Max Size: 5cm

Ornate Tetra (Hyphessobrycon bentosi)

The Ornate Tetra makes a pretty addition to community or biotope aquariums, and they have great personalities. This Tetra is relatively hardy and somewhat easy to care for. Still, they are not recommended for the beginner aquarist as these tetras require pristine water as they can not tolerate water condition changes. This attractive and pleasant Tetra deserves the extra work needed to keep it.

Many companions are needed for this little fish. A school of six is generally the accepted minimum. Still, although the Ornate Tetra has schooling tendencies, it will usually only school tightly when it is interrupted by larger tankmates or water changes.

The Ornate Tetra has a deep-body, and their shape is similar to that of the larger tetras. This Tetra has a silvery salmon pinkish body and has a dark spot around the gills, they have a faint greyish shoulder patch, and the fins have dark red markings with white tips.

Quick Facts
Scientific NameHyphessobrycon bentosi
Other NamesBentos Tetra, White Tip Tetra, White Fin Ornate, False Rosy Tetra
Aquarium LevelAll Levels
Best kept asGroups 6+
Lifespan3 - 5 years
Water Parameters
Water TypeFreshwater
PH6.5 - 8.0
GH3 - 12
TDS18 -215
73 - 82℉
22.8 - 27.8℃

Photos of the Ornate Tetra

Ornate tetra
Ornate tetra
Ornate tetra
Ornate tetra
Ornate Tetra

Natural Habitat

You can find Ornate Tetras in Obidos, Para, and Brazil in the lower Amazon basin located on the river's main channel between the mouths of the Rios Trombetas and Tapajós in South America.

These Tetras inhabit slow-moving creeks, sidearms, sluggish tributaries, flood plain lakes and forest lakes with submerged woody structures such as roots, overhanging riparian vegetation, fallen branches or aquatic plants where the forest canopy shades them.

The water has an inconsequential diffused mineral content that is poorly buffered and stained brown because of the progressive discharge of tannins and natural acids from decomposing organic matter.


What to feed the Ornate Tetra

It would be best if you provide the Ornate Tetra with a varied diet. They have relatively high vitamin requirements, so high-quality flake foods should make up most of their diet.

They enjoy chasing after live foods and may occasionally pick at algae or plants. These Tetras need several feedings a day but only offer what they can consume in 3 minutes or less.

How to sex the Ornate Tetra

It is relatively easy to differentiate male from female Ornate Tetras. Males have longer dorsal and anal fins and will be slightly larger and more intensely-coloured than females. In contrast, the females will be much plumper mostly when filled with eggs, shorter and duller than the males.

How to breed the Ornate Tetra

Breeding the Ornate Tetra is a tricky but rewarding process. They are egg scattering spawners that present no parental care. Agreeable breeding pairs in good condition will often spawn in a community tank if provided with the right conditions. Unfortunately, the adults will regularly consume the eggs and fry.

A separate breeding aquarium will be required, with the temperature raised by a few degrees than usual and the water should be soft and slightly acidic. You should provide fine-leaved plants as a spawning medium. The lights should be dim; this will mimic their natural habitat and help to trigger spawning. A small, air-driven sponge filter is needed for oxygenation and filtration this will provide gentle water flow.

To maximise breeding success, condition the males and females in different tanks before breeding and feed them a lot of small, live food. You should then select a breeding pair or small group and move them into the breeding tank in the evening. A mature female's belly can be perfectly rounded when she's full of eggs. Choose the biggest and most colourful males. There should be one or two males and multiple females in a group.

They normally spawn in the morning, and the females will release their eggs among the fine-leaved plants. You should remove the parents must immediately after spawning, or they will consume the eggs.

Eggs will hatch in approximately 24 to 36 hours, and the fry will be free-swimming five days after that. Perform water changes frequently, taking great care not to remove any fry in this process.

For the first few days, you will need to feed the fry with infusoria-type foods until they are big enough to accept microworm or baby brine shrimp. The baby fish are relatively slow to reach maturity and ought to be kept isolated until they are too large to be eaten.

Other Tetras of interest

African Moon Tetra(Bathyaethiops caudomaculatus)
African Red Eyed Tetra(Arnoldichthys spilopterus)
Black Darter Tetra(Poecilocharax weitzmani)
Black Line Tetra(Hyphessobrycon scholzei)
Black Neon Tetra(Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi)
Black Phantom Tetra(Hyphessobrycon megalopterus)
View all Tetras
Date Added: 14/10/2020 - Updated: 02/12/2021 17:30:12