Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi

Introduction to Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi

In the vast and captivating world of aquarium fish, one species that shines with its vibrant colors and alluring charm is the Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi. Commonly known as the Black Neon Tetra, this small freshwater fish offers aquarists a delightful addition to their tanks. This blog post will explore the various aspects of this species, including its habitat and natural distribution, physical characteristics and appearance, feeding habits and diet, breeding behavior and reproduction, as well as the care and tank requirements necessary for keeping the Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi thriving in your aquarium.

Introduction to Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi

The Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi, commonly known as the Black Neon Tetra, is a small freshwater fish that is native to the Amazon basin in South America. It belongs to the family Characidae and is a popular choice among aquarium enthusiasts due to its vibrant colors and peaceful nature.

Black Neon Tetras are typically small in size, with adult males reaching a length of about 1.5 inches and females slightly larger at around 2 inches. They have a slender body shape and are characterized by their bold black lateral line which extends from the gill cover to the caudal fin, contrasting beautifully with their bright silver-blue body.

In their natural habitat, Black Neon Tetras are found in slow-moving, heavily vegetated streams and tributaries of the Amazon River. They prefer water conditions with a pH range of 5.0 to 7.0 and a temperature between 72 to 82°F. These fish are known to be schooling species, so keeping them in groups of at least six individuals is essential to promote their well-being and reduce stress.

Habitat and natural distribution of H. herbertaxelrodi

Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi, commonly known as the Black Neon Tetra, is a small freshwater fish native to the Amazon basin in South America. It is found in the countries of Brazil, Colombia, and Venezuela, where it inhabits slow-moving rivers, streams, and tributaries. The natural habitat of this species is densely planted areas with plenty of hiding spots, such as submerged logs and dense vegetation. The water in its habitat is typically clear, slightly acidic to neutral, and has a temperature range of 75-82°F (24-28°C).

In its natural distribution range, the Black Neon Tetra is often encountered in blackwater environments. These are aquatic ecosystems characterized by the accumulation of organic matter, mainly from decaying leaves, creating darkly stained acidic water. The tannins released by the decomposing vegetation give the water its characteristic dark tea-color appearance. The Black Neon Tetra has adapted to thrive in such blackwater conditions, which is why it can often be found in areas with a high concentration of leaf litter and other organic debris.

This species is known to form large shoals in its natural habitat, providing safety in numbers against potential predators. The dense vegetation and intricate root structures in the water serve as ideal spawning sites for these fish. Females usually scatter their eggs among the plants, and the males then fertilize them externally. After spawning, both the male and female play a role in guarding and protecting the eggs until they hatch.

Common Name Scientific Name
Black Neon Tetra Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi
Habitat: Slow-moving rivers, streams, and tributaries in the Amazon basin.
Distribution: Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela.
Water Parameters: Clear, slightly acidic to neutral, temperature range of 75-82°F (24-28°C).

The Black Neon Tetra is a popular choice for aquarium enthusiasts due to its striking appearance and ease of care. However, it is important to replicate their natural habitat as closely as possible in a home aquarium to ensure their well-being and longevity. Providing plenty of plants, hiding spots, and appropriate water conditions will help recreate the ideal environment for this beautiful species.

Physical characteristics and appearance of H. herbertaxelrodi

Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi, commonly known as the Black Neon Tetra, is a small and vibrant freshwater fish native to the Amazon Basin in South America. This species is highly sought after by aquarium hobbyists due to its striking appearance and peaceful nature. The physical characteristics and appearance of H. herbertaxelrodi make it a captivating addition to any aquarium.

The Black Neon Tetra has a sleek and elongated body, typical of most tetras. It reaches an average size of around 1.5 inches, making it suitable for smaller aquarium setups. Its body is predominantly black, which provides a stunning contrast to the vibrant neon blue stripe that runs horizontally from the tip of its snout to the base of its tail. The color intensifies in males, turning into a deep blue hue, while females exhibit a slightly lighter shade.

One of the key distinguishable features of H. herbertaxelrodi is its characteristic adipose fin. This small, fleshy fin is located on its back, between the dorsal fin and the caudal fin. The presence of the adipose fin is a defining characteristic of the Characidae family, to which tetras belong. It adds an extra touch of elegance to the overall appearance of the fish.

In addition to its attractive physical features, the Black Neon Tetra also possesses captivating behavioral traits. This species is known for its peaceful nature and can be kept in a community aquarium alongside other non-aggressive fish species. Its small size and schooling behavior make it an excellent choice for community tanks. H. herbertaxelrodi is a shoaling fish, which means it naturally forms groups or schools in the wild. To promote their well-being, it is recommended to keep them in groups of at least six individuals.

Feeding habits and diet of H. herbertaxelrodi

When it comes to the feeding habits and diet of Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi, it is essential to understand the natural behavior of this species in the wild. These vibrant and colorful fish are commonly known as the Black Neon Tetra, and they originate from the streams and rivers of the Amazon rainforest in South America. In their natural habitat, they are primarily omnivorous, meaning they consume both plant matter and small invertebrates.

Plant-based Diet:

Black Neon Tetras have a preference for plant-based food sources. They feed on various types of algae, which provide essential nutrients and fiber to their diet. In an aquarium setting, it is crucial to include a variety of plant matter in their diet. This can include blanched vegetables like zucchini, spinach, or kale, as well as specialized fish pellets or flakes containing a high content of plant-based ingredients.

Protein-Rich Foods:

Although their diet primarily consists of plants, Black Neon Tetras also require protein-rich foods to ensure their overall health and vitality. In their natural habitat, they feed on small insects, insect larvae, and other small aquatic organisms. Therefore, it is essential to provide them with a well-balanced diet that includes live or frozen foods such as brine shrimp, bloodworms, or daphnia. These protein-rich sources will help mimic their natural diet and provide them with the necessary nutrients.

Dietary Considerations:

When feeding Black Neon Tetras, it is vital to consider their small size and delicate mouths. They are relatively small fish, growing up to about 1.5 inches in length. Therefore, it is crucial to provide them with appropriately sized food particles to prevent choking or difficulties in consumption. Pellets or flakes specifically designed for small tetra species can be an ideal choice. Additionally, feeding them multiple small meals throughout the day, rather than one large meal, helps to mimic their natural feeding patterns and ensures they receive adequate nutrition.


In conclusion, the feeding habits and diet of Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi include a combination of plant-based and protein-rich foods. Providing a well-balanced diet consisting of plant matter, specialized fish pellets, and live or frozen protein sources will ensure their optimal health and vibrant colors. Remember to consider the size of their mouths and provide appropriately sized food particles to prevent any feeding difficulties. By understanding their natural diet and replicating it in an aquarium setting, you can ensure the overall well-being of these beautiful Black Neon Tetras.

Breeding behavior and reproduction of H. herbertaxelrodi

Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi, commonly known as the Black Neon Tetra, is a popular freshwater fish among aquarium enthusiasts. Its stunning appearance and peaceful nature make it an ideal addition to any community tank. However, understanding its breeding behavior and reproduction process is essential for those interested in successfully breeding these beautiful fish.

1. Spawning Behavior:

During the breeding season, male Black Neon Tetras become more vibrant in color and develop elongated, pointed fins. They engage in elaborate courtship rituals to attract the females. The males display their fin extensions to their potential mates and perform a vibrant dance to show off their colors. This display is known as “flaring.” Once a male successfully attracts a female, they will engage in the actual spawning process.

2. Reproduction:

The Black Neon Tetra is an egg-scattering species, meaning that the female scatters her eggs freely in the environment, and the male fertilizes them externally. The spawning process usually takes place in the morning, and it is essential to provide the fish with suitable conditions to encourage successful reproduction.

3. Breeding Tank Setup:

To facilitate breeding, it is recommended to set up a separate breeding tank. The tank should be densely planted, creating plenty of hiding spots for the eggs to prevent them from being eaten by adult fish. Additionally, adding a mesh breeding mop can provide a suitable spawning site for the tetras. The water parameters should be maintained at a temperature of around 75-80°F and a slightly acidic pH level between 6.0 and 6.5.

4. Spawning Process:

Once the breeding tank is ready, introduce a well-conditioned pair of Black Neon Tetras into the tank. To further stimulate the spawning behavior, provide a nutritious diet consisting of small live or frozen foods like daphnia, brine shrimp, or micro worms. The male will chase the female amidst the plants, and the female will release her eggs. The male will then fertilize them by releasing his milt.

5. Egg Care:

After the spawning process, promptly remove the adult fish from the breeding tank to prevent them from consuming the eggs. The eggs are usually sticky and will attach to the plants or other surfaces in the tank. It is crucial to provide low lighting conditions to prevent the growth of fungus on the eggs. In around 24-36 hours, the eggs will hatch into fry.

6. Raising Fry:

Once the fry hatch, they will initially survive on their yolk sacs before transitioning to free-swimming. Feed them infusoria or commercial fry food designed for tiny fish until they are large enough to consume micro worms or newly hatched brine shrimp. Maintain excellent water quality and gradually increase their food size as they grow.

The breeding behavior and reproduction of Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi are truly fascinating. With the right setup and proper care, you can experience the joy of witnessing these beautiful fish go through their natural breeding process and successfully raise their fry.

Care and tank requirements for keeping H. herbertaxelrodi

Care and Tank Requirements for Keeping H. Herbertaxelrodi

Hyphessobrycon herbertaxelrodi, commonly known as the Black Neon Tetra, is a beautiful and popular freshwater fish that can make a great addition to any aquarium. To ensure their health and well-being, it is important to provide them with the proper care and tank requirements. In this blog post, we will explore the essential aspects of caring for and maintaining an ideal environment for H. herbertaxelrodi.

Tank Size and Setup

When it comes to the tank size for H. herbertaxelrodi, bigger is always better. These fish are quite active, and they appreciate having ample space to swim and explore. A minimum tank size of 20 gallons is recommended, but larger tanks are even more ideal. Additionally, it is crucial to provide a well-established filtration system to maintain water quality. Black Neon Tetras are sensitive to changes in water parameters, so regular water testing and maintenance are essential for their well-being.

Water Parameters

Creating a suitable water environment for H. herbertaxelrodi involves maintaining specific water parameters. They prefer a slightly acidic pH ranging from 6.0 to 7.0, with a hardness level of 1-5 dKH. The water temperature should be kept between 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit (22 to 26 degrees Celsius). Investing in a reliable aquarium heater and thermometer is highly recommended to ensure the stability of the water temperature.

Aquarium Decor

H. herbertaxelrodi are naturally found in densely planted areas with shaded regions, so providing them with lots of plants in the aquarium is beneficial. Live plants, such as Java Moss or Anubias, not only mimic their natural habitat but also act as hiding spots and contribute to the overall water quality. Driftwood and rocks can also be added to create hiding places and territorial boundaries. It is important to ensure that the decorations are not sharp or abrasive to prevent any injuries to the fish.

Compatibility and Tank Mates

When choosing tank mates for H. herbertaxelrodi, it is crucial to consider their peaceful nature. They get along well with other small and non-aggressive fish species like Corydoras, Rasboras, and Tetras. However, it is best to avoid larger or aggressive fish as they may intimidate or harm the Black Neon Tetras. Keeping them in small groups of at least six individuals is ideal, as it helps to minimize stress and bring out their natural shoaling behavior.


H. herbertaxelrodi are omnivorous fish and have a varied diet in the wild. In an aquarium setting, they readily accept a combination of high-quality flakes, pellets, and frozen or live foods. It is important to provide them with a balanced diet that includes both plant-based and protein-rich foods. Regular feeding in small quantities two to three times a day is recommended to ensure that they receive proper nutrition.

In conclusion, providing proper care and meeting the tank requirements for H. herbertaxelrodi is essential for maintaining their overall health and well-being. By ensuring the appropriate tank size, water parameters, aquarium decor, compatible tank mates, and a balanced diet, you can create a thriving and beautiful environment for these captivating Black Neon Tetras in your own aquarium.

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