Name: Astyanax mexicanus
Origin: Mexico, USA
This is the only tetra native to the USA. They make interesting tankmates for cichlids.
I think this tetra should come with a warning tag, as it can truly overpower cichlids that cannot eat them. I once got a bunch of them in a river from my city in Mexico along with some tilapias to add to my Tanganyikan cichlid community, which included sardine fish (Cyprochromis leptosoma), calvus, featherfins and leleupis. I was worried for the tilapias chasing everyone out, but I found that the tetras were the REAL deal. They started bullying my leptosomas and featherfins, then everything else. I have had the same experience with a tank full of mbuna and electric blues. These are lovely fish, just get a large group, and choose your tankmates carefully! Oh, and by the way, males tend to have more reddish color around the tailfin, and females are yellowish with green accents.
I have trapped these in the Guadalupe River located in South Texas. I brought some home for my tank, but they were too aggressive with the other tetras and had a whole lot of energy. Eventually I had to find a new home for them.
I have two Mexican tetras in my cichlid tank although they are schooling fish (planning to add them little by little), one is albino. Well, they are a good addition to my tank because they play with each other and are very active and they do not hide like my cichlids do. They seemed to be alright at first with the old inhabitants of my tank. But then when they tried to terrorize my cichlids, this resulted in fighting. The mexican tetras got defeated, because they just can't match the teeth and the aggressiveness of my cichlids.
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