Glowlight Tetra – How To Care For It - "glowlight tetra" by h080 is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.
Glowlight Tetra – How To Care For It - "glowlight tetra" by h080 is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

One of our favorites among freshwater aquarium fish, is the glowlight tetra, since they are active, colorful and so much fun to watch. This stunningly beautiful fish got introduced to aquarium hobbyists in 1933, and primarily come from the longest river in Guyana, the Rio Essequibo. Its scientific name is Hemigrammus erythrozonus. Not only ours, but this fish is also a favorite among fish keepers from all over the world. Take a look at this beautiful fish and it’s not hard to guess why aquarists admire its beauty.


With their torpedo-shaped body, glowlight tetras looks a lot like their popular cousins the cardinal tetra and neon tetra. They have a silvery shiny base color which becomes apparent upon being looked at closely. But their most identifying feature is the orange-reddish stripe they have. This stripe runs on the side of the fish’s body, and will shine brightly under the right lighting conditions.


Glowlight tetras typically grow up to a length of around 1.5 inches (around 4 centimeters). This is their average length when they’re fully grown. This tiny size makes them a perfect fit for most fish tanks. However, some of these fish will grow slightly larger than others reaching a full length of around 2 inches (5 centimeters). 

Tank setup

Setting up a tank for glowlight tetras is easier than you might think. They are hardy fish with a good tolerance for a wide variety of conditions. This is why they make great pets for first-timers.

With all that being said, there are still some care instructions that you need to follow for more vibrant and healthier fish.

Tank size

There’s no need for a massive tank for your glowlight tetra fish, as they are pretty small. Half a dozen of these fish can be easily kept in a 10 gallon tank (45 liters). However, a tank size of 20 gallons (90 liters) or even more is recommended to provide the fish with plenty of space to roam. 

Moreover, glowlight tetras are schooling fish and like to live in groups. So, bigger tanks always go well for them.


It’s always a good idea to find the right temperature for your fish. Regarding the glowlight tetra they can usually tolerate a temperature range of 74°F to 82°F (23 to 27,5 Celsius).

Tank mates 

When it comes to glowlight tetra tank mates, glowlight tetras like to live among mates of their kind. You can keep a half dozen of these or even more if you want. You can also go for other small, peaceful fish like the rest of the tetras, as well as cory catfish, barbs, danios, and peaceful loaches.

However, be careful with for example large cichlids, as they may look upon the glowlight tetras as a food source.

Moreover, any extremely active fish may disturb your cute little glowlight tetras.

Glowlight Tetra – How To Care For It - "glowlight tetra" by h080 is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.
Glowlight Tetra – How To Care For It – “glowlight tetra” by h080 is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.


Glowlight tetra fish are omnivores which means they can eat just about anything. However, we recommend sticking to a standard diet of for example flakes or micro pellets. You can also feed them live foods.

Final thoughts

Because of their hardy nature, glowlight tetra fish can be handled by anyone. Because of their active personality and stunning looks, they are a favorite among fish keepers. Something else which makes them quite easy to take care of is their omnivorous nature. All you need to do is to find food that fits in their small mouths.  We have always heard good about this species from its owners.