Penguin Fish

 Genus name: Thayeria Boehikei

Family: Characid

Also known as: Boehike’s Penguin Fish

Distribution:  South America:  Amazon BasinPenguin Fish

Length:  up to 2.4″ (6cm)

Water Temperature: 73-79F (23-26C)

Diet: Worms, small insects and crustaceans, dried food

Water: soft preferably, but will tolerate medium-hard water.

Lives: Mainly in the upper areas of the aquarium

Breeding:  Lays Eggs

Community Tank

The Penguin Fish is a hardy shoaling fish that is mostly found near the top of the aquarium. It swims in a characteristic oblique position with its head upward, and the tail pointing downwards.

The Penguin Fish is a silver colour underneath, with a black stripe which goes all the way from the gills, along the body, and ends at the end of the bottom half of the tail.  There is a shiny gold line which runs on either side of the black stripe.  The upper part of the body of the Penguin Fish is a gold/bronze colour.

The Penguin Fish is peaceful and undemanding, and ideal for the novice aquarist.  As they do like to shoal, it is advisable to have at least 6 together in the aquarium.

As with many similar fish, the female Penguin Fish is distinguished from the male by having a more rounded abdomen, and being stouter in appearance.

For breeding, the Penguin Fish need soft water, and clumps of fine-leaved plants.  The female Penguin Fish will lay anything up to 1000 eggs at a time.  The eggs hatch in about 20 to 24 hours, and are free swimming after four or five days.  As with many other tropical fish, Penguin Fish will eat their own eggs and young, so should be removed from the aquarium after spawning.

Just Tropical Fish is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to You will not pay any more, and it helps support our site.