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No expert, but I've been keeping freshwater tropicals off and on for forty years. I've finally decided that because I like to see activity in the tank and because I don't have the luxury of huge tanks...Tetras are a fish that work well for me. Activity, generally not too difficult, nice color and I can keep more than a couple in a 20-40gal. tank.

Just wondering which are your favorites and I guess you can throw in Rasboras as well. Also, have you run across and rare members of either family that are particularly cool or interesting to keep?

Thanks!
 

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Just my opinion, but if you want activity in your tank then tetras are not the way to go. They pretty much just mill around and occasionally one gives chase to another. I like tetras for filling space, but if you want a smaller fish that’s going to put on a show for you then cherry barbs are a better choice.

To answer your questions - Congo tetras are particularly cool and interesting, but are not suitable for smaller tanks. They’re the exception to what I had said earlier. My favorite color scheme is the orange flame tetra.
 

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Not exactly tetra, but pencilfish. Tonnes of personality and remind me of hummingbirds as they sometimes 'hover' and 'shake' their fins. Plus when males spar its really fun to watch.

If you have a larger tank, I'd also recommend Buenos Aries tetra, they very active and lively and do well in larger schools - plus theu not a very common tetra


For interest in breeding behaviour, the splash tetra?

Emperor tetra? Colombian tetras - a group of adults look amazing in blackwater/planted tanks... black widows?


As for rasboras, my personal fav would be the scissortail for the larger aquariums - drab fish, but their scissor action was always a conversation piece - and for smaller aquariums the boraras genus - interesting fish, look amazing in schools over 20.

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Discussion Starter #5
Hey, thanks for the input guys...as always, I just need a larger tank...or more!

Jaysee, I've had Congos many years ago in a 100 Gal. tank and when they get larger their color and their fins are breathtaking. Particularly in a school.

Yes aussie, Pencilfish are indeed cool!
 
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