Neon Tetra Tank Mates: 7 Stunning Tank Mates for Neon Tetras

The Neon Teta, iconic iridescent blue and red stripe, is a staple in many freshwater aquariums. These small, peaceful fish bring a vibrant splash of color to any tank, but what about their companions? Choosing suitable Neon Tetra tank mates is crucial for creating a harmonious and thriving underwater community.

While tetras are relatively easygoing, they have specific needs regarding tank conditions and temperament compatibility.

Introducing the wrong fish can lead to stress, aggression, and even casualties among your beloved tetras. 

tank mates for Neon tetra fish

But fret not, fellow aquarists! There’s a whole world of stunning and compatible tank mates that will get along with your tertas and enhance the beauty and diversity of your aquarium.

So, if you are ready to transform your tank from a solo act to a captivating ensemble cast, dive in with us as we explore seven stunning Neon fish tank mates that will perfectly complement your fish and bring your aquarium to life

What Makes a Good Neon Tetra Tank Mate?

Neon tetras are peaceful, schooling fish that thrive in a good tank with plenty of plants to hide in. When choosing tankmates for your neons, it’s essential to consider their small size and peaceful nature.

Avoid larger fish that may bully or eat them. Some good tank mates for tetras include other tropical fish like cardinal tetras, green neon tetras, and peaceful community fish.

Neon tetra care

It’s recommended to keep at least 5 neon tetras in a 10-gallon tank and provide plenty of space for them to school together. Additionally, check the requirements of any other fish species you plan to add to your community tank to ensure compatibility.

When it comes to different species of fish to keep with tetras, it’s best to choose peaceful species that are big enough to fit into a school together in a coordinated manner. Avoid cichlids and other aggressive fish that may threaten your fish.

You may add more tankmates, such as rainbow or discus fish, as your Neons grow. Just be sure they’ll get along and not harm each other. It’s also important to check the markings and size of any potential tank mates for tetra fish to ensure they won’t accidentally eat any fry or harm your fish.

What Fish Can I Keep with Neon Tetras?

Neon tetras are popular aquarium fish known for their bright colors and peaceful demeanor. If you’re wondering what other fish to keep with your six neon tetras, there are a few options to consider.

Adding some Cory cats to the tank is possible, as they are non-aggressive and will get along well with the tetras. Another option is to add some plecos to help keep the tank clean. Just ensure the tank is large enough to accommodate all the fish.

Remember that some fish, like bettas, can be territorial and may not get along well with the tetras. Also, remember that shoal fish, like neon tetras, prefer to be kept in a group of at least six individuals to feel secure.

And finally, if you have juvenile tetras, be cautious with larger fish that may see them as potential snacks. In the end, choose fish that are skittish, non-aggressive, and will not harm the tetras.

1. Harlequin Rasboras

These peaceful fish are similar in size and temperament to tetras, making them ideal tank mates. They come in various colors, adding a pop of brilliance to your aquarium.

2. Otocinclus Catfish

Like Corydoras, Otocinclus are small, , peaceful algae eaters that help maintain a clean tank environment. They are perfect companions for your tetras and other peaceful fish.

3. Ghost Shrimp

These transparent and fascinating invertebrates are peaceful scavengers, aiding in tank cleanliness. Their interesting behavior adds another dimension to the aquarium.

4. Dwarf Gourami

While gouramis can sometimes be aggressive, dwarf gouramis are generally peaceful and can coexist with neon tetras. Their iridescent bodies add another layer of beauty to the tank. Be sure to provide plenty of hiding spots for your neon tetras if you add dwarf gourami.

5. Corydoras Catfish

These bottom-dwelling scavengers are a great addition to any community tank. They help keep the aquarium clean by eating leftover food and algae wafers. Corydoras catfish are peaceful and won’t bother your neon tetras.

6. Nerite Snails

Another team of cleaning crew members, nerite snails, are prolific algae eaters. They are peaceful and relatively small, perfect for a tank with neon tetras.

7. Chili Rasboras

Even smaller than neon tetras, chili rasbora is another peaceful option. Their fiery red color complements the neon tetras’tetras’ electric blue, creating a dazzling display.

– Zebra Danios

These active swimmers can be fin nippers and may harass your neon tetra’s tail. Therefore, it is essential to be selective when choosing tank mates for neon tetras to ensure they can coexist peacefully.

Some suitable neon fish tank mates less likely to harass them include peaceful community fish such as guppies, mollies, and small Rasboras. It is best to avoid aggressive or territorial fish that may threaten your tetras. 

– Bristlenose pleco

While bristlenose plecos are peaceful, they can grow large and compete with neon tetras for food and resources. Therefore, ensuring enough space and hiding spots in the aquarium for both species to coexist peacefully is essential.

Additionally, feeding the plecos at night when the neons are less active can help reduce competition for food. It is always a good idea to monitor the behavior of all fish in the tank and make adjustments as needed to ensure the well-being of all inhabitants. 

– Guppies

Male guppies can be aggressive towards neon tetras, especially if the tank is overcrowded. To help reduce aggression between different species of fish, it is important to provide plenty of hiding places and live plants in the tank.

Keeping a good balance of male and female guppies can also help reduce aggression within the guppy community. It is always essential to monitor fish behavior and be prepared to separate any fish that are being overly aggressive towards others. 

Remember, when choosing tank mates for your neon tetras, it is crucial to consider the tank size, temperament, and water parameter needs of all the fish involved. By doing your research, you can create a thriving and beautiful community tank for your neon tetras to enjoy.

Neon Tetra Tank Mates at Complete Koi and Aquatics

Neon tetras at Complete Koi and Aquatics are popular with aquarium enthusiasts. These small, vibrant fish are known for their bright colors and peaceful nature. Neon tetras may thrive in a 5-gallon tank with a heavily planted substrate.

They prefer to be kept in small schools of at least six individuals, and if you pair them up, you’ll see their fascinating breeding behaviors.

Neon tetras aren’t too picky about their diet, happily accepting flakes, pellets, and frozen or live foods.

Keep an eye on their tank mates, though, as neon tetras are prone to nipping fins. If you add them to a community tank, choose peaceful tank mates that won’t move the betta tetras too much.

Which fish can be kept with neon tetra?

Peaceful, small fish like cardinal tetras, Corydoras catfish, harlequin Rasboras, and dwarf Gouramis make great neon tetra tank mates.

Can one neon tetra live alone?

While technically possible, keeping a single neon tetra is not recommended. They’re social fish who need a school of at least six to feel secure and exhibit their natural behaviors.

What do you put in a neon tetra tank?

A neon tetra tank should have soft, slightly acidic water, plenty of plants for cover, a gentle filter, and a heater to maintain water temperatures around 72-78°F.

Do neon tetras need a friend?

Absolutely! Neon tetras are schooling fish and require the companionship of their kind. Aim for a group of six or more to ensure their happiness and well-being.

Can tetras be solitary?

Most tetras, including neons, are schooling fish that thrive in groups. Living solitary can lead to stress and health issues.

How big of a tank does one neon tetra need?

While one neon tetra can survive in a small tank, it thrives in schools. A minimum 10 gal tank is ideal for a small school of 6 neon tetras, providing enough swimming space.

Do neon tetras need to live in groups?

Yes, neon tetra fish need a group of at least 6 for comfort and reduced stress. They feel safer and exhibit natural habitat in a shoal.

Are tetras from South America?

Many tetras are from South America, but some originate from Africa and Central America. These vibrant freshwater fish are famous aquarium residents.


Choosing tank mates for your neon tetras is like composing a vibrant underwater symphony. Each species plays its unique role, contributing to your aquarium’s overall harmony and balance. From the shimmering hues of cardinal tetras to the industrious cleaning crew of Corydoras, the options are as diverse as they are exciting. Remember, a successful community tank thrives on compatibility, so research and careful selection are critical. With this knowledge, you’re ready to embark on the exciting journey of building your neon tetra community.

Explore your options, create a stunning aquascape, and witness life’s mesmerizing dance unfold within your underwater haven. With careful planning and a dash of creativity, your neon tetra tank mates will coexist and flourish, transforming your aquarium into a captivating spectacle of color and life.

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About Me

I am the founder of, a devoted wife and mother, and an avid fish enthusiast. My aim is to assist fellow fish lovers worldwide in understanding how to properly care for and breed their pet fish.

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