Breeding, as with most other tetras, can be difficult due to there being few obvious differences between the genders. However, males are usually more slim and smaller than females. There is also a visible difference between the shape of the swim bladder, which can be seen above and behind the silverish abdominal cavity. To breed these fish, they should be given a small, dedicated breeding tank planted with thick bunches of fine-leaved plants such as Myriophyllum on which they can lay eggs. Filtering through peat moss can also be helpful. The eggs hatch in about a day.
The average lifespan for a Serpae tetra is about seven years.