Flecktail Tetra

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Flecktail Tetra
Crenuchus spilurus.jpg

Spotted tetra ( Crenuchus spilurus )

Sub-cohort : Ostariophysi
Order : Tetras (Characiformes)
Family : Blue tetra and ground tetra (Crenuchidae)
Genre : Crenuchus
Type : Flecktail Tetra
Scientific name of the  genus
Günther , 1863
Scientific name of the  species
Crenuchus spilurus
Günther , 1863

The spotted tetra ( Crenuchus spilurus ; from Greek spilos "spot" and oura "tail"), also known as the splendor tetra or sailfin tetra , is a freshwater fish from South America . He is the only representative of the monotypical genus Crenuchus (from the Greek krene "source", and ochos "guardian"; thus roughly "source ruler "). In the aquarium hobby it is known as a nurse, but it is not bred very often.


The spotted-tailed tetra occurs in Guyana , Suriname and French Guiana and inhabits the river basins of the upper and lower Amazon and the Orinoco . Its home waters become soft and weakly acidic .


The elongated and clearly flattened body of the spotted-tailed tetra reaches a total length of six centimeters in the male animals, the females remain smaller. The upper jaw of its strikingly large mouth has no teeth. The intermediate and lower jaws are covered with ribbon-like, three-pointed teeth. The color varies depending on where it was found, but mostly it is a reddish brown. A yellowish band runs from the gill cover to the root of the caudal fin . The upper half of the iris is colored blood red. A large black spot on the tail stalk gave the species its name Fleckenschwanzsalmler and Crenuchus spilurus ("Crenuchus with tail spot "). In addition to the difference in size, male specimens can be recognized by their flag-like enlarged dorsal and anal fins . Both fins in the male have a mosaic-like pattern of light yellow spots and a yellow or red border. The coloring of the female remains significantly simpler overall. The spotted tetra has 29 to 32 scales in a central longitudinal row; there is also an adipose fin .

Fin formula :

  • Dorsal: 3–4 / 13–15
  • Anal: 2/9


The food spectrum of the spotted tetra mainly includes small invertebrates such as the larvae of mayflies , copepods or mussel crabs . In contrast to most tetra species , this species does not live in schools, but solitary . With the onset of sexual maturity, male animals show territorial behavior and move into a hiding place, such as a cave. When adult males come together, ritualized fights can occur, but these do not result in injuries. Mating takes place in the evening or night hours. One to three brown-red eggs are glued to the ceiling of the hiding place for each fertilization process, a clutch can contain 20 to 60 eggs in total. The father takes care of the brood by driving away potential brood predators and fanning the spawn with fresh water. At 25 degrees Celsius, the larvae hatch after about two days, but initially remain attached to the ceiling of the brood cavity with a thread. About three days later, the male flushes the offspring out of the shelter with fins and thus ends his care. The light-sensitive larvae then feed on their yolk sac for about a week.


  • Günther Sterba : Freshwater fish in the world . Weltbild Verlag, Augsburg 1998, ISBN 3-89350-991-7 .
  • Axel Zarske: Crenuchus. In: Claus Schaefer, Torsten Schröer (Hrsg.): The large lexicon of aquaristics. Eugen Ulmer, Stuttgart 2004, ISBN 3-8001-7497-9 , p. 286.

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