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Below you will find a few of the most popular questions and answers about the Black Neon Tetra.

Before we begin here are a few basic things you should know about this fish;

About The Black Neon Tetra

Black Neon Tetra is a beautiful, fish with black and white stripes that go from the gills to the tail, and a distinctive bright orange semi-circle above the eyes. They hail from slower-moving streams of some North American countries (primarily from Brazil and Bolivia).

They can make a good choice for your first fish, as they are very hardy and can survive a wider range of parameters than many other delicate fish species. They love to school, so it’s a good idea to keep at least half a dozen of them in, ideally, a 20-gallon tank, but they can survive in a 10-gallon as well.

Black Neons prefer a planted tank with low lighting. They are medium to top-level dwellers, so the choice of substrate might not matter much. Gravel is a good idea, especially if you are planning a community tank because a lot of other fish can adjust well to that. If you want to mimic their natural habitat, the ideal substrate would be a white sandy bottom with a few pebbles. But you can also make them happy by adding some golden brown leaves at the bottom.

Some Black Neons prefer clear water, and some might be happier in slightly tan stained water. You can observe that behavior when you go and pick them up from the store. Some other things that you should know about them are:

  • Care level: Beginner
  • Size: 1-1.6 inches (males are slimmer, females are full-bodied)
  • Ideal tank size: 20 Gallons
  • Temperature range: 75 – 82 °F
  • PH range: 5.5 – 7.5 (6 to 6.5 is ideal)
  • Hardness range: 4-8 GH (5, 6 is ideal) But a lot of fish keepers have found them happy and thriving in softer water as well.

Black Neons are pretty hardy when it comes to parameters. But stocking them with fish that stress them out can be very harmful. This is why it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with some of the tank mates that your Black Neon Tetra will really get along with. Also, they prefer slow to medium water currents, so introducing fish that like stronger currents, like Hillstream loach, might not be a good idea.

1. How long do black neon tetras live?

The Black Neon Tetra is a very hardy fish and should live for about 3-5 years.

Further Reading: How Long Do Black Neon Tetras Live

To extend or maximize it’s life span, the Black Neon Tetra will do best in schools of 5 or more and be kept in a tank that is at least 20 gallons.

2. How big do black neon tetras get?

Black Neon Tetras is a smaller fish that do not get that large and typically will be about 1.5″ – 2″ in size.

This fish does best when kept in bigger schools and community tanks. They will get along with almost all tetras and lots of other peaceful fish.

3. Are black neon tetras aggressive?

The Black Neon Tetra is not considered to be an aggressive fish and will get along with much other peaceful fish such as;

  • Cory Catfish
  • Rasbora
  • Zebra Danio
  • Honey Gourami
  • Cardinal Tetra
  • Apistogramma Cichlids

For more information, read our guide about fish that are compatible with the Black Neon Tetra:

Black Neon Tetra Tank Mates – How to form a Happy Little Community With Black Neon Tetras

4. What do black neon tetras eat?

The Black Neon Tetra will eat your standard high-quality flake or pellet food. However, you should mix it up with things like brine shrimp and freeze-dried bloodworms.

5. How can you tell if a black neon tetra is male or female?

The Male Black Neon Tetra is typically small and narrow when viewed from above, while the Female Black Neon Tetra is more massive and plumper as it will become filled with eggs as it nears maturity sexually.

That said, it is crucial to understand the differences are not easy to spot until the fish have fully grown and become sexually mature, don’t try to determine the gender when this fish is young.

6. Do black neon tetras lay eggs?

Yes, The Black Neon Tetra is an egg layer. To encourage spawning, start to feed them high protein foods like brine shrimp. Keep them in a warmer aquarium with soft acidic water and lots of floating plants and places to hide.

7. How many black neon tetras are in a gallon?

The Black Neon Tetra should be kept in an aquarium of at least 20 gallons. This will allow you to keep them in schools of at least 6-10 fish. The Black Neon Tetra can grow to be about 1.5″-2″ in size, so a 20 gallon would provide approx 2 gallons of water per each Black Neon Tetra.

8. Can black neon tetras live with neon tetras?

Yes, The Black Neon Tetras can live with Neon Tetras. Both fish are very peaceful and will not cause any issues in the same aquarium.

Though the name is similar, they are considered to be two different species of fish so they won’t school with one another, but they also won’t fight.

9. Can black neon tetras live with black skirt tetras?

No, The Black Skirt Tetra – Despite being a tetra itself, might not treat your Black Neons very kindly. When they grow up, they tend to be aggressive towards other fish and their species as well.