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Can Guppies Live With Tetras?

If you’re an aquarist or a hobbyist, such as ourselves, then we can assume you spend enough time wondering which fish species you can pair together next in your fabulous aquarium.

Guppies and Tetras are freshwater fishes blessed with beautiful colors and great traits, and their popularity is unmatched when compared to other aquarium fishes, and yes, for all the right reasons.

Since both these fish species are docile in nature, it’s only right that people ask, “Can Guppies live with Tetras?” without a second thought.

So, if you’re seeking answers, you’re at the right place.

Generally, they are pretty compatible, but certain conditions must be met for Guppies and Tetras to thrive.

Read on to learn more.

Understanding Guppies

The eye-catching Guppies are small tropical fishes native to the coastal streams of South America, but today, they are abundant and found globally.

Robert John Lechmere Guppy introduced them to the aquarium trade in the mid-1800s.

This particular species has been thriving since.

Although the scientific name for Guppies is Poecilia Reticulata, they go by various names in the market, such as rainbow fish or million fish, and they are often used as a way to control mosquitoes.

Guppies have been studied to be extremely rare since they have high levels of genetic and phenotypic variability, making each Guppy distinct and unique from the other.

Additionally, the male Guppies with unique patterns and extremely vibrant colors are known to be the most fertile since this fish species is particularly colorful to attract female Guppies.

That said, there are more than 260 different species of Guppies today, and the reason why they are so popular as aquarium fish is due to the fact that they are hugely docile, low-maintenance, and rather flexible in dietary options.

However, while they may be able to survive an extensive range of water environments, for your Guppies to thrive in an aquarium, certain conditions, such as a large tank with various ornamentation and plantation, need to be the bare minimum.

Understanding Tetras

Tetras, freshwater fishes that belong to the family Characidae, are native to the streams of South America, Africa, and Central America.

They come in many forms and vibrant colors and are increasingly popular with aquarists and hobbyist for their various characteristics and traits.

An average Tetra is usually 1 to 2.

5 inches long, but their sizes may differ.

Tetras are known for their extremely vibrant colors, including silver, green, blue, red, etc.

, and the colors are prone to intensify when showing dominance or mating.

Much like the Guppies, Tetras come in numerous species, each with unique characteristics, and they are social creatures in general, which means for them to thrive, they need to be in groups.

However, a common misconception about tetras is that since they are docile and friendly, they can live with any type of fish species.

This is completely wrong since they will be targets if you put them in tanks filled with aggressive fish.

Additionally, Tetras thrive in large tanks with water with a pH of 6.

0 to 7.

0 and a temperature similar to Guppies on or between 72°F to 82°F.

Since Tetras are also rather sensitive to poor water conditions, a proper tank cycle is necessary.

Can Guppies Live With Tetras?

Absolutely, Guppies and Tetras are usually a great combination as long as you meet certain conditions that come with having them co-exist together.

Generally, Guppies and Tetras are freshwater fishes thriving in similar water conditions and environments.

If you look at the similarities in-depth, the water conditions for both Guppies and Tetras to thrive in are 72°F to 82°F with a slight difference in the pH levels but neutral being the ideal for both.

Also, when you look at the dietary options for both these species, since they are omnivores, they will gracefully feed on flakes and pellets or vegetables like lettuce and peas.

Just ensure their diets consist of high-quality ingredients instead of cheap ones.

Moving on to the tank and environment, keeping both these fishes in larger tanks, preferably a 20-gallon, is ideal for a community.

However, ensure that the aquarium is properly lit and has plenty of space and hiding spots made from natural plantations and other decorative ornaments to reduce their stress levels and keep them exploring and occupied.

That said, while both these fish species are social by nature, most experts would inform you to monitor their behavior for several reasons carefully.

While tetras are peaceful, some species often get nippy when in smaller groups or if the aquarium is over-packed.

Also, since Guppies are generally smaller than tetras, they are prone to be harassed by their tank mate, so supervision is necessary.

In case of continuous aggression, ensure that you remove them and are kept separately.

Compatibility Considerations

Tetras and Guppies can co-exist and live peacefully, provided that suitable conditions of the tanks are met.

However, it is important to understand that to exist peacefully, certain challenges should be cleared before dumping them in.

Challenges like choosing the right kind of Tetras that are suitable to co-exist with Guppies, such as Ember tetras, Neon Tetras, or Cardinal Tetras, known to be peaceful, and not lumping them in with more aggressive or larger Tetras that are prone to be nippy.

As mentioned, a proper 20-gallon tank or larger with a temperature of 72°F to 82°F and a pH of between 6.

8 to 7.

8 with proper hiding spots is essential to house a community or larger group of Guppies and Tetras.

Remember that even though they are docile, proper research needs to be done to keep them as such.

Meaning since Guppies and Tetras are both Schooling fish, they thrive in specific numbers in their community.

Ensure that for each male Guppy, there are at least 3 to 4 females to avoid aggression and certain territorial behaviors, and as for tetras, they need to be in packs of 6 or more of the same species to thrive.

In addition, make sure you properly clean the tank before introducing Tetras and Guppies.

Close monitoring is advised for the first hour or two to ensure they get along just fine without aggression.


Tetras and Guppies are both social and peaceful, making great tank mates, but only when all conditions are met for them to thrive.

Ensure that you use a properly sized tank that has less height and more length, with the ideal temperature and water condition, a sufficient amount of hiding spots, and is fed with proper high-quality feeds.

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