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Head and Tail Light Tetra
Veterinary & Aquatic Services Department, Drs. Foster & Smith
Tetras
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Hemigrammus ocellifer

Head and Tail Light Tetra

Quick Stats:  Head and Tail Light Tetra

Family: Characidae
Range: South America
Size: Up to 2 inches
Diet: Omnivore
Tank Set-up: Freshwater: Plants, rocks, driftwood
Tank Conditions: 64-82°F; pH 5.8-8.5; KH 4-8
Minimum Tank Capacity: 10 gallon
Light: Medium
Temperament: Peaceful
Swimming Level: Middle
Care Level: Easy
Reproduction: Egg Layer

The Head and Tail Light Tetra originates from the tributaries and rivers of South America and will make a wonderful addition to any community aquarium. Its body is mostly transparent in color with the head and abdomen having a silver to gold coloration. It has a pinkish spot both on the base of the tail, and just behind the eyes, which suggests its common name. Tank raised specimens are often available.

The Head and Tail Light Tetra can be housed in an aquarium with other soft water fish. Tetras are a schooling fish that do well in groups of six or more fish of the same species. Live plants, rocks, and driftwood help to enhance its natural habitat and provide hiding spaces.

Head and Tail Light Tetras breed occasionally in an aquarium setting, and a hospital or "breeding tank" will be necessary. During breeding time, the females will display a fuller-looking belly, which helps to distinguish them from the males. Slightly acidic water is best for optimal breeding habits. After the eggs begin to hatch, 12 to 15 hours after being laid, removing the parents will reduce the number of lost fry.

The Head and Tail Light Tetra will accept many small foods such as brine shrimp or daphnia, freeze dried bloodworms and tubifex, micro pellet food, and a high quality flake food.

Ideal tank mates include:

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