This species (largely exported from the Rio Negro in Brazil and the Vaupes in Colombia, and first imported into Europe in 1965) was originally known simply as the Rummy Nose or Rummy-nosed Tetra. However, a very similar species, H. rhodostomus, which had been imported for many years prior to this from the Belem region in Brazil, was already known as the Rummy Nose. This led to considerable confusion, with the Rio Negro Rummy Nose being often named H. rhodostomus instead of H. bleheri. Skeletal differences exist between the two, but they are impossible to determine in living specimens. Fortunately, there are several other, more easily identified distinguishing characteristics: in H. bleheri, the red coloration in the head region covers most of the head and extends some way into the body, while in H. rhodostomus it is much more restricted; the tip of the snout is more rounded in H. bleheri; the black band that, in H. rhodostomus, extends along the base of the anal fin is lacking in H. bleheri, as are any marks on the rays of the anal fin.
- H. bleheri found in middle Rio Negro (Brazil) and Rio Vaupes (Colombia). H. rhodostomus in Belem region of Brazil; also reported from Venezuela.
- Around 1 3/4in (4.5cm).
- Peaceful shoalers; H. bleheri is known to “parasitize” brooding pairs of Uaru amphiacanthoides by feeding on the “body milk” that the uarus secrete and on which their fry feed during their early days. Diet: Most foods accepted.
- Well planted, with swimming spaces. Soft, slightly acid, good-quality, tannin-stained water recommended. Temperature range: 72 79 F (22 26 C). H. rhodostomus is a little more tolerant of temperature fluctuations.
- Very soft, acid water recommended. Eggs are scattered among vegetation or over the substratum. Hatching takes about 1 1/2 days.