Tetra-Buenos Aires

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Buenos Aires Tetra Habitat and Care

The undemanding Buenos Aires tetra is adaptable to a range of aquarium conditions. Acceptable water temperatures can span all the way from the mid-15 to 26 degrees Celsius, making it suitable for heated as well as unheated tanks. It is a highly active fish, and it does require a sizable open swimming space. Longer tanks are ideal.

The Buenos Aires tetra is not suitable for most live planted tanks, however, as it is known to devour vegetation. Use artificial plants instead, or select sturdy live plants such as anubias, Java fern, or vallisneria. Round out the décor with driftwood and rocks around the periphery of the tank, and your Buenos Aires tetras will be quite at home.


They are happy with any type of substrate and do fine with normal aquarium lighting. However, the tank should be securely covered as these fish are skilled jumpers and will probably do so if given the opportunity.


The Buenos Aires tetra is extra sensitive to the nitrates and phosphates that build up over time, and water hardness increases due to evaporation. To combat these ever-changing conditions, water should be replaced on a regular basis. At least 25 to 50 percent of the tank water should be replaced every other week especially if the tank is densely stocked.


Buenos Aires Tetra Diet and Feeding

Buenos Aires tetras are omnivores that will accept a wide variety of foods. Feed these tetras several times a day but feed only what they can consume in three minutes or less at each feeding.


In the wild, they primarily feed on worms, crustaceans, insects, and plants, but in the aquarium, they will generally eat all kinds of live, fresh, and flake foods. Given its propensity for eating live plants, provide this fish with some lettuce, spinach, or other vegetation to munch on. In lieu of fresh vegetation, you can provide a good quality spirulina flake food.


Flake, dried, and freeze-dried foods add well-needed variety to their diet and will be readily accepted. To keep these tetras at their best and most colorful, offer live foods such as bloodworms, daphnia, brine shrimp, and mosquito larvae. 


Gender Differences

Males of the species have brighter, redder fins and are generally more colourful overall, particularly during spawning. Females are larger and broader with a rounder belly. 


Breeding the Buenos Aires Tetra

Buenos Aires tetras are easy to breed; they are egg scattering fish that can be spawned in pairs or in groups. If spawned in a group, use approximately the same number of males as females. A mature female's belly will become nicely rounded when she is full of eggs. Choose males that are the most colourful.


Condition all spawning fish with live foods prior to spawning attempts. Keep the water slightly acidic to neutral with a pH of 6.5 to 7.2; keep the water temperature at 23 degrees Celsius. Gentle filtration, such a sponge filter is recommended. Provide sturdy plants such as Java moss or spawning mops on which the fish will scatter their adhesive eggs.


This species will usually begin to spawn at dawn. Females may lay as many as 2,000 eggs, depositing them on the plants or green floss. Remove the adults once the eggs have been laid. After spawning, these fish exhibit no parental care and will eat the eggs and young, so make this your separate rearing tank.


The eggs will hatch in approximately 24 hours. In three to four days the fry will have consumed their egg sacs and will be free swimming. Initially, feed the fry infusoria or commercially prepared fry food such as Liquifry. As they grow larger, feed them freshly hatched brine shrimp, micro worms, or finely ground high-quality flake food or fry food.

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