Scientific Name:
Serrasalmus geryi (Jegu and Dos Santos 1988)

Common Names:
Geryi Piranha, Violet Line Piranha.

Brazil: Rio Araguaia.

Maximum Size:
> 30cm. (12"). Specimen over 10" in length are very rare in the home aquarium.

Body Characteristics:
Geryi's Piranha has a brighly shining silver colored body. The coloration turns darker towards the upper body. The most striking feature of this very pretty species is the violet to purple line running from the base of the dorsal fin to the tip of the upper jaw. This line is not visible when viewed from the side. The pectoral and ventral fins are colorless. All other fins are light grey, and the anal fin has a dark base. The tail fin is dark, with a white vertical band in the middle. The eyes are reddish.

Distinctive/unique features:
• Purple/black stripe running from nose to base of the tail fin.
• Laterally compressed body.
• Humeral spot.
• Orange to red eyes.
Locality map

Juveniles and sub-adults can be kept in a tank measuring 32x14". When they reach a size of 4-6", a 40" long and 18" deep tank is more suitable to provide enough space to move and turn freely. Adult fish need a tank of at least 48x18x18".
When kept in a group, the tank should be at least 20" deep and 60" long (for 3-4 specimen: an additional 8" of length is adviced for each extra fish).

15°C 24-30°C 35°C

5.0 5.5-7.5 9.0
 Ideal conditions
 Suitable conditions
 Unsuitable conditions

Compatible Species:
Geryi's Piranha is one of the few Serrasalmus-species that has been succesfully kept in a group, despite the fact that is is not very tolerant towards tank mates, and in particular its own kind. However, due to it's parasitic lifestyle (scale-eater, fin-nipper) and aggressive character, these are rare occurences, and attempts are usually shortlived. All in all, it is best to keep this species as a solitary fish: attempting to shoal this species is only recommended to very experienced piranha keepers!

S. Geryi accepts most food items other piranha's eat, like fish (fillets, frozen fish and live feeders *), shrimp, prawns, mussel, squid and other sea fruits, earth worms, meal worms and other insects, flakes, pellets, granules. Sometimes this fish will refuse to eat non-living food items.

* Live fish need to be quarantained first, so they are safe to feed (containing no disases or parasites). Goldfish, minnows and other members of the Cyprinid family (Carp-like fish) should be avoided, as these fish contain growth-inhibiting hormones (Thiaminase/Vitamine B1 inhibitors) that could negatively affect the fish's health and development.

Due to its very limited natural range this species is only sporadically exported, and therefore a rare sight in the home aquarium. Because of this, Geryi's Piranha usually fetches very high prices.

Some pictures of Serrasalmus geryi

Note the very characteristic purple 'Racing Stripe'
Photo by: Jonas Hansel

Almost mature specimen, about 7 inches in size
Photo by: Jonas Hansel

Remarkable foto of a small shoal of adult fish
Photo by: Bob Hare

Group of adult S. geryi
Photo by: Mr. Harley

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