Tetra fish are popular for their bright coloration. They swim in schools and it's delightful to watch them as they move about the aquarium. They are also known for their peaceful nature and how well they mix among each other. The most popular types of Tetras are the Neon and the Cardinal Tetras. Both types are extremely beautiful fresh water fish.

Tetra Fish

The ideal size of aquarium to have Tetra fish is a 15 gallons tank, with water heated to a temperature between 75 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. You shouldn't use a thick layer of gravel, no more than a quarter of an inch thick.

Neon Tetras are extremely popular aquarium fish. They're sturdy and inexpensive, so it's often one of the first fish species purchased by beginner aquarists. Neon Tetras will add color and activity to your aquarium. Neon Tetras stay quite small and have a peaceful temperament, so they are ideal for small community aquariums.

When you have Neon Tetras in your fish tank, you should always have a minimum of six, although ten is better. They need to swim in schools to be happy. They are generally very shy, and if frightened, will search for hiding spots, so having live aquarium plants is important if you intend to keep these fish.

Neon Tetras do well with Black Phantom Tetras, Glow Light Tetras and Harlequin Rasboras. Other good friends are White Clouds, Fancy Guppies, Glass Fish, Honey Gouramis, Corydoras Catfish and Ghost Shrimp. You should not put them in the same tank with Large Tetras- including Serpae Tetras, Black Skirt Tetras or Black Neon Tetras; the Neon’s will not be able to defend themselves and they might get attacked or eaten.
Despite the Neon, Glow Light and Black Phantom Tetra’s tiny size of about 1.25”, they have been known to live for 10 years or more.

Cardinal Tetra

The Cardinal tetra is often confused with its popular relative, the Neon tetra. Some people refer to the Cardinal as “red neon tetra”. But they are two distinct species and telling them apart is not hard at all. Both Cardinal tetras and Neon tetras have an iridescent blue line across the body. Under this line, you will find a lateral red stripe. If it's a Neon, this stripe will end halfway from the nose. If it's a Cardinal, the striping will continue much longer.
The Cardinal tetra is particularly sensitive to nitrate. Levels of ammonia and nitrite must be kept down. You have to perform frequent water changes and be careful not to leave uneaten food in the water. Cardinal tetras are generally not recommended for beginner aquarists, but if you really want to keep Cardinal tetras, monitor the water conditions closely.
For Cardinal tetras, it is always a good idea to include a lot of plants in your aquarium as well as an open area for swimming. Floating plants help dim the light a bit, and that way your Cardinal tetras will spend more time out in the open. Keep Cardinal tetras in groups of at least five. Larger shoals are even better, so if you have place for 10 Cardinal tetras or more, definitely go for the higher number. The more the merrier!

Photos Courtesy of: leino88