Blue Emperor Tetra
Blue Emperor Tetra (Inpaichthys Kerri)
Native Location: Colombia
Size: 5cm (2 inches)
Temperature Range: 23 – 27℃ (73 – 81℉)
Preferred pH Range: 5.0 – 7.8
Minimum Aquarium Size: 38L (10 gallons)
Potential Tankmates: Other Tetras, Guppies, Platies
Care Level: Beginner
Blue Emperor Tetra are not as popular as other Tetra species. Which is surprising when you learn they have handsome-iridescences with beautiful reflective rainbow hues. The only true way to admire them is in person with an easy to care for and community fish nature.
They have an omnivore diet made of mainly worms and crustaceans. Captive Emperor Tetra will also accept flake, frozen and other live foods like mosquito larvae and brine shrimp. It is healthiest to keep Emperor Tetras in groups of at least five or six in a tank that can accommodate them with comfort. But as males can become aggressive to one another, it is best to keep only one male in the school. As a peaceful species, they will feel uncomfortable with more boisterous fish. Emperor Tetras will stay in the middle to top sections of the water column.
Males will fight for dominance in smaller tanks. It does not tend to end in any major bodily harm. Although keeping one male in a school is a serious suggestion. If you decide to keep two, you will need to keep an eye on them and separate them if it becomes too aggressive. Use a dark-coloured sand substrate at the bottom of your tank to mimic their native riverbeds. Emperor Tetras enjoy dense vegetation and subdued lighting. Make sure there are plenty of hiding spots but also places to explore.
The difference between Emperor Tetra, and other Tetra species, is how easy they are to differentiate between males and females by their physical features. The dorsal fins and caudal fins on a male are longer and more pointed than the female. The extended ray in the middle of the caudal fin is also extended on the male, giving the tail a trident appearance. Females are smaller and plumper. Keep the fish in their optimal environment in a breeding tank. And they will likely spawn without the need for intervention. Plant live vegetations as it will help protect the eggs. Once spawning is complete, remove the adult pair from the tank.