fish Easy level

Hyphessobrycon pyrrhonotus Burgess 1993

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Hyphessobrycon pyrrhonotus is a freshwater tetra, native to Rio Ereré, a tributary to Rio Negro in Brazil. Nowadays, it is still only present in the Rio Negro basin. This is a benthopelagic species that lives in tropical, preferably shallow, waters. In nature, this fish usually swims in groups, among submerged woody structures such as roots, fallen branches, overhanging riparian vegetation or aquatic plants. Usually, the substrate is made of white sand and leaf litter.

Submitted by
Natasha Khardina
Approved by
Peter Guennel
-0.9847240, -62.1745605
Geographical region
South America
Drainage Basin
Amazon basin
River catchment
Rio Negro
Water body type
Water body name
Nameless affluent
Water body part
Water body course
Middle course
Water body: tributary of
Tributary name
Type locality
Rio Ereré, tributary to Rio Negro, Brazil.
Conservation status/IUCN Red List
Not Evaluated (NE)


Water Chemistry

Water information

Water type
Fresh water
Water color
Black water
Water transparency
Concentration of sediments
Water temperature
24-27 °C
Water flow/curent

Chemical parameters

Dissolved Oxygen


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

Hyphessobrycon pyrrhonotus is a peaceful species, although adult males can become territorial. In the biotope aquarium, it is best to maintain them with similarly-sized characids, gasteropelecids, lebiasinids, smaller callichthyid or loricariid catfishes and non-predatory, medium-sized cichlids. This is a group fish; so, it is best to keep it in a group of at least 8-10 specimens of both sexes.

Aggression grade
Day active
Sexual dimorphism

In adult males the dorsal, pelvic and anal fins are highly extended, while adult females tend to be rounder in shape. However, males grow noticeably larger and have more intense colours than females.

Nutrition in Nature

Hyphessobrycon pyrrhonotus is an opportunistic omnivore. It feeds on fruit remains, aquatic insects, larvae, and terrestrial ants.


Breeding tank set-up

The biotope aquarium for Hyphessobrycon pyrrhonotus is best furnished with live plants. A natural-looking arrangement can be replicated by means of a sandy substrate with wood roots and branches that provide shady spots. Dried leaf litter that will preogressively decay can also emphasise the natural feel, as it spurs the growth of beneficial microbe colonies, provide tannins and other beneficial chemicals. However, this species is intolerant to accumulation of organic pollutants and requires spotless water; so, weekly water changes are required.

Nutrition parents

In the biotope aquarium, Hyphessobrycon pyrrhonotus shoud be fed with regular meals of small live and frozen foods such as bloodworm, DaphniaArtemia, etc. Alongside, they can be given good quality dried flakes and granules. Nutrition is important to recreate the best condition; thus, this fish will show its best colours.  

Mating type
Spawning behaviour

Until today there were no reports about a successful breeding.

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

Fry can feed on bacteria provided by the decomposition of leaf litter.

Notes on reproduction