Nannostomus espei – Barred Pencilfish

Nannostomus espei is a peaceful, somewhat shy schooling fish that must be kept together with other calm fish.

Nannostomus espei – Barred Pencilfish

Nannostomus espei – Barred Pencilfish is a peaceful, somewhat shy schooling fish that you can keep together with other calm fishes. The aquarium should be set up with driftwood and roots that make hiding places and planted on the sides and background, but not too dense. In the middle you should leave a lot of free swimming space. A dark substrate and a dimmed light by using floating plants are appreciated. A regular changing of the water is necessary. The water should be prepared very well. They are very sensitive for a changing Ph.


South America; British Guyana.


You should give them small live food such as Artemia and mosquito larvae. Dry food is accepted as well occasionally.

Breeding Nannostomus espei

Breeding Nannostomus espei is not easy. The water in the breeding aquarium should be extremely soft(< 2Gh). You should use a spawning grid and some fine leaved plants. When the light is dimmed the eggs are laid and fertilized between those plants. After that they fall to the bottom and they are protected against the parents by the spawning grid. After spawning the parents should be removed. After 1-3 days the eggs hatch. When the young fishes are swimming free you can raise them with very fine infusoria.



Jan Bukkems – Aquavisie

Copyright images

Hung-Jou Chen

Additional information






Breeding behaviour

Social Behaviour


Min. aquarium length in cm




Length minimum in cm

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Temperature maximum

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