Are you worried that your pretty Neon Tetra fry might grow into huge fish that will take over your tank? Or are you wondering whether they will remain tiny and disappear amongst the tank décor?
The truth is adult Neon Tetras are not big fish. However, they are not extremely tiny fish either. They grow to about 1.2 inches or 3 centimeters on average, but they can grow to a maximum length of 2.5 inches. And since they are schooling fish, it is ideal for you to keep at least 10 of them in your tank.
Hence, your concerns about them outgrowing your tank or “disappearing” in it might just be baseless. However, if you want to be fully aware, you need to first know how fast the Neon Tetra fry grows and then decide what the ideal tank size is for them.
How Big Do Neon Tetras Grow?
As mentioned earlier, on average, Neon Tetras grow to about 1.2 inches or 3 centimeters. However, they can grow to a maximum length of 2.5 inches.
Moreover, there is a significant difference in size between the female and male Neon Tetras. Female Neon Tetras are usually bigger than males and have a rounded belly, whereas males have a flat belly. However, the male Neon Tetras are more vibrantly colored and have longer fins!
Furthermore, Neon Tetras have a lifespan of between 5 and 8 years. So, it is easy to spot the older Neon Tetras as they are ordinarily a bit heavier and longer.
However, this information is not sufficient for you to be prepared in regards to maintaining enough space for all the fish in your fish tank. Hence, let us begin by first learning how fast Neon Tetras grow.
How Fast Do Neon Tetras Grow?
Now, understanding how fast Neon Tetras grow will enable you to decide whether your current fish tank will be spacious enough for the schooling fish. If you do not, with this information, you will be able to be better prepared.
Hence, it is important to note that a Neon Tetra fry will grow very slowly at first. They may even take 2 months to reach a length of ¼ of an inch!
When Do They Reach Their Maximum Size?
An average Neon Tetra will grow to a maximum length of 1.2 inches or 3 centimeters. And this maximum length is reached within the first year of the Tetra’s life in most cases.
How to Speed Up Growth Rate of Neon Tetras
Now, if you simply cannot wait for your Neon Tetras to grow bigger, there are measures you can take to speed up this process. Hence, below I have described some of these measures in detail for you.
However, be aware that speeding up the growth rate of Neon Tetras could potentially lower their life expectancy.
Providing your Neon Tetras with optimal water parameters will increase their growth rate most significantly.
Since Neon Tetras are tropical fish, they require a temperature of about 27 degrees Celsius. They also need planted tanks in order to control their stress levels because they like hiding out in their little nooks occasionally. Moreover, without these hiding spots their stress levels could get so high that it could actually cause them to perish!
Furthermore, to ensure that the water conditions are optimal, you may also want to invest in good quality equipment such as heaters, filters, and lighting systems. Although, remember that too much light could also cause your Neon Tetra’s stress levels to skyrocket!
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- Types of Aquarium Filter For Tetra Fish and Filtration Methods
- Water Parameters for Tetra Fish: Stable Water Condition
Quality of Food
Remember, “You can’t build a great building on a weak foundation”. This means that if the Tetra fry does not get high-quality nutritious food, then it will grow to become a weak adult Neon Tetra.
Hence, the most important foods for speedy growth are high protein foods. High-quality foods that are high in protein will encourage the growth rate of your Neon Tetras. However, make sure that you do not go overboard!
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This method of speeding up their growth rate is simple. Just get a bigger tank!
However, remember that although adult Neon Tetras may appreciate the extra space to swim around in, the Tetra fry may not fare so well. This means that if the tank is too big, then the Tetra fry may not be able efficiently to reach the food in this bigger space. And this undernourishment could lead to them eventually dying.
Keep Males and Females in Separate Tanks
Most Neon Tetras will be ready to breed in about 12 weeks. However, they will not have reached their maximum size until at least 9 months. Hence, if they begin breeding at just 12 weeks then this could take up a lot of their energy, which could have been used for their bodily growth.
Hence, it is a good idea to separate the males and females and place them in separate tanks until they have reached their peak sizes!
What Tank Size is Ideal for Neon Tetras?
I am sure that you have heard of this before that each 1 each of fish in the tank requires 1 gallon of water to swim around in. Although this simplifies the issue of the ideal tank size for Neon Tetras, you do need to consider some other factors before deciding on purchasing or building the ideal tank for your Neon Tetras.
Also Read: Best Tank Size For Keeping Neon Tetras
How Many Neon Tetras Should Be Kept Together?
As you may know already, Neon Tetras are schooling fish. This means that you should never keep less than four Neon Tetras in the tank. This is mostly due to them feeling more at ease when swimming in a larger school. Additionally, keeping them in larger schools keeps their stress levels under control and ultimately keeps them away from premature death due to high-stress levels.
Hence, Neon Tetras can be kept in schools of 4-6. However, keeping them in a school of 10 is ideal. Although you can keep Neon Tetras in a group of 15-20 as well. No matter which number you choose from these three, it is important first to make sure that your fish tank has enough space for all of them!
Related Article: How Many Neon Tetras Should You Keep In School?
Choosing the Right Tank Size
Since Neon Tetras do not get very big, it may seem that they do not require a huge fish tank. And this is true because a single Neon Tetra only requires a gallon or two of water.
However, since Neon Tetras are schooling fish, and the ideal number of Neon Tetras in a school is 10 or more, a fish tank of around 15-20 gallons is necessary. However, if you opt to go for around 6 Neon Tetras then a 10-gallon fish tank should suffice.
Nonetheless, no matter how many Neon Tetras you choose to have, try opting for a taller fish tank. Since Neon Tetras swim in the middle portion of the fish tank, a taller fish tank will allow them more space to swim!
Related Article: How Many Neon Tetras in a 10-gallon tank
What Should You Feed Neon Tetras?
When it comes to Tetra fry growing into healthy adults, the amount and quality of food they consume are very crucial. Hence, providing them with high-quality food with the necessary nutrients is important.
Therefore, the food they consume can consist of high-quality flake food, freeze-dried bloodworms, brine shrimp, or micro-pellet food. However, when the fish are still very young, Infusoria is significant in ensuring that the fry grows up to be a healthy adult Tetra!
Another noteworthy thing here is that Neon Tetras are omnivores, which means that they consume food of both plant and animal origin. Hence, make sure to include both of these options as a part of their regular diets.
How Often Should You Feed Neon Tetras?
A good rule of thumb is to feed your Neon Tetras once a day but not more than twice a day. Nevertheless, if there is an abundance of live plants in the fish tank, then your Neon Tetras can feed off them. Hence, in this case, feeding them once every 2-3 days will suffice.
In conclusion, if you want to be prepared for your Neon Tetra fry growing up then first, focus on their diets. Once you have their diet sorted out, then you can figure out whether you have the right tank size. If not, you will have a significant amount of time to get a new one as the fry grow pretty slowly at first.
Hence, now that you know exactly how big and how fast your Neon Tetra will grow, you can move on to setting up the right living conditions for them!