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Black Phantom Tetra: A Complete Guide to Care and Breeding

black phantom tetra

Last Updated: September 4, 2023 by Flora Gibbins

You know, there’s something magical about the Black Phantom Tetra that has always intrigued me. Picture this: a stunning fish with an air of mystery, named after its ghostly, otherworldly appearance. When I first saw these beauties swimming together, their striking coloration and calm demeanor instantly won me over. Trust me when I say, they’re a crowd-pleaser in any aquarium! As a favored choice among both beginners and experienced aquarists, they’re easy to care for and get along with a variety of tank mates.

In this blog post, we’ll chat about everything you need to know about the Black Phantom Tetra, from their unique features to their fascinating origin story.

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Black Phantom Tetra Facts and Overview

Origin and distribution, behavior and temperament, compatible fish species, non-fish tank mates, tank mates to avoid, water parameters, diet and feeding, swim bladder disease, internal and external parasites, the breeding process, breeding tips, related species, are black phantom tetras fin nippers, how many black phantom tetras should i keep in a tank, how fast do black phantoms grow, do black phantom tetras change color, is it normal for black phantom tetras to hide, is the black phantom tetra right for your aquarium.

  • Common names : Black Phantom Tetra, Phantom Tetra
  • Scientific name: Hyphessobrycon megalopterus
  • Adult size: Approximately 1.5 to 2 inches (3.8 to 5 cm)
  • Lifespan : Around 3 to 5 years
  • Colors and Markings : Males have a black, almost metallic, body with a silver band along the side, while females are slightly lighter with a more subdued silver band; unique “phantom” spot on dorsal fins
  • Origin : Paraguay River and Guaporé River basins in South America

The Black Phantom Tetra has an intriguing backstory, rooted in the meandering waters of South America. This freshwater fish species is native to the Paraguay River basin, which spans across Brazil, Bolivia, and Paraguay. Their natural habitat includes slow-moving, densely vegetated tributaries, streams, and floodplain lakes. These settings provide plenty of hiding places and food, allowing them to thrive among the submerged roots, leaf litter, and aquatic plants.

Aquarists first took notice of the Black Phantom Tetra in the early 20th century, and since then, their popularity has only grown. The fascinating coloration, peaceful temperament, and ease of care make them a sought-after addition to community tanks worldwide.

One of the first things I noticed about the Black Phantom Tetra was their striking appearance, which is truly something to behold. These small but enchanting fish boast a mix of metallic colors that are sure to catch the eye of any aquarist.

Male Black Phantom Tetras have a black, almost metallic, body with a shimmering silver band along their sides. Females, on the other hand, are slightly lighter in color, with a more subdued silver band. It’s almost as if they’ve been painted by an artist, creating a living work of art in your aquarium!

The most distinctive feature of the Black Phantom Tetra, and the one that inspired their name, is the unique “phantom” spot on their dorsal fins. Both males and females share this intriguing marking, which resembles a black “eye” against the fin’s translucent background. When I first observed this feature, I couldn’t help but be fascinated by the stark contrast it created, making these fish even more captivating.

The anal fins of the species are elongated and fan-shaped, extending from the lower part of the body, close to the ventral area, to the base of the caudal fin. In males, the anal fin is generally longer and more pointed, while in females, it tends to be shorter and rounder. The coloration of the anal fin is typically a translucent black or grayish-black, complementing the overall color scheme of the fish.

In addition to their striking coloration, Black Phantom Tetra fish have a compact, somewhat stocky body shape, which lends itself well to their graceful swimming style. Watching them glide effortlessly through the water, you’ll quickly see why they’re such a beloved addition to any aquarium.

One of the most endearing aspects of the Black Phantom Tetra is their peaceful and sociable nature. As schooling fish, they thrive in groups of six or more, and I’ve found that observing them interact with each other is genuinely mesmerizing. When they’re in a proper school, they display fascinating shoaling behaviors, moving together in unison, and creating a dynamic visual display in the aquarium.

When I first introduced Black Phantom Tetra into my tank, I was pleasantly surprised by their gentle temperament. Unlike some other species, they tend to coexist harmoniously with their tank mates, making them an ideal choice for community tanks. It’s worth noting, however, that during the breeding season, males may exhibit some territorial behavior, engaging in displays and mild scuffles with one another. But, from what I’ve seen, these interactions are generally harmless and don’t result in any injuries.

Another charming aspect of their behavior is their curiosity. In my tank, I’ve noticed that the Black Phantom Tetras enjoy exploring their environment, swimming among plants, and hiding in nooks and crannies. This inquisitive nature adds a sense of liveliness to the aquarium and makes them an absolute joy to observe.

Black Phantom Tetra Tank Mates

As peaceful and sociable fish, Black Phantom Tetra can thrive in a community aquarium setting. They get along with a variety of tank mates, both fish and non-fish. However, there are a few species that I avoid keeping with them. Let’s take a closer look at the different types of tank mates for Black Phantom Tetras.

black phantom tetra tank mates

Black Phantom Tetras coexist well with other small, peaceful freshwater fish species that share similar water requirements. Some ideal Black Phantom Tetra tank mates include:

  • Other tetra species (e.g., Green Neon Tetras , Congo Tetras, Rosy Tetras )
  • Corydoras catfish
  • Small danios
  • Dwarf gouramis

In addition to compatible fish species, Black Phantom Tetras can share their aquarium with some non-fish tank mates. Peaceful invertebrates like snails and shrimps can make good companions for these sociable fish. Some options to consider are:

  • Amano shrimp
  • Cherry shrimp
  • Nerite snails
  • Mystery snails

While Black Phantom Tetras are generally peaceful, it’s essential to avoid housing them with aggressive or overly large species. These could stress or harm your Black Phantom Tetra tank residents. Some tank mates to avoid include:

  • Cichlids (with the exception of some dwarf cichlids)
  • Larger predatory fish (e.g., Oscars, Arowanas, or large catfish)
  • Fin-nipping species (e.g., Tiger Barbs, Serpae Tetras)

By choosing compatible tank mates for your Black Phantom Tetra, you can create a harmonious and visually stunning community aquarium that everyone can enjoy.

Black Phantom Tetra Care

I personally find Black Phantom Tetra Care to be a genuinely rewarding experience. These charming fish are not only a pleasure to observe but also relatively low-maintenance, making them suitable for both beginner and experienced aquarists.

In this section, I’ll share some essential Black Phantom Tetra care tips that have helped my Black Phantom Tetras live healthy and happy lives.

It is critical to provide a comfortable and visually appealing habitat for your Black Phantom Tetras. In this section, I’ll go through the essential components of an appropriate tank setup for these enthralling species.

Black Phantom Tetra are relatively small, but they are active swimmers and need enough space to move around comfortably. A minimum tank size of 20 gallons is recommended, but if you can provide a larger tank, your tetras will appreciate the extra room to explore.

What to Put in the Tank

To mimic the natural habitat of Black Phantom Tetra, it’s important to include:

  • Live or artificial plants : These fish love swimming around and hiding among floating plants. A densely planted tank will provide them with a sense of security and plenty of hiding spots. You can use plants like Java fern, Anubias, and Amazon swords.
  • Hiding spots : In addition to plants, you can add driftwood, rocks, or caves to your tank to create more hiding spots and enhance the natural look of the aquarium.
  • Substrate : A dark, fine-grained substrate, such as sand or fine gravel, is ideal for Black Phantom Tetra fish. This will not only help mimic their natural environment but also make their colors stand out even more.

Equipment and Accessories

To maintain optimal water conditions and ensure the well-being of your Black Phantom Tetras, you’ll need the following equipment and accessories:

  • Filtration system : A high-quality filter is essential for maintaining water quality and providing adequate water flow in the tank.
  • Heater : As tropical fish, Black Phantom Tetra require a stable water temperature. A reliable heater will help you maintain the appropriate temperature for these fish.
  • Lighting : Moderate lighting is suitable for Black Phantom Tetras. You can use a standard aquarium light, but make sure to provide a regular day/night cycle.
  • Thermometer and water testing kits : Regularly monitoring water temperature and parameters is vital to ensure a healthy environment for your fish.

Maintaining proper water parameters is essential for the health and well-being of your Black Phantom Tetra. Keeping a close eye on these parameters has helped me prevent potential health issues and ensure that my fish stay happy and comfortable. Here are the ideal water parameters for Black Phantom Tetra fish:

  • Temperature : Black Phantom Tetras thrive in water temperatures between 72°F and 82°F (22°C to 28°C). I’ve found that maintaining a stable temperature around 76°F (24°C) keeps my tetras active and healthy.
  • pH : These fish prefer slightly acidic to neutral water, with a pH range of 6.0 to 7.5. In my tank, I aim to maintain a pH of around 6.8, which seems to suit them well.
  • Hardness : Black Phantom Tetra can adapt to a range of water hardness levels. However, they do best in soft to moderately hard water, with a general hardness (GH) of 5 to 15 dGH.
  • Water flow: As they come from slow-moving waters, Black Phantom Tetra prefer a gentle water flow in the aquarium. When setting up my tank, I made sure to choose a filter that wouldn’t create too much turbulence and disturb my fish.

One of the aspects I enjoy most about keeping Black Phantom Tetra is feeding them a diverse and balanced diet. These fish are omnivorous, which means they readily accept a variety of food types. In my experience, providing them with a mix of high-quality commercial foods and occasional live or frozen treats keeps them healthy and vibrant.

For their staple diet, I feed my Black Phantom Tetras a combination of high-quality flake or pellet foods that are specifically formulated for small tropical fish. This ensures they receive the necessary nutrients for proper growth and health.

In addition to the staple diet, I like to offer my tetras occasional treats to keep their diet interesting and varied. Live or frozen foods, such as daphnia, brine shrimp, and bloodworms, are some of their favorites. I’ve found that offering these treats once or twice a week not only keeps my tetras excited about mealtime but also enhances their coloration and overall well-being.

When it comes to feeding frequency, I’ve had success with offering small portions of food two to three times a day, ensuring they can consume it all within a couple of minutes. This prevents overfeeding and helps maintain good water quality in the tank.

Hyphessobrycon megalopterus

Common Health Issues and Diseases

Like any fish species, Black Phantom Tetra can be susceptible to certain health issues and diseases. Being aware of these potential problems and taking preventative measures can help ensure the well-being of your fish. Here are some common health issues and diseases to watch out for:

This disorder affects the fish’s ability to swim properly and maintain buoyancy. It can be caused by various factors, such as poor water quality, overfeeding, or a sudden change in temperature.

To prevent swim bladder disease, ensure optimal water conditions, feed your fish a balanced diet, and avoid overfeeding. Treatment options depend on the underlying cause but may include adjusting the water parameters or changing the feeding regimen.

Also known as white spot disease, Ich is a common parasitic infection that affects many fish species. Symptoms include small white spots on the body, fins, and gills, along with increased scratching against surfaces in the tank.

To prevent Ich, maintain stable water conditions and avoid sudden temperature fluctuations. If your fish show signs of Ich, raise the water temperature gradually and use a suitable Ich medication to treat the infection.

This bacterial infection causes the edges of the fins to become frayed or discolored. Fin rot often occurs due to poor water quality or injuries sustained from aggressive tank mates. To prevent fin rot, maintain excellent water conditions and promptly address any bullying in the tank. If fin rot is detected, treat the affected fish with a suitable antibiotic medication.

This species can be affected by various parasites, such as flukes, worms, or protozoa. Signs of a parasitic infection include weight loss, lethargy, or visible parasites on the body.

Preventing parasitic infections involves maintaining excellent water quality and quarantining new fish before adding them to the main tank. If you suspect a parasitic infection, consult with an aquatic veterinarian or fish specialist for appropriate treatment options.

Breeding Black Phantom Tetras

Breeding Black Phantom Tetras can be a truly rewarding experience. I’ve found that witnessing the fascinating breeding behaviors and raising the fry brings a whole new dimension to the aquarium hobby.

Black Phantom Tetras are an egg-scattering species , which means that during the breeding process, they scatter their eggs randomly among plants or on other surfaces in the aquarium, rather than depositing them in a specific location or nest. This method of reproduction is common among many species of Tetras and other small, schooling fish.

When Black Phantom Tetras are ready to spawn, the male will court the female by displaying his fins and performing a unique dance. Once the female is receptive, the pair will swim close to the plants or spawning mops in the breeding tank, and release their eggs and sperm simultaneously. The fertilized eggs will then adhere to the plants or mops, while the unfertilized ones might fall to the bottom of the tank.

As an egg-scattering species, Black Phantom Tetras provide no parental care to their eggs or fry. It’s essential to remove the adult fish from the breeding tank after spawning to protect the eggs from being eaten. The eggs will typically hatch within 24-48 hours, and the fry will remain attached to the plants or spawning mops for a few more days before becoming free-swimming.

Follow these steps to encourage successful breeding in Black Phantom Tetra:

  • Set up a separate breeding tank with plenty of plants or spawning mops for the female to lay her eggs on.
  • Maintain slightly warmer water temperatures (around 80°F or 27°C) to help trigger the spawning process.
  • Provide a nutritious diet to the potential breeding pair to encourage spawning.
  • Observe the courtship behavior, where Black Phantom Tetra male displays its fins and performs a unique dance to attract the female.
  • Watch as the pair swim close to the floating plants or spawning mops and release their eggs and sperm simultaneously. The fertilized eggs will then adhere to the plants or mops.

Keep these tips in mind when breeding Black Phantom Tetra fish:

  • Parental removal : After spawning, remove the adult fish from the breeding tank to protect the eggs from being eaten.
  • Incubation period : Expect the eggs to hatch within 24-48 hours, with fry remaining attached to the plants or spawning mops for a few more days.
  • Gentle water changes : Perform regular, small water changes to maintain water quality and promote fry growth and development. Always use clean, dechlorinated water of the same temperature.
  • Monitor fry growth : Keep an eye on the fry’s growth and adjust their diet accordingly, starting with infusoria or fry food and gradually introducing freshly hatched brine shrimp and crushed flake food.

black phantom tetra breeding

If you find Black Phantoms fascinating, you might also be interested in exploring other tetra species . These species share similarities in appearance, behavior, or care requirements, making them equally captivating additions to your Black Phantom Tetra tank.

Here are a few related species worth considering:

  • Red Phantom Tetra (Hyphessobrycon sweglesi) : As the name suggests, Red Phantom Tetras display a vibrant red coloration, with males being more brightly colored than females.
  • Diamond Tetra (Moenkhausia pittieri) : Diamond Tetras are known for their shimmering, iridescent scales, which give them a diamond-like appearance. They are peaceful and adaptable, making them excellent community fish.
  • Lemon Tetra (Hyphessobrycon pulchripinnis): Lemon Tetras are known for their bright yellow coloration and peaceful nature. Lemon Tetras make excellent tank mates for other peaceful community fish and can be a visually appealing addition to your aquarium.

While Black Phantom Tetras are generally peaceful and do not have a reputation for fin-nipping, they may occasionally display mild aggression, especially during the breeding season. Providing enough hiding spots and plants in your tank can help reduce territorial disputes and keep the fish content.

They are schooling fish that prefer to be in groups of at least six or more. Keeping them in larger groups will make them feel more secure and allow them to display their natural schooling behavior.

These fish grow relatively slowly. They can reach their full adult size of around 1.5 inches (3.8 cm) in about 9 to 12 months, depending on factors such as diet, water quality, and tank conditions.

Yes, they can change color depending on their mood, health, and environment. Stress, poor water quality, or illness can cause them to lose their vibrant coloration. On the other hand, when they are healthy, well-fed, and in a suitable environment, their colors will be more vivid.

While they are generally active and social fish, they may hide when they are introduced to a new environment or feel stressed. Providing plenty of hiding spots and maintaining a stable environment will help them feel secure and encourage them to be more active.

As we’ve explored throughout this blog post, Black Phantom Tetras are captivating fish that can bring both beauty and engaging behavior to your aquarium. Their peaceful nature, adaptability, and striking appearance make them an excellent choice for both beginners and experienced aquarists alike.

Embracing the opportunity to care for and learn from these fascinating creatures can be a rewarding and enriching experience. With a little dedication and attention to their specific needs, you can create a thriving environment for Black Phantom Tetras and other compatible species in your aquarium.

So, go ahead and take the plunge! Add these remarkable fish to your aquatic community and enjoy the captivating world they bring to your underwater haven.

About The Author

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Flora Gibbins

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Black Phantom Tetra Care Sheet – Origin, Lifespan, Breeding, Tankmates

Black Phantom Tetra

One of the underrated and beautiful fish of the Tetra fish family is Black Phantom Tetra (Scientific Name: Hyphessobrycon megalopterus ). These tetras are freshwater fish and beloved by many hobbyists. The unique feature of the black phantom tetra is the black patch on its body.

Black Phantom Tetras are very easy to care for and are very beautiful as well. The tetras are omnivorous and are easy to feed; they accept any form of food you give them.

As they are hardy fish, anyone with little experience in fishkeeping can easily care for them. However, you must require some knowledge about the fish and aquarium environment to keep them happy in your aquarium.

These fish are also the best active schooling fish. The colors can get more attractive when you can set up the right tank for them and provide them with a proper diet.

These tetras are similar to their cousins Red Phantom Tetra ( Hyphessobrycon sweglesi ). Their appearance is similar but has a reddish tingle to their body.

Let’s learn more about Black Phantom Tetra in detail so that you can easily house them in your aquarium happily.

Table of Contents

Origin, Habitat in the Wild and Distribution ( Hyphessobrycon megalopterus )

Black Phantom Tetra is freshwater fish of the Characidae family that was first described by Eigenmann in 1915.

These fish come from South America, upper Paraguay, and Brazil and are native to river basins such as the Guapore River and Rio San Francisco.

In Guapore and Paraguay, you can find these tetras in waters that flow into the wetlands of Pantanal. In other areas, you find them mostly in slow-moving and murky waters that are thick in vegetation.

These tetras are non-aggressive fish that prefer to live in groups. The fish is widely available and are inexpensive, making them highly recommended pets for household aquarium.

These fish are widely bred in captivity and distributed throughout the globe. Since catching them in the wild can hamper the ecosystem, most breeders capture only a few of them and breed them in captivity. The exported breeds are mostly captive-bred.

About Black Phantom Tetra ( Hyphessobrycon megalopterus )

Black Phantom tetras are the most attractive and one of the easiest fish to keep. These fish are very hardy and are adaptive to various water parameters.

Due to this nature, these fish are great for the beginning aquarists who have a little knowledge about fish keeping.

The fish gets its name from its black translucent appearance. They also possess a beautiful black diamond patch with green or silver outlines on their bodies.

Much like other tetras, these tetras also have an oval-shaped body with 1.8 inches in length.

Let’s learn more about the black phantom tetras distinctively.

The black phantom tetra, like other tetras, has an oval-shaped body from the side and is laterally compressed.

The fish have large black patches across its body. The color is mixed with a distinctive splash of black and a mixture of white and silvery gray.

You can easily differentiate these tetras from others by considering the unique tiny adipose fin, which is located in between their dorsal fins and caudal fins.

They have the name black phantom tetra because of having four unpaired fins, anal fin, caudal fin, adipose, and the dorsal fin.

Black phantom tetras are similar to other tetras and can only grow to the maximum size of 1.8 inches in length.

Availability

The black phantom tetras are widely distributed worldwide. As Black Phantom Tetras are bred in captivity rather than collecting them in the wild, the IUCN Red List marked the fish as Least Concern (LC).

The tetra does not have major widespread threats and is available in South America and central Brazil. These are particularly inexpensive than other fish and are readily available in pet stores across the USA and UK.

The price of these tetras can vary according to the local pet stores. However, they are very affordable. The cost of the fish can range from $1.39 to $2.49 per fish.

These fish are mostly suitable for beginners who do not want to spend a lot of money. In total, you will be spending around $8 to $10 as these fish need to be purchased in groups of at least 6.

Generally, these tetras can live up to 8 years in the wild. However, with the proper care and diet, in-home aquarium, the fish can live 5 to 6 years.

You need to monitor their habitat for their well-being and stress-free conditions.

Sexual Difference

If you are planning to keep black phantom tetra, you will be able to distinguish between male and female black phantom very easily.

The most notable feature that differs females from the male is the color of these fish. The males are more grayish and have dark patches behind their gills. On the other hand, females have brighter coloration than males.

Female black phantom has a natural reddish hue to their pelvic fin, caudal, and anal fins. The males do not have these features. The female’s dorsal fin is also blacker than those of the males.

If you look closely, you can visualize that the females have fins that are shorter and smaller in comparison with the males.

Apart from that, you can also differentiate their sex by looking at their body as the male’s body shape is almost tetragonal.

Fish Keeping Difficulty

One of the distinguished factors of black phantom tetras is their flexibility. As the fish are hardy, they can adapt to a wide range of water parameters. This makes the fish an ideal and highly demanding fish for beginner aquarists as well.

Even though these tetras do not have a problem with the different water parameters, you cannot be ignorant of them. You need to ensure that your tank is clean and your fish do not latch on to various diseases.

The aquarium tank is a closed ecosystem, and the water does not travel to any other area. Hence, you are supposed to clean fish excretes, remove fish debris, etc. that can be present in the water.

If you are capable of performing these tasks regularly, the fish can live their entire life happily in your aquarium.

Social Behavior and Tank Mates

Black phantom tetras, like any other tetras, are a community fish and love to be in a school. Therefore, you need to keep a pack of at least 6 of their kind in your aquarium.

These tetras are very friendly with other species as well. If you are willing to pair these fish with other species, then you have to make sure that they are active as black phantom tetras.

These tetras get easily spooked, so you need to make sure that you provide them with the appropriate habitat with plenty of vegetation.

You may also see two male black phantom tetras fighting. This behavior is known as “mock” fighting, and they do not hurt each other, so you do not need to worry.

Make sure that you keep them with species that are similar in size to this tetra, as larger species can pose a threat to them.

When you keep them will slow swimmers, they can become very competitive with them regarding foods. This can make slow swimmer species starve.

Some of the best companions for the black phantom tetras are livebearers, danionins, Rasboras, other tetras, most gourami, peaceful bottom dwellers, and small cichlids.

Caring for Black Phantom Tetra

Even though the black phantom tetras are very hardy and can adapt to various water parameters, it is essential for you to provide them with all the care they need.

It is not very difficult to manage and care for the black phantom tetra. With a decent size tank, good aquarium water, the right temperature, right tank mates, and a proper diet, it will be very easy for you to look after the tank.

It is necessary to care for the fish as you care for human beings. As they live in a closed environment, maintaining the tank should be the utmost priority. The fish can be very stressed if the tank environment is not optimal.

Next will be discussing different factors influencing the care for black phantom tetra. Keep reading for more information.

Black phantom tetras, as I have mentioned earlier, are active schooling fish. These fish want to live in an environment that is large so that they can swim freely.

The most common mistake a beginner aquarist does is when choosing an aquarium. They try to buy a small size aquarium thinking this will require lesser maintenance.

However, it’s opposite to what they think. You should know that smaller aquariums are very hard to maintain. Therefore, tank size is the most important factor to consider. The bigger, the better.

The ideal minimum size for your aquarium should be at least 24 inches long, with at least 20 gallons in volume.

And this math is only for 6 of the black phantom tetras. Get a bigger tank if you want to add more fish.

Keep in mind that you should not overcrowd your tank, and you should only keep one black phantom tetra fish per gallon in the tank.

The bigger the tank size, the more it will be easy to manage the fish and their environment. This will provide you with the assurance that your fishes are happy and healthy.

Black phantom tetras are more likely to live in the regions where there are heavy plantations in the wild. These areas of water do not have bright lightings. Thus, you should be using dim and subdued lightings in your aquarium.

The shaded lights bring out the best coloration in the fish and provide great beauty to the tank.

However, if you are planning to go for a planted aquarium, make sure you add enough hiding places and shades for the fish.

NICREW ClassicLED Aquarium Light   is an ideal light for the aquarium with these tetras. they give low output and maintain the dim lit environment.

Decorations and Substrate

An important thing to consider while adding any decorations and substrate in your tank is to disinfect them from any toxins. This will prevent contamination/toxins from harming your fish.

The black phantom tetra does well in a densely planted tank. These tetras love to swim freely in the middle of the tank.

Hence, you should plant the tank with live or artificial plants around the sides and back of the tank. To mimic the fish’s natural habitat, you can use a biotope tank.

These tetras prefer dark gravel as well. You can use river sand with some driftwood and twisted roots for the decoration.

Seachem Flourite Black Clay Gravel can give your aquarium natural look and porous substrate for plants to grow in.

You can also add dried leave to the sand. The dried leaves will stain the water, causing it to become light brown, which will provide the tank with a natural look.

Diet for Black Phantom Tetra

As the black phantom tetras are omnivorous, they tend to eat whatever you serve them. It is very easy to feed these fish as well.

In the wild, the fish mainly gets to eat worms, small insects, and crustaceans. As these fish are small, they mostly feed on only tiny organisms.

If you are planning to keep a black phantom in your aquarium, you should try to feed them what they eat in the wild.

Generally, you can feed them with live, fresh, and flake foods. You need to give them high-quality flake food every day to keep the balance in their diet.

You can treat them with brine shrimp, either live or frozen or bloodworms, once in a while as well. Feed them twice a day and make sure you do not overfeed them as well.

These fish have smallmouth; hence, you need to provide them with crushed foods and not large foods. You only need to provide meals that the fish can consume within 3 to 5 minutes .

If the fish do not eat the food, you need to remove it as quickly as possible otherwise, it can disrupt the balance of the ecosystem in your tank.

Maintain Water Quality for Black Phantom Tetra

Although Black Phantom Tetras are hardy fish, they are still sensitive to water parameters. Their colors might fade away as the temperature drop and pollutants increases in your tank.

And this also causes fish to be vulnerable to many diseases. Nevertheless, it is better to provide them with the care they require.

You can install a good filtration system to make things easier for you. You cannot see the pollutant in the water, can you? No right?

So, always use aquarium test kits to test ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, phosphates, pH, and hardness of your aquarium water.

Here are some of the factors you need to take care of before adding the fish to your tank or in your routine check-up.

Read further for more information.

Water Temperature

Fish are cold-blooded species, which means that they cannot regulate their body temperature.

Hence, when the water temperature change, their body temperature also changes. If the water temperature alters drastically, it might hamper the fish’s health.

The perfect water temperature for black phantom tetras can be from 72°F to 82°F. (22 to 28°C). You need to maintain this temperature at any cost as this has a direct effect on the fish’s metabolism.

If the water in your aquarium is too cold, then there will be a slow pace in your fish’s metabolism, and warm water can increase their metabolism.

The drastic and rapid fluctuations in the water temperature can weaken the immune system of the fish and make them prone to various diseases.

To stop this, you can use a good quality automatic aquarium heater and monitor the temperature regularly using a thermometer.

Hitop Submersible Adjustable Aquarium Heater is an ideal choice for an aquarium heater in the tetra tank.

pH and Hardness

If you have been researching about keeping fish, then you must be aware of various toolkits that can determine the pH level and hardness of the water in the tank. Maintaining pH level means maintaining the acidity of the water.

The preferred pH level for black phantom tetras ranges from 6.0 to 7.5. The hardness of the water should be ten dGH.

Hard water has many dissolved minerals in the water. The hardness of the water directly affects the pH level as the mineral in hard water acts as a buffer that will reduce the acid in water.

So, to maintain a balanced pH and hardness of water, do change 10% aquarium water every other day or 50 percent water each week.

Filtration is the core of your aquarium. Installing filters can be very beneficial to the aquarium as it traps solid wastes from the water and converts liquid wastes into a relatively harmless form (ammonia into nitrite and nitrite into nitrate). This process is called the aquarium nitrogen cycle.

You need to consider and boost the cycle of your aquarium called the nitrogen cycle. To boost, you need to use aquarium filters that can store more bio media to develop better bacteria when the tank ages.

The good bacteria feed on harmful chemicals like ammonia and nitrite and produce nitrate, which is less harmful to the fish.

There are filters like mechanical filters and biological filters. The mechanical filters help to remove debris from the water that makes your aquarium clean.

Biological filtration breaks down dangerous wastes such as ammonia, converting them to nitrites, and then breaks the nitrites into nitrates that are non-toxic or lesser toxic than others.

The cycle in the tank, with the help of a high-quality filter, can circulate oxygenated water throughout the tank.

A canister filter is a filter you should go for as it has a large volume that can store a large amount of filter media.

Penn Plax Cascade 400 Submersible Aquarium Filter is a highly recommended canister filter you can use in your black phantom tetra tank.

Water Maintenance

Installing the filtration system and using test kits can help you maintain the consistency of water and pollutants from the tank.

However, it does not remove all the chemicals. So, no matter what filter you use, if you do not change the water regularly, it will not help the tank.

You need to know that the aquarium is not a natural ecosystem, and it is a closed system. Therefore, all the bacteria remain in your tank unless you remove them.

You do not need to and shouldn’t add other chemicals to the tank because you need to keep the tank as organic as possible. Just do water changes weekly, and you are good to go.

You just need to spend some extra effort and time maintaining the tank. You can use test kits like API master test kit that are widely available in the pet store or on Amazon to test your tank’s water parameter.

Some of the activities that you need to consider are pH level, hardness, and regulations of ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate level.

Besides, you need to replace the tank water by 10% every week. Make sure that you use fresh water at the proper temperature, which is similar to the tank water.

Fish Diseases

Living in a closed environment, the fish are not immune to various diseases. Black phantom tetra, like most fish, is prone to diseases such as ichthyobodo infection, skin flukes, parasitic infestations, bacterial infections, and other common fish diseases.

As the tetras are extremely hardy and mainly diseases are not usually a problem in the well-maintained aquarium. If you add any kinds of decorative items to your tank, it can also bring in many diseases.

One of the easiest things about black phantom tetra is that due to their resilience, it will be easy to prevent disease outbreaks. You can limit the disease to only one fish when you can catch them early. You can research a few of the diseases, and then you will realize the telltale signs.

Breeding Black Phantom Tetra

The black phantom tetra is very easy to breed. To get the best care for the fish eggs and the fry, you need to set up a separate tank.

Breeding Tank Requirements Of Black Phantom Tetra

The tank should not be bigger than 10 gallons so that you can keep the tank range from 3 to 5 gallons. The breeding tank should also be dimly lit and densely planted.

The plantation should include spawning mops or java moss that can provide a place for the females to lay their eggs.

You also need to provide the ideal breeding tank for replicating the Condition of the water to their natural habitat.

The temperature should be about 77°F (25°C). The water needs to be relatively soft with a pH level, about 5.0 to 5.6, to stimulate breeding.

The water hardness should be below 4° dGH. You can filter the water through a small sponge filter, which is air-powered, or through peat, which is aquarium safe.

Breeding And Spawning Of Black Phantom Tetra

The female will scatter between 300 to 400 eggs in one spawning, and the male will fertilize them.

The tetras are best spawned in pairs, as males get aggressive with one another when breeding or defending a territory. So, 2:1 is the best ratio for female and male black phantom tetra.

Once the fish spawning completes, you must remove the parents as they tend to eat the eggs and fry.

The eggs can hatch in a day, but they can be very susceptible to fungus. You need to expose the fry to very little light so that the fungus does not spread in other eggs. The fry may swim after about five days.

For the first few days, you can feed them with   Infusoria -type foods until they can feed on a micro worm or brine shrimp nauplii.

Even though the breeding of black phantom tetra is easy, you need to keep in mind that male tetras can become very aggressive towards one another. Hence, you need to take care of the tetras carefully.

These tetras are very delightful to watch. It requires minimal care and is widely available. You will not regret purchasing them, and your tank will be the center of attraction.

I have tried to provide almost all the information about black phantom tetra through this article. However, if you still need some more information, you can contact me via the comment section below. I will reply to your queries.

If you are interested in similar breeds of tetras , you can check out our other articles as well.

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The Aquarium Guide

Black Phantom Tetra: Care Guide, Breeding, & Tank Size

Adam Edmond Image

  • By Adam Edmond

black phantom tetra breeding behavior

Just like most  other species of tetra , the black phantom tetra has a rather flat body with a longer dorsal fin. The tail of the fish is somewhat forked at the end allowing for its easy identification. The male phantom tetra has a shape that is almost tetragonal but the coloring of the male is not as bright as that of the female. You will easily distinguish a male from the female by taking a look at its coloring which is more grayish. The male also has got a dark patch that is located behind the gills.

The female of the fish have got a pelvic fin that exhibits a natural reddish hue. This is also evident in their caudal and anal fins. The male black phantom tetras don’t have any reddish coloration on them. Again a keen look at the fins of the females and you will realize that they have fins that are shorter and smaller compared to those of the males. Another striking feature of the females is their dorsal fins which are blacker than those of the males. During breeding, you will see that the females tend to have bodies that are plump.

Black Phantom Tetras have their origins in the South American region specifically between the Bolivian and Brazilian border. They were originally found in the river basins of Rio Mamore and Rio Beni. In Bolivia they were originally found in the Rio Guapore. The fish have a rather large distribution in the wild and currently there is no cause for alarm to their continued existence. They are easily available and thus you will find them affordably in pet stores without much of a hustle.

Group of Black Phantom Tetra in Planted Tanks

In the wild the fish is known to like living in densely vegetated areas and therefore when it is to be kept in an aquarium setting the tank need to be furnished with sufficient  freshwater plants .

Temperament and Behavior of Black Phantom Tetra

The black phantom tetras are social creatures and prefer to stay in specific groups. They are not some schooling species, but the shoaling fish sticks together in groups for most of their time. Most times, this fish is not aggressive at all. However, the male fishes at times try to show territorial behavior over time. This type of fish often develops a social hierarchy within a group. The males, at times, creep into someone else’s territory and have to take up a mock fight. 

At the mock fights, the male fishes will be acting aggressively to one another. They might do the mirror movements or swim around to give an interesting display. Mock fighting is not for injuring one another but is an innocent behavior of these fishes.

Tank setup for Black Phantom Tetra

The Black Phantom Tetra is highly hardy and this is one thing that makes it a popular favorite of many aquarium enthusiasts. The fact that the fish is very resilient makes them also  a great option for beginner aquarists . The fish is known to perfectly adapt to abrupt water changes will readily survive even in community tanks. One thing to note though is not to mistake the high resilience of the fish with ignorant care. Just like most other fish kept in the aquarium ensure that  the tank is kept clean  at all times. You can ensure this by removing food debris that is left by the fish in the tank.  Performing frequent water changes  is also advisable as this will reduce the possibility of causing infection in the tank.

Black Phantom Tetra Tank Setup and Specification

Tank Requirement

Here below are some basic care tips that you can follow when setting up a tank for the Black Phantom Tetra:

  • The fish are highly active swimmers and therefore need a tank that is longer in length. Ensure that the tank is at least 20 inches.
  • The tank should also be big enough for the fish because they are  a schooling kind of fish . A tank with a water  capacity of at least 29 gallon  is good to go.
  • Ensure that the tank water is soft and have peat-filtering installed on the aquarium.
  • Due to the swimming nature of the fish ensure that the center of the tank is open enough. You can have plants to the sides and back of the tank. The fish are quite choosy and will be dull in a tank that is not properly arranged.
  • As for the substrate to be placed on the bottom of the tank, it is best to use dark-colored substrate such as Carib Sea Eco-Complete .
  • Ensure that it is dimly lit so that the fishes’ attractive coloration can be highlighted.
  • Have a lid tightly placed on top of the tank because the fish are notorious jumpers and will easily jump out of the tank.
  • The pH range for the tank water should be at least 6.5 with a hardness range of 10dGH.
  • Ensure that the water movement is moderate. Perform a thirty percent water change each week for heavily populated tanks.

Water Temperature

The black phantom tetras prefer to live in tropical river conditions. They are ideal to be kept in biotope tanks. The biotope tanks are set up to replicate the water chemistry, similar to the natural habitat. This species of fish mostly dwells in a slow-moving flow of water. It is better if the water has plant life in it. Dense vegetation and decaying plant matters are necessities for making the water-rich with nutrients. 

Black phantom tetras do have the potential to adapt to almost all conditions. Still, to ensure that the water temperature is right, you should determine that the range should be between 72 degrees F to 82 degrees F. This is the ideal temperature range for keeping your tetra at a home aquarium. One or two points up or down might not create a big hassle. But anything beyond that is going to raise care concerns for the tetras.

Feeding Black Phantom Tetra

The fish is an omnivorous fish that essentially feeds on both plants as well as tiny animals. In the wild, the fish is known to feed on tiny insects, crustaceans, and worms. When you are going to keep them in a captive environment, feed them food they eat in the wild. Fortunately, they can also be fed fish flake food as well as micro pellet feeds. These are some of the most easy to feed fishes you will find in the aquarium hobby today.

Black Phantom Tetra with Neon Tetra

Black Phantom Tetra Breeding

The Black Phantom Tetra is prolific breeder with the female capable of producing up to three hundred eggs. With optimum aquarium conditions the fish will breed easily. You can facilitate the breeding process of the fish by manipulating the pH of the tank water to about 5.5 or 6. You will also need to make the hardiness of the water to be dH4. For stress free breeding, it is best to have a single male with a group of females in the same tank. A single male should be able to fertilize the eggs of the many females it will be placed with on the same tank.

Disease Potential

Black Phantom Tetras are quite susceptible to all types of common health issues that a fish suffers from. Some of such issues include bacterial infections, Ich, parasites, and flukes. However, with ideal care, you can seek to avoid most of these diseases. You need to go ahead with a 25% water change every week to ensure that the ammonia levels in the water are down. Hence, this will help you maintain the optimality of water for the healthy living of the fish. 

Apart from that, you must also take proper care upon water cycling the tank. Before you add any new plants or fish to the aquarium, you need to quarantine them to ensure that they don’t get aggressive right from the beginning. It is to play the things safe, as you do not want your existing fishes killing off the new ones. If they are introduced to any closed ecosystem with some additions, the black phantom tetras are prone to parasites and diseases. 

It means that you need to be careful throughout changing water or bringing in new fish or plants to the tank. It is because your negligence might just expose your fish to parasites or diseases. Some of the disease symptoms are not prominent before a week or two that will end your time to react and respond to revive the health of your fish. And that will eventually result in their death!

How do you take care of a Black Phantom Tetra?

You can take care of black phantom tetra by setting up a well-planted tank. You can prefer to add floating plants to the aquarium if you are willing to pet this fish. You can also consider adding up some dried leaves in your tank. You can also consider adding driftwood in the tank to give them a better space to wander around. In addition to that, you should also change water frequently, as this species of fish cannot resist poor water. 

Are Black Phantom Tetra Hardy?

Black Phantom Tetra Hardy is highly hardy! And this is one attribute that makes it quite popular amongst aquarium enthusiasts. The fish is also resilient, which makes it an ideal option for beginner aquarists. This fish also can adapt to water changes and can survive within the community tanks. But high resilience should not trigger your ignorant attitude towards this species. 

How long do black phantom tetras live for?

Black phantom tetra has a lifespan of 5 years. Some fish of this species can also live for around six years if you take ideal care of them and are a bit lucky. Therefore, make sure that the care quality you offer them will decide upon the life expectancy of your fish. Get them optimal water, a perfect environment, and a healthy diet to help them thrive with a healthy life. 

How big do black phantom tetras get?

The size of black phantom tetra varies depending upon the varieties. If you own a long-finned variety developed and maintained by captive breeders, it has the best size and is often sold in the aquarium trade to obtain the best size. The male black phantom tetras do have a bit elongated anal and dorsal fins. The standard lengths that the black phantom tetras grow are 3.6cm or 1.4inches. 

Why are my black phantom tetras fighting?

The fighting behavior of the black phantom tetras is normal. If the tank is pretty much small, then it will hamper their space of rest. It becomes stressful for them, and they begin to fight one another throughout the day. Many tetras are peaceful and never fight within the aquarium. If you feel like your tetras are very aggressive to one another, you can prefer to change them after a day or two by observing how they react to your tank environment. 

Can black phantom tetras live with bettas?

Black phantom tetras can be good mates with bettas in the same tank. One reason these two are the best mates for living in one tank is that phantom tetras have black neon color. And that doesn’t trigger the bettas against them. Color is the key for triggering aggression in fishes, and that aspect is neutralized here. Apart from that, both tetras and bettas need the same parameters to survive. Hence, they can be good mates in an aquarium tank! 

Can black phantom tetras live with angelfish?

Black phantom tetras and diamond tetras are quite small and can go well with that of the angelfish. The bigger tetras, such as serape tetras, neon tetras, and black tetras, are bigger and might nip angelfish fins. Therefore, it is better to go for small tetras to keep them in the same tank as angelfish. As black phantom tetras are smaller, they are fast to dodge even if the angelfish comes close. In this way, they can also share the same water roof without much hassle.

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All About Black Phantom Tetras: Care, Feeding and Tank Setup

  • December 23, 2023

black phantom tetra (Hyphessobrycon megalopterus)

Table of Contents Show

Fins and body shape, natural range, aquarium requirements, feeding schedule, live vs. prepared foods, social behavior, activity level, breeding behavior, water parameters, aquarium decor, temperature, water hardness, breeding conditions, caring for fry, common diseases, preventive measures, treatment options, online sources, suitability for hobbyists, challenges of keeping black phantom tetra, overall appeal, related posts:.

You are about to embark on an exciting journey into the mesmerizing world of the Black Phantom Tetra. With its striking black-colored body and delicate fins, this beautiful fish is a true jewel among aquarium enthusiasts. In this article, we will uncover the captivating traits and behaviors of the Black Phantom Tetra, shedding light on why it is a popular choice for both novice and experienced fishkeepers alike. So, get ready to dive deep into the enchanting world of the Black Phantom Tetra and discover what makes it a fascinating addition to any aquarium.

The Black Phantom Tetra is named for its striking coloration. It has a dark, almost black body with a vibrant red or orange tail. The combination of these two contrasting colors creates a visually stunning fish that will add a pop of color to any aquarium.

The Black Phantom Tetra is a small fish, growing to just about 2 inches in length when fully mature. This makes them a suitable choice for smaller aquariums or for hobbyists who prefer smaller fish species.

In addition to their unique coloration, Black Phantom Tetras have elegant fins and a streamlined body shape. Their fins are long and flowing, adding to their overall beauty. The body is slender and slightly elongated, allowing them to swim swiftly through the water.

The Black Phantom Tetra is native to the rivers and streams of South America, specifically the Paraguay River basin. They can be found in areas with dense vegetation and slow-moving or still waters. In the wild, these fish thrive in warm, tropical environments.

To provide the best possible living conditions for Black Phantom Tetras, it is important to replicate their natural habitat as closely as possible. They prefer aquariums with plenty of plants and hiding spots, as well as areas with both open water and densely vegetated areas.

Black Phantom Tetras are generally peaceful fish and can be kept with a variety of tank mates. However, they may become stressed or intimidated by more aggressive or larger fish species. It is best to choose tank mates that are of similar size and temperament to ensure a harmonious community tank.

In the wild, Black Phantom Tetras are omnivorous, meaning they eat both plant matter and small aquatic organisms. In captivity, they can be fed a varied diet consisting of high-quality flakes or pellets, supplemented with live or frozen foods such as brine shrimp or bloodworms.

It is recommended to feed Black Phantom Tetras small amounts of food several times a day. This will help mimic their natural feeding patterns and prevent overeating. Feed only what they can consume within a few minutes to ensure they receive the proper nutrition.

While Black Phantom Tetras can thrive on a diet of prepared foods alone, incorporating live or frozen foods into their diet is beneficial. Live or frozen foods provide additional nutrients and can help stimulate their natural foraging behavior.

Black Phantom Tetras are social fish and should be kept in groups of at least 6 individuals. They thrive in the presence of their own kind and will display more natural behavior when kept in a group. They are generally peaceful and can be housed with other peaceful species.

These tetras are active swimmers and will often dart around the aquarium, especially when they feel secure and comfortable in their environment. Providing a well-decorated tank with plenty of swimming space will encourage their natural behavior and enhance their activity level.

Breeding Black Phantom Tetras can be a rewarding experience. They are egg-layers and will scatter their eggs among plants or other surfaces in the aquarium. The parents do not provide care for the eggs or fry, so it is important to remove them from the main tank to prevent predation and ensure the survival of the young.

A minimum tank size of 20 gallons is recommended for a small group of Black Phantom Tetras. This will provide them with enough swimming space and allow for the inclusion of plants and hiding spots. A larger tank size is advisable for larger groups or for keeping them with other fish species.

Black Phantom Tetras prefer slightly acidic to neutral water conditions. The temperature should be kept between 75-82°F and the pH level should be in the range of 6.0-7.5. It is important to regularly monitor and maintain water parameters to keep the fish healthy and thriving.

In order to create an ideal environment for the Black Phantom Tetra, it is important to include plenty of live or artificial plants in the tank. These tetras appreciate areas to hide and explore, so driftwood, rock structures, and caves make great additions to their tank. A dimly lit tank with a dark substrate can also help enhance their coloration.

Water Conditions

Black Phantom Tetras prefer a tropical water temperature ranging from 75-82°F. It is important to use a reliable aquarium heater to maintain a consistent temperature within this range, as fluctuations can stress the fish and compromise their health.

The ideal pH range for Black Phantom Tetras is between 6.0-7.5. It is important to regularly test and adjust the pH level as necessary to ensure the well-being of the fish. Avoid drastic pH swings, as this can be detrimental to their health.

These tetras thrive in slightly soft to moderately hard water. Aim for a water hardness level of 5-15 dGH to mimic their natural habitat. Regular water changes and the use of appropriate water conditioners can help maintain the desired water hardness.

To encourage breeding in Black Phantom Tetras, provide them with a well-planted tank with plenty of hiding spots and a spawning mop or fine-leaved plants, where the female can scatter her eggs. Maintain pristine water conditions and consistent temperatures within their preferred range to promote successful breeding.

When ready to breed, the female Black Phantom Tetra will scatter her adhesive eggs among the plants or spawning mop. The eggs are small and transparent, making them difficult to spot. It is advisable to use a separate breeding tank to ensure the survival of the eggs and fry.

Once the eggs hatch, the fry will be extremely tiny and vulnerable. They will need to be fed infusoria or other suitable food for the first few days before transitioning to baby brine shrimp or finely crushed flakes. Frequent water changes and careful monitoring of water parameters will help ensure the survival and growth of the fry.

Black Phantom Tetras are generally hardy and less prone to diseases compared to some other fish species. However, they can still be susceptible to common fish diseases such as ich, fungal infections, and fin rot. Keeping the aquarium clean and providing proper nutrition and water conditions can help prevent these issues.

To prevent diseases, it is essential to maintain good water quality by performing regular water changes and testing the water parameters. Quarantine new fish before introducing them to an established tank to minimize the risk of introducing diseases. Avoid overcrowding and provide a balanced diet to boost the immune system of the fish.

If a disease does occur, prompt action is necessary to ensure the health of the fish. Consult with a veterinarian or a knowledgeable fish keeper for appropriate treatment options. Medications, water conditioners, and increased water changes may be necessary to address the specific disease.

Availability

Black Phantom Tetras are commonly available in pet stores that specialize in freshwater fish. With their striking coloration and peaceful nature, they are often sought after by hobbyists looking to add a vibrant touch to their aquarium.

Numerous online retailers offer Black Phantom Tetras for purchase, providing convenience and a wider selection for hobbyists. It is important to use reputable sources and consider the shipping and handling practices of the retailer when purchasing fish online.

The price of Black Phantom Tetras can vary depending on factors such as size, availability, and location. On average, they are reasonably priced and offer good value for their striking coloration and peaceful temperament.

Black Phantom Tetras are an excellent choice for hobbyists of all experience levels. They are relatively easy to care for, have stunning coloration, and are compatible with a wide range of tank mates. Their small size makes them suitable for smaller aquariums and their peaceful nature adds to their appeal.

While generally hardy, Black Phantom Tetras can be sensitive to poor water conditions or sudden fluctuations in water parameters. Maintaining consistent water quality and ensuring proper nutrition are key to their well-being. Additionally, successful breeding can be challenging, requiring specific conditions and careful monitoring.

With their striking black and red coloration, graceful fins, and active behavior, Black Phantom Tetras are sure to capture the attention of any aquarium enthusiast. Their peaceful nature and compatibility with a variety of tank mates make them a popular choice for both beginner and experienced hobbyists. Adding a group of Black Phantom Tetras to your aquarium will not only enhance its aesthetic appeal but also provide you with hours of enjoyment observing their natural behavior.

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black phantom tetra breeding behavior

Edwin is a passionate fishkeeper since he was a kid. He loves caring for the fish and sharing his ideas about fishkeeping with family and friends. He is the owner of Fishkeeping Adventure.

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Black Phantom Tetra Care: Everything You Need To Know

  • by Alison Yang
  • Updated: December 16, 2020
  • 80.8K views

Black Phantom tetras are a wonderful freshwater fish that add a unique look to any tank. They’re also quite easy to care for, making them a great choice for aquarists of all experience levels.

However, it’s still very important to have a strong understanding of their requirements if you want them to thrive. Being hardy doesn’t mean they’re invincible!

This guide will cover Black Phantom tetra care in great detail, fully preparing you for ownership. You’ll learn about their ideal tank conditions, water parameters, tank mates, and even how to breed them!

Table of Contents

Species summary, no spam, subscribe for cool fish stuff, average size, water parameters, setting up the rest of their tank, disease potential, food & diet, behavior & temperament, black phantom tetra tank mates.

The Black Phantom tetra (scientific name: Hyphessobrycon megalopterus ) has an ominous name and a sinister look to match. Named after their striking appearance, these freshwater fish are actually far more peaceful than their trade name would have you believe.

Social and very playful, Black Phantom tetras make excellent additions to community tanks. They’re an active species as well (more on that later). With their unique social interactions and penchant for darting throughout the tank, these fish always put on a show.

Black Phantom tetras are native to South America. They inhabit bodies of water throughout Bolivia and West Brazil. Most notably, you can find them in the upper Paraguay and Madeira basins.

This species flourishes in the wild and readily breeds in captivity. As a result, they’re easy to find and add to your fish collection!

This eye-catching fish species has some unique physical characteristics. At face value, the fish has many of the same features you see on other types of tetra s. This includes a flat, tetragonal body, wide anal fin, and a tiny little adipose fin.

A Black Phantom tetra swimming in a freshwater tank

The body of the fish is relatively muted, as the base coloration is usually smokey-gray. However, the most defining feature is a distinct eye-shaped marking behind the gills.

This mark is what gives the fish its name. It’s a dark black spot or band. Flaking the black spot, you’ll find iridescent stripes with a subtle tinge of blue. The distinct marking looks like a foreboding eye staring back at you!

All Black Phantom tetras have this marking on both sides of the body. However, it tends to be more intense with males.

Males also have long flowing fins that are often edged with black.

Author Note: Telling the difference between males and females is very easy. Females have red coloration on their pelvic, anal, and adipose fins. They’re also a bit plumper (this is especially true around times of spawning).

The average Black Phantom tetra lifespan is about five years. Some may even reach six years if you’re lucky!

The quality of care you provide will have an impact on this fish’s life expectancy. Like any other species, they need optimal water conditions, the right environment, and a high-quality diet to truly thrive.

Without proper care, the Black Phantom tetra could suffer from disease and a shortened lifespan.

The average size of an adult Black Phantom tetra is between 1.4 and 1.75 inches in length. You might see some specimens reach two inches in length, but that’s very rare.

Because they’re such a small species, you have to get up close to truly appreciate all of the detail on this fish’s body. Their black marking is usually visible from afar, but it’s hard to spot the rest (especially when they’re moving)

Black Phantom Tetra Care

Like the other species in their family, Black Phantom tetra care is a fairly low-maintenance responsibility. Considered a good “newbie” species, they can adapt to a decent range of conditions. Plus, their non-aggressive nature makes the fish easy to pair with others

All that said, you still have to be vigilant about their care. Black Phantom tetras have specific water parameters and dietary needs too!

Here are some care guidelines to help you keep these fish happy and healthy.

A 10-gallon aquarium should be the bare minimum when it comes to the ideal Black Phantom tetra tank size. In fact, we recommend going with a tank that holds 20 gallons or more.

Thanks to their small stature, Black Phantoms don’t need a massive aquarium to thrive. However, it does help!

As active swimmers, this freshwater species needs ample open space. A cramped aquarium will only increase stress levels and lead to a lack of enrichment.

Author Note: In addition to volume, pay close attention to the length of the tank. Aim for an aquarium that’s at least 40 inches long to ensure that your fish can swim freely.

Black Phantom tetras thrive in tropical river conditions. They do best in biotope tanks that are set up with the same water chemistry as their natural habitat.

These fish dwell in slow-moving water that is murky and filled with plant life. Generally, the dense vegetation and decaying plant matter result in nutrient-rich waters that are on the acidic side.

While Black Phantom tetras can adapt to a wide range of conditions, it’s always good to aim for the water parameters recommended below.

  • Water temperature: 72°F to 82°F (the middle of this range is ideal)
  • pH levels: 6.0 to 7.5
  • Water hardness: Up to 18 dGH (around 10 dGH is best)

To maintain these parameters (and the water quality in general), it’s important to perform regular tests with a reliable aquarium test kit . This will allow you to stay informed on the state of your tank and catch any unwanted changes before they become a problem.

When it comes to tank decor, natural is always best. Thanks to their unique coloration, Black Phantom tetras offer a stunning contrast to natural backdrops.

Not only that, but these fish will feel safer when surrounded by living decorations.

The goal is to recreate the rivers they inhabit! To do that, start with a dark sand substrate. This mimics the riverbed and all of its plant detritus.

Two Hyphessobrycon megalopterus swimming together

Next, fill the tank with a variety of plants. Take advantage of long stem plants as well as floating species . The plants act as a shelter from the light.

Finally, round off the decorations with large pieces of driftwood and rock.

Make sure to keep some open space in the middle of the tank. You can arrange your plants and decorations in the background and foreground while still leaving room to swim.

When it comes to equipment, Black Phantom tetras need all the essentials. This includes a powerful filtration system and lights. These freshwater fish prefer subdued lighting.

Even still, the fish need a standard day and night cycle. Utilize a low-powered lighting system and let some of the plants create dark shady spots when they need it.

Author Note: It’s also very important to get a secure lid if you plan on owning this species! Black Phantom tetras are powerful swimmers that are capable of leaping out of the water. Keep the lid on to ensure that no fish leap to their death!

Black Phantom tetras are susceptible to all of the common health issues that fish can suffer from. These include Ich, bacterial infections, flukes, and parasites.

Thankfully, most of these diseases are avoidable with proper care. Stay on top of water parameters and perform a 25 percent water change every other week. This will keep ammonia levels down while also maintaining optimal water conditions.

Always introduce your fish to a well-cycled tank. Also, before you add any new fish or plants into the mix, make sure you quarantine them first (if you want to play things safe).

It’s very easy for diseases and parasites to be introduced into a closed ecosystem with new additions. This means you must be careful when going through this process if you want to minimize the chance of exposing your Black Phantom to disease.

Omnivores by nature, Black Phantom tetras aren’t picky (far from it). In fact, you’ll need to pay extra attention early on in order to avoid overfeeding them!

Feeding them a primary diet of dried commercial foods is best. Give them a nutrient-rich pellet or flake food if you want to maximize their health. Check the label to be sure that the food is balanced and contains all of the nutrients they need to thrive.

That said, an occasional high-protein snack is always appreciated. Black Phantoms love freeze-dried or live foods. They enjoy brine shrimp, bloodworms , and mosquito larvae the most.

Author Note: These high-protein foods are not only great for their health, but they also provide a great source of enrichment as well. Everyone likes a bit of variety!

Black Phantom tetras are social creatures that prefer to stay in groups. They’re not a schooling species, but they are shoaling fish that will stick together most of the time.

For the most part, this species is non-aggressive. However, males can exhibit some territorial behavior from time to time. The fish often develop a social hierarchy within the group. Males that creep into another’s space may have to answer to a mock fight!

During a mock fight, males will act aggressively towards one another. They may also mirror movements and swim in unison. It’s quite an interesting display.

Luckily, mock fighting usually doesn’t result in injury. It’s a relatively innocent behavior that helps squash any beef without physical injury (we know of a certain two-legged animal that could learn a thing or two from this).

These fish do well in community tanks, meaning the best tank mates are going to be other Black Phantom tetras.

You should keep these fish in pairs or groups of five or more. Make sure to get a healthy mix of males and females to avoid any territory issues.

If you want to keep them with other species, you have to choose your tank mates accordingly. The main rule is to avoid aggressive fish or species that are considerably larger than the Black Phantom tetra.

For the best results, consider adding other tetra species and peaceful bottom dwellers . They pair quite well with the Red Phantom tetra. You can also try:

  • Danios ( Celestial Pearl danios are our favorite)
  • Most types of rasboras
  • Honey gourami
  • Non-aggressive cichlids (like the Apistogramma )
  • Dwarf gourami

You can also keep these fish with most freshwater snails and shrimp . They won’t bother each other and can happily coexist.

Author Note: Many aquarists have asked if you can keep a Black Phantom tetra with a betta fish . While it has been done, it’s not recommended.

Black Phantom tetras readily breed in captivity. Females can lay up to 300 eggs at once!

This is an egg-scattering species. Parents don’t protect the young or look after the eggs, but spawning is an easy process. With proper care, you can rear the young and have a brand-new generation of fish to care for!

To promote spawning, you need to start by creating a separate breeding tank. Fill it with floating plants and keep the light levels low.

Utilize a mesh barrier, breeding grass, or a breeding box. These accessories will separate the eggs from the adults to maximize egg survival rates.

Black Phantom tetras are more likely to breed in acidic waters. Bring down the pH level to about 5.5. You can drop the hardness down to about 4 dGH as well. Condition your bonded pair with live foods and introduce them to the tank.

Leave the pair to spawn. If successful, you should see eggs the next morning.

Return the adults to their normal tank while you wait for the eggs to hatch. This should only take a few days. In the meantime, cover the lighting to subdue it further.

Author Note: Eggs are susceptible to fungi, so you want to limit spore growth as much as possible.

Once the eggs hatch, the babies will survive off the egg sac for a couple of days. Then, you will need to provide infusoria or commercial fry food. About 10 days in, the fry will be ready for freshly hatched brine shrimp.            

Black Phantom tetra care is something that anyone can manage. These fish are extremely low-maintenance and are a pleasure to own.

As long as you stick to the recommendations in this guide and stay consistent, these fish should thrive under your care.

If you have any questions that weren’t answered in this care sheet, you can ask us directly. Chatting with our readers about fish is always a blast!

Alison Yang

Alison Yang

Alison is passionate about the intricate web of life on our planet, she's an Ecology and Evolutionary Biology graduate dedicated to creating impactful content that educates, inspires, and fosters change. As an educator, she has a proven track record of simplifying complex concepts, making them accessible to a broad audience. When she's not diving into the world of science or teaching, you can find her at the local animal shelter, offering her time to care for and advocate for our furry friends. Feel free to reach out to Alison to: [email protected]

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Aquarium Care Made Easy

Black Phantom Tetra Care Size, Life Span, Tank Mates, Breeding

Black Phantom Tetra Care: Size, Life Span, Tank Mates, Breeding

In this post, we discuss the Black Phantom Tetra and everything you need to know about this beautiful community fish.

Black Phantom Tetra, scientific name  Hyphessobrycon megalopterus , is a freshwater fish and is a beloved among many aquarists. The species is relatively easy to maintain, and they are also very peaceful, which makes them a favorite for many. Apart from their calm nature, they are also very widely available among traders as well as hobbyists.

They are called Black Phantom due to the black patches on each side of the posterior gills. The Black Phantom Tetra traces its origins to the river basins in Bolivia and Brazil. This fish is playful and sociable as well. They are also known for making seamless adaptations to new habitats, which makes them easy to care for even by beginners. They are also known as just Phantom Tetra.

Table of Contents

Some equipment you might need for your black phantom tetra, physical attributes of the black phantom tetra..

There is nothing flashy about the Phantom Tetra. It is more about understated elegance. It has a tetragonal shape, which is typical of a tetra.

A unique physical feature of this species is the black patch, which is present on the posterior of the gills on both sides. This patch is surrounded by silver-colored fins which are iridescent to a certain degree. The rest of the body is light grey.

An adult Phantom Tetra can grow up to 1.3 and 1.4 inches. They have a life expectancy of five years. However, they can comfortably live up to six years when the conditions of the habitat, as well as their diet, are appropriately monitored.

Unlike other tetras, identifying the male and the female Phantom Tetra is quite easy. The dorsal fins of the males in this species are much longer than in females. The females have a reddish tinge on their pelvic area as well as anal fins. The males do not exhibit this coloring, and their fins are almost black.

On the other hand, females have dorsal fins, which are almost black in appearance. The females also tend to become a lot bigger than the males during the breeding season. The colors also become more pronounced during this season to be attractive to their partner. The patterns on the body of the females are even more prominent than those of the males.

A long-finned variety of the Phantom Tetra is also seen with some breeders. The fins of the Phantom Tetra are by no means short, but this variety that is bred in captivity have extra-long fins. However, they are not very common and are only exclusive to some breeders.

The Black Phantom Tetra is very closely associated with the Red Phantom Tetra. The latter has distinct red colors located on its fins. It is also a lot easier to care for than their brightly colored cousins.

Temperament and Social Behavior.

The Phantom Tetra is playful, calm, and sociable. This fish is also one of the most adaptable species, which makes them a favorite of many. It is a schooling fish , much like the others in the tetra family. They are best kept in a school of about six pairs.

However, they don’t seem to mind even if they are just a pair among other fishes of the same size and temperament. This is what makes them the ideal pets, even for those who have a small-sized tank.

Are Black Phantom Tetras aggressive?

Among all the tetras, the Black Phantom Tetra is the most playful and exhibits curious behavior. Although they are not aggressive by any means, the males exhibit territorial behavior and sometimes engage in mock fights. They do not injure each other, but sometimes these playful fights can result in small tears in the fins. However, these are superficial tears, and they heal very quickly.

Another way they exert their dominance around their neighbors is by posture. The males of the Phantom Tetra are known to extend their fins when they want their presence to be felt. Both the anal fins as well as the dorsal fins get fully extended, so they look bigger than they actually are. The black colors of the fins also take on a more pronounced hue when they flex their muscles. Therefore, it is best not to keep them in a tank with bigger fishes or those that are aggressive as they can feel threatened.

They are also very social, and they can get along with a lot of other fish. The ideal tank mates of the Black Phantom Tetras include:

  • Red Phantom Tetra

Are Black Phantom Tetras fin nippers?

Black phantom tetras can nip the fins of other fish when kept alone or in smaller shoals. To limit the amount of fin nipping try to keep at least 10 Black Phantom Tetras together.

Habitat and Living Conditions.

The Black Phantom Tetras are native to the upper Madeira basin as well as the Paraguay basin in Bolivia, Rio San Francisco, and Central Brazil. In the wild, they live in the clear waters of the wetlands as well as in murky aquatic conditions with a lot of vegetation.

In captivity, the Phantom Tetra thrives in a tank that has 20 gallons of water or more. They typically have the same needs in terms of water temperature and environment. But this fish is much more adaptable and undemanding than other tetras. Of course, this is no reason to neglect them.

The ideal temperature of a Phantom Tetra tank is from 72°F to 82°F or 22.2°C to 27.8°C. For breeding purposes, the desired temperature is 77°F. The pH of the water in the tank should be in the range of 6.0 to 7.5. The hardness range of the water is between one and 18 dGH, but 10 dGH is the best for this fish species.

Best Tank Setup and Supplies

Ideally, the tank for a Black Phantom Tetra should have the following essentials:

  • Biotope aquaria can be the best tank for a Black Phantom Tetra. They will also do well in a nano tank like this one from Marineland .
  • A tank that is about 20 inches in length or more is recommended. Black Phantom Tetras are curious fishes, and they will swim the length and breadth of the tank, so they need a good space to explore.
  • The tank should be well-secured and also covered on the top. As playful as the Black Phantom Tetras are, they try to jump out at every opportunity, so you don’t want to compromise their safety.
  • Dim lighting conditions to allow their color to shine more
  • A substrate which consists of river sand to mimic their natural habitat
  • A generous amount of driftwood and roots at the substrate
  • The water must be peat-filtered media. Soft water is preferred over hand water.
  • A handful of dried leaves should be added to the substrate, which will make the water a light brown color. These leaves should be removed after every few weeks and be replaced with fresh ones to avoid an accumulation of inorganic matter.
  • Plenty of plants should be provided, especially towards the bottom of the tank. This will function as the refuge for the fishes and enhance their coloring.
  • Floating plants can also be added to the top of the tank as well
  • The movement of the water inside the tank should be moderate

Feeding and Nutrition of the Black Phantom Tetras.

The Black Phantom Tetra feeds on small insects and worms as well as small crustaceans. When you have them in your tank, their feeding behavior does not differ significantly. Black Phantom Tetras are omnivorous, so they will also feed on small plants as well.

These fish are not fussy eaters, but you need to feed them the food that they would eat in their natural habitat. This is because they need the proper nutrients to stay healthy. Improper diet can affect the health as well as the vibrancy of the Black Phantom Tetras, much like other fishes.

What do Black Phantom Tetras eat?

Different types of food that can be given to the Phantom Tetra include:

  • Live or frozen feed brine shrimp
  • Blood worms
  • Flake foods
  • Fresh foods
  • Mosquito larvae
  • Vegetable food
  • Tablets and pellets

While they will eat almost anything that you feed them, it is essential to feed them live food as much as you can. If you plan to feed the Phantom Tetras the pellets and frozen food, make sure they are high in quality.

Tip: It is best to use the pellets and tablets as supplements and not as a regular diet.

This species of fish requires to be fed several times a day. However, it is vital to feed them only what they can eat; otherwise, accumulation of the leftover food can pollute the environment.

How to Care for Black Phantom Tetra Tanks.

The Black Phantom Tetra requires minimal care, which makes them suitable for beginner aquarists. But note that it will do you good not to mistake their hardy nature for high tolerance of neglect. Although they will do well in just about any condition, they will shine in a tank which is clean and has good water.

The color of the Phantom Tetra is best viewed in clear to medium clear water. Their overall health also depends on the condition of a healthy tank, and so does their lifespan.

This species of fish are not susceptible to diseases. But an accumulation of inorganic matter in the tank, the wrong temperature, and other factors can make them easily contract infections. As with other Tetra Fish, they can become vulnerable to developing skin flukes, bacterial, and parasitic infections if the tank is not maintained correctly.

The following are the ways you can care for the tank, which houses your Black Phantom Tetra.

  • If you use the dead leaves to enhance the appearance of the water, make sure that you remove them after every few weeks. They should be replaced with freshly dried leaves.
  • 25% to 50% of the total volume of water from the tank should be replaced every two weeks. This is to ensure that the overall environment of the tank is kept in optimum condition for the fish. The frequency with which you clean the tank will depend on the size of the tank and how populated it is.
  • The Phantom Tetra can withstand a lot of water conditions. However, it is best not to supply an endless amount of hard water or acidic water as it can affect their health.
  • Be careful and watch what you put inside the tank, whether it is the water, the leaves, or other fish that you introduce in the tank. The best way to eliminate any contamination inside the tank is to test it in a separate tank and see if it can be safely introduced to your pets.

How to Breed Black Phantom Tetras Successfully.

Black Phantom Tetras are not difficult to breed. In fact, they are relatively easy even for someone who does not have a lot of experience with fish breeding. It is because it is a resilient fish and a prolific breeder. The female Phantom Tetra can lay up to 300 eggs, which is a significant number considering its size and comparison to other small fish.

They are an egg-scattering species, and they will mate regardless of whether you intend to breed them or not. The Phantom Tetra is a rather carefree fish and does not take its parenting duties seriously.

In this section, we learn how you can breed the Black Phantom Tetra successfully in captivity.

1. Prepping the tank.

  • It is best to prepare a separate tank for the parents to facilitate the spawning. The tank need not be a big one like your standard tank. Tanks with a capacity of about 3 to 10 gallons of water will do the job correctly.
  • The tank should be filled with a lot of vegetation as the female will scatter the eggs on to the plants and leaves. Plants such as   java moss , spawning mops, and other plants with delicate leaves will provide the right place for the eggs to stick to. Floating plants can also be added on top. A layer of fine mesh will also be a good choice. However, if you plan to use a mesh, make sure that the holes are not too big so that the parents can get through.
  • The ideal temperature of the water should be 77 degrees F, while the pH should be between 5.5 and 6. The hardness of the water should be around DgH4.
  • The lighting should be either dim or none at all.
  • Water can be filtered through a small Sponge Filter that is air-powered or through peat that is labeled aquarium safe.

2. Conditioning the parents.

  • The parents should be kept in pairs or one male among several females. Refrain from keeping a couple of males with a single female as this is not ideal for breeding, and it can also increase stress for them.
  • Conditioning foods should mainly consist of live foods during this period. You need to feed the potential parents several times a day. If you use frozen foods, make sure that you use only the best quality.
  • Females start looking a bit rounder than the males when they are on the verge of spawning. Their colors also become more vibrant during this stage.

3. The breeding.  

  • Since the parents do not exhibit typical parental behavior, and you might not know when the spawning has taken place until you see the eggs. The males will usually chase after the females amongst the vegetation, and the females will scatter the eggs on the leaves of the plants.
  • The male fertilizes the eggs soon after they are laid.
  • As soon as you notice that the spawning has occurred, remove the parents from the breeding tank. It is essential to remove them as the parents will start feeding on the newly fertilized eggs.

4. Taking care of the fry .

  • When the eggs have been fertilized by the male, they are called fry. In this vulnerable stage, they are readily eaten by their own parents. It is up the humans to watch out for their welfare.
  • The eggs of the Black Phantom Tetra hatch in about 24 hours after fertilization. Keep the dark environment of the tank consistent. Otherwise, they will become infected with fungal infections. If you are concerned about this problem, add a small volume of methylene blue to reduce the chances of infection.
  • You can start feeding the fry after a couple of days.    Infusoria-type foods are the recommended food for the fry during this stage.
  • After three to four days, the fry will start swimming. You can feed them live food such as micro worms and brine shrimp nauplii.
  • After about five days, the fry will start swimming freely. They will develop Black Phantom Tetra characteristics at about the third week onwards.

Conclusion.

The Black Phantom Tetra is a real delight to watch. It requires minimal care and is also widely available. These reasons make them a hit among breeders as well as hobbyists. They are also very affordable, which adds to their advantages.

They are a hardy and resilient fish with very accommodating nature. They get along with just about any fish of the same size as well. If you plan to add this attractive and playful fish to your tank, you won’t regret it.

Black Phantom Tetra Care

Featured Image: Krächz [ CC BY 3.0 ], via Wikimedia Commons

References: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_phantom_tetra http://animal-world.com/encyclo/fresh/characins/phantom.php https://www.thesprucepets.com/black-phantom-tetra-1381828 https://fishkeepingadvice.com/black-phantom-tetra/

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Fish Academia

Black phantom tetra Care Guide: Diet, Tank Mates, Diseases, Breeding & More

Updated: October 27, 2022

The Black Phantom Tetra is a beautiful, peaceful, and easy to care for freshwater fish that is perfect for beginners.

This species is perfect for a community tank and gets along well with other peaceful fish. They’re also very active and love to swim!

But even though they’re easy to care for, there are still a few things you need to know to make sure they’re happy and healthy.

In this guide, we’ll teach you everything you need to know about Black Phantom Tetra care. You’ll learn about their diet, tank mates, lifespan, and more!

Table of contents

  • Water parameters

What To Put In Their Tank

  • Common diseases

Behavior & Temperament

Species overview.

The black phantom tetra (scientific name: Hyphessobrycon megalopterus) is a freshwater fish that’s native to South America. It’s found in various parts of Brazil, Peru, and Bolivia.

This fish prefers slow-moving waters with a lot of plants and vegetation. This is something that’s common to many species of tetra, as they come from an environment where there’s not a lot of movement or disturbance.

The black phantom tetra is a very popular fish in the aquarium scene due to its unique black and white coloration. It’s also a very peaceful fish, which makes it a good choice for community tanks.

Black phantom tetra

The Black Phantom Tetra is a freshwater fish that is easily recognizable due to its unique coloration. As the name suggests, these fish are mostly black with a few white markings.

The black coloration starts at the tip of their mouth and extends all the way back to their caudal peduncle. There is a small white stripe that runs along their body starting at their gill plate and extending to their tail.

This white stripe is bordered by another black stripe on each side. The fins on these fish are also mostly black with a few white markings.

The dorsal fin has a white tip and the caudal fin has a white edge. The anal fin and pectoral fins are also black with white edges.

The Black Phantom Tetra is a relatively small fish, only reaching a maximum size of about 2 inches.

Black phantom tetras have a lifespan of 5 to 8 years. This can obviously vary based on the individual fish and the conditions they’re kept in.

As with any other animal, the lifespan of a black phantom tetra can be shortened by things like poor water quality, stress, or a suboptimal diet.

Black phantom tetras are a small fish, only growing to be about 2 inches in length. Because of this, they don’t need a lot of space to thrive and can even do well in smaller tanks.

The minimum tank size for black phantom tetras is 20 gallons. If you plan on keeping a school of these fish we recommend at least 30 gallons so they have enough space to swim and school together.

Water Parameters

The Black Phantom Tetra is a freshwater fish that is native to the Rio Negro in South America. As such, they are used to living in water that is relatively warm (between 72-82 degrees Fahrenheit), slightly acidic (between 6.0-7.0 on the pH scale), and has a relatively low hardness level (between 2-12 dGH).

To maintain these water parameters, it is important to do regular water changes (approximately 10-15% every week or two) and to use a water filtration system that is designed to remove toxins and impurities from the water.

It is also important to make sure that the water in your tank is well-oxygenated, as Black Phantom Tetras are known to be sensitive to low levels of dissolved oxygen.

When it comes to the inside of the aquarium, these fish are pretty easy to please.

The biggest thing you need to worry about is the water quality. They prefer clean water with a bit of a current.

As for the substrate, go with something that’s dark in color. This will help bring out their black coloration.

When it comes to plants, go with something that’s on the hardier side. These fish love to nibble on plants, so anything that’s delicate won’t last long.

Java Fern, Anubias, and Hornwort are all great choices.

You can also add some driftwood and rocks to the inside of their tank. Just make sure that anything you put in is securely anchored. These fish are known to dig around a bit and can easily uproot things that aren’t properly secured.

Common Diseases

The black phantom tetra is a relatively hardy and disease-resistant fish. However, that doesn’t mean that they can’t get sick.

The most common disease that these fish experience is ich. This is a parasite that will attach itself to your fish and cause white spots to form on their body.

If left untreated, ich can be fatal. However, it is treatable if you act quickly. There are a number of different ich treatments available, so consult your vet or do some research online to figure out the best course of action.

Another disease to look out for is fin rot. This is a bacterial infection that will cause the fins of your fish to rot away. It’s usually the result of poor water quality, so the best way to prevent it is by keeping a close eye on the conditions in your tank.

As always, the best way to keep your fish healthy is by providing them with clean, high-quality water. This will help to prevent a lot of different diseases and illnesses, so it’s always worth the extra effort.

Black phantom tetras are schooling fish, so they do best in groups. When they’re alone, they can be a bit shy and may not come out to play as often.

These fish are relatively peaceful, but they can be nippy. They’re known to nibble on the fins of their tank mates from time to time. This is especially true if the other fish have longer fins.

Black phantom tetras are also known to be a bit jumpy. They may startle easily, so it’s important to have a lid on your tank.

During the day, these fish like to stick to the shadows. They’ll often hide behind plants or rocks. When night falls, they become more active and start to explore their environment.

All in all, black phantom tetras are relatively easy to care for. They’re not too picky about their food and they don’t need a fancy tank. As long as you have a few plants and some hiding places, they’ll be happy.

Black phantom tetras are peaceful, social fish. In the wild, they live in large schools. As a result, they do best when kept in groups of 6 or more.

These fish are also shy. They’re not aggressive, but they can be skittish. As a result, they do best with other peaceful fish that won’t bully them.

Some compatible black phantom tetra tank mates include:

  • Neon Tetras
  • Cardinal Tetras
  • Rummy Nose Tetras
  • Ghost Shrimp
  • Cherry Shrimp

Black phantom tetras are one of the easier species of fish to breed. This is due in part to the fact that they are egg-scatterers. They don’t provide any care for their young, so you don’t have to worry about them eating the eggs.

To breed black phantom tetras, start by setting up a breeding tank. It should hold at least 20 gallons of water and have a sponge filter.

Then, add plenty of plants. Black phantom tetras like to lay their eggs on plants. Java moss is a good option.

When ready, add two males for every female. These fish are shy, so you might want to add more plants to help them feel comfortable.

Once the fish have acclimated, begin feeding them live foods. This will help to trigger spawning.

When the female is ready to lay eggs, she’ll do it on the plants. The male will then fertilize them. After that, the parents will be done. They won’t care for the eggs or the fry.

Eggs will hatch in about 24 hours. At that point, you can start feeding the fry baby brine shrimp.

Black phantom tetras are a great addition to any freshwater aquarium. They’re relatively peaceful, easy to care for, and look great swimming around.

We think they’re a great option for beginner aquarium keepers and experienced aquarists alike.

If you’re looking for a new fish to add to your tank, we highly recommend giving black phantom tetras a try!

Gold nugget pleco

Aquarium advice

Black Phantom Tetra Care Guide

The Hyphessobrycon megalopterus, more commonly known as the Black Phantom Tetra is a freshwater fish that’s highly popular among pet owners and aquarium aficionados. Belonging to the family Characidae, these fishes can be distinguished by the existence of a tiny adipose fin situated between their caudal fins and their dorsal fins.

Like most tetras, they are not difficult to keep in captivity, making them highly recommended pets for household aquaria.

Fishkeeping hobbyists may be interested in knowing that tetras owe their name from the fact that they possess a total of four unpaired fins. These are the dorsal, caudal, anal and finally, the adipose fin.

Article Contents

General Description

The Black Phantom Tetra has a flat body which is characteristic to most tetras. Their bodies exhibit a fusiform or spindle-like appearance, meaning they have a round-like cross-section and tend to taper at each end.

These fish have tall dorsal fins and their tails are forked, with symmetrical lower and upper lobes. Their anal fins are usually long, extending from just behind the dorsal fins towards their ventral caudal peduncles. In addition, the adipose fin can be described as fleshy in its appearance.

Adipose fin of a Black Phantom Tetra

Like all other tetras, the Black Phantom Tetra male has an almost tetragonal shape. However, its coloring is less bright, usually light gray with a big dark patch situated just behind the gills and with an iridescent silvery trim.

Meanwhile, the female black phantom tetra’s pelvic fins naturally show off a reddish hue. The same is true with their pelvic and anal fins. The males, on the other hand, hardly have any red coloring on them. They sport black-colored fins. The females’ fins are distinguishably smaller and shorter. However, the dorsal fins of females are markedly blacker than those of the males’ and their patterning tends to be more pronounced

Furthermore, in their breeding conditions, the bodies of the females are more noticeably plump. It is also during this time that the difference between the colors of both genders become more obvious. These tetras can grow to a maximum of 1.75 inches or 4.5 centimeters in length.

Where Do Black Phantom Tetras Originate?

Black Phantom Tetra

The origin of the Black Phantom Tetra can be traced back to South America, specifically in Brazil (in the river basins of Río Beni and Río Mamore at the Bolivian and Brazilian border) and in Bolivia (Río Guaporé).

It’s also possible that the fish can be found in Río Paraguay’s upper region, just before Paraguay.

This species has a fairly large distribution with no known threats to their existence, making them ideal pets. They are easily available and are generally inexpensive.

How Long Do Black Phantom Tetras Live?

Avid aquarists should know that this particular class is benthopelagic, meaning they require tropical temperatures in order to thrive, specifically between 72 – 82 degrees Fahrenheit or 22- 28 degrees Celsius.

Since its original dwelling consists of dense vegetation, pet owners should understand that this tetra is more likely to grow well in a planted aquatic environment while in captivity. They have a general lifespan of 5 – 6 years.

Black Phantom Tetra Tank Setup and Conditions

One remarkable characteristic of the Black Phantom Tetra which makes it a favorite among aquarium hobbyists is their resilience. This quality also makes them ideal for newbie fish-keepers.

This particular species has the capacity to adapt superbly well to changes in water condition. Moreover, these fishes are proven to be sociable tank mates and are thus, highly recommended for community tanks.

One may keep these fishes in pairs or in schools of five. However, it is important to note that these tetras are active swimmers. Hence, it is advisable to place them in a long fish tank , preferably at least 20 inches in length and if possible, with a volume of no less than 76 liters.

Aquariums with soft water and peat-filtering are recommend for these fishes.

The Black Phantom Tetra will appreciate an open environment in which it will be able to swim freely. Nevertheless, ensure that the sides and the back of the tank are densely planted. Dark-colored gravel and plant covers are also advised.

Fish hobbyists should know that these fishes may appear quite dull in a poorly arranged aquarium, but a backdrop of rich foliage can bring out the beauty of these water creatures.

Also, a dimly lit aquarium will help enhance and emphasize the fish’s attractive coloring.

South American River Biotope Aquarium

The most ideal homes for these fishes are biotope aquaria. This means that the plants and the furnishings and even the water chemistry should be made to simulate a natural setting. You may obtain river sand with dried leaves to be used for the base, along with some driftwood roots.

However, if you choose to add dried leaves into the substrate, you’ll need to replace them after a few weeks or else they’ll end up tingeing the water with a brownish coloring.

Another essential tip is to ensure that the tank is safely covered. This is because the Black Phantom Tetra is quite a jumper. Also, note that these fishes are fit for Nano aquariums but not suitable for the brackish types.

Their preferred pH range is an average of 6.5. Meanwhile, the recommended hardness range is an average of 10 dGH.

Ideally, the water movement must be moderate. Their tank level is considered as mid-dweller. Expect these tetras to wander off in all regions of the aquarium—top, side, bottom. The aquarium water, at least 30% of it, should be changed every other week, particularly if it is heavily stocked.

What Do Black Phantom Tetra Eat?

Another extraordinarily convenient characteristic of the Black Phantom Tetra is that it is omnivorous, meaning you can feed it just about anything. In their natural habitats, tetras feed mostly on worms, tiny insects, and crustaceans.

If you’re planning on keeping them as pets, you’ll be happy to know that they tolerate flake food and micro pellet feeds really well.

Brine Shrimp

However, if you wish for your fishes to maintain a healthy, brilliant coloring, feed them live food like brine shrimp and mosquito larvae. High-quality flake food can be used as a supplement instead. Our number one recommendation for flake food is TetraMin Tropical Flakes

You may also give them bloodworms , both live and freeze-dried. Vegetable food and meaty food may also be included in their diet. These fishes need to be fed several times a day.

Black Phantom Tetra Common Diseases

Similar to most fishes, the Black Phantom Tetra is susceptible to parasitic infestations, bacterial infections, as well as skin flukes. They may also be prone to the protozoan Ichthyophthirius multifiliis.

It is important for fish-keepers to remember that anything that is introduced into the tank can be a possible carrier of infection and can potentially alter and threaten the balance in the aquatic environment.

Bacteria-carrying items may include substrate, plants, and furnishings. That said, these black phantoms can be exceedingly tough and with a well-maintained tank, pet owners should encounter very minimal problems.

In most cases, when arrested in the early stages, illnesses tend to affect only one or a handful of the specimens. Every pet owner should make it a point to research on various diseases affecting pet fishes so that they may be able to spot and stop the occurrence of any infection before it spreads.

The best way for you to prevent the incidence of any disease is to provide your pets with a healthy, well-balanced diet and to ensure that the aquatic environment is kept clean. A more natural-looking tank is more likely to lessen the stress among these creatures as they are kept in captivity.

Are Black Phantom Tetras Aggressive?

As previously mentioned, the Black Phantom Tetra is a social species and it is typically non-aggressive. Furthermore, unlike other tetras which need to be kept in groups, it is perfectly fine to keep these species by twos.

However, if you’re planning on keeping two or more male tetras together, make sure that the tank space is large enough. Otherwise, there might be problems concerning the claiming of territory.

During such instances, one may observe that the males will stretch out their dorsal fins and their anal fins while they are gauging each other.

Black phantoms display a darker shade whenever they are defending their turf. Once you notice that their edgings have grown very distinct, then you know that they’re in full defense mode. For such reasons, forming organic partitions like decorative plants may be necessary to separate each fish’s individual zone.

When keeping two male fishes together, expect the occurrence of mock fights. The good thing is that these battles do not often result in injuries. The worst case scenario is that the two male fishes will end up ripping each other’s’ fins.

However, with proper care, such wounds can heal in no time. Expect these black phantoms to display more aggressiveness during spawning.

The Black Phantom Tetra has been observed to create brief dominance hierarchies. In such a structure, the males will compete fiercely for the females’ attention. This is why it is advisable for fish-keepers to maintain a mixed-sex group.

How To Breed Black Phantom Tetras

Another reason why aquarists just love the Black Phantom Tetra is because this species is very prolific.

The female produces an average of 300 eggs. Under ideal living conditions, aquarium owners usually note doubling in population within less than fifteen months.

To facilitate breeding, the pH value of the water must be lowered to 5.5 to 6. Similarly, the water hardiness should be brought below dH 4.

A good quality water testing kit is an essential piece of equipment for this stage of the process. We recommend the API Master Test Kit

Black Phantom Tetra's

The ideal setup is to have either a single pair or a school which consists of a single male and several females. You may introduce two specimens of the opposite sex in one small container and leave them there until you are able to detect the presence of eggs. Under favorable settings, eggs are seen immediately the morning after.

Subdued lighting also helps. Alternatively, a dim effect can be achieved by adding some floating plants into the tank.

Black Phantom Tetra breeders should also understand that the eggs of these species are increasingly sensitive to fungal attacks and that increased lighting encourages the growth of fungi. If you see that the eggs have rapidly grown opaque and have begun to resemble powder puff with white-colored threads protruding from them, then this is an indication that they are infected with fungus and are therefore infertile.

Sometimes, when fertile eggs are situated next to a heap of fungus-infected infertile eggs, they end up being affected as well.

Another vital fact that breeders of Black Phantom Tetra should consider is that this fresh fish species tends to be egg-scattering, meaning it does not normally take care of its young. In fact, it sometimes ends up eating its offspring.

The base of the tank must be covered with a mesh to keep the eggs out of the adults’ reach. It should be large enough to allow the eggs to fall through. However, it should also be small enough so as to prevent the adults from getting through. Plastic grass mattings may sufficiently do the trick. Otherwise, you can make use of glass marbles or plants with very fine leaves.

In order to increase their chances of survival, it might be necessary to set up a separate aquarium for the fry. To care for the fry aquarium, perform micro water changes weekly and if you wish, you may observe the fry and follow their progress with the aid of a magnifying glass.

Initially, you have to feed them with small grade (as in 5 to 50 microns) of Paramecium protozoa. Then, when the fry are big enough to tolerate them, you may begin introducing microworms into their diet.

Afterwards, commercial fry food may be given. Same as with the adults, the Black Phantom Tetra fry tend to thrive better when fed with correctly proportioned live food.

fluval breeding box

You’ll be surprised to know that compared to their parents, young tetra fry exhibit a higher tolerance for crowded environments.

You may keep them in a breeding tank with a minimum size of 3 gallons during the first one and a half months.

When the time comes that the young have grown large enough to be transferred to a bigger aquarium, refrain from using a net. Instead, siphon the fry through a one-half inch tube.

Logan Price

I created this website to help fellow fishkeepers get accurate and helpful information at the click of a few buttons. I've always loved caring for fish and their aquariums, but I've certainly made mistakes along the way. So I'm hoping to help people avoid common fishkeeping mistakes so they can enjoy this satisfying hobby alongside me!

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Black Phantom Tetra Care: Complete Guide for Beginners

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Black Phantom Tetra Species Profile and Identification

The  Black Phantom Tetra , also known as  Hyphessobrycon megalopterus , is a small, attractively colored fish native to the freshwaters of South America. With a uniquely shaped physique, it easily stands out in your aquarium.

  • Size : An adult Black Phantom Tetra measures from 1.4 to 1.8 inches (3.6 – 4.6 cm) upon attaining full maturity.
  • Color : Their bodies primarily showcase a muted silver-grey shade, convincingly accentuated by iridescent black patches.
  • Lifespan : If treated diligently with optimal care, these adorable creatures dwell for 4 to 6 years.

Recognizing a Black Phantom Tetra is simple.  Males  flaunt deep black coloration on their dorsal and anal fins, while  females  exhibit an alluring reddish hue to their anal fins. Only the males possess an enlarged dorsal fin. This fin becomes vertically erect during clashes or slight confrontations, crafting a majestic display.

Visual identification, albeit elementary, isn’t foolproof. Therefore, familiarization with their distinctive traits, including their semi-aggressive nature, comes in handy. Interestingly, the Black Phantom Tetra is often mistaken for its peer, the  Red Phantom Tetra . Still, discerning hobbyists can spot the differences, most notably the color disparity on the dorsal and anal fins.

To ensure your fish tank is indeed a home to Black Phantom Tetras, follow this simple identification rule: ‘silver-grey body with black patches and differing dorsal and anal fin colors between males and females’. Always note, proper identification is a significant step towards successful fishkeeping.

Knowing your fish species marks the genesis of every successful fish-keeping journey. Next up, is getting everything you need for your Black Phantom Tetras. This includes a well-set tank, adequate water conditions, and suitable feed. So, let’s dive in!

Black Phantom Tetra Supplies

Keeping Black Phantom Tetra fish isn’t a complicated task, but it requires some specific supplies to ensure their well-being.

  • Tank  – A suitable tank is critical for Black Phantom Tetras. Tetras feel most comfortable in 20-gallon tanks or larger given their group behavior.
  • Filter  – An efficient filter system is needed to keep the water clean. Black Phantom Tetras prefer slow-moving waters, so select a filter that won’t cause too much water flow.
  • Heater  – Black Phantom Tetras come from tropical areas, so water temperature should range between 72°F to 80°F (22°C – 27°C). A reliable aquarium heater can keep the water at a constant and suitable temperature.
  • Lighting  – Black Phantom Tetras prefer dim lighting, which imitates their natural environment. LED lights with an option for dimming work well.
  • Water Testing Kit  – Regular monitoring of pH levels and water hardness is necessary. The pH levels should be in the range of 6.0 to 7.5, whereas the general hardness in the range of 8 to 18dGH.
  • Decorations  – Black Phantom Tetras enjoy hideouts. Aquatic plants, rocks, and driftwood can add some variety to their environment, as well as provide cover.
  • Optional supplies:
  • Air Pump  – While not a necessity, an air pump can help oxygenate the water.
  • Substrate  – A dark substrate will help these fish stand out. Sandy substrates with gravel are a good choice.

When buying supplies, it is crucial to remember that quality is vital. Investing in the appropriate, high-quality supplies will ensure your Black Phantom Tetras thrive. This initial investment will save time and money in the long run while simultaneously providing the optimal environment for these fish.

Black Phantom Tetra Tank Setup

Setting up a tank for your Black Phantom Tetras requires thoughtful planning. These attractively hued fish appreciate a setup that mimics their natural environment.

  • Tank Size:  Firstly, choose a tank that is at least  20 gallons (about 76 liters) . This space provides ample room for these social fish to swim and interact. A larger tank size also reduces water parameter fluctuations, promoting a healthier environment for your pet.
  • Substrate:  As for the base, Black Phantom Tetras prefer a  fine-grained substrate or sand . This mirrors their natural riverbed habitats. Using dark colored substrates also serve to deepen their color hues, enhancing their appeal.
  • Plants and Decorations:  Plant your tank with  live plants  such as Java ferns or Anubias. These produce oxygen, improve water quality, and create hiding spaces. Intersperse these with  driftwood  and  rock formations  to mimic their natural home.
  • Lighting:  Black Phantom Tetras live in dimly lit waters in the wild. Thus, their tanks should be lit  moderately to softly.  This keeps them comfortable while showing off their stunning colors.
  • Filtration:  Strong currents distress Phantom Tetras. Hence, install a filter that provides a  gentle flow . A sponge filter would ideally make the cut.

Here is a summarized table for your reference:

Creating a setup that closely mirrors their natural inclination is paramount. A well-planned tank setup goes a long way in keeping your Black Phantom Tetras healthy, happy, and thriving!

Black Phantom Tetra Water Requirements

Part of ensuring the well-being of your Black Phantom Tetra involves understanding and providing the necessary water conditions. Here are crucial details about the water requirements for this species:

  • Water Temperature  – Black Phantom Tetras thrive in warmer waters. The ideal temperature for them is around 72°F-80°F (22°C – 27°C). It’s essential to maintain consistent water temperature, as fluctuations can cause stress to your fish.
  • pH Level  – They can adapt to different levels of acidity or alkalinity. However, a more acidic environment is best, with pH levels between 6.0 to 7.5. Keep a regular check on your tank’s pH level.
  • Water Hardness  – They favor softer water. The ideal General Water Hardness (dGH) should be within 8 to 18dGH, with 10dGH as the optimal hardness.

Every tank is unique, so adjustments might be necessary until you reach the optimal water parameters. Regular water testing is crucial not only to maintain these parameters but also to prevent any potential health concerns. Here are the key points summarised in a table:

Remember, sudden or significant changes in water conditions can be harmful to any fish. Take your time, and aim for gradual adjustments where necessary. This caution will ensure the long and healthy life that Black Phantom Tetras are known for.

Black Phantom Tetra Diet and Feeding

Understanding the  dietary needs  of your Black Phantom Tetra is crucial. These fish are  omnivores .

In the wild, their diet consists of:

  • Small insects,
  • Crustaceans,
  • Plant matter.

As owners, your goal is to mimic this diet in your home aquarium.

Start by providing  high-quality flake food . It should form the core of their diet. Ensure it’s rich in both:

Occasionally, introduce  live or frozen foods . You can use:

  • Brine shrimp,
  • Bloodworms.

These additions provide key nutrients and mimic hunting rituals. It breaks the monotonous routine of flake food.

Remember to  feed them sparingly . Overfeeding can lead to:

  • Health problems,
  • Poor water quality.

Follow the “5-minute feed rule.” Anything they can’t consume in 5 minutes is excessive. It adjusts portion sizes to their appetites.

Create a  feeding schedule . Consistency is important. Feed them once or twice a day. It caters to their natural feeding patterns.

Black Phantom Tetra Care Schedule

Following a consistent Black Phantom Tetra care schedule is the key to having healthy, vibrant aquarium pets. Here’s a simple, direct guide to maintaining a routine that caters to their needs.

  • Daily : Feed your Black Phantoms with a balanced diet, typically twice a day. Small, frequent meals are advisable, as large feedings can pollute the tank. Monitor their behavior for any signs of health issues.
  • Weekly : Use a testing kit to check water parameters each week. This includes temperature, pH, and general hardness. These should ideally fall within 22°C-27°C/71.6°F-80.6°F, 6.0-7.5, and 100ppm respectively. Adjust as necessary.
  • Biweekly : Change about 20% of the tank water every other week. This helps keep nitrate levels down and ensure a fresh environment. Clean the glass with a proper aquarium-safe scrubber.
  • Monthly : Inspect the filtration system for any required maintenance. It should work properly to prevent ammonia spikes. Don’t forget to trim live plants, get rid of dead or dying ones, and check the substrate for vacuuming.
  • Annually : Replace light bulbs once a year, as their output decreases over time.

Accurate adherence to this care schedule is an integral part of Black Phantom Tetra keepership. Remember – the quality of care you provide directly affects your tetra’s health and lifespan, which can range between 4-6 years.

In essence, care for Black Phantom Tetras goes beyond feeding and water change. It also includes observing their behavior, maintaining their habitat, and regular checks for potential health problems.

Black Phantom Tetra Health Problems

Despite Black Phantom Tetras being considered hardy and resilient, they are not entirely immune to health issues. Here are  few common problems  you should be aware of:

  • Ich : Also known as white spot disease, Ich is a common health concern in aquarium fish. Indications include white spots on your tetra’s body and erratic swimming behaviors. The best remedy is a specific ‘Ich treatment’ available at pet stores.
  • Fungal infections : These are common in environments with poor water quality. Symptoms include fluffy white patches on the body or fins. Regular water changes and addition of anti-fungal medicines can help combat these problems.
  • Fin rot : A consequence of bacterial infection, fin rot causes the fins to discolor and fray. It’s vital to incorporate antibiotic treatments and maintain water cleanliness to treat this issue.
  • Bloated stomach or swim bladder disease : The symptom is exactly as the name suggests – the fish’s belly becomes bloated, and the fish may float upside-down. A balanced diet, reducing feeding, and medication can alleviate this.

Below is a table that shows these diseases, their symptoms, and possible treatments.

Remember, the key to ensuring your Black Phantom Tetras’ health is prevention rather than cure.  Regular water changes ,  feed monitoring  and keeping an eye out for odd behaviors will go a long way in maintaining their health.

Black Phantom Tetra Tank Mates

When it comes to choosing  tank mates  for your Black Phantom Tetras, it’s crucial to make the correct selection. Follow these guidelines:

  • Firstly,  Black Phantom Tetras are peaceful fish , so avoid pairing them with aggressive species. This could subject them to undue stress or even injury.
  • Strive for a harmonious tank environment. Medium-sized freshwater fish make excellent companions. Species such as  Neon Tetras, Swordtails, or Guppies  are good choices.
  • They also fare well with other Black Phantom Tetras. A small school of  5-6 fish  can create a stunning visual effect and can promote comfort and social interaction within the species.
  • Consider similar water condition requirements. Tank mates should be able to thrive in the same conditions — pH between  6.0 to 7.5 , hardness levels between  8 to 18dGH , and temperature range of  22°C – 27°C  (or  71.6°F – 80.6°F ).
  • Consider adding some bottom dwellers too.  Cory Catfish and Dwarf Gouramis  make great tank mates as they occupy different areas of the tank and usually don’t cross paths.

Keep these tips in mind, and take pleasure in the serene and lively aquarium environment you’ll create.

Black Phantom Tetra Breeding

When it comes to breeding Black Phantom Tetras,  it’s best to have a separate tank . This should be a smaller, 10-gallons or approximately 38-liters tank, dimly lit with some hiding spots for the female when she needs respite.

Here are some  breeding tips :

  • Selecting Breeding Pairs : Do this based on bright coloration and vigor.
  • Tank Preparation : Soft, slightly acidic water (pH 6.0—7.5) and mid-70s degrees Fahrenheit (22°C – 27°C) aims to mimic their natural breeding ground.
  • Feeding : Feed them live or frozen food to prepare for spawning.

After a successful spawning, females will scatter around 300 to 500 clear to pale yellow eggs. Once eggs are laid,  remove the parents  to reduce risk of them eating the eggs or fry.

The eggs will hatch within a day. Initially, feed them infusoria-size foods. When they mature, you can gradually introduce brine shrimp and micro-worms.

Success in breeding can be challenging due to their egg-scattering nature and parental tendencies. Remain patient during this process. Equipping yourself with the right knowledge, you’re off to a good start in Black Phantom Tetra breeding.

Caring for Black Phantom Tetras, despite their specific requirements, can be greatly rewarding. With their unique coloration and peaceful nature, they make a fantastic addition to any home aquarium. Feel free to leave a comment below on your experiences or queries related to Black Phantom Tetra care.

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Black Phantom Tetra (Hyphessobrycon megalopterus)

Welcome to our in-depth guide on the Black Phantom Tetra, a captivating and popular freshwater fish among aquarium enthusiasts. This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of everything you need to know about Black Phantom Tetras, from their unique profile and stunning coloring to their aquarium setup, breeding habits, diet, feeding requirements, and compatibility with other fish.

Black Phantom Tetra Facts

Black phantom tetra profile.

The Black Phantom Tetra, scientifically known as Hyphessobrycon megalopterus , is a small and peaceful fish native to the waterways of South America, specifically in parts of Brazil and Bolivia. They are known for their distinctive black markings and gentle temperament. Typically, these fish grow up to 1.5 inches in length and have a lifespan of about 3 to 5 years in a well-maintained aquarium.

Black Phantom Tetra Coloring

One of the most striking features of the Black Phantom Tetra is its beautiful coloration. They possess a translucent silver body with a prominent black patch just behind their gills, which is more pronounced in males. During the breeding season, males display more vivid colors to attract females, enhancing their visual appeal in your aquarium.

Black Phantom Tetra Habitat

Black Phantom Tetras originate from the clear and slow-moving freshwater streams of South America, primarily in Brazil and Bolivia. Their natural habitat is characterized by soft, slightly acidic water with abundant vegetation and a sandy or muddy bottom. These environments provide ample hiding spots and a rich source of food, creating ideal conditions for these small, peaceful fish.

In the wild, Black Phantom Tetras are found in schools, navigating through densely planted areas, which offer protection from predators and support their social behavior. Replicating these conditions in an aquarium is essential for their well-being.

Black Phantom Tetra Aquarium Setup

Creating the ideal tank setup for Black Phantom Tetras is vital for their health and happiness. This section will guide you through the key aspects of setting up a perfect aquarium environment for these graceful fish.

Tank Size and Type

The minimum recommended tank size for Black Phantom Tetras is 20 gallons . A larger tank not only provides more space for swimming but also helps maintain stable water conditions. Rectangular tanks are preferred as they provide adequate swimming space. It’s also beneficial to have a securely fitted lid as these fish can jump.

Water Conditions

Black Phantom Tetras thrive in soft, slightly acidic water. The ideal water temperature should be maintained between 72°F to 80°F. The pH level should be kept between 6.0 and 7.5, with a water hardness of 2-10 dGH. Regular water changes, around 25% weekly, are crucial to keep the water parameters stable and the environment healthy for the fish.

Filtration and Aeration

Good filtration is key to maintaining a clean and oxygen-rich environment. A hang-on-back filter or a sponge filter is suitable for a Black Phantom Tetra tank, as they provide adequate filtration without creating excessive water flow. Gentle water flow is important as these fish originate from slow-moving waters.

Lighting and Decoration

Black Phantom Tetras prefer a dimly lit environment, so avoid strong lights. You can use floating plants to naturally diffuse the light entering the tank. Decorations should include plenty of plants, both live and artificial, to provide hiding spots and mimic their natural habitat. Driftwood and smooth rocks can also be added to create a more natural look and feel.

Substrate and Plants

The ideal substrate for a Black Phantom Tetra tank is dark gravel or sand, which not only looks aesthetically pleasing but also helps in showcasing the colors of the fish. Planting the tank with species like Java Fern, Anubias, and Amazon Swords provides excellent cover and adds to the natural ambiance, benefiting the overall health and stress levels of the fish.

Black Phantom Tetra Breeding

Breeding Black Phantom Tetras can be a rewarding experience. They are egg scatterers and do not exhibit parental care. For successful breeding, a separate breeding tank with soft, acidic water is recommended.

Breeding Environment

To encourage breeding, setting up a dedicated breeding tank is highly recommended. This tank should ideally be about 10-15 gallons in size. The water conditions need to be soft and slightly acidic, with a pH of around 6.0 to 6.5 and a temperature maintained between 76°F to 80°F. Dim lighting and the presence of fine-leaved plants, such as Java Moss, provide an ideal environment as they mimic the natural breeding grounds of these fish. Additionally, a sponge filter can be used to keep the water clean without posing a risk to the fry.

Spawning Process

Prior to spawning, it is beneficial to condition the breeding pair with high-quality foods such as live or frozen brine shrimp and bloodworms. Once conditioned, introduce the breeding pair into the prepared breeding tank. Spawning typically occurs in the early hours of the morning. During this process, the male Black Phantom Tetra will display intense colors and engage in a dance-like ritual to entice the female. The female lays eggs, scattering them among the plants or on the tank bottom, and the male fertilizes them immediately. After spawning, which can result in several hundred eggs, it is crucial to remove the adult fish from the breeding tank to prevent them from eating the eggs.

The eggs usually hatch within 24 to 36 hours , depending on the water temperature. Initially, the fry will feed on their yolk sac, but after this is depleted in about 3 to 5 days, they should be fed infusoria or specially prepared fry foods. As they grow, they can be gradually introduced to micro worms and eventually, crushed flakes and small brine shrimp.

Black Phantom Tetra Diet & Feeding

Black Phantom Tetras are omnivores and not particularly fussy eaters. A balanced diet for these fish should include high-quality flake food, brine shrimp, daphnia, and bloodworms. It’s important to feed them small amounts several times a day to ensure proper nutrition without overfeeding.

Black Phantom Tetra Compatibility

When it comes to tank mates, Black Phantom Tetras are quite peaceful and can coexist with other similarly sized, non-aggressive fish. Ideal companions include other tetra species, dwarf cichlids, rasboras, platies, and small catfish. However, they should not be kept with large or overly aggressive fish.

Black Phantom Tetra Diseases

Black Phantom Tetras, like many aquarium fish, are susceptible to various health issues and diseases, primarily due to poor water quality or stress. Common ailments include Ich or White Spot Disease, characterized by white spots on the skin and fins, often caused by abrupt changes in water temperature. They can also suffer from fungal infections, fin rot, and bacterial diseases, noticeable through frayed fins, cloudy eyes, or unusual swimming patterns.

The Black Phantom Tetra is a beautiful and fascinating addition to any freshwater aquarium. With their striking appearance, peaceful nature, and relatively easy care requirements, they are an excellent choice for both novice and experienced fishkeepers. By providing them with the right environment, diet, and companions, you can enjoy the vibrant life and activity they bring to your aquatic world.

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Black Phantom Tetra Care & Species Overview

Black-phantom

The black phantom tetra is a calm shoaling fish that likes to swim around the midsection of the aquarium. This species of tetra fish is native to the freshwaters of Northern Paraguay and Brazil and is part of the Characidae family of fish.

Aquarists are very attracted to this fish species, as it is extremely easy to care for and looks striking in an aquarium.

The black phantom tetra is compatible with several fish species. Whether you are new to caring for fish, or an expert, this fish will add character to your tank.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Black phantom tetra facts & overview, appearance & behavior, black phantom tetra care, should you get a black phantom tetra for your aquarium.

School of Black-phantom tetras

The black phantom tetra goes by the scientific name of Hyphessobrycon Megaloptera . These fish are referred to as black phantom tetras for short because of their mysterious appearance and the dark marking that resembles an eyepatch behind their gills. This eye patch makes the fish look as if a phantom is watching you.

Wild black phantom tetras are red. Over time, fish breeders took it upon themselves to make the black phantom tetra more physically different from its cousin, the serpae tetra , so the black phantom was developed.

The black phantom tetra’s natural habitat contains plenty of vegetation, especially floating plants and clear water. Keeping the tetra in an aquarium with live plants and clean water will prevent them from becoming distressed and unwell.

Black phantom tetras have long lifespans of up to five years, but if their aquarium is not suitable and doesn’t resemble their natural habitat, they will be more susceptible to infections and diseases.

The black phantom tetra isn’t under threat of endangerment and can therefore be found easily in pet stores across the country. Black phantom tetras typically cost between $3 to $4.50 in pet stores and online.

Black phantom appearance

The black phantom tetra fish species has a wider body than other types of tetra fish . Their bodies are flat and oval-shaped, and silver with a touch of black in color. Although it is called a black phantom tetra, the fish isn’t very dark and looks more gray in certain lighting.

Aquarists often choose the black phantom tetra for aesthetic purposes. This tetra looks fantastic and makes an interesting contrast from other brightly colored fish that you can get for your freshwater aquarium.

Distinguishing between male and female black phantom tetra fish is easy and can be done by comparing their fin lengths. Males have elongated fins and tails, whereas the females look stumpier and have a stocky build.

Female fish become bloated and puffy when breeding or pregnant, which is also a tell-tale way that helps distinguish the males from the females. Both male and female fish have tall dorsal fins and fork-shaped tail fins.

Stressed fish will look dull and lethargic. The black phantom tetra’s eyes become cloudy, and they may show signs of infections or diseases caused by distress and unsuitable tank conditions.

Typical Behavior

Black phantom tetra fish are shoaling fish that like to be kept in groups and often swim around the tank together. The tetra is a peaceful fish, but they will nip and bite other fish if they feel threatened or if they get in their way.

These fish get on well with other shoaling fish that display similar swimming habits and personality traits, such as the harlequin rasbora .

Males will become territorial at times, especially if there are other female fish around. Keeping an appropriate ratio of males and females is vital to ensure the male fish in the tank don’t bicker.

Biting and fin nipping are typical signs to look out for that indicate your black phantom tetras are under stress or feel threatened. When a black phantom tetra is calm and happy, it will stay in the mid-section of the tank and swim slowly alongside other black phantom tetras in the tank.

Black phantom tetras are active in the daytime and will look for cover and safety during the night. Keeping an appropriate day to night cycle is vital, so use plants to provide the fish with cover and appropriate lighting for the time of the day.

If you can’t see your black phantom tetra, it is probably hiding and resting in a corner of the tank. These fish aren’t shy, but it is important to provide them with sufficient hiding places and live plants so that the tetra feels comfortable and safe.

Black phantom care

Caring for black phantom tetras is easy, especially if you follow a care guide. As long as the water parameters and tank conditions are as they should be, these fish should live a long and happy life.

The black phantom tetra lives in the freshwater of the Guaporé River basin and Rio Sao Francisco and can also be found in the wetlands of Pantanal. Rich vegetation and clear water are ideal for your black phantom tetra tank.

Although these fish are hardy, they are still prone to the usual aquarium fish diseases that are common throughout freshwater and saltwater fish. Keeping new fish in quarantine and performing regular water changes will reduce the chances of your fish getting sick.

Habitat and Tank Requirements

Mimicking the environment that black phantom tetras will find in the wild is key to keeping them healthy and happy. Tetras like living in a highly vegetated aquarium, with soft lighting and accessories such as dried driftwood and other natural ornaments.

The following are some great plants for a black phantom tetra tank:

  • Water wisteria
  • Amazon frogbit

Don’t forget that black phantom tetra fish swim around the middle of the tank. When designing and aquascaping the tank, make sure there is plenty of space in the center for your fish to swim freely and comfortably.

Tank Conditions

Here are the desired tank conditions for black phantom tetras:

  • Water type — Black phantom tetras are freshwater fish , which means you can use tap water to fill up your tank. Never use distilled water for your fish tank as the mineral levels are not ideal for your fish.
  • Tank size — Black phantom tetras should live in 10-gallon fish tanks or larger. Although these fish are small, there are usually plenty of them and other fish species in the tank, so they need plenty of space to swim freely.
  • Ideal water temperatures — Black phantom tetras need to live in water with temperatures between 72 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit. Keeping the water temperatures as constant as possible is key for maintaining optimal fish health, so although these fish can tolerate fluctuating temperatures, you should check the tank’s temperature daily and stop it from changing more than one or two degrees.
  • Substrate — Dark river sand is perfect for black phantom tetra fish tanks.
  • Plants and decorations — Decorate the tank with dried leaves and driftwood rather than plastic accessories. Plastic accessories will not harm your fish, but they won’t benefit them as much as adding natural organic matter to the water.
  • Water pH levels — Black phantom tetras should swim in water with a pH level between 6 and 7.5
  • Filters and bubblers — Use a peat filter for black phantom tetra fish tanks.

Black phantom tetras are easy-going fish that like to share a tank with other peaceful fish. When choosing tank mates for the black phantom tetra, avoiding highly territorial fish will help keep the peace in the tank.

Here is an overview of the best tank mates for the black phantom tetra fish:

  • Honey gouramis
  • Non-aggressive cichlids

Be cautious when introducing cichlids into your aquarium. They can be incredibly territorial, and some species are aggressive. Only introduce cichlids into your black phantom tetra tank if you are an experienced fishkeeper.

As a general rule, stick to easy-going bottom dwellers and other tetra species of fish in a black phantom tetra fish tank. Once you are feeling more confident in your abilities, you can introduce more challenging fish.

Diet and Feeding

In the wild, black phantom tetras will feed on insects, worms, and crustaceans. However, the fish in your tank should eat high-quality fish flakes and pellets for optimal health.

Most fish keepers find it easier to make a fish feeding schedule and stick to the times quite rigidly as tetra fish tend to overeat.

Feed your black phantom tetra fish flakes three times per day (choose the hours that work best for you) and feed them a snack once daily of brine shrimp, mosquito larvae, or bloodworms. These snacks can be freeze-dried or live.

Ich , bacterial infections, flukes, and parasites are common black phantom tetra infections and diseases. These are very simple to treat and require 25 percent water changes as maintenance and treatment every other week.

Keeping new fish in a quarantine tank is a great way to prevent infections. However, this isn’t always possible as maintaining a separate tank is time-consuming and costly.

Black phantom tetra Breeding

Black phantom tetras will breed without hassle in captivity. Females can lay up to 300 eggs if they are healthy.

In order to successfully breed your fish, isolate the fish in a separate spawning tank.

Here are some tips and step-by-step instructions for successfully breeding these fish:

  • Decorate the tank with live plants — Plenty of floating live plants and natural vegetation will help get the fish in the mood.
  • Add suitable lighting — Low lighting has been proven to help black phantom tetras begin their spawning rituals. Placing the breeding tank in a quiet room will also prevent the fish from becoming distracted.
  • Keep the water temperature warm — Spawning fish appreciate water temperatures that are on the higher end of the scale of the acceptable temperatures. This is also true for eggs and fry.
  • Reduce the pH level to 5.5 — Reduce the pH level in the water and lower the water hardness for spawning fish.
  • Leave the fish to spawn — Leave the male and female fish alone to spawn once all of the water parameters and tank conditions are on point. Feeding the spawning pair with live food like mosquito larvae or bloodworms will help them.
  • Use a breeding box to separate the eggs from the fish — Finally, keeping the eggs and fry safe once the fish have spawned and laid their eggs is crucial. Breeding boxes are cost-effective ways of keeping fry and eggs away from adult fish.

Before deciding whether a black phantom tetra fish is right for you, think about what you are looking for in a tank. If you’d prefer a community tank, the blank phantom tetra could be perfect.

Despite the difficulty of caring for more than one species of fish in a tank, it is very rewarding. Black phantom tetras are fun fish to observe in an aquarium, and they will give you years of pleasure, especially if you decide to breed them somewhere along the line.

black phantom tetra breeding behavior

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Black Phantom Tetra Care: A Comprehensive Guide

Black Phantom Tetra Care: A Comprehensive Guide

Table of Contents

The Black Phantom Tetra (Hyphessobrycon megalopterus), often referred to simply as the Black Phantom, is a popular choice among aquarium enthusiasts. This small and attractive freshwater fish is known for its striking appearance and peaceful nature. In this article, we will delve into the care requirements for these captivating fish to ensure they thrive in your home aquarium.

The Black Phantom Tetra is named for its distinctive dark coloration. Its body is primarily ebony, with a bold horizontal stripe running from its nose to the base of its tail fin. This stripe is often accentuated by a shimmering metallic blue or green hue, creating a stunning contrast. Black Phantom Tetras typically grow to about 2 inches (5 centimeters) in length, making them a suitable choice for smaller tanks.

Black Phantom Tetra Care: A Comprehensive Guide

When properly cared for, Black Phantom Tetras can live for an average of 3 to 5 years. Factors such as water quality, diet, and tank mates can influence their lifespan. Providing them with optimal conditions will help maximize their longevity.

Average Size

Adult Black Phantom Tetras reach an average size of 1.5 to 2 inches (3.8 to 5 centimeters). Their small size makes them a great addition to community aquariums and nano tanks.

Black Phantom Tetra Care

To ensure the well-being of your Black Phantom Tetras, it’s crucial to pay attention to various aspects of their care.

A suitable tank size for a group of Black Phantom Tetras should be at least 20 gallons (75 liters). These fish are shoaling species, which means they thrive in groups. A minimum of six individuals is recommended to prevent stress and ensure their social well-being.

Water Parameters

Maintaining the right water conditions is essential for the health of your Black Phantom Tetras. Here are the key parameters to consider:

  • Temperature: Keep the water temperature between 72°F and 78°F (22°C to 26°C).
  • pH Level: Aim for a slightly acidic to neutral pH, ideally around 6.5 to 7.0.
  • Water Hardness: Soft to moderately hard water with a dGH (degrees of General Hardness) of 4 to 10 is suitable.

Regular water testing and monitoring will help you maintain these parameters and ensure a stable environment for your fish.

Setting Up The Rest Of Their Tank

Black Phantom Tetras prefer a well-planted aquarium with plenty of hiding spots and subdued lighting. The presence of live plants mimics their natural habitat and provides shelter. Driftwood and rocks can also be included to create additional hiding places and aesthetic appeal.

Disease Potential

While Black Phantom Tetras are generally hardy, they can be susceptible to common aquarium diseases. Maintaining good water quality, a balanced diet, and regular tank maintenance can help prevent illness. Quarantining new fish before introducing them to your main tank can also reduce the risk of disease transmission.

Food & Diet

A varied and balanced diet is essential for the health and vibrancy of Black Phantom Tetras. They are omnivorous and will readily accept both dry and live foods. High-quality flake or pellet food should serve as their staple diet. Supplement their diet with live or frozen foods such as brine shrimp, daphnia, and bloodworms to provide essential nutrients and mimic their natural diet.

Behavior & Temperament

Black Phantom Tetras are known for their peaceful disposition, making them ideal for community aquariums. They are active swimmers and exhibit shoaling behavior. Keeping them in a group will reduce stress and allow them to display their natural schooling tendencies. Avoid housing them with aggressive or nippy tank mates, as their gentle nature can make them vulnerable.

Black Phantom Tetra Tank Mates

Choosing compatible Black Phantom tank mates is crucial for the well-being of your Black Phantom Tetras. Here are some suitable options:

  • Tetras: Consider other peaceful tetra species like Neon Tetras , Cardinal Tetras , or Rummy Nose Tetras .
  • Corydoras Catfish: These bottom-dwelling catfish are compatible and share similar water requirements.
  • Rasboras: Harlequin Rasboras and Chili Rasboras are excellent companions due to their similar temperament.

Avoid keeping them with larger or aggressive fish that may intimidate or harass them.

Breeding Black Phantom Tetras

Breeding Black Phantom Tetras can be an exciting and rewarding endeavor for experienced aquarists. These fish are relatively easy to breed in a well-prepared aquarium environment. Here, we’ll delve into the details of breeding Black Phantom Tetras step by step.

Setting Up a Breeding Tank

To begin the breeding process, it’s essential to set up a separate breeding tank. A breeding tank provides a controlled environment where you can monitor the breeding pair and their offspring without interference from other tank inhabitants. Here’s how to set up the ideal breeding tank:

A breeding tank for Black Phantom Tetras can be smaller than their regular habitat. A 10 to 15-gallon tank should suffice. Ensure that it is adequately filtered and heated to maintain stable water conditions.

Black Phantom Tetras prefer slightly acidic to neutral water conditions for breeding. Aim for a pH level of around 6.5 to 7.0 and a water temperature between 75°F and 78°F (24°C to 26°C). Soft water with a dGH of 4 to 6 is ideal. Using a sponge filter can help maintain water quality without creating strong currents that might disturb the eggs or fry.

Spawning Site

Provide suitable spawning sites for your Black Phantom Tetras. These fish scatter their eggs among fine-leaved plants, such as Java moss or spawning mops. You can also use a mesh or breeding net as an alternative if you prefer to isolate the eggs from the parents.

Preparing the Breeding Pair

Before introducing your breeding pair to the breeding tank, condition them to encourage breeding behavior. Follow these steps:

  • Select a Healthy Pair: Choose a male and a female that are in prime health and displaying vibrant colors. Mature females tend to be plumper, especially when they are carrying eggs.
  • Diet: Feed the prospective parents a high-quality diet rich in protein. Live or frozen foods like brine shrimp, daphnia, and bloodworms are excellent choices. This diet helps prepare them for the rigors of spawning.
  • Lighting and Photoperiod: Adjust the lighting in the breeding tank to simulate natural conditions. Provide a gradual increase in light intensity over the course of a week. Maintain a consistent photoperiod of 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness.

Spawning Behavior

Black Phantom Tetras are egg scatterers, which means they do not build nests or care for their eggs and fry. Instead, they scatter their eggs among the fine-leaved plants or spawning mops. To encourage spawning:

  • Provide Suitable Conditions: Ensure that the water conditions in the breeding tank are optimal, as previously mentioned. The breeding pair should be comfortable in their surroundings.
  • Induce Spawning: Early in the morning, gradually raise the water temperature by a few degrees. This temperature increase mimics dawn in their natural habitat and can trigger spawning behavior. Dim the lights to reduce stress.
  • Observe Spawning: The female will lay her eggs among the chosen spawning site, and the male will fertilize them. This process may take several hours, during which the female can lay hundreds of eggs.

Removing the Adults

Once spawning is complete, it’s essential to remove the adult Black Phantom Tetras from the breeding tank promptly. These fish have a tendency to eat their own eggs or newly hatched fry. Transfer them back to their regular tank or another suitable holding tank.

Caring for the Fry

The Black Phantom Tetra eggs will hatch within 24 to 36 hours, depending on water temperature. The fry initially cling to the plants or spawning mop for support. As they grow, they will start swimming independently.

To care for the fry:

  • Feed them infusoria or liquid fry food for the first few days.
  • Gradually introduce finely crushed flakes or powdered fry food as they grow.
  • Ensure that the water quality remains pristine to prevent disease and promote healthy growth.

As the fry mature, you can start to introduce them to the same diet as the adult Black Phantom Tetras. As they grow, you can also gradually acclimate them to the main aquarium.

Breeding Black Phantom Tetras can be a fascinating and educational experience for aquarium enthusiasts. By providing the right conditions and attentive care, you can witness the entire life cycle of these beautiful fish, from eggs to vibrant adults.

Black Phantom Tetra Male Or Female

Distinguishing between male and female Black Phantom Tetras (Hyphessobrycon megalopterus) can be challenging, as they are not highly sexually dimorphic, meaning there are only subtle differences in appearance between the sexes. Here are some general guidelines to help you differentiate between male and female Black Phantom Tetras:

  • In some cases, females may appear slightly larger and plumper, especially when they are carrying eggs. However, this size difference can be subtle and is not a reliable indicator.
  • The dorsal fin of the male Black Phantom Tetra is often more pointed and elongated than that of the female. In contrast, the female’s dorsal fin tends to be shorter and more rounded.
  • Some aquarists also suggest that males may have slightly more extended anal fins, but this can vary among individuals.
  • In terms of color, there may not be consistent differences between males and females. Both sexes typically display the characteristic black horizontal stripe running from their nose to the base of the tail fin.
  • In some species of tetras, males may have small, white spots called “egg spots” on their anal fins. These spots mimic the appearance of eggs and can be used to attract females during courtship. However, not all tetras, including Black Phantom Tetras, have prominent egg spots, and their presence may vary among individuals.

Due to the subtle nature of these differences, it can be challenging to determine the sex of Black Phantom Tetras with certainty, especially in younger or less mature individuals. The most reliable way to confirm the sex of your tetras is through close observation during the breeding season when differences may become more apparent, such as the plumpness of a gravid female or the elongation of the male’s dorsal fin.

In conclusion, Black Phantom Tetras are a delightful addition to any freshwater aquarium. By following the care guidelines outlined in this article, you can provide a comfortable and thriving environment for these captivating fish. Remember to maintain water quality, offer a varied diet, and choose compatible tank mates to ensure the well-being of your Black Phantom Tetras for years to come.

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Lee Johnson

Lee Johnson

Aquarium enthusiast.

I love sharing my knowledge about all things aquarium related. I have been keeping aquariums for over 20 years and cannot imagine a life without an aquarium. 

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Black Phantom Tetra 101: A Complete Guide for Hobbyists

  • by Tim Priest
  • March 25, 2023

Black Phantom Tetra Guide

Introducing the Black Phantom Tetra: A Marvel of the Aquatic World!

Welcome, fellow fish enthusiasts, to a captivating journey into the mesmerizing underwater world of the Black Phantom Tetra , also scientifically known as Hyphessobrycon megalopterus ! Hailing from the enchanting Amazon River basin in South America, these charming little fish are like magical dancers of the aquatic ballet. With their mesmerizing colors and ethereal fin movements, they’ll have you entranced as they glide gracefully through the water.

Get ready for a thrilling exploration of their origins, behavior, care requirements, and more. So, strap on your metaphorical flippers, and let’s dive into the enchanting realm of the Black Phantom Tetra!

Side view of a healthy Black Phantom Tetra in a crystal clear aquarium

The Black Phantom Tetra is an elegant freshwater fish that boasts an alluring beauty, capturing the attention of both casual observers and aquarium aficionados alike. Their slender, compressed bodies are adorned with shimmering colors, ranging from iridescent silver to subtle hues of green and black. The unique blend of colors adorning their bodies creates an almost hypnotic visual effect as they move effortlessly through the water.

One of the most striking features of the Black Phantom Tetra is its prominent dorsal fin, which is situated on the top side of the fish, towards the middle of its body. The dorsal fin is characterized by its elongated and flowing shape, adorned with a stunning array of colors that include deep blacks and vivid reds. The contrasting hues of this fin create a dramatic visual effect, making it a focal point of the fish’s appearance. The anal fin, located on the bottom side of the fish, mirrors the shape and coloration of the dorsal fin, enhancing the overall visual appeal.

The caudal fin, located at the rear of the fish, is a distinctive feature of the Black Phantom Tetra. It is split into two lobes, each of which is adorned with a blend of black and silver, creating a striking contrast. The caudal fin’s colors and structure add to the fish’s mesmerizing appearance as it propels itself gracefully through the water. Additionally, the Black Phantom Tetra has a unique sexual dimorphism, meaning that males and females display slightly different characteristics. Males possess a more prominent dorsal fin, while females display a rounder body shape and generally exhibit more vibrant red coloration on their fins.

The Black Phantom Tetra is not only visually captivating but also possesses an air of mystery, thanks to its elusive nature. With their translucent bodies, they can sometimes appear almost ghost-like, lending to their “phantom” moniker. This combination of elegance, color, and mystique makes the Black Phantom Tetra an exceptional addition to any freshwater aquarium, as they contribute a sense of wonder and intrigue to the underwater landscape.

Fun Fact: Black Phantom Tetras are known for their unique “sparring” behavior, where two males face off and flare their fins in a harmless display of dominance. This fascinating behavior adds an extra level of interest to their already captivating presence in the aquarium!

In the United States, the Black Phantom Tetra is a relatively affordable species for aquarium enthusiasts. On average, you can expect to pay around $3-$5 per fish, depending on the source and the size of the fish. However, prices may vary based on factors such as quality, availability, and the retailer’s location.

The Black Phantom Tetra is known for its relatively moderate lifespan, with an average life expectancy of around 3 to 5 years in captivity. However, under optimal care and conditions, these captivating fish can live up to a maximum of 8 years, showcasing their hardy nature and adaptability.

To maximize the lifespan and health of your Black Phantom Tetra, it is essential to maintain a clean and stable aquatic environment. Regular water changes and monitoring of water parameters are crucial for the fish’s wellbeing. Additionally, providing a varied diet rich in essential nutrients and vitamins can significantly contribute to their health and longevity. Providing ample hiding spots and a stress-free environment will also play a significant role in ensuring the happiness and overall well-being of these charming aquatic creatures.

Average Size and Growth Rate

Black Phantom Tetras reach an average adult size of about 1.5 inches (4 cm) in length. In some cases, they may grow slightly larger, but this is generally the maximum size one can expect for this species. The growth patterns of Black Phantom Tetras are quite similar in both the wild and captivity, making it easier to predict their size and growth rates.

Beautiful Black Phantom Tetra showcasing its unique fin and body markings

Upon hatching, Black Phantom Tetra fry are incredibly tiny, typically measuring less than 0.1 inches (0.3 cm) in length. By the time they reach one month of age, they will have grown to approximately 0.4 inches (1 cm) in length. At six months, they would have reached about 1 inch (2.5 cm) in size. It usually takes around 9 to 12 months for Black Phantom Tetras to attain their full adult size, depending on the quality of care and environmental conditions provided.

Black Phantom Tetras typically reach sexual maturity at around 6 to 9 months of age. At this stage, they will be ready to breed, and you may begin to observe unique mating behaviors and other signs of reproductive readiness in your fish.

For the Black Phantom Tetra, the minimum recommended aquarium size is 20 gallons (75 liters). This provides ample space for the fish to swim and explore, ensuring their comfort and happiness. However, if you plan to keep them with other tank mates, an ideal tank size would be 30 gallons (113 liters) or larger. For each additional Black Phantom Tetra, you should increase the tank volume by at least 2 gallons (7.5 liters) to maintain a comfortable living environment.

Black Phantom Tetras are a shoaling species, which means they prefer to be in groups of their own kind. For optimum health and social behavior, it is suggested to keep a minimum school size of six individuals. To house a school of this size, a tank of 30 gallons (113 liters) or larger is recommended.

Water Parameters

The Black Phantom Tetra thrives in specific water conditions that closely mimic their natural environment. Maintaining these parameters is essential for the health and well-being of the fish. Here are the desirable water parameters for Black Phantom Tetras:

pH: 6.0-7.5 Temperature: 72-82°F (22-28°C) General Hardness (dGH): 2-12° Carbonate Hardness (dKH): 3-10° Ammonia: 0 ppm Nitrite: 0 ppm Nitrate: <50 ppm

Before introducing Black Phantom Tetras into your aquarium, it is crucial to ensure that the tank is fully cycled. A cycled tank has completed the nitrogen cycle , which involves the conversion of harmful ammonia to nitrite and eventually to less harmful nitrate. Cycling usually takes between 4 to 6 weeks and is essential for creating a stable and healthy environment for your fish. Introducing fish into an uncycled aquarium can lead to stress, illness, and even death due to the presence of toxic substances.

  • Regular water testing is crucial for maintaining the ideal water parameters for your Black Phantom Tetras. Popular water testing kits, such as the API Freshwater Master Test Kit , can help you monitor and maintain a healthy environment for your fish.
  • Perform water changes of approximately 25-30% every two weeks to maintain water quality and remove excess waste and toxins.
  • If the water parameters fall outside the desirable range, Black Phantom Tetras may become stressed, which can lead to a weakened immune system and susceptibility to disease.
  • The Seachem Prime Water Conditioner is a popular product for removing chlorine and chloramine from tap water, detoxifying ammonia and nitrite, and providing essential ions and electrolytes for your fish.
  • To simplify water changes and make them easier, consider using the Python No Spill Clean and Fill Aquarium Maintenance System . This product allows you to effortlessly change the water in your aquarium without the need for buckets or siphons, making the process less time-consuming and more enjoyable.

The Black Phantom Tetra is an omnivorous species that enjoys a varied diet. In the wild, they feed on a mix of small invertebrates, plant matter, and microorganisms. To ensure the health and well-being of your Black Phantom Tetras, providing a balanced and diverse diet is essential.

An ideal diet for these fish consists of high-quality flakes, pellets, live or frozen foods, and vegetables . Black Phantom Tetras have a mid-water feeding style, meaning they prefer to eat from the middle section of the aquarium. Floating and slow-sinking foods are perfect for them. These fish are usually neither too fast nor too slow when it comes to eating, so they can compete well with other similarly sized tank mates.

In their natural habitat, Black Phantom Tetras feed primarily on insects, small crustaceans, and algae. This mix of animal and plant-based foods provides them with the necessary nutrients to thrive.

For optimal health, it is recommended to feed your Black Phantom Tetras 2-3 times a day, offering only what they can consume within 2-3 minutes. Overfeeding and leaving uneaten food in the tank can lead to water quality issues and increase the risk of illness in your fish.

Housing Requirements and Habitat Construction

Creating a healthy habitat for the Black Phantom Tetra involves considering several aspects such as substrate , filtration, hardscape, plants , artificial decor, and lighting. In this section, we will explore each of these elements to help you build the perfect home for your fish.

Substrate: Black Phantom Tetras prefer a soft, sandy substrate or fine gravel in natural colors like brown or black. These substrates are gentle on their delicate fins and create a natural environment for them to explore. Two recommended substrate options are CaribSea Super Naturals Aquarium Sand and Seachem Flourite Black Sand .

Filtration: Gentle water flow is crucial for Black Phantom Tetras, as they come from slow-moving waters. A sponge or hang-on-back filter works well for these fish. One suitable filter for their tank size is the Fluval C2 Power Filter . If you plan to breed these fish, be cautious about fry being caught in the filter intake; covering the intake with a sponge can help prevent this.

Natural Hardscape: To mimic the Black Phantom Tetra’s natural habitat, include driftwood like Mopani, Malaysian, or Spiderwood. Rocks like slate or river stones can also be used to create hiding spots and resting areas. Adding botanicals like Indian Almond Leaves or Alder Cones can provide additional enrichment and tannins to the water.

Plants: Live plants are an excellent addition to a Black Phantom Tetra’s tank, providing shelter and improving water quality. Some low-tech beginner aquatic plants that work well with this species are:

  • Java Fern – An easy-to-care-for plant that can be attached to driftwood or rocks.
  • Anubias Nana – Another low-maintenance plant, perfect for attaching to hardscape elements.
  • Amazon Sword – A larger plant that can act as a centerpiece in the aquarium.
  • Cryptocoryne Wendtii – A hardy plant that comes in various colors and sizes.

Artificial Decor: While some aquarists prefer a natural look, others enjoy adding artificial decorations to their tanks. Black Phantom Tetras appreciate hiding spots and visual barriers, so consider adding artificial caves, shipwrecks, or castles. Artificial plants can also provide additional cover.

Behavior and Temperament

Black Phantom Tetras are known for their peaceful and schooling nature. They are usually active swimmers and enjoy exploring their environment. Due to their timid disposition, they may hide when they feel threatened or uncomfortable.

Close-up of a vibrant Black Phantom Tetra swimming in a planted aquarium

These fish make excellent additions to community tanks, as they are compatible with other peaceful, similarly sized species. It’s important to avoid housing them with larger or aggressive fish, as they may become stressed or bullied. When kept in a harmonious environment, Black Phantom Tetras thrive and display their best colors and behaviors.

Black Phantom Tetras exhibit some unique behaviors such as displaying to each other or “dancing” during courtship and breeding . Males will occasionally flare their fins and swim around each other in a non-aggressive manner. This display is usually harmless and does not result in injury. However, if their environment is overcrowded, stress levels may rise, potentially leading to more aggressive interactions.

Personality Scores

Black Phantom Tetras are known to breed in captivity, and with the right conditions, hobbyists can successfully encourage spawning. Here is a step-by-step guide to optimize breeding conditions for Black Phantom Tetras:

Step 1: Set up a separate breeding tank Prepare a separate breeding tank of around 10 gallons (38 liters) with a sponge filter to provide gentle water flow. A sponge filter is essential, as it prevents the fry from being sucked into the filtration system. Use a fine, dark substrate, and include some Java moss or spawning mops for the fish to lay their eggs on. Ensure the tank has a secure lid, as these fish are known to jump.

Step 2: Adjust water parameters Recreate the natural environment by adjusting the water parameters. Keep the water temperature around 80°F (27°C), maintain a pH of 6.0-6.5, and keep the water hardness between 2-6 dGH.

Step 3: Identify males and females Males are generally slimmer, more colorful, and have larger dorsal fins than females. Females tend to be rounder and slightly larger, especially when filled with eggs.

Step 4: Introduce the breeding pair Introduce a healthy breeding pair into the breeding tank. To increase the likelihood of successful spawning, condition the pair with high-quality live or frozen food, such as bloodworms or brine shrimp.

Step 5: Observe spawning behavior Males will display their fins and swim around the females in a non-aggressive manner. This behavior is an indication of courtship and breeding readiness.

Step 6: Monitor for eggs After spawning, the female will lay her eggs among the plants or on the spawning mops. Black Phantom Tetras can lay around 100-300 eggs at a time.

Step 7: Remove the parents Once the eggs have been laid, remove the parents from the breeding tank to prevent them from eating the eggs.

Step 8: Care for the fry The eggs will hatch within 24-36 hours. The fry will become free-swimming within 3-4 days. Feed the fry with a high-quality, fine-powdered fry food, such as Hikari First Bites. You can also provide newly hatched brine shrimp, which is an excellent source of nutrition for the fry.

Step 9: Monitor growth and development As the fry grow, perform regular water changes to maintain water quality. Observe their development and transition them to a more varied diet once they are large enough to consume it.

Black Phantom Tetras are generally peaceful, community fish. They are social with their own species and other species, making them suitable for community tanks. However, it is important to choose tankmates that have similar temperaments and water parameter requirements.

Ideal tankmates for Black Phantom Tetras include other peaceful, small to medium-sized fish species like tetras, rasboras , livebearers, and small catfish. In addition, snails and shrimp can make great additions to a Black Phantom Tetra community tank, as they help with aquarium maintenance and provide diversity to the tank environment.

On the other hand, larger, aggressive fish species are not suitable tankmates for Black Phantom Tetras. These include large cichlids, predatory fish like Arowanas , and any fish that may view the tetras as a potential meal. It is essential to choose tankmates wisely to ensure a harmonious and stress-free environment for all fish in the tank.

Compatible Tankmates

By carefully selecting compatible tankmates, you can create a visually appealing, peaceful, and harmonious community tank that showcases the beauty of the Black Phantom Tetra and its tankmates.

Diseases and Illnesses

Black Phantom Tetras, like other fish species, can be susceptible to various diseases and illnesses. Providing a stable and clean environment, a well-maintained tank, and a balanced diet can help prevent many of these issues. Be aware of the common ailments that can affect Black Phantom Tetras to recognize and treat them promptly.

Common Diseases and Treatments

It’s essential to monitor the health of your Black Phantom Tetras and take immediate action if you notice signs of illness. Early detection and treatment can significantly improve the chances of recovery for your fish. Remember to maintain proper water quality and conditions, and quarantine new fish before introducing them to the main tank to minimize the risk of disease.

Variations and Morphs

Black Phantom Tetras have a few common morphs, primarily related to color and fin shape:

Long-Fin Black Phantom Tetra

Longfin Black Phantom Tetra with its striking black dorsal fin and silver body

This morph has been selectively bred for its elongated and flowing fins, which can create a graceful, mesmerizing appearance as the fish swims.

Albino Black Phantom Tetra

Albino Black Phantom Tetra swimming gracefully among aquatic plants

This morph is a rare, albino version of the Black Phantom Tetra. It has the characteristic body shape and fins, but the body coloration is a pale, pinkish-white, with red eyes.

The Black Phantom Tetra, scientifically known as Hyphessobrycon megalopterus, is native to South America. It is primarily found in the Paraguay River basin and the Pantanal wetlands in Brazil, Bolivia, and Paraguay. They inhabit slow-moving, clear to slightly stained waters with dense vegetation, and their natural habitat includes smaller tributaries, streams, and flooded areas during the rainy season.

The majority of Black Phantom Tetras available in the aquarium trade are commercially bred, mainly in fish farms in Southeast Asia and Eastern Europe. The commercial breeding of this species ensures a consistent supply of healthy and vibrant fish for the global market. Occasionally, wild-caught specimens may be available, but the focus on captive breeding reduces the impact on their natural populations.

Now is a good time to remind aquarium hobbyists never to release any fish, including Black Phantom Tetras, into local waterways. Releasing aquarium fish into the wild can have severe ecological consequences, including the introduction of diseases, competition with native species, and potential disruption of local ecosystems. Always find a responsible way to rehome or humanely euthanize fish if you can no longer care for them.

The Black Phantom Tetra (Hyphessobrycon megalopterus) was first described by Carl H. Eigenmann in 1915. Its stunning appearance, unique behavior, and adaptability to various water conditions contributed to its rise in popularity among aquarium enthusiasts. By the mid-20th century, the Black Phantom Tetra had become a well-established and sought-after species in the aquarium hobby .

As the popularity of the Black Phantom Tetra grew, so did the interest in its breeding and care. Publications, such as Tropical Fish Hobbyist and Practical Fishkeeping, have featured articles on the species, providing valuable information and tips to hobbyists. Over the years, renowned breeders and hobbyists have also contributed to the knowledge and understanding of this fascinating fish, further enhancing its appeal within the aquarium community.

Fun fact: The Black Phantom Tetra is sometimes confused with its close relative, the Red Phantom Tetra (Hyphessobrycon sweglesi), which shares a similar body shape but has a distinct red coloration.

The Black Phantom Tetra belongs to the class Actinopterygii, which includes ray-finned fishes, the largest and most diverse group of fish. It is a member of the order Characiformes, which comprises several freshwater fish families, including the Characidae family, which contains tetras and related species. Close relatives of the Black Phantom Tetra that are popular in the aquarium hobby include the Red Phantom Tetra (Hyphessobrycon sweglesi), the Neon Tetra (Paracheirodon innesi), and the Cardinal Tetra (Paracheirodon axelrodi).

Final Thoughts

As you can see, Black Phantom Tetras are truly an amazing and captivating species to have in your aquarium. Their unique appearance, engaging behaviors, and compatibility with a range of tankmates make them a popular choice for both novice and experienced aquarists alike. By following the guidance provided in this comprehensive care guide, you’ll be well on your way to creating a thriving aquatic environment that showcases the best of what these stunning fish have to offer.

In conclusion, we hope that this in-depth look into the world of Black Phantom Tetras has provided you with the knowledge and inspiration needed to successfully care for these beautiful fish. By understanding their specific needs and requirements, you can enjoy a harmonious and rewarding relationship with these fascinating creatures. So, why wait any longer? Dive into the enchanting world of Black Phantom Tetras and let them bring a splash of color and excitement to your aquarium!

Tim Priest, author of LearnTheAquarium.com

Tim Priest , a renowned aquarium expert with over 15 years of experience in aquatic gardening and fish education, is dedicated to helping enthusiasts create stunning and thriving aquatic environments. As the founder of LearnTheAquarium.com , Tim shares his wealth of knowledge, passion, and expertise through engaging articles, educational resources, and personalized advice.

Discover the secrets to creating captivating underwater landscapes and maintaining healthy aquatic ecosystems. Join Tim on an exciting journey and let your aquarium adventure begin !

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Black Phantom Tetra: Your Ultimate Set Up and Care Guide

  • by Dr. Mollie Newton
  • August 15, 2023
  • 11 minute read

black phantom tetra in aquarium

Tired of mundane fish choices for your aquarium? Enter the enigmatic world of Black Phantom Tetras. Uncover the perfect harmony of beauty and ease as we guide you through their care. From beginners to experts, everyone will find a treasure trove of tips here to ensure these elegant swimmers grace your tank effortlessly.

In this article...

Article Summary Black Phantom Tetras are recognizable due to its striking dark coloration and appearance. They are peaceful freshwater fish and are suitable for all levels of aquarists. Black Phantom Tetras are active explorers that prefer swimming in groups of at least six.

Species Summary

The Black Phantom Tetra, scientifically known as Hyphessobrycon megalopterus , is a popular freshwater fish species among aquarium enthusiasts. It is commonly referred to as the Black Phantom Tetra due to its striking appearance and dark coloration. The Black Phantom Tetra is also commonly known as the Black Tetra or the Black Widow Tetra.

Native to the Amazon River basin in South America , the Black Phantom Tetra is found in various countries including Brazil, Colombia, and Peru. It inhabits slow-moving rivers, streams, and flooded areas within the dense vegetation of the Amazon rainforest.

The black phantom tetra is a small fish with a sleek and elongated body shape . It has a slightly compressed body, which means it is flattened from side to side. This body shape allows the fish to easily maneuver through the water and navigate through plants and other obstacles in its environment.

One of the most distinctive features of the black phantom tetra is its coloration. As the name suggests, this fish is predominantly black in color. However, it also has a shimmering silver or blue iridescence that gives it a beautiful and eye-catching appearance. This combination of black and silver/blue creates a striking contrast and adds to the overall allure of the fish.

FUN FACT The black phantom tetra has two dorsal fins, one located towards the front of its body and the other towards the back. These fins are triangular in shape and are generally transparent, although they may have a slight black or dark gray coloration. Its anal fins are located on the underside of the fish near its tail. These fins also transparent with a black or dark gray hue.

The black phantom tetra gets its name from a unique eye-shaped marking located behind its gills. This marking is black in color and resembles an eye, complete with a circular shape and a dark center. It is believed that this marking serves as a defensive mechanism, confusing predators by making them think that the fish is facing in a different direction. This eye-shaped marking is a fascinating adaptation that adds to the mystique of the black phantom tetra.

Native Habitat and Distribution

Originating from South America, specifically Bolivia and West Brazil, Black Phantom tetras are accustomed to warm waters with dense vegetation. In the wild, they inhabit slow-moving rivers, streams, and flooded areas where they can find shelter among submerged roots or fallen leaves. Their natural habitat also includes areas with ample crustaceans and other small aquatic organisms on which they feed.

Size, Growth Rate, and Lifespan

Adult black phantom tetras typically reach a size of around 1.5 to 2 inches (3.8 to 5 centimeters) in length. It usually takes them about 6 to 8 months to reach full maturity. Black phantom tetras are considered to be relatively fast-growing fish. They can experience noticeable growth within a few weeks, especially when provided with a nutritious diet and optimal black phantom tetra tank conditions. However, it’s important to note that individual growth rates may vary depending on factors such as genetics, diet, and environmental conditions.

Under optimal conditions in captivity, Black Phantom tetras have an average lifespan of about three to five years . With proper care and suitable tank conditions mimicking their native habitat, these beautiful fish can thrive happily for several years.

Tank Size and Water Parameters

The tank size and water parameters are crucial factors to consider when setting up a habitat for black phantom tetras. These beautiful freshwater fish require specific conditions to thrive and display their vibrant colors.

Black phantom tetras need a minimum tank size of 10 gallons to accommodate their active nature. These fish love to swim around, so providing them with enough space is vital. However, keep in mind that larger tanks are always better as they allow for more natural behavior and reduce stress levels.

Length plays a significant role. These fish appreciate tanks with longer dimensions rather than taller ones. A longer tank provides ample swimming space horizontally, allowing them to exhibit their natural behavior freely.

Water Parameters

Fluctuations in temperature can stress the fish..

Black phantom tetras thrive within a temperature range of 72-79°F (22-26°C ). It is crucial to provide consistent warmth within this range using an aquarium heater equipped with a thermostat. Fluctuations in temperature can stress the fish and make them susceptible to diseases.

To replicate the black phantom tetra’s natural habitat, it is important to maintain soft and slightly acidic water conditions in the aquarium. These fish originate from tropical rivers where the water is typically soft and slightly acidic due to decaying organic matter.

Maintaining an optimal pH level between 6.0-7.0 is recommended for these tetras. Regular water testing should be conducted to ensure stability in water chemistry.

Creating an ideal aquatic environment involves providing ample swimming space along with natural tank decor. Black phantom tetras appreciate the presence of plants, driftwood, rocks, and dark sand substrate in their habitat.

Arrange the floating plants and decorations to create shaded spots and hiding places. This not only provides security but also mimics their natural environment where they can seek shelter from bright light or potential threats.

NOTE Black phantom tetras are constantly exploring their environment, darting around the tank with energy and curiosity. As benthopelagic fish , they occupy both the bottom and middle regions of the water column, adding an interesting dynamic to any aquarium setup.

Water Quality Maintenance

Maintaining optimal water quality is crucial for the health of black phantom tetras. Regular water changes should be performed to remove accumulated toxins and maintain stable water parameters. Aim for a 25% water change every two weeks to keep the black phantom tetra tank clean and reduce the risk of diseases.

Monitoring water hardness is also essential as these fish prefer softer water. If necessary, use appropriate additives or filtration systems to achieve the desired water hardness level.

Behavior & Temperament

Black phantom tetras are highly suitable for aquarists of all levels, including beginners, due to their low-maintenance nature.

Being shoaling species, black phantom tetras thrive when kept in groups of at least six individuals. Their schooling behavior not only enhances their well-being but also creates a visually appealing spectacle in the tank.

Black phantom tetras are generally peaceful towards other fish species. They exhibit a social nature and prefer staying in groups. However, it’s worth noting that occasional territorial interactions may occur among males. These interactions often manifest as mock fights and serve as a means for resolving conflicts within the group.

Tank Mates and Community Tanks

It is important to choose companions that share similar temperaments and requirements. Opting for small and peaceful freshwater fish species ensures compatibility while minimizing potential conflicts.

Other tetra species

Other tetra species such as the black neon tetra or ember tetras are suitable tankmates for black phantom tetras because they share similar water condition preferences and peaceful temperament. They are all small, schooling fish that can coexist harmoniously in a community tank.

Peaceful bottom dwellers

Corydoras catfish are suitable tankmates for black phantom tetras because they occupy different areas of the tank. The catfish stay near the bottom, while the tetras occupy the middle to upper levels of the tank. This helps to create a balanced and diverse community tank.

Rasboras are suitable tankmates for black phantom tetras because they have similar water condition preferences, such as temperature and pH levels. They are also peaceful and non-aggressive, making them compatible with the tetras in a community tank.

Certain gourami species

Certain gourami species, such as dwarf gouramis, are suitable tankmates for black phantom tetras..

Certain gourami species, such as dwarf gouramis, are suitable tankmates for black phantom tetras because they have a calm demeanor and are generally peaceful. They can coexist peacefully in a community tank without causing any conflicts or aggression.

Select cichlid species

Some select cichlid species, such as the Bolivian ram or the German blue ram, are suitable tankmates for black phantom tetras because they do not display aggressive tendencies. These cichlids are known for their peaceful nature and can coexist peacefully with the tetras in a community tank.

Non fish tank mates

Non-fish tank mates can also be considered to add variety to your aquarium. Snails and shrimp, such as ghost shrimp or cherry shrimp, can coexist peacefully with black phantom tetras.

Tank Mates to Avoid

On the other hand, it’s important to identify black phantom tetra tank mates to avoid due to aggression or size disparity. Aggressive fish species or those considerably larger than the black phantom tetra may cause stress and potential harm.

Aggressive or fin-nipping fish

Avoid keeping black phantom tetra with aggressive or fin-nipping species such as tiger barbs, red-tailed sharks, or African cichlids. These fish may harass or damage the delicate fins of the black phantom tetra, causing stress and potential injury.

Large or predatory fish

It is best to avoid pairing black phantom tetra with large or predatory fish such as angelfish, Oscars, or snakeheads. These larger species may see the black phantom tetra fish as potential prey and may attempt to eat them.

Bottom-dwelling fish

Black phantom tetras are primarily mid-level swimmers, so it is not recommended to keep them with bottom-dwelling species such as plecos or loaches. These bottom-dwellers may compete for food and territory, leading to stress and aggression.

Fast-swimming or highly active fish

Avoid housing black phantom tetra with fast-swimming or highly active species like danios or rainbowfish. The quick movements of these fish may startle or stress out the black phantom tetra, affecting their overall well-being.

Extremely territorial fish

Species that are known for being highly territorial, such as certain types of cichlids or bettas, should be avoided as tank mates for black phantom tetra. These territorial fish may become aggressive towards the tetras, causing harm or even death.

RECOMMENDATION It is important to research and consider the specific needs and behaviors of potential tank mates before introducing them to a tank with black phantom tetra. Ensuring compatibility and a peaceful community will contribute to the overall health and happiness of these beautiful fish.

Black Phantom Tetra Care

Caring for black phantom tetra involves providing them with a suitable aquarium setup, maintaining proper water conditions, and ensuring a balanced diet. These small freshwater fish are relatively easy to care for, making them a popular choice among aquarium enthusiasts.

Food & Diet

Providing them with a proper diet is crucial. These fish have an omnivorous nature , meaning they eat both plant matter and small aquatic organisms. Understanding their natural feeding habits in the wild can help us replicate their diet in captivity.

To ensure balanced nutrition, it is recommended to feed Black Phantom Tetras a varied diet consisting of high-quality flakes, pellets, and live or frozen foods . Dried commercial foods should serve as the primary diet, with a focus on nutrient-rich pellets or flakes. These options provide essential vitamins and minerals necessary for their overall well-being.

Brine Shrimp as Treats

While dried commercial foods are sufficient for daily feeding, occasional high-protein snacks can be beneficial for these fish. Freeze-dried or live foods such as bloodworms or brine shrimp make excellent treats that supplement their regular diet. Not only do these snacks add variety to their meals but they also help maintain color vibrancy.

Health and Disease Prevention

These fish are susceptible to various health issues..

Proper care and disease prevention are vital aspects of Black Phantom Tetra care. These fish are susceptible to various health issues including Ich (white spot disease), bacterial infections, flukes, and parasites. Taking preventive measures can significantly reduce the risk of these problems occurring.

One common threat to the health of Black Phantom Tetra fish is introducing items into the tank without proper quarantine procedures. New plants, decorations, or even new fish can potentially introduce harmful pathogens into their environment. It’s essential to quarantine any new additions before introducing them to the main tank.

Maintaining water quality is another key factor in preventing diseases among Black Phantom Tetras. Regular water changes are crucial for removing toxins and maintaining optimal conditions for these fish. A well-filtered tank with good oxygenation helps promote a healthy environment.

Monitoring your tetras’ behavior is also important in catching early signs of disease or stress. Look out for symptoms such as loss of appetite, abnormal swimming patterns, or visible abnormalities. If any issues arise, it’s best to consult with a knowledgeable aquarium professional for proper diagnosis and treatment.

The Black Phantom Tetra fish are known for their prolific breeding nature, making it relatively easy to encourage successful reproduction in a home aquarium.

TIP Eggs are sensitive to fungal attacks , so proper lighting in the aquarium plays a crucial role in preventing such issues. Ensure that there is sufficient light exposure without causing excessive stress to both parents and offspring.

Setting Up the Breeding Tank

It is important to create an ideal breeding environment for your tetras. Aim for a pH level between 6.5 and 7.5, along with moderately hard water conditions. Maintaining stable water parameters is essential, as any fluctuations can disrupt the breeding process.

Separating Females from Male Black Phantom Tetras

Separating males and females before breeding allows you to condition them individually. This helps stimulate their natural instincts and prepares them for spawning. Once they are ready, reintroduce the male and female into the breeding tank simultaneously.

Egg Scattering Species

Black Phantom Tetras employ an egg-scattering method during courtship behavior. Females lay adhesive eggs on floating plants or substrate within the tank. It is advisable to include plenty of vegetation in the breeding tank to provide suitable surfaces for egg attachment.

..it’s best to move the adult fish out of the tank after spawning..

Parental black phantom tetra care is minimal, so it’s best to move the adult fish out of the tank after spawning to prevent egg predation. This ensures that the eggs have a higher chance of survival.

After approximately 24 hours, tiny fry will hatch from the eggs. At this stage, they require specialized care and specific dietary requirements for healthy growth. Infusoria or powdered fry food are excellent options for feeding young fry.

As your fry grow larger, it becomes necessary to transition them to larger tanks . Avoid using nets for this purpose, as the delicate fins of the Black Phantom Tetra can become entangled and damaged. Instead, carefully transfer them using a siphon or a gentle pouring method.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is black phantom tetra aggressive.

Black Phantom Tetras are known for their peaceful and non-aggressive nature. They are generally compatible with a variety of other peaceful community fish, making them an excellent choice for community aquariums.

Are Black Phantom Tetras rare?

Black Phantom Tetras are relatively common and popular within the aquarium hobby. You can often find them in many pet stores and online aquarium supply websites, making them readily available for enthusiasts.

How big do Black Phantom Tetras get?

Black Phantom Tetras typically grow to be around 2 inches (5 cm) in length when fully mature. Their small size makes them suitable for a range of aquarium sizes, including smaller setups.

Are Black Phantom Tetras good for beginners?

Yes, Black Phantom Tetras are well-suited for beginners. They are relatively hardy fish and are quite adaptable to different water conditions. Their peaceful temperament and ease of care make them a great choice for those new to the aquarium hobby.

How many Black Phantom Tetras to keep?

It’s recommended to keep Black Phantom Tetras in groups of at least 6 individuals. This helps reduce stress and encourages their natural schooling behavior, creating a more visually appealing and harmonious aquarium environment.

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Dr. Mollie Newton

Founder of PetMeTwice. I'm a doctor of Veterinary Medicine and avid Aquarist. I love learning and teaching fellow fish lovers how to keep their fish healthy and happy. 🐠 🤩

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Tcrascolorado

Black phantom tetra: care guide, tank mates, and more.

January 20, 2024 By tcrascolorado Leave a Comment

Black Phantom Tetra: Care Guide, Tank Mates, and More

The black phantom tetra, also known as Hyphessobrycon megalopterus, is a popular freshwater fish species native to the Amazon River basin in South America. This small, peaceful fish is prized for its striking black coloration and ethereal appearance, making it a sought-after addition to many aquariums. In this article, we will explore the characteristics, care requirements, and unique behaviors of the black phantom tetra, shedding light on why it has become a beloved choice for aquarists around the world.

Table of Contents

Appearance and behavior of black phantom tetra, habitat and tank requirements for black phantom tetra, diet and feeding tips for black phantom tetra, breeding and reproduction of black phantom tetra, closing remarks.

Black phantom tetras are small, peaceful freshwater fish known for their striking appearance and interesting behavior. These fish are popular among aquarists for their unique dark coloration and active nature.

The appearance of black phantom tetras features a slender body with a deep black color that fades to a translucent gray near the tail. They have a distinctive fin structure, with a long and flowing bottom fin, and a hint of red coloration at the base of the tail. Their behavior is fascinating to observe, as they are known to be quite active and playful, often swimming in groups and displaying social behaviors within the aquarium.

Black Phantom Tetra, scientifically known as Hyphessobrycon megalopterus, is a popular choice for aquarium enthusiasts due to its striking appearance and ease of care. When setting up a tank for Black Phantom Tetras, it’s important to create an environment that mimics their natural habitat in South America. Understanding their specific habitat and tank requirements will help ensure the well-being of these beautiful fish.

Habitat Requirements:

Black Phantom Tetras are native to the slow-moving, heavily vegetated waters of South America, particularly in the Amazon basin. When replicating their natural habitat in an aquarium setting, it’s important to consider the following:

  • Soft, slightly acidic water with a pH of 6.0-7.0.
  • Temperature between 73-82°F (23-28°C).
  • Plenty of live plants for cover and hiding spots.

Tank Requirements:

When selecting a tank for Black Phantom Tetras, a minimum size of 15 gallons is recommended to provide enough space for a small school of these fish. Additionally, consider the following tank requirements:

  • Secure lid to prevent them from jumping out.
  • A well-functioning filtration system to maintain water quality.
  • Dim lighting to replicate their natural habitat.

When it comes to the diet and feeding of black phantom tetras, it is important to ensure that their nutritional needs are met to keep them healthy and thriving. These small, peaceful fish are omnivorous by nature, meaning they require a balanced diet of both plant and animal-based foods.

Feeding Tips: – Offer high-quality flake or pellet food as the staple diet for black phantom tetras. Look for products specifically formulated for tetras, as they contain the essential nutrients these fish need. – Supplement their diet with live or frozen foods such as bloodworms, brine shrimp, and daphnia. These protein-rich treats will help mimic their natural diet in the wild and provide them with additional nutrients. – Consider including some plant-based foods in their diet, such as blanched spinach or zucchini. This will ensure they receive a variety of nutrients and help promote their overall health.

It is important to feed black phantom tetras small amounts multiple times a day, rather than one large meal. This will prevent overfeeding and help maintain good water quality in the aquarium. Additionally, it is always a good idea to observe their feeding behavior to ensure they are getting enough food without any competition from other tank mates. By providing a varied and balanced diet, you can help your black phantom tetras stay healthy and vibrant for years to come.

The can be an exciting and rewarding experience for fish enthusiasts. These beautiful and peaceful freshwater fish are known for their striking black and silver coloration, making them a popular choice for community aquariums. Here are some key points to consider when it comes to :

**Breeding Conditions:** – To encourage breeding, it’s important to create an environment that mimics their natural habitat. This includes soft, slightly acidic water with plenty of plants for the females to deposit their eggs. – Maintain a consistent water temperature of around 75-80°F, as this can help stimulate spawning behavior.

**Spawning Behavior:** – Black Phantom Tetras are egg layers, and spawning typically occurs early in the morning. – The female will scatter her eggs among the plants, and the male will then fertilize them. It’s best to remove the adults from the breeding tank after spawning to prevent them from eating the eggs.

**Rearing the Fry:** – Once the eggs have been fertilized, they will hatch within 24-36 hours. The fry can be fed infusoria or finely powdered commercial fry food. – Ensure the fry are kept in a well-maintained aquarium with good water quality and plenty of hiding spaces to help them grow and develop.

Overall, breeding Black Phantom Tetra can be a fascinating and educational experience for aquarists of all levels. With the right conditions and care, you can successfully raise a new generation of these captivating fish in your own home aquarium.

Q: What is a black phantom tetra? A: The black phantom tetra is a small freshwater fish species that is popular among aquarium enthusiasts.

Q: What does a black phantom tetra look like? A: The black phantom tetra has a dark, almost black body with a distinctive white or silver patch in the shape of a phantom mask on its head. It has a streamlined body and a forked tail fin.

Q: What are the ideal tank conditions for black phantom tetras? A: Black phantom tetras thrive in well-planted aquariums with plenty of hiding spots. They prefer slightly acidic water with a pH range of 6.0-7.0 and a temperature range of 72-82°F.

Q: What do black phantom tetras eat? A: Black phantom tetras are omnivores and will eat a variety of foods including flakes, pellets, and live or frozen foods such as bloodworms or brine shrimp.

Q: Are black phantom tetras suitable for community tanks? A: Yes, black phantom tetras are peaceful and sociable fish, making them suitable for community tanks. They should be kept in groups of at least six to prevent aggression amongst the shoal.

Q: How large do black phantom tetras grow? A: Black phantom tetras typically grow to around 1.5 inches in length, making them well-suited for smaller aquarium setups.

Q: Are black phantom tetras difficult to care for? A: Black phantom tetras are relatively hardy and easy to care for, making them a great choice for beginner aquarists. They require regular water changes and a balanced diet to thrive.

In conclusion, the black phantom tetra is a popular and striking freshwater fish species that is well-suited for community aquariums. With its peaceful nature and unique coloration, it can add a beautiful touch to any tank. However, it is important to provide them with the proper environment and diet to ensure their health and wellbeing. Whether you are a seasoned aquarist or a newcomer to the hobby, the black phantom tetra is definitely a species worth considering for your aquarium. With the right care and attention, these fish can thrive and bring joy to any fish tank.

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Pets Curious

Black Phantom Tetra Care Guide & Species Profile: Size, Lifespan and Diet

Black Phantom Tetra

Black Phantom Tetra  (Hyphessobrycon Megaloptera) are small and relatively peaceful tetra that can be kept in various settings and with several tank mates.

Their striking black and white coloration, long fins, and iridescent scales have made them popular among hobbyists. They prefer to live in schools of at least six individuals.

They are a good choice for even the most miniature aquariums at a maximum size of two inches. Black Phantom Tetras have been successfully bred in captivity and are relatively easy to spawn.

They require a tank environment with a highly oxygenated water flow and high temperatures of 80 degrees Fahrenheit. These Tetra species have a reputation for being finicky eaters.

Though their diet has been expanded to include more available foods in recent years.

Table of Contents

Species Overview

Black Phantom Tetra is a small and peaceful species of Tetra fish that can be kept in freshwater aquariums . It is scientifically known as Hyphessobrycon Megaloptera and it belongs to the Characidae fish family.

They hail from the river basins of Guaporé River and Sao Francisco River in Western Brazil and Bolivia, where they naturally live in tropical water conditions with a pH between 6.0 and 7.5 .

In captivity, Black Phantom Tetra requires a tank temperature between 72 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit (22 to 28 C) . They are shoaling fish and will only thrive when kept in groups of at least six individuals; ideally, there should be 15 or more.

It gets their name from the dark pigment on their bodies, making them appear almost like they’ve been dipped in ink. While some may argue that these fish aren’t black, they certainly have a very dark coloration.

Their scales become even more iridescent and reflective in the aquarium as they move in front of light sources.

Black Phantom Tetra Size

Black Phantom Tetra size can vary depending on the species, age of the fish, and the environment they live in. The size of adult Black Phantom Tetra ranges from 1.25 to 1.75 inches long , though they may grow slightly more prominent.

Black Phantom Tetra Lifespan

In the wild, these Tetra species have been known to reach up to 5 years old or more. In a captivity environment, the Black Phantom Tetra lifespan is about 4 to 5 years but in some rare situations it can live up to 6 years under optimal care.

Behavior & Temperament

These fish species are popular shoaling fish species. They prefer to live in groups of at least 4 or more tetras, and the more, the merrier! While they will comfortably share a tank with other tetra species as long as they have at least six other members in their school.

it’s important to remember that these fish species are significantly smaller species and will need to be housed with other similarly-sized Tetras.

Mature Black Phantom Tetra can sometimes be slightly more aggressive than some of their counterparts, but as long as they’re put into a school that’s large enough, they will likely not bother any tank mates or show aggression toward them.

Black Phantom Tetra will generally ignore tank décor and other fish, but they need a heavily-planted aquarium. Live or plastic plants should be used to break up sightlines that allow them to see one another.

This heightens the chances of aggression in the school, so it’s best to take this into account when setting up their environment. Black Phantom Tetras are highly active swimmers, often darting around in the middle levels of the aquarium.

They’re not considered schooling fish, but they need plenty of room to swim freely to thrive. They will also appreciate some open space on top of their tank for them to rest near the surface and enjoy the light.

Appearance & Colors

The appearance of the Black Phantom Tetra is quite striking. They feature a dark body with iridescent scales and transparent fins, making them appear almost like they’ve been dipped in ink.

They have a white belly and the males are generally smaller than the females, but they’re very similar in appearance otherwise. If you can see them side-by-side, it’s easy to tell which one is male and female by looking at their fins.

Female Black Phantom Tetra will have more prominent dorsal and anal fins than males do. They feature a dark body with iridescent scales and transparent fins, making them appear almost like they’ve been dipped in ink.

Black Phantom Tetra

Black Phantom Tetra Care

Black Phantom Tetra will thrive in a heavily planted tank with plenty of open swimming space. This species should be kept in schools of at least 6 tetras , and it’s essential to provide them with ample plant cover so they can dart into hiding if they feel the need to.

They are not picky eaters and will readily accept most types of fish food. They do best when in the middle levels of the aquarium, so live, or plastic plants should be used to create “caves” in their environment for them to hide in.

– Black Phantom Tetra Tank Size

The minimum Black Phantom Tetra Tank size would be at least 10 gallons per fish. Since it does well with groups it would be better if you have at least 30 gallons tank for a group of 4 fish. The bigger tank is best if you consider adding other tank mates.

They’re not picky about the pH level of their water, though they prefer it to be on the neutral side. In addition, these fish prefer soft water, so a good filtration system is important for them.

– Black Phantom Tetra Tank Setup

When you set up a tank for your Tetra fish, you might choose sand substrate or fine gravel substrate , that may feel the wild environment. Do not remember to add some aquarium rocks and driftwood pieces that allow them to hide and relax.

It prefers the middle levels of an aquarium with plenty of open swimming space. You can have a few plants to help break up the lines in their environment, but it’s important to leave the areas where they can hide so that they’re less stressed.

Black Phantom Tetra will thrive in a heavily planted tank with plenty of open swimming space. This species should be kept in schools of at least six tetras, and it’s essential to provide them with ample plant cover so they can dart into hiding if they feel the need to.

They’re not picky eaters and will readily accept most types of fish food . They do best when in the middle levels of the aquarium, so live, or plastic plants should be used to create “ caves ” in their environment for them to hide in.

– Water Conditions And Parameters

Black Phantom Tetra prefer freshwater that’s slightly on the acidic side, but they’re not picky otherwise.

  • Water acidity range: 6.0 – 7.5 pH
  • Hardness level: 12 – 15 dGH
  • Water temperatures: 72°F – 82°F (22 – 28°C)

Having an aquarium water testing KIT might be helpful for regular water testing.

– Suitable Aquarium Plants

Black Phantom Tetra are fast eaters, so the plants you have in your tank need to be able to grow quickly enough to keep up with them. If they can’t, the tetras will tear them out by their roots or slowly starve as they try to find food around the plants.

As long as they can get to them without uprooting them or jumping out of the tank, these are great options for planting in an aquarium with fish like Tetras.

  • Anubias Nana
  • Amazon Sword
  • Water Wisteria

– Common Diseases And Prevention

Black Phantom Tetras are pretty tough to fish that tend to resist the most common diseases. However, they’re not immune, so preventing diseases is always better than treating them once they’ve set in.

The biggest problems you’ll have with your Black Phantom Tetra will likely stem from their tank environment. Make sure your filter isn’t pumping out too much of the dissolved solids found in tap water, and always keep an eye on the pH level of your aquarium.

If you notice your fish rubbing themselves against rocks or plant leaves, they might be experiencing swim bladder problems.

This can sometimes be fixed simply by feeding them foods that will help them process their air bladders more easily, but other problems might require more drastic action.

It will do best in water that’s slightly acidic, but they’re fairly hardy and will rarely come down with diseases if their environment is kept stable.

Make sure your tank is fully cycled before you add any fish, and always keep a close eye on the pH level of your aquarium.

Black Phantom Tetra Diet & Feeding

In the wild, Black Phantom Tetra feeds on both crustaceans and insects. In an aquarium environment, they’ll accept most types of fish food as long as it’s small enough to fit into their mouths.

Flakes are a great option if you’re looking for a good staple diet for your Tetra. They don’t have a high nutritional value, but they’ll provide your fish with the energy they need to make it through their day.

How Often Do You Feed Black Phantom Tetras?

Black Phantom Tetra will eat several times per day, and they’ll usually swim to the surface in search of food. If you notice yours aren’t eating as much as usual, make sure their tank is well-covered and that there’s no way for any fish to jump out when they’re feeding.

In general, feed your Tetra around three times per day. You’ll likely want to use small meals throughout the day instead of one large one since this will prevent any of it from going bad before they can get to it.

What Do Black Phantom Tetras Eat?

Black Phantom Tetra are omnivorous, but they prefer to eat smaller fish and crustaceans. They’ll usually forage for food along the bottom of the river or tank they live in in the wild.

What NOT To Feed Black Phantom Tetras!

Anything too large for the Black Phantom Tetra to eat will be ignored. If fed too many protein-rich foods, they can also develop intestinal issues, so try to stick with plants and smaller fish as their staple diet.

Frozen Or Live Black Phantom Tetra Foods?

Some tetras prefer frozen food over live food since they have a lower nutritional value. Live food will give your Tetra fish the nutrients they need, but if you notice they aren’t eating it, go ahead and switch them over to frozen food.

Additional Food Sources For Black Phantom Tetras

Black Phantom Tetra will eat most types of fish flakes or pellets, so if you want to supplement their diet with other foods, you can feed them foods such as worms or brine shrimp.

Feeding Frequency

In general, Black Phantom Tetra should be fed around three times per day. You don’t want to give them too much food at once since they might ignore some of it before it has a chance to go wrong.

Ensure their tank is fully covered so they won’t jump out when it’s feeding time, and permanently remove any uneaten food.

Black Phantom Tetra

Gender Difference

Black Phantom Tetra isn’t known to have any distinctive differences between the genders, so you’ll likely only be able to tell males from females by their overall size. Males will typically grow a bit larger than females.

Breeding Black Phantom Tetra

Black Phantom Tetras are generally easy to breed if kept in an aquarium environment with plenty of vegetation. Unlike some tetras, they’ll breed in tanks without the need for extra special treatment.

The female will birth between 30 and 60 fry roughly two weeks after mating. The fry will start completely silver, but they’ll develop their shiny black scales within a few weeks.

Black Phantom Tetra Tank Mates

They aren’t generally picky when it comes to tank mates, but you’ll want to make sure they live in a tank that’s at least 30 gallons in size with other tank mates.

You can put other Tetras species into the same aquarium without much issue since they’re larger than most other tetra species.

Here is a list of compatible Black Phantom Tetra Tank Mates:

  • Celestial Pearl Danio
  • Chili Rasbora
  • Zebra Danio
  • Honey Gourami
  • German Blue Ram
  • Cockatoo Cichlid
  • Dwarf Gourami
  • Cherry Barb

Origin And Distribution

The origin of the Black Phantom Tetra in South America. People have reported that they found Hyphessobrycon megalopterus in the river basins of Guaporé River and Sao Francisco River in Western Brazil and Bolivia.

When it’s not breeding season, Black Phantom Tetras will travel through schools of closely related fish so they can eat more easily. They aren’t picky eaters by any means, so they’ll happily eat fish flakes or pellets if you want to give them a treat.

They also eat invertebrates that fall into their tank, and they aren’t scared of predators. Because of this, it can be a bit aggressive if you’re housing them with other types of smaller fish.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are black phantom tetras aggressive.

Black Phantom Tetras don’t generally have aggressive tendencies, but they get a bit more territorial than most other types of tetras.

They’ll usually chase away any fish that tries to eat their food within seconds of noticing, and they’re also known to nip at the fins of other fish.

If you’re housing them in a tank with other types of fish, you’ll need to make sure that the Black Phantom Tetras don’t see them as a threat.

If you have another type of fish that’s smaller than them, you’ll want to make sure they have plenty of space away from it. The Black Phantom Tetraswill usually be able to leave them alone if there’s a lot of room between them.

Are Black Phantom Tetras Hardy Fish?

Black Phantom Tetras are generally hardy fish, so you won’t have to worry too much about them getting sick or injured. However, they aren’t adamant about water conditions, so their tank will need regular maintenance if you want to keep them healthy.

If your Black Phantom Tetras do get sick, you might notice a few issues. They may be incredibly picky about the types of food they eat, and their fins might burn or tear if they try to swim through parts of the tank that have potent currents.

Are Phantom Tetras Fin Nippers?

Black Phantom Tetras aren’t aggressive when they’re not around other types of fish, but they are known to nip at the fins of other fish in their tank. Black Phantom Tetras are also known to nip at fish fins if they think there’s not enough space between them.

This can be especially frustrating when you’re trying to house your Black Phantom Tetras in a tank with tiny or young types of tetra because it might make it difficult for them to eat their food.

You can stop them from nipping at the fins of other fish by making sure there’s plenty of space between them and giving them more food than usual.

This is especially useful if you’re housing your fish in a tank with tiny or young types of Tetra – they’ll usually leave them alone as long as they have enough to eat.

Do Black Phantom Tetras Eat Shrimp?

Black Phantom Tetras don’t usually try to eat small or medium-sized fish in their tank when they’re not breeding season. They eat invertebrates that fall into their tank, so you might want to add a lid if you have small shrimp or snails in your aquarium.

This is especially true if the Black Phantom Tetras live in a tank with tiny or young types of tetra – the Black Phantom Tetras might see them as food, and they can fit into smaller spaces than most other types of fish.

If you do notice that your Phantom Tetras are eating shrimp or snails, you’ll want to remove them from the tank as soon as possible.

Can Black Phantom Tetras Live With Bettas?

Black Phantom Tetras and Bettas can live together in a tank, but this isn’t usually a good choice. These Tetras are medium size fish, so they might see Bettas as prey if they’re not separated.

Betta fish also need plenty of space to swim – they usually need at least a 5 gallons tank on their own, so housing them with Black Phantom Tetras is usually a bad idea.

If you want to keep Bettas and Black Phantom Tetras together, there are a few things you’ll need to do. The bettas will need an aquarium of at least 10 gallons , and you’ll need to be sure that the bettas have their hiding spots, so they aren’t at risk of being eaten.

If you notice your Black Phantom Tetras are trying to be aggressive on your Bettas, you’ll need to separate them immediately.

How Many Black Phantom Tetras Can You Have In A 10 Gallon Tank?

Black Phantom Tetras can be kept in a 10 gallons tank with other fish species, but this isn’t the best tank size for them. They need plenty of space to swim.

One Black Phantom Tetra needs at least 5 gallons on its own, and you’ll need to make sure it has plenty of hiding places.

How Much A Black Phantom Tetra Cost?

Black Phantom Tetras aren’t very expensive because they’re not hard to breed. You can usually find them for sale at a local pet store. Finding a local breeder locally is also an option and might be convenient to you.

If you need help finding one, many online communities can help you find Black Phantom Tetras for sale. In the US market, you will be able to find them for around $5. Online prices are not a big difference, but you have to pay for the shipping.

Final Thoughts

These Tetras are beautiful freshwater fish species that can make excellent aquarium pets. If you plan to keep them in your fish tank there are some things you’ll need to keep in mind.

They are smaller size fish that nip at the fins of other types of fish, so they might try to eat tiny or young types of tetra if they don’t have enough room.

You’ll also want to look for Black Phantom Tetras that are fully grown if you buy them online. Your local pet stores might sell young adult fish.

If you keep these things in mind and provide your Black Phantom Tetras with the right tank size and plenty of food, you’ll be able to keep them healthy and happy.

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Black Phantom Tetra Care: Size, Life Span, Tank Mates, Breeding

In this post, we discuss the Black Phantom Tetra and everything you need to know about this beautiful community fish.

Black Phantom Tetra, scientific name  Hyphessobrycon megalopterus , is a freshwater fish and is a beloved among many aquarists. The species is relatively easy to maintain, and they are also very peaceful, which makes them a favorite for many. Apart from their calm nature, they are also very widely available among traders as well as hobbyists.

They are called Black Phantom due to the black patches on each side of the posterior gills. The Black Phantom Tetra traces its origins to the river basins in Bolivia and Brazil. This fish is playful and sociable as well. They are also known for making seamless adaptations to new habitats, which makes them easy to care for even by beginners. They are also known as just Phantom Tetra.

Table of Contents

Some equipment you might need for your black phantom tetra, physical attributes of the black phantom tetra..

There is nothing flashy about the Phantom Tetra. It is more about understated elegance. It has a tetragonal shape, which is typical of a tetra.

A unique physical feature of this species is the black patch, which is present on the posterior of the gills on both sides. This patch is surrounded by silver-colored fins which are iridescent to a certain degree. The rest of the body is light grey.

An adult Phantom Tetra can grow up to 1.3 and 1.4 inches. They have a life expectancy of five years. However, they can comfortably live up to six years when the conditions of the habitat, as well as their diet, are appropriately monitored.

Unlike other tetras, identifying the male and the female Phantom Tetra is quite easy. The dorsal fins of the males in this species are much longer than in females. The females have a reddish tinge on their pelvic area as well as anal fins. The males do not exhibit this coloring, and their fins are almost black.

On the other hand, females have dorsal fins, which are almost black in appearance. The females also tend to become a lot bigger than the males during the breeding season. The colors also become more pronounced during this season to be attractive to their partner. The patterns on the body of the females are even more prominent than those of the males.

A long-finned variety of the Phantom Tetra is also seen with some breeders. The fins of the Phantom Tetra are by no means short, but this variety that is bred in captivity have extra-long fins. However, they are not very common and are only exclusive to some breeders.

The Black Phantom Tetra is very closely associated with the Red Phantom Tetra. The latter has distinct red colors located on its fins. It is also a lot easier to care for than their brightly colored cousins.

Temperament and Social Behavior.

The Phantom Tetra is playful, calm, and sociable. This fish is also one of the most adaptable species, which makes them a favorite of many. It is a schooling fish , much like the others in the tetra family. They are best kept in a school of about six pairs.

However, they don’t seem to mind even if they are just a pair among other fishes of the same size and temperament. This is what makes them the ideal pets, even for those who have a small-sized tank.

Are Black Phantom Tetras aggressive?

Among all the tetras, the Black Phantom Tetra is the most playful and exhibits curious behavior. Although they are not aggressive by any means, the males exhibit territorial behavior and sometimes engage in mock fights. They do not injure each other, but sometimes these playful fights can result in small tears in the fins. However, these are superficial tears, and they heal very quickly.

Another way they exert their dominance around their neighbors is by posture. The males of the Phantom Tetra are known to extend their fins when they want their presence to be felt. Both the anal fins as well as the dorsal fins get fully extended, so they look bigger than they actually are. The black colors of the fins also take on a more pronounced hue when they flex their muscles. Therefore, it is best not to keep them in a tank with bigger fishes or those that are aggressive as they can feel threatened.

They are also very social, and they can get along with a lot of other fish. The ideal tank mates of the Black Phantom Tetras include:

  • Red Phantom Tetra

Are Black Phantom Tetras fin nippers?

Black phantom tetras can nip the fins of other fish when kept alone or in smaller shoals. To limit the amount of fin nipping try to keep at least 10 Black Phantom Tetras together.

Habitat and Living Conditions.

The Black Phantom Tetras are native to the upper Madeira basin as well as the Paraguay basin in Bolivia, Rio San Francisco, and Central Brazil. In the wild, they live in the clear waters of the wetlands as well as in murky aquatic conditions with a lot of vegetation.

In captivity, the Phantom Tetra thrives in a tank that has 20 gallons of water or more. They typically have the same needs in terms of water temperature and environment. But this fish is much more adaptable and undemanding than other tetras. Of course, this is no reason to neglect them.

The ideal temperature of a Phantom Tetra tank is from 72°F to 82°F or 22.2°C to 27.8°C. For breeding purposes, the desired temperature is 77°F. The pH of the water in the tank should be in the range of 6.0 to 7.5. The hardness range of the water is between one and 18 dGH, but 10 dGH is the best for this fish species.

Best Tank Setup and Supplies

Ideally, the tank for a Black Phantom Tetra should have the following essentials:

  • Biotope aquaria can be the best tank for a Black Phantom Tetra. They will also do well in a nano tank like this one from Marineland .
  • A tank that is about 20 inches in length or more is recommended. Black Phantom Tetras are curious fishes, and they will swim the length and breadth of the tank, so they need a good space to explore.
  • The tank should be well-secured and also covered on the top. As playful as the Black Phantom Tetras are, they try to jump out at every opportunity, so you don’t want to compromise their safety.
  • Dim lighting conditions to allow their color to shine more
  • A substrate which consists of river sand to mimic their natural habitat
  • A generous amount of driftwood and roots at the substrate
  • The water must be peat-filtered media. Soft water is preferred over hand water.
  • A handful of dried leaves should be added to the substrate, which will make the water a light brown color. These leaves should be removed after every few weeks and be replaced with fresh ones to avoid an accumulation of inorganic matter.
  • Plenty of plants should be provided, especially towards the bottom of the tank. This will function as the refuge for the fishes and enhance their coloring.
  • Floating plants can also be added to the top of the tank as well
  • The movement of the water inside the tank should be moderate

Feeding and Nutrition of the Black Phantom Tetras.

The Black Phantom Tetra feeds on small insects and worms as well as small crustaceans. When you have them in your tank, their feeding behavior does not differ significantly. Black Phantom Tetras are omnivorous, so they will also feed on small plants as well.

These fish are not fussy eaters, but you need to feed them the food that they would eat in their natural habitat. This is because they need the proper nutrients to stay healthy. Improper diet can affect the health as well as the vibrancy of the Black Phantom Tetras, much like other fishes.

What do Black Phantom Tetras eat?

Different types of food that can be given to the Phantom Tetra include:

  • Live or frozen feed brine shrimp
  • Blood worms
  • Flake foods
  • Fresh foods
  • Mosquito larvae
  • Vegetable food
  • Tablets and pellets

While they will eat almost anything that you feed them, it is essential to feed them live food as much as you can. If you plan to feed the Phantom Tetras the pellets and frozen food, make sure they are high in quality.

Tip: It is best to use the pellets and tablets as supplements and not as a regular diet.

This species of fish requires to be fed several times a day. However, it is vital to feed them only what they can eat; otherwise, accumulation of the leftover food can pollute the environment.

How to Care for Black Phantom Tetra Tanks.

The Black Phantom Tetra requires minimal care, which makes them suitable for beginner aquarists. But note that it will do you good not to mistake their hardy nature for high tolerance of neglect. Although they will do well in just about any condition, they will shine in a tank which is clean and has good water.

The color of the Phantom Tetra is best viewed in clear to medium clear water. Their overall health also depends on the condition of a healthy tank, and so does their lifespan.

This species of fish are not susceptible to diseases. But an accumulation of inorganic matter in the tank, the wrong temperature, and other factors can make them easily contract infections. As with other Tetra Fish, they can become vulnerable to developing skin flukes, bacterial, and parasitic infections if the tank is not maintained correctly.

The following are the ways you can care for the tank, which houses your Black Phantom Tetra.

  • If you use the dead leaves to enhance the appearance of the water, make sure that you remove them after every few weeks. They should be replaced with freshly dried leaves.
  • 25% to 50% of the total volume of water from the tank should be replaced every two weeks. This is to ensure that the overall environment of the tank is kept in optimum condition for the fish. The frequency with which you clean the tank will depend on the size of the tank and how populated it is.
  • The Phantom Tetra can withstand a lot of water conditions. However, it is best not to supply an endless amount of hard water or acidic water as it can affect their health.
  • Be careful and watch what you put inside the tank, whether it is the water, the leaves, or other fish that you introduce in the tank. The best way to eliminate any contamination inside the tank is to test it in a separate tank and see if it can be safely introduced to your pets.

How to Breed Black Phantom Tetras Successfully.

Black Phantom Tetras are not difficult to breed. In fact, they are relatively easy even for someone who does not have a lot of experience with fish breeding. It is because it is a resilient fish and a prolific breeder. The female Phantom Tetra can lay up to 300 eggs, which is a significant number considering its size and comparison to other small fish.

They are an egg-scattering species, and they will mate regardless of whether you intend to breed them or not. The Phantom Tetra is a rather carefree fish and does not take its parenting duties seriously.

In this section, we learn how you can breed the Black Phantom Tetra successfully in captivity.

1. Prepping the tank.

  • It is best to prepare a separate tank for the parents to facilitate the spawning. The tank need not be a big one like your standard tank. Tanks with a capacity of about 3 to 10 gallons of water will do the job correctly.
  • The tank should be filled with a lot of vegetation as the female will scatter the eggs on to the plants and leaves. Plants such as   java moss , spawning mops, and other plants with delicate leaves will provide the right place for the eggs to stick to. Floating plants can also be added on top. A layer of fine mesh will also be a good choice. However, if you plan to use a mesh, make sure that the holes are not too big so that the parents can get through.
  • The ideal temperature of the water should be 77 degrees F, while the pH should be between 5.5 and 6. The hardness of the water should be around DgH4.
  • The lighting should be either dim or none at all.
  • Water can be filtered through a small Sponge Filter that is air-powered or through peat that is labeled aquarium safe.

2. Conditioning the parents.

  • The parents should be kept in pairs or one male among several females. Refrain from keeping a couple of males with a single female as this is not ideal for breeding, and it can also increase stress for them.
  • Conditioning foods should mainly consist of live foods during this period. You need to feed the potential parents several times a day. If you use frozen foods, make sure that you use only the best quality.
  • Females start looking a bit rounder than the males when they are on the verge of spawning. Their colors also become more vibrant during this stage.

3. The breeding.  

  • Since the parents do not exhibit typical parental behavior, and you might not know when the spawning has taken place until you see the eggs. The males will usually chase after the females amongst the vegetation, and the females will scatter the eggs on the leaves of the plants.
  • The male fertilizes the eggs soon after they are laid.
  • As soon as you notice that the spawning has occurred, remove the parents from the breeding tank. It is essential to remove them as the parents will start feeding on the newly fertilized eggs.

4. Taking care of the fry .

  • When the eggs have been fertilized by the male, they are called fry. In this vulnerable stage, they are readily eaten by their own parents. It is up the humans to watch out for their welfare.
  • The eggs of the Black Phantom Tetra hatch in about 24 hours after fertilization. Keep the dark environment of the tank consistent. Otherwise, they will become infected with fungal infections. If you are concerned about this problem, add a small volume of methylene blue to reduce the chances of infection.
  • You can start feeding the fry after a couple of days.    Infusoria-type foods are the recommended food for the fry during this stage.
  • After three to four days, the fry will start swimming. You can feed them live food such as micro worms and brine shrimp nauplii.
  • After about five days, the fry will start swimming freely. They will develop Black Phantom Tetra characteristics at about the third week onwards.

Conclusion.

The Black Phantom Tetra is a real delight to watch. It requires minimal care and is also widely available. These reasons make them a hit among breeders as well as hobbyists. They are also very affordable, which adds to their advantages.

They are a hardy and resilient fish with very accommodating nature. They get along with just about any fish of the same size as well. If you plan to add this attractive and playful fish to your tank, you won’t regret it.

Black Phantom Tetra Care

Featured Image: Krächz [ CC BY 3.0 ], via Wikimedia Commons

References: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_phantom_tetra http://animal-world.com/encyclo/fresh/characins/phantom.php https://www.thesprucepets.com/black-phantom-tetra-1381828 https://fishkeepingadvice.com/black-phantom-tetra/

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  1. Black Phantom Tetra: Care Guide, Breeding, & Tank Size

    black phantom tetra breeding behavior

  2. breeding pairs of black phantom tetras

    black phantom tetra breeding behavior

  3. Black Phantom Tetra Care & Species Overview

    black phantom tetra breeding behavior

  4. Black Phantom Tetra: A Complete Guide to Care and Breeding

    black phantom tetra breeding behavior

  5. Black Phantom Tetra 101: Breeding Guide, Care, & Disease

    black phantom tetra breeding behavior

  6. Black Phantom Tetra Care Sheet

    black phantom tetra breeding behavior

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  1. Black Phantom Tetra 101: Breeding Guide, Care, & Disease

    Below are some basic care tips for setting up a tank for the Black Phantom Tetra: The fish are highly active swimmers and therefore need a longer tank. Ensure that the tank is at least 20 inches. The tank should also be big enough for the fish because they are schooling species. A tank with a water capacity of at least 29 gallons is good.

  2. Black Phantom Tetra: A Complete Guide to Care and Breeding

    Behavior and Temperament Black Phantom Tetra Tank Mates Compatible Fish Species Non-Fish Tank Mates Tank Mates to Avoid Black Phantom Tetra Care Tank Setup Water Parameters Diet and Feeding Common Health Issues and Diseases Swim Bladder Disease Ich Fin Rot Internal and External Parasites Breeding Black Phantom Tetras The Breeding Process

  3. Black Phantom Tetra Care Sheet

    Appearance The black phantom tetra, like other tetras, has an oval-shaped body from the side and is laterally compressed. The fish have large black patches across its body. The color is mixed with a distinctive splash of black and a mixture of white and silvery gray.

  4. Black Phantom Tetra: Care Guide, Breeding, & Tank Size

    Habitat Temperament and Behavior of Black Phantom Tetra Tank setup for Black Phantom Tetra Tank Requirement Water Temperature Feeding Black Phantom Tetra Black Phantom Tetra Breeding Disease Potential FAQs How do you take care of a Black Phantom Tetra? Are Black Phantom Tetra Hardy? How long do black phantom tetras live for?

  5. All About Black Phantom Tetras: Care, Feeding and Tank Setup

    Fish Food Fist Tanks Heaters Protein Skimmers All About Black Phantom Tetras: Care, Feeding and Tank Setup Discover the mesmerizing world of the Black Phantom Tetra, a striking black-colored fish with vibrant fins. Learn about its traits, behaviors, habitat, and care in this comprehensive guide. Perfect for aquarium enthusiasts of all levels.

  6. Black Phantom Tetra Care: Everything You Need To Know

    Behavior & Temperament Black Phantom Tetra Tank Mates Breeding Conclusion Species Summary The Black Phantom tetra (scientific name: Hyphessobrycon megalopterus) has an ominous name and a sinister look to match. Named after their striking appearance, these freshwater fish are actually far more peaceful than their trade name would have you believe.

  7. Black Phantom Tetra Care: Size, Life Span, Tank Mates, Breeding

    1. Prepping the tank. 2. Conditioning the parents. 3. The breeding. 4. Taking care of the fry. Conclusion. Some Equipment You Might Need For Your Black Phantom Tetra Physical Attributes of the Black Phantom Tetra. Black Phantom Tetras Close - Up Watch on There is nothing flashy about the Phantom Tetra. It is more about understated elegance.

  8. Black phantom tetra Care Guide: Diet, Tank Mates, Diseases, Breeding & More

    Updated: October 27, 2022 The Black Phantom Tetra is a beautiful, peaceful, and easy to care for freshwater fish that is perfect for beginners. This species is perfect for a community tank and gets along well with other peaceful fish. They're also very active and love to swim!

  9. Black Phantom Tetra: Habitat, Tank Requirements, Breeding, And Health

    Explore its habitat, , breeding behavior, and common . Find tips for keeping this stunning fish in your aquarium. Overview of Black Phantom Tetra. The Black Phantom Tetra, scientifically known as Hyphessobrycon megalopterus, is a fascinating freshwater fish that has captured the hearts of many aquarium enthusiasts.

  10. Black Phantom Tetras: Everything You Need To Know

    General Description The Black Phantom Tetra has a flat body which is characteristic to most tetras. Their bodies exhibit a fusiform or spindle-like appearance, meaning they have a round-like cross-section and tend to taper at each end. These fish have tall dorsal fins and their tails are forked, with symmetrical lower and upper lobes.

  11. Black Phantom Tetra Care: Complete Guide for Beginners

    Males flaunt deep black coloration on their dorsal and anal fins, while females exhibit an alluring reddish hue to their anal fins. Only the males possess an enlarged dorsal fin. This fin becomes vertically erect during clashes or slight confrontations, crafting a majestic display. Visual identification, albeit elementary, isn't foolproof.

  12. Black Phantom Tetra Care Guide: Tank Mates, Feeding, and Breeding

    Black Phantom Tetra Care Guide: Tank Mates, Feeding, and Breeding. Black phantom tetras are members of the family Characidae, which includes several popular aquarium tetras.

  13. Black Phantom Tetra (Hyphessobrycon megalopterus)

    The Black Phantom Tetra, scientifically known as Hyphessobrycon megalopterus, is a small and peaceful fish native to the waterways of South America, specifically in parts of Brazil and Bolivia. They are known for their distinctive black markings and gentle temperament.

  14. Black Phantom Tetra Care & Species Overview

    Stressed fish will look dull and lethargic. The black phantom tetra's eyes become cloudy, and they may show signs of infections or diseases caused by distress and unsuitable tank conditions. Typical Behavior Black phantom tetra fish are shoaling fish that like to be kept in groups and often swim around the tank together.

  15. Black Phantom Tetra Care: A Comprehensive Guide

    Appearance The Black Phantom Tetra is named for its distinctive dark coloration. Its body is primarily ebony, with a bold horizontal stripe running from its nose to the base of its tail fin. This stripe is often accentuated by a shimmering metallic blue or green hue, creating a stunning contrast.

  16. Black Phantom Tetra 101: A Complete Guide for Hobbyists

    Fun Fact: Black Phantom Tetras are known for their unique "sparring" behavior, where two males face off and flare their fins in a harmless display of dominance. This fascinating behavior adds an extra level of interest to their already captivating presence in the aquarium! Cost

  17. Black Phantom Tetra: Unveiling a Captivating Tank Addition

    Tank Maintenance. Some top tips for keeping your black Phantom Tetra in tip-top condition! Install a good filter and clean it every 2-3 weeks. Vacuum your substrate and make partial water changes of 20-35% every 1-2 weeks with treated water of matching temperature. Get yourself a reliable heater and thermometer.

  18. Black Phantom Tetra: Your Ultimate Set Up and Care Guide

    Species Summary The Black Phantom Tetra, scientifically known as Hyphessobrycon megalopterus, is a popular freshwater fish species among aquarium enthusiasts. It is commonly referred to as the Black Phantom Tetra due to its striking appearance and dark coloration.

  19. Black Phantom Tetra Care (Hyphessobrycon megalopterus)

    Scientific Name : Hyphessobrycon megalopterus. Common Names : Phantom Tetra. Care Level : Easy. Size : Up to 2 inches (5 cm) pH : 6 - 7.5. Temperature : 72°F - 80°F (22°C - 27°C) Lifespan : 3 - 5 years, perhaps longer. Origin / Habitat : South America, various river basin areas. Temperament / Behavior : This is a generally peaceful fish and ...

  20. Black Phantom Tetra: Care Guide, Tank Mates, and More

    Habitat Requirements: Black Phantom Tetras are native to the slow-moving, heavily vegetated waters of South America, particularly in the Amazon basin. When replicating their natural habitat in an aquarium setting, it's important to consider the following: Soft, slightly acidic water with a pH of 6.0-7.0. Temperature between 73-82°F (23-28°C).

  21. Black Phantom Tetra Care Guide & Species Profile: Size, Lifespan and Diet

    Black Phantom Tetra size can vary depending on the species, age of the fish, and the environment they live in. The size of adult Black Phantom Tetra ranges from 1.25 to 1.75 inches long, though they may grow slightly more prominent. Black Phantom Tetra Lifespan. In the wild, these Tetra species have been known to reach up to 5 years old or more.

  22. Black Phantom Tetra Care: Size, Life Span, Tank Mates, Breeding

    Posted on January 18, 2024 by Kyle McFarlane 14 min read In this post, we discuss the Black Phantom Tetra and everything you need to know about this beautiful community fish. Black Phantom Tetra, scientific name Hyphessobryconmegalopterus, is a freshwater fish and is a beloved among many aquarists.

  23. Black Phantom Tetra Care: Size, Life Span, Tank Mates, Breeding

    Black Phantom Tetra (Hyphessobrycon megalopterus) is a easy to maintain, peaceful tetra making them a favorite for many beginners. ... Temperament and Social Behavior. The Phantom Tetra is playful, calm, and sociable. This fish is also one of the most adaptable species, which makes them a favorite of many. ... In this section, we learn how you ...