The ‘not quite Peru tetra’
Here’s a total wildcard spotted at Aqualife in Leyland. If you haven’t been there, do yourself a favour and head on over — each and every tank contains an assortment of waifs, strays and oddments.
Among the reams of uncommonly seen species are real gems like these. Undescribed, unknown fish, with just a tease of a common name and nothing else. These lime green tetra are the kind of fish you can completely overlook, because they have similarities with ‘everyday’ common fish. My mind filtered them out as I looked around, and it wasn’t until owner Steve pointed them out to me that I had my ‘woah’ moment.
At a glance, they’re sorta-kinda Peru tetra, Hyphessobrycon peruvianus. Except the colours are all wrong. They have the two distinct ‘caudal blotches’ (look at the base of the tail), but while those of the Peru tetra are orange-red, the imposter tetra has bright lemon blotches. Add to that the bright red eye, and metallic green taint along the flank, and you’ve got a fish which is, frankly, outright gorgeous. Pretty cheap, too.
Scientific name: No idea. Hyphessobrycon sp., most likely. Size: Likely around 4cm. Origin: Peru, I believe. Habitat: Assume shallow streams with vegetation, leaf litter and roots (as with other Hyphessobrycon of this shape). Tank size: Minimum 45 x 30cm footprint. Water requirements: Assume acidic to neutral and soft: 5.0–7.0ph, hardness 2–8°H. Temperature: Likely 23–26°C. Temperament: Peaceful. Feeding: Omnivore, offer flake and pellet foods, live and frozen Daphnia, Cyclops and bloodworm. Availability and price: First time I’ve ever seen them, retailing at £1.79 each.
Terrific tetra without a name