fish medium level

Glossolepis pseudoincisa Allen & Cross 1980

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Millennium Rainbowfish, Lake Ifanten Rainbowfish

Glossolepis pseudoincisa or Lake Ifanten Rainbowfish in the hobby was first accidentally discovered in Tami River, Indonesia, almost a half a century ago, but somehow it could never be found again in the river. Half a century later, this species was collected by Heiko Bleher and Natasha Khardina in a previously unknown lake located in Western Papua called Lake Ifanten o Danau Ifanten.

Submitted by
Heiko Bleher
Approved by
Gunther Schmida
-2.7180021, 140.6364746
Geographical region
Southeastern Asia
Drainage Basin
River catchment
Tana River
Water body type
Crater lake
Water body name
Water body part
Water body course
Water body: tributary of
Tributary name
Type locality
Tami River, Western Papua, Indonesia
Conservation status/IUCN Red List
Not Evaluated (NE)


Water Chemistry

Water information

Water type
Fresh water
Water color
Clear water
Water transparency
Concentration of sediments
Water temperature
26.8 °C
Water flow/curent

Chemical parameters

Dissolved Oxygen


Standard length
8 cm
Water volume (min. aquarium)
130 l
Social behaviour
Group fish
Behaviour description

The Millennium Rainbowfish are active and will definitely liven up the aquarium. Being a schooling species it is best to keep a group of 20 of the adult with a good ratio of males and females. The males will display their most brilliant colors brightly popping out while posturing each other.

Glossolepis pseudoincisa will do best in aquariums that simulate their natural habitat. The tank should have sandy substrate and vegetation best planted in the sides and back, living a stretch of open water in the middle. Rockwork could be a beautiful additions to the Lake Ifanten rainbowfish tank.

In its natural environment this species tends to congregate in groups around the margins of lake covered with dense vegetation. Lower temperatures, close to 21° C, will encourage males to display brighter colors.

Aggression grade
Day active
Sexual dimorphism

Adult males develop much higher back than females. The coloration of the males is bright red, while the females are greenish-yellow.

Nutrition in Nature

Glossolepis pseudoincisa is an omnivore species. In its natural biotope it feeds on small crustaceans, insect larvae, algae and detritus. As aquarium they will accept up to 70% flake or pellet food. Other 30% should be made up of a variety of live foods: bloodworms, tubifex worms, brine shrimp, and daphnia.


Breeding tank set-up

Glossolepis pseudoincisa is an egg scatterer. Separate a well fed breeding pair and introduce them to the spawning tank. The breeding aquarium should have slightly hard, alkaline water with a pH 7.5 and a temperature 26 °C. This species lay their eggs on fine-leaved plants such as java moss. A small raise in temperature can induce spawning.

Nutrition parents

High quality diet of frozen and live foods: Artemia sp., Mysis sp., microworms.

Mating type
Spawning behaviour

Males will display intensive red that  depends upon age, health, temperature, water quality, mood, and even rank in the school. A brilliant neon orange strip serves as a breeding signal to females. Females and young males are silvery brown.

Usually the healthy pair will spawn for a period of several weeks, laying a few eggs each day. These are attached to java moss or spawning mop by a small thread.

The male will display an amazing show of intense colors on the spawning site by doing a “headstand” over the produced by female eggs. After the spawning the pair will rest. The spawning mop or plants should be removed ot replaced otherwise the eggs will be eaten. The fish will repeat this daily with steadily decreasing numbers of eggs produced. The parents should be removed when egg numbers fall or when the females show signs of fatigue.

Breeding habits
Egg scatterer
Hatching period
about 7 days
Number of eggs in average
Parental care
Fry number
Nutrition fry

For the growth of the young it is necessary to administer an infusoria–type food for the first few days, until they are large enough to shrimp nauplii, microworm and other micronized food.

Notes on reproduction

Although the adults tend not to eat the spawn, it’s easier to raise the fry in a separate aquarium. It is recommended to checking the plants daily and remove the laid eggs to a raising tank with the water from the spawning tank.

Comment by the expert

Millenium Rainbowfish are easy to care for provided their water is kept clean. At least 25% of the tank water should be replaced weekly, especially if the tank is densely stocked. The importance of partial water changes can not be overstated, as this is a deciding factor of body color.

Being imported by a few companies Lake Ifanten Rainbowfish is extremely rare in captivity. This species is quite hardy and in a well maintained aquarium the diseases are rare. An outbreak of disease is usually limited to just one or a few fishes if you deal with it at an early stage.