What Do Neon Tetra Eggs Look Like? {Are They Easy To Spot?}

Are you looking for neon tetra eggs? Are they too small to spot? In this article, we’ll look closely to uncover what neon tetra eggs look like.

What Do Neon Tetra Eggs Look Like? Neon tetras have tiny eggs that are round, white to yellow shades that resemble little jelly balls. They are smaller than 1 millimeter. 

You may notice 60-120 eggs at a time or you may not be able to find them. Let’s try to discover them together.

When Do Neon Tetras Spawn Eggs?

The eggs of a neon tetra are usually spawned early in the morning. You may start to notice a chasing sequence between the male and female. The male swims as close as possible to make contact while a female may extend herself vertically.

Neon tetras mate during their breeding seasons and after 12 weeks of age. The courtship dance resembles chasing, but the male is assisting to allow the eggs to spawn and get fertilized.

How Many Neon Tetra Eggs Are Spawned At Once?

The average amount of eggs a female neon tetra spawns is a rather large range for small eggs. A minimum of 60 eggs is common with a maximum of 120 to 130 eggs.

The eggs may not end up together in the same location. It’s best to look further if you notice some neon tetra eggs. There could be more!

Where Are Neon Tetras Usually Located?

Female neon tetras may lay eggs in safe locations or out in the open. A common location will be over the plants in the tank where neon tetras feel most comfortable.

The eggs may also drop to the ground, gravel or substrate. You may notice them on decorations and rocks as well. The eggs are usually not sticky so they move or spread instead of packing in the same spot tightly together.

Do Neon Tetras Eat Their Eggs?

The parents may eat their eggs. If they are inexperienced or young neon tetras, they may need a few attempts to get it right. It will be more common for them to eat their eggs.

A good idea would be to remove the parents to discourage them from eating the eggs. The eggs will hatch in about 24 hours.

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How Can Notice If A Female Is Ready To Lay Eggs?

A female neon tetra will most likely end up with a swollen belly. A larger belly may not always indicate a pregnant neon tetra.

It’s best to leave them to complete their mating process. The female will allow the male to chase her and rub against her. Try to not disturb them for 2-3 hours. After you see the eggs, removing the parents would be wise to avoid them eating the eggs.

Are Neon Tetra Eggs Easy To Spot?

Neon tetra eggs are small and difficult to spot. They are under 1 millimeter in size and located apart from each other. Some are stickier than others and cling to the moss, plants or yarn mop. These eggs will be easier to spot.

Many eggs will end up in the substrate because neon tetra eggs are usually not sticky. They might lay on the bottom of your aquarium or they could end up getting filtered through or washed away.

What Color Are Neon Tetra Eggs?

The color of a neon tetra egg can range between:

  • clear
  • white
  • yellow

The eggs are clearer at first but will become slightly more defined when they are whitish-yellow. Some may say the eggs are a cream color or pale. The egg is round so it will resemble a small jelly ball.

Should I Shine A Light On Neon Tetra Eggs?

The eggs are actually very sensitive to light. If you are looking for your neon tetra eggs by shining a light to investigate, you may harm them.

The light will encourage fungus to develop on the eggs. Neon tetra eggs will end up damaged or not be viable anymore.

Do All The Neon Tetra Eggs Get Hatched?

The following reasons will cause neon tetra eggs to not hatch:

  • Parents eat them
  • Tankmates eat them
  • Light sensitivity makes them infertile
  • Eggs wash away
  • Eggs get swept up in the filter
  • Eggs do not get fertilized

Expect only about 30% of the eggs to hatch if you want to take care of the fry. If not, the eggs may not end up hatching at all with parents or tankmates getting in the way. Out of 120 eggs, only 40 may hatch.

What Do Fertilized Neon Tetra Eggs Look Like?

The eggs of a neon tetra are already difficult to spot. Noticing if the eggs are fertilized will require a much closer look.

A fertilized egg will contain a black dot. The black dot will be inside the egg indicating that it’s fertilized successfully by the male neon tetra. The black dot forms into an embryo.


Neon tetra eggs are less than 1 millimeter in size and may hatch in less than 24 hours or up to 48 hours. If there isn’t a black dot inside the egg, it isn’t fertilized and not viable.

The eggs are clear or a mix between yellow and white. They are small and round that resemble little jelly balls. It’s best to not shine a light on them and possibly remove the parents to prevent them from eating the eggs.

Good luck in your search to spot all the neon tetra eggs!

Brian Arial

Brian Arial has kept fish for leisure and worked with fish stores for most of his life. He enjoys writing and caring for aquariums and ponds.