Rainbow Copella Tetra (Copella vilmae)
Copella Rainbow Tetras are peaceful and fascinating little fish. They are easy to take care of and a pleasure to breed. The only disadvantage is that these Tetras are pretty scarce and are rarely offered for sale.
Copella Rainbow Tetras are shoaling fish; therefore, you should maintain them in good-sized groups of eight to ten individuals. Keeping these fish in more significant numbers will make your fish less skittish and give you a more natural-looking display. However, due to their relatively small adult size, you must take care when choosing their tankmates. Larger, more boisterous fish easily threaten these Tetras, and you should not house them with anything that would consider them a snack.
Ideal tankmates for the Copella Rainbow Tetras could include smaller species of Dwarf Cichlids, Pencilfish, Corydoras Catfish, Killifish and other small blackwater Tetras.
Copella Rainbow Tetras are small, slender fish with pinkish-red body colouration. In addition, these Tetras display a very broken stripe that almost looks like separate dark patches on their bodies.
These Tetras have a rather large and upturned mouth with acutely pointed teeth and a dark band starting at the snout running to the eye, which can continue through to the operculum on some species. In addition, their dorsal fin has a red flash of colour on it as well as a dark blotch.
Their caudal fin is extremely forked, with the upper lobe being vaster than the bottom lobe, which also has a red flash. Their adipose fin is absent, and they use their large pelvic fins when spawning.
|Scientific Name||Copella vilmae|
|Aquarium Level||Middle - Top|
|Difficulty||Beginner - Intermediate|
|Best kept as||Groups 8+|
|Lifespan||3 - 5 years|
|PH||4.5 - 7.5|
|GH||3 - 12|
|TDS||18 - 143|
|68 - 82℉|
20 - 27.8℃
Photos of the Rainbow Copella Tetra
The Rainbow Copella Tetra is endemic to the Rio Preto, a tributary of the Caures River near Belem in north-western Brazil in South America. This species has also been found in Rio Amazonas at Letícia in Colombia. These Tetras inhabit slow-flowing blackwaters of rivers and creeks, and the substrate in their habitats consist of sand, dead leaves, driftwood and branches of trees. These habitats are usually relatively shaded due to the forest and primarily Ficus trees that surround them.
What to feed the Rainbow Copella Tetra
Rainbow Copella Tetras will accept good-quality dried foods of a suitable size, such as flakes and granules in the aquarium. However, it would be better if you also offered them daily meals of small live and frozen foods such as Moina, baby brine shrimp and grindal worm to keep your Tetras in tip-top condition.
You can also provide these fish with insects such as Drosophila fruit flies or small crickets, although you must ensure their stomachs are full before giving them to your fish.
How to sex the Rainbow Copella Tetra
It is relatively straightforward to distinguish the male from the female Rainbow Copella Tetra. The males are usually larger and longer than females and have more extended fins, which are typically more vibrant. In addition, when males are in spawning condition, a thick dark bar may extend posteriorly along the body from behind the opercle.
How to breed the Rainbow Copella Tetra
Currently, there is little to no information on how to breed the Copella Rainbow Tetra; however, they are likely to produce in the same way as other fish from the genus.
It would be better to place a pair or a trio in a small breeding tank with a sponge filter and plenty of Java Moss or floating plants. You should then lower the water level to around 10cm from the top. Next, arrange it so that the water from the sponge filter splashes the water surface and tank sides, making a moist microclimate between the cover and the aquarium lid.
Rainbow Copella Tetras will spawn on the aquarium's lid or the sides of the aquarium glass. The male and female will harmonise their jumps and use their enlarged pelvic fins to cling to their desired spawning site. They will lay around a dozen eggs during each leap and can lay over 100 eggs.
If more than one female is available, the male will mate with them all. The nests can be in the same place, or there can be various nests.
Once spawning is complete, you need to remove the females. The male will now guard the eggs.
If the male has multiple nests to tend to, he will remember where they are and splash each nest in turn. If the eggs are fertile, they will usually hatch after two or three days, and the babies will drop into the water. At this point, you will have to remove the male.
The fry is small and requires live foods initially. Paramecium and infusoria are sufficient. They will also find nourishment within the Java moss and floating plants. Around ten days later, the fry will be large enough to consume vinegar eels or newly hatched brine shrimp.
It would be beneficial to carry out partial water changes to keep on top of the water quality.