Neon Tetra – Red neon – Breeding and rearing

Neon tetras are among the most popular aquarium fish. Breeding these animals is more difficult than keeping them.

Necessary conditions for breeding

For breeding, a tank with a capacity of 15 – 40 litres is required. A corner filter removes bacteria and excrements of the fish. The filter must not be too large, otherwise the young fish will be sucked into the filter. It is best to filter with a low flow over unfertilized peat through mat filters or foam filters. Neon tetras spawn at night. Darkening of the aquarium is achieved by sticking dark paper.

The bottom should be darkened. Fine-grained plants such as the water milfoil or javamoos are suitable for egg-laying. To prevent the eggs from being eaten by the fish, a spawning rust is placed in the aquarium. The water must be clean and soft. For successful breeding, the total hardness should be 4 and the carbon hardness less than 1. The temperature should be 24 to 26 degrees Celsius, the PH value of the water should be 5 – 6.5. For optimal breeding, regular measurement of the conductivity is necessary (optimal at 20 μs).

Pictures and photos of the Neonsalmler breeding

Water conditions for breeding

  • Total hardness 4
  • Carbon hardness below 1
  • PH- value 5 – 6,5
  • Conductivity 20 μs

The courtship behavior

A female and a male fish are placed in the spawning tank. Females are thicker than males, the turquoise side line is crooked. The fish should be 8 to 12 months old. The courtship behaviour is similar to the showing behaviour. The fish chase each other through the aquarium and swim directly towards each other. The swimming of tight envelopes lasts about 5 seconds. Then they shake each other and press the lateral bodies together.

Spawning behaviour

The fish swim 1 – 2 days in the aquarium. To keep the water clean, they are fed with a maximum of 2 mosquito larvae daily during this time. Around four o’clock in the morning the female will deposit up to 400 eggs on the plants or on the bottom in the twilight. If spawning takes place under strong light irradiation, the eggs die. The male fish still needs some time to inseminate the eggs. Then the parent fish are removed from the spawning tank

Brood care and feeding

Neon tetras are free spawners. A brood care does not take place. To prevent the eggs from becoming infected with fungi after spawning, an antifungal agent is mixed into the water. 12 to 36 hours after spawning, the larvae hatch and after a further 36 hours they are already swimming freely.

Four days after hatching, the young animals are already under the water surface.

Rearing of young fish

As soon as the young fish swim freely, they are fed four times a day with powdered food, rotifers and paramecia. After a few days, the food can be supplemented with dried copepods and bouncing nauplii.

The incidence of light is only slowly increased by 25 % daily in order not to stress the young fish. At the age of three months the young fish can be placed in the aquarium with the adult fish.

Food for juvenile fish

  • Paramecia
  • Cyclops
  • Nauplii

>> Read on: Neon Tetras – Attitude and Portrait

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