Rainbowfish live in a wide range of freshwater habitats, including rivers, lakes, and swamps. Although they spawn all year round, they lay a particularly large number of eggs at the start of the local rainy season.

Rainbowfish usually do best with tropical community fish, such as tetras, guppies, and other rainbowfish. They usually eat floating flakes in captivity, because in the wild they will often eat insects floating on the surface.