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Cochu’s Blue Tetra (Boehlkea Fredcochui) Care Guide

Tetras are undoubtedly the best ones to add to a tank for beginners looking for easy schooling fish. But what does tetra mean?

Are they only tiny fish with neon effects? No, not at all! There are blue tetras, which are another very gorgeous type of fish species.

The Blue tetra is the most beautiful one among all the other tetras with its light and bright color and a funny temperament.

Blue tetra is the native of the Amazon rainforest basin. They grow to 1.6-inches and live up to 2-3 years subject to proper care. These fish are peaceful but prominent fin nippers. They are easy to care for and thus best kept with other small friendly fish in a group of 6.

Species Overview

Level of CareEasy
AppearanceBright shiny blue with a slight pink hue
TemperamentFin nippers
Life Expectancy2-3 years
Tank Size25-gallon
Tank EnvironmentSoft acidic water with bright lighting and lots of plants
Tank MatesPeaceful

Unlike the common types of tetras, Boehlkea Fredcochui or Blue tetra is relatively less popular. They are usually native to the rivers and streams of the Amazon rainforest basin in Southern American regions.

Their blue color and smaller size make them an excellent choice for your aesthetically decorated aquariums. However, they are quite comfortable and easy to care for, even in non-planted tanks.

Blue tetras are usually schooling fish; thus, it is better to keep many specimens together in the tank.



Cochu’s blue tetra comes with a streamlined body shape. And in terms of size, these fish grow up to only 1.6-inches. An adult Cochu will show its vibrant blue color with a slight hue of pink coloration on its body.

However, their color usually varies from a dull sky-blue color to a darker one. Also, the blue color on the tetras’ body is pretty shiny. But do you know where this luster comes from? Well, the shine is based on their health condition.


Blue tetras usually extend up to 1.6-inches. As adults, they can also grow up to 2-inches if they receive the proper level of care.

Behavior & Temperament

Blue tetra is usually a very peaceful one for your tank. They are gentle enough and will not at all harm the other mates in the aquarium. As they are schooling fish, they naturally prefer to stay in a group with others of their kind.

However, Blue tetras are known as famous fin nippers. They frequently nip the fins of other large or slow swimming tank mates. This behavior is primarily seen in them when they do not get enough space for swimming.

Albino king blue tetra


In the wild, the Cochu’s blue tetras live for about 5-6 years. However, in a fish tank, when they live in captivity, they hardly live up to 2-3 years subject to proper care and the right diet.

Tank Requirements

Blue tetras are very easy to care for. But you need to ensure that you are offering them an appropriate level of care with a proper tank setup.

Though Cochu’s tetras are small in size, they produce a lot of waste. So, never make the mistake of keeping them in a small aquarium owing to their size; instead, ensure to keep them in a generous capacity of the tank.

The water quality of the tank also plays a vital role in maintaining the good health of tetras. They are hardy enough and dwell in a variety of water parameters.

However, the tank needs to balance water hardness, pH level, and temperature. Also, it is recommended to add a top-notch filtration unit to the tank of your blue tetra.

While deciding on the substrate for your tank, opt for a darker one. Dark gravel will be fine for your tiny tetras.

Now, for facilitating the best care, the tank of blue tetras needs specific assortments. This species of tetra usually prefers moderate or bright lighting in the tank, along with dense vegetation. Thus, make sure the aquascape is shady enough so that they can have proper places to hide.

For added decoration, you can merely incorporate many artificial plants into your aquarium. Also, adding plenty of plants and driftwood pieces will be fine for the tank.

Tank Setup

For offering the best level of care to your blue tetra, you need to ensure that you are creating a very top-notch tank setup. And this is why you need to take all the measures to make the tank have the best aquascape.

So, here is how you can facilitate a proper tank setup for your bright blue tetra.

  • For taking care of tetras, you need to opt for a large tank. Tetras are best kept in a group of 6 specimens. Thus, you can keep the Cochu’s tetras in a 25-gallons tank.
  • This species of tetra loves to dwell under bright lighting yet in shady places. And such a requirement makes the tank setup quite tricky. So, what to do? You can either keep many live plants or opt for some fake plants to offer your fish adequate places to hide.
  • In Cochu’s blue tetra tank, the water temperature needs to be proper. In the wild, they usually stay at a moderate temperature, like 72-82 ℉. However, in the aquarium, it is better to maintain 78 ℉ water temperature.
  • Cochu’s generally prefer a bit soft to intermediate water. Hence, make sure to maintain the hardness level of water between 5-12 dGH.
  • Also, maintain a pH range of 6-7.5 in the aquarium water.
  • For facilitating proper filtration in the tank, you can pick a filter that adds a low level of current to the water. Hang-on-the-back or sponge filters are usually preferred.
  • These tetras prefer dwelling in a darker substrate. So, add dark-colored gravel or aquarium soil to give them the proper level of care.

Tank Mates

Blue tetras are usually best kept with fish of the same species as they are con-specific. But since they are peaceful enough and not aggressive, you can easily keep them with other peaceful fish.

You can also keep the Cochu’s tetras with other species of tetra. But blue tetras are prominent fin nippers. So, they will nip the fins quite often when other fish come closer to them. It might be a distinct defense mechanism for them, but make sure not to keep them with such feeble fish that might get easily hurt due to fin nipping.

So, are you wondering which fish would be the most compatible with your blue tetras? Well, check out the list below.

Group of blue tetras

Food & Diet

To take good care of your blue-colored, tiny aqua pets, you need to make sure that you offer them the proper amount of diet to grow.

These fish usually require a highly nutrition-rich diet. Though they are omnivorous by nature, in the wild, they were usually scavengers.

And owing to this nature, these blue tetras generally feed on everything they find in their way. They eat dead plants, leaves, and even fruits hanging close to the water.

Nevertheless, these tiny fish love to consume a lot of plant-based food. So, it is better to feed them with pellets having a higher composition of plant content, fulfilling their hunger craving rightly.

Blue Tetra Care

Caring for blue tetra is not at all a hectic task. Instead, these fish are very easy to care for in your tank.

While taking proper care of your tetras, you need to ensure that 10% of water changes every week. Besides, you may vacuum the substrate only once a month; it will be enough for them.

Also, you need to keep checking the water parameters once in a while to ensure that you are providing good quality water to your pet fish. It is vital to keep the aquarium water clean to prevent harming your fish’ health.

Breeding Guidelines

Do you want to welcome baby blue tetras to your tank? Well, breeding this species of tetra is very easy. But make sure to offer them a separate breeding tank to make your tetras stay calm and reproduce well.

A proper tank setup for the breeding purpose will maximize the chances of getting better success in breeding.

So, for the breeding aquarium, it is better to pick a densely planted one. Add smooth and long-leaved plants to the tank with a lot of hiding spots. Ensure that the water pH is slightly acidic and soft, as, in such conditions, blue tetras have better hatching of their eggs.

You can also add floating plants to ensure better breeding of the tetras. Put in plants like Amazon Sword to offer them proper places to stay and hide.

During breeding, the filtration rate also needs to be very top-notch. You can add a small sponge filter to the tank. But make sure you are not adding too powerful filters.

Also, in the breeding season, offer your tetra nutrition-enriched foods. Give them a high protein diet, which will encourage their breeding.

So, are you excited to learn about tetras’ breeding mechanism?

Well, the female blue tetras lay their eggs on a smooth surface over a plant. After that, the male counterparts fertilize those eggs openly. Post fertilization, remove the parents immediately from the tank to safeguard the fries from being eaten away.

In the beginning, you need not feed the fries, as they sustain on egg yolk. But as they grow and the egg yolk gets depleted, you can offer them baby brine shrimps to nourish them well.

Interesting Facts

Do you want to know some fun facts about blue tetras? Well, here are a few interesting facts about them.

  • They nip the fins of other fish species whenever the teras sees them roaming in their territory.
  • They are schooling fish and show the best color when kept in a group.
  • Blue tetra loves to swim around in open spaces.
  • They love the constant water flow in the tank.
  • Their color is best shown and pops up vibrantly in the bright light.

Where to Buy?

Cochu’s blue tetras are not so common, unlike other tetras, which are easily available in the market. But this particular species of tetra is not rare. You can find them in any major fish store.

However, if you do not get these tetras in your usual fish stores, you can find them in the hobbyist stores. Blue tetras are also easy to find in the online fish stores, from where you can easily order them.

Wrapping Up

They are fun and beautiful fish species. Blue tetras are very suitable to be cared for in a tank. They are gentle enough and not at all demanding. If you provide them with good tank water quality and adequate amounts of food, they will live happily with you.

With their best behavior, they are simply a good choice for many beginners. All you need to ensure is a proper tank setup that mimics their natural habitat and lets your blue tetras stay stress-free and happy in the aquarium.