Redfin Penguin Tetra (Thayeria sp) Species Profile & Care Guide
The Red Fin Penguin Tetra is a newly discovered member of the Penguin Tetra family.
These Tetras are a peaceful species that won't compete well with very boisterous or much larger tankmates. Ideally, it would be best if you kept them with other South American fish.
The Red Fin Penguin Tetra is a sociable fish and schooling by nature; therefore it would be more beneficial if you kept them in groups of at least six individuals as they will fare much better when they are in the company of its own kind.
The fin-nipping behaviour that is sometimes associated with these Tetras does not usually reveal itself when kept in adequate numbers, as the fish tend to concentrate on squabbling amongst themselves. Like most Tetras, it looks far prettier and more effective when maintained like this anyway.
Most Penguin Tetras possess olive bodies and silver abdomens with a black line running down the side into the tail fin's lower half. However, this new form has a champagne gold-like body colour and display fiery red fins, greatly enhancing its ornamental value.
|Scientific Name||Thayeria sp|
|Aquarium Level||Middle - Top|
|Difficulty||Beginner - Intermediate|
|Best kept as||Groups 6+|
|Lifespan||3 - 5 years|
|Temperature||73 - 82 ℉ (22.8 - 27.8 ℃)|
|PH||5.5 - 8.0|
|GH||5 - 20|
Natural Habitat of the Redfin Penguin Tetra
The Red Fin Penguin Tetra is native to the Guaranta do Norte area in the Upper Reaches of Rio Teles Pires in Brazil in South America. They inhabit slow-moving wetlands with a luxuriant growth of underwater plants as well as jungle streams and rivers with dense vegetation but little in the way of aquatic plant life.
Other Tetras of interest
Red Fin Penguin Tetras are not fussy and will accept anything you give them. However, to achieve the best condition and colours of your fish provide regular meals of small live and frozen foods like artemia, bloodworm and daphnia as well as high-quality dried food such as flakes and granules.
Sexing the Redfin Penguin Tetra
It is very challenging to differentiate male from female Red Fin Penguin Tetras as both male and female fish have the same gorgeous body colour, which is one of its advantages. However, I can imagine when the females are in spawning their stomachs will look far more rounded than the males.
Breeding the Redfin Penguin Tetra
Red Fin Penguin Tetras are relatively easy to breed, although you will need to set up a separate breeding tank to raise a good fry yield.
This tank should be dimly lit and contain clumps of fine-leaved plants such as java moss; alternatively, you may use spawning mops, these will give your fish a place to deposit their eggs. Alternatively, you can cover the bottom of the tank with some mesh which should be big enough to let the eggs fall through, but small enough to stop the adults getting to them.
It is advisable to raise the temperature a few degrees higher than in the regular aquarium, as a rise in temperature may encourage the fish to spawn. There is no need to use peat filtration or RO water with this tetra, although you can do so if you wish. However, a small air-powered sponge filter is all that is required in terms of filtration.
You can spawn these fish in a group, with half a dozen individuals of each sex being a good number. It would be more beneficial if you condition the fish with plenty of small live foods then spawning should not present too many problems.
Alternatively, you can spawn them in pairs. Following this technique, the fish are conditioned in female and male groups in separate tanks. Once the females are noticeably full of eggs and the males display their best colours, you should select the best-coloured male and the fattest female and transfer them into the spawning tank in the evening.
They should then spawn the next morning. These Tetras are incredibly fertile, and a single female may produce anything up to 3000 eggs, although around 1000 is more common.
Whichever method you choose, you will have to remove the adults once spawning is complete; otherwise, if given a chance, they will consume the eggs and fry.
The eggs will hatch within 12 to 24 hours, and then 3 or 4 days later they will become free-swimming.
Once the fry has consumed their yolk sac, you should then feed them on an infusoria type food initially for several days until they are large enough to accept food such as brine shrimp nauplii or microworm.
Both the eggs and the fry are light sensitive in the early stages of life, so it is essential that you keep your tank as dark as possible.