Catfish, Dwarf Barbs, and Loricariids. To truly capture the essence of their natural habitat, a sandy substrate paired with driftwood roots and branches creates an inviting environment. Alternatively, a well-planted aquarium serves as a lush haven for these Tetras to explore. To further enhance the authentic ambience, adding dried leaf litter adds visual appeal, provides cover for the fish, and encourages the colonization of beneficial microorganisms.

When observing Montag's Tetras, their exquisite physical characteristics become apparent. Their mesmerizing bodies boast a captivating blend of colours, with a brownish hue adorning the upper half and a contrasting greyish-black shade adorning the lower half. Notably, two distinct humeral spots stand out, connected by a dark lateral body stripe. The first spot, surrounded by shimmering silver, commands attention, while the slightly smaller second spot exudes a captivating black allure. Adding to their allure, a narrow, straight red line gracefully traverses the lateral area, beginning just above the first blotch and continuing down to the caudal peduncle. The upper half of their eyes reveals a striking red pigment, further accentuating their remarkable appearance. While their fins maintain a transparent quality, the pelvic fin stands out with a vibrant yellow hue.

Montags Tetra Photos

Sexual Dimorphism

Sexing Montag's Tetras can be a challenging task as there are no clear visual distinctions between males and females. However, it is believed that sexually mature females may exhibit a more rounded body shape when carrying eggs. This slight difference in physical appearance can provide some indication of the fish's sex.

Quick Facts

Scientific NameHyphessbrycon montagi
Year Described2014
Other NamesBarbel Tetra
Max Size3 cm
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 8+
Diet & FeedingOmnivore
LifespanUp to 5 Years

Water Parameters

Water TypeFreshwater
pH 5.0 - 7.0
GH 3 - 15
TDS 18 - 143
Ideal Temperature
73 - 82
22 - 27

Natural Habitat

The captivating Montag's Tetra is exclusively found in the mesmerizing landscapes of Brazil's South America. This species calls the headwaters of the Rio Arapiuns, Rio Branco, Rio Aruã, and a small direct tributary of the Rio Amazonas in Para state it's home. These remarkable Tetras thrive in the enchanting streams that meander through the flooded forest regions. The water in these streams is characterized by its moderate flow and crystal-clear clarity, offering a glimpse into the fascinating underwater world. The riverbed is adorned with a mixture of sand, pebbles, and mud, creating a captivating tapestry that harmonizes with the lush surroundings. The substrate is generously layered with a carpet of fallen leaves and embraced by the presence of submerged logs, adding a touch of natural elegance to this unique habitat.


Breeding Montag's Tetras can be a relatively straightforward process, but it requires the establishment of a dedicated breeding tank to maximize fry yield. This specialized tank should be kept dimly lit and equipped with bundles of fine-leaved plants such as Java Moss, which serve as suitable surfaces for the Tetras to scatter their eggs. Alternatively, spawning mops, plastic grass-like matting, a layer of glass marbles, or a mesh can also serve this purpose effectively.

Maintaining water conditions within the breeding tank is crucial. Aim for a slightly acidic to neutral pH, slightly higher temperature compared to the community aquarium, and provide adequate water movement and oxygenation using an air-powered sponge filter or air stone. Conditioning a group of Montag's Tetras with plenty of live and frozen foods will help prepare them for spawning, reducing potential difficulties in the process. Alternatively, you can spawn these Tetras in pairs by conditioning male and female groups separately in individual tanks with a high-quality diet of live and frozen foods.

Once the females are full of eggs and the males exhibit their most vibrant colours, carefully select the healthiest female and the most brightly coloured male to place in the breeding tank. Spawning typically occurs the following morning. It is important to promptly remove the adults after spawning, as they may consume the eggs if given the opportunity.

The eggs will generally hatch within 24 to 36 hours, with the fry becoming free-swimming 3 to 4 days thereafter. Initially, feeding the fry with infusoria-type foods is advisable until they are large enough to accept baby brine shrimp and microworms. During the early stages, the eggs and fry are particularly sensitive to light, so it is recommended to maintain dim lighting or keep the lights off to ensure their well-being.

Diet & feeding

In their natural habitat, Montag's Tetras exhibit an omnivorous feeding behaviour, consuming a diverse range of food sources, including crustaceans, small invertebrates, fallen fruit, and algae. In the home aquarium, these Tetras can likely thrive on a diet consisting of high-quality dried foods such as flakes and granules. However, to ensure optimal health and vitality, it is highly recommended to supplement their diet with various live and frozen foods such as bloodworm, mosquito larvae, daphnia, Moina, and similar options. Additionally, incorporating dried foods into their feeding regimen will provide a well-rounded nutritional balance for these Tetras.

Other Tetras of interest