Introduction to Bloodfin Tetra

The Bloodfin Tetra is an excellent freshwater ray finned fish among the aquarium hobbyists due to their hardiness and gorgeous coloration. It is also known as the Bloodfin, Glass Bloodfin, the Red-finned Characin, the Red-finned Tetra and the Argentine Bloodfin. It originates from Rio Parana basin in Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay, South America. It inhabits in a variety of water ways including streams, rivers and small tributaries where floating and overhanging vegetation are available.

Bloodfin Tetra’s Overview

The Bloodfin Tetra is an excellent hardy aquarium fish. It has a slim and laterally compressed body with forked caudal fin. Body is silver in color while the caudal, dorsal, anal and adipose fins are red in color. Generally the male is slightly more colorful than the female.  The female have a plumper body shape while the body of males are usually streamlined with more red color on the fins. Mature males have gill glands and hooks on the anal fins. The Bloodfin Tetra is an egg layer. The mature female produces about 700-800 glass-clear eggs. The bloodfin tetra is omnivorous and in wild it mainly feeds on worms, small insects and crustaceans. In captivity it generally accepts all kinds of live, fresh, and flake foods. It prefers good water chemistry with pH of 6.0-8.0, hardness of 2 – 30 dGH and temperature of 64.0 to 82.0° F. It grows up to 5.51 cm in length and can live up to 10 years or more with proper care.

Quick Specs

Scientific Name: Aphyocharax anisitsi

Common Name: Bloodfin, Argentine Bloodfin, Red-finned Characin, Red-Finned Tetra, Glass Bloodfin etc

Origin: Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina

Adult Size: 5.51 cm

Behavior: Peaceful

Tank Level: All

Minimum Tank Size:  15 gallons

Diet: Omnivore

Scientific Name: Aphyocharax anisitsi

Breeding: Egg layer

Care level: Easy

Water pH: 6.0-8.0

Water Hardness: 2 – 30 dGH

Water Temperature: 64.0 to 82.0° F

Water Movement: Moderate

Lighting:  Moderate – normal lighting

Lifespan: 5-10 years or more

Background of Bloodfin Tetra

The Bloodfin Tetra (Aphyocharax anisitsi) was described by Eigenmann and Kennedy in 1903. It belongs to the family Characidae under order Characiformes of class Actinopterygii. It has several synonyms such as Aphyocharax affinis, Aphyocharax ipacarayensis, Aphyocharax rubropinnis, Phoxinopsis typicus, Aphyocharax anisiti. It is not listed on the IUCN Red List as a vulnerable species.

Feeding Bloodfin Tetra

The bloodfin tetra is omnivorous and in wild it mainly feeds on worms, small insects and crustaceans. In captivity it generally accepts all kinds of live, fresh, and flake foods with other food types, such frozen products. It also appreciates brine shrimp, bloodworms, brine shrimp and silkworms. To keep a good balance gives them a high quality flake food every day. Feed should be offered 2-3 times a day.

Enjoying the Article?

Join Our Mailing List

Enter your e-mail in today and periodic updates of new and interesting articles about everything freshwater.

Housing Bloodfin Tetra

Bloodfin tetra is an extremely hardy fish making them popular among the aquarium enthusiasts.  It is a very active fish and it needs at least 15 gallons tank or more. Bloodfin tetra is typically kept in schools of five or more individuals. It is quite peaceful fish and it can be kept with other peaceful fish like Corydoras Catfish, Large Tetras, Mollies, Plecostomus, Silver Hatchet, Swordtails, Zebra Danio, Guppies, other Tetras, Rasboras, small Loricariids and Platies. They do well in a planted tank with appreciate rosette type plants like Valisneria and Sagittaria. They also do well with ornamental shrimp and other more delicate invertebrate species. They have fin nipping tendency and it should not be kept with fish of long fins, wavy fins, such as angelfish or guppies. To make tank environment healthy water should be replaced on a regular basis. It prefers good water chemistry with pH of 6.0-8.0, hardness of 2 – 30 dGH and temperature of 64.0 to 82.0° F. At least 25 – 50% of the tank water should be replaced every other week, especially if the tank is densely stocked. The tank should be securely covered as this fish is skilled jumper.

Breeding Bloodfin Tetra

The Bloodfin Tetra is an egg layer. This is a great fish for beginners as it is very hardy and easy to breed in captive condition. Spawning occurs usually in early morning on the tank surface between the plants after a period of very active driving by the male. Before spawning the parents should be conditioned with high quality protein foods such as live, fresh and flake foods. The breeding tank should have good water chemistry with pH of 6.0-8.0, hardness of 2-30 dGH and temperature of 64.0 to 82.0° F. The mature female produces about 700-800 glass-clear eggs which sink to the bottom of the tank. The parents should be removed after spawning to prevent them from eating the eggs. Eggs hatch in about 20 to 25 hours and they survive several days using yolk for nutrition. The free swimming fry should be fed with brine shrimp and then finely ground flake foods.

Sexing Bloodfin Tetra

Bloodfin Tetra’s are difficult to make difference between the male and female. Generally the male is slightly more colorful than the female.  The female have a plumper body shape while the body of lales are usually streamlined with more red color on the fins. Mature males have gill glands and hooks on the anal fins.

Bloodfin Tetra for sale and where to buy

The Bloodfin Tetra is hardy, active and adaptable fish. It is a good fish for beginners and expert aquarists. It has silver and whitish body with blood red fins which make it more popular among the aquarium enthusiasts. The Bloodfin Tetra is readily available with moderate price. Check out below for where I recommend to buy Emperor Tetras.