Tim's Tropical Fish






Pristella Tetra

Tetra Galleries

Pristella Tetra, Pristella maxillaris

The Pristella Tetra originates from the Amazon and Orinoco Rivers of South America.  It is also known by the common name X-Ray Tetra.  It is known by the scientific names Pristella maxillaris and Pristella Riddlei. The Pristella Tetra has a distinctive black band on its dorsal fin with white above the band and yellow/white below it.  The tail can have a hint of orange/red.  The body is translucent, giving rise to the name X-Ray, but many sold today appear more solid bodied.  There is also an albino version, which is sometimes referred to as the Golden X-Ray.

Pristella Tetras are good beginner fish.  They are hardy and resistant to temperature change and fluctuating water quality.  They do not require the soft acidic water typical of many other tetras.  Pristella Tertras are shy and will be quite nervous among larger fish. They should be kept in groups of 6 or more.  They will school loosely when they feel safe and tightly when they feel threatened.  Low light levels with plants and driftwood to hide among are recommended.  Pristella Tetras eat small flake foods, spirulina flakes, freeze dried bloodworms and live foods, such as brine shrimp.

Males will tend to be slimmer than females.  A pair should be separated and fed live foods prior to spawning. Pristella Tetras will scatter hundreds of eggs among plants.  The parents should be removed after spawning.  The fry are very small and will require live artemia brine shrimp.

Pristella Tetra, Pristella maxillaris Pristella Tetra, Pristella maxillaris
Scientific Name: Pristella maxillaris
Family: Characin
Temperature: 23 - 28 C; 73 - 80 F
pH: 6.0 - 8.0
Size: 4 cm; 1.5 inches
Life Span: 5 years
Breeding: Difficult, Egg Layer


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