Red Eye Tetra (Moenkhausia sanctaefilomenae) Fish Species Profile

Article Contains

The red-eye tetra is an easy species to keep and adds a touch of elegance in a community aquarium with its metallic colour, dynamic energy, and signature red eye. It grows to just 2 inches and has large scales. They are tough enough to be indecisive, and big enough not to get eaten by other species with a largemouth. You will see these moving in small troops, six or more is ideal, and they hang around near the surface under floating plants.

Scientific NameMoenkhausia sanctaefilomenae
Other NamesYellow-banded moenkhausia, yellowback moenkhausia, yellowhead tetra, lamp eye tetra.
OriginsSouth America, Brazil
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
Best kept asGroups 5+
Lifespan3 - 5 years
Maximum Sizeup to 7 cm
Water Conditions
Water TypeFreshwater
Temperature75 - 85 ℉ (23.9 - 29.4 ℃)
PH5.5 - 8.5
GH5 - 20
KH4 - 8
TDS100 - 200

Origins of the Red Eye Tetra

Red-eye tetras are found in South America in Paraguay, Eastern Peru, Eastern Bolivia, and Western Brazil. In the wild, they inhabit pure flowing clear waters or big rivers, but you can sometimes find them living in tributaries so that they can feed in the thick vegetation of the murky Amazon.


Red-eye tetras will eat a variety of different foods

you can feed them small granules, flake food, frozen or live brine shrimp, daphnia, tubifex, and freeze-dried or frozen bloodworms.

You should regularly introduce vegetables as this will keep them healthy and will bring out their best colours and make them more appealing.

Sexing the Red Eye Tetra

The only genuinely distinguishing feature to differentiate the sexes between male and the female is that the female is more rounded and fat.

Breeding the Red Eye Tetra

Red-eye tetras will become reproductive around ten months old they will require a separate breeding tank.

Keep this tank dimly lit with clumps of spawning mops or Java moss.

If you have floating plants, they will often lay eggs in them.

When its time to breed they will lock fins, when this occurs, they will carry out a somersault movement in the plants.

The female will release about a dozen eggs at a time, and the male fertilises them.

If floating plants aren't available, they will scatter their eggs on the substrate or glass bottom.

Once spawning has occurred, you should remove the mating pair as they will consume the eggs. The female can lay up to 1000 sticky eggs.

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Date Added: 5/28/2020 - Updated: 5/28/2020 5:14:52 PM