Dwarf Pencilfish

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Jan 18, 2005
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Greece and USA (dual citizenship)
Common Name(s): Dwarf Pencilfish
Scientific Name: Nannostomus Marginatus
Family: Lebiasinidae
Origin: Amazon Basin
Maximum size: Up to 1.75 inches, although rarely exceeds 1.25 inches.
Care: Does best in planted aquariums, although can do well in unplanted. Likes tempatures between 73-80. Keep pH between 5-7. Prefers blackwater extract and/or peat filtration. Subdued to moderate lighting. Not really a "schooling fish" but likes small groups of at least 3. Feels more comfortable with a couple of taller of floating plants. Dont house with large fish.
Feeding: Omnivorius and micro predators is what I call them. Will take crushed spurinula flakes or very fine spurinula pellets. Will occasionally eat tropical fish micro pellets. Most frozen and freeze-dried foods small enough to fit in their mouths. Is a must to add small live foods such as baby brine shrimp, fruit flies, mosquito larvae, daphina, white worms, and things of that extent.
Sexing and Breeding: Males are usually slimmer and have brighter red colors. Breeding occurs at higher temps around 85 degrees on fine leaved plants. Parents may eat the eggs if they get a chance. It's very difficult to feed the fry as they are too small for most foods.
Comments: Wonderful, active, colorful fish to keep. May be shy sometimes though. Can be expensive, but worth the investment IMHO.

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