Black Phantom Tetra
Black Phantom Tetra (Hyphessobrycon Megalopterus)
Native Location: Paraguay, Brazil
Size: 3.5 – 4.5cm (1.4 – 1.75 inches)
Temperature Range: 22 – 28℃ (72 – 82℉)
Preferred pH Range: 6.0 – 7.5
Minimum Aquarium Size: 38L (10 gallons)
Potential Tankmates: Gouramis, small and non-aggressive Cichlids, other Tetra
Care Level: Intermediate
Quiet and easy to care for, Back Phantom Tetra make a great addition to any tank for any level hobbyist.
Phantom Tetras are not picky eaters. But the problem with these fish is that you have to watch them and make sure they do not overeat. They need a diet high in dried commercial foods like nutrient-rich pellets and flake food. They will also love frozen or live foods as a treat. In the wild, Phantom Tetras are a part of large schools, so in a tank, they will need to be in a group of at least eight. They will also be compatible with many peaceful community fish species. Try pairing with other Tetras like Red Phantom Tetra for a striking visual. Living in the mid-section of the tank, they can share their home with peaceful bottom-dwellers.
It will not be unusual if a small hierarchy forms between males in an attempt to claim territories. So, you will either need a larger tank that can accommodate having multiple males or keep less of them in the school. It can be interesting to watch males quarrel at the edges of their turfs. Injuries are minor but the aggression can cause chronic stress. Phantom Tetras are an active species, who love to jump, so it is best to have a tight lid covering the whole aquarium. To mimic their natural habitat, try using a dark sand substrate. Include driftwood and smooth rocks for cover. As they are sensitive to poor water quality, you will need to perform frequent water changes.
Male Phantom Tetras have longer, black or edged black fins and a total lack of red colour. Their fins seem enlarged when compared to females. Female Phantom Tetras develop a reddish pelvic, anal and adipose fin. Their midbody is also fuller than males. For females, their colourings mean they get confused with other Tetra species. Set up a breeding tank with an ample number of floating plants and have dim lighting. Males engage in courtship fin displays. After the female has laid her eggs, you will need to remove adult fish from the tank.