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Top Fin Aquatics

Black Phantom Tetra

Black Phantom Tetra

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The Black Phantom Tetra is a peaceful and easy-to-care-for fish, making it a great addition to any aquarium, suitable for hobbyists of all levels.


Black Phantom Tetras are not fussy eaters but require monitoring to prevent overeating. They thrive on a diet of nutrient-rich pellets and flake food, supplemented with occasional frozen or live treats.

Social Behavior

In their natural habitat, Black Phantom Tetras live in large schools. In an aquarium, they should be kept in groups of at least eight. They get along well with other peaceful community fish and can be paired with other Tetra species, such as the Red Phantom Tetra, for a visually striking display. They occupy the middle section of the tank and coexist peacefully with bottom-dwellers.

Tank Setup

  • Size: Minimum of 38 liters (10 gallons)
  • Cover: Tight lid to prevent jumping
  • Substrate: Dark sand to mimic their natural habitat
  • Decor: Driftwood and smooth rocks for hiding spots
  • Water Quality: Frequent water changes to maintain high quality

Behavior and Compatibility

Males may establish small hierarchies and territorial boundaries, which can be interesting to observe. To minimize stress and aggression, either provide a larger tank for multiple males or keep fewer males in the group.


Male Black Phantom Tetras have longer, black or edged black fins and lack red coloring. Females, on the other hand, develop reddish pelvic, anal, and adipose fins and have fuller midbodies. This coloring can sometimes cause them to be mistaken for other Tetra species. For breeding, set up a tank with floating plants and dim lighting. Males perform courtship displays with their fins. After the female lays eggs, remove the adults to protect the eggs.

Final Note

Black Phantom Tetras are active and sensitive to water quality, so regular maintenance and a well-covered tank are essential for their well-being.

  • Native Location: Paraguay, Brazil
  • Climate: Tropical
  • Maximum Size: 3.5 – 4.5 cm (1.4 – 1.75 inches)
  • Temperament: Peaceful
  • Diet: Omnivore
  • Breeding: Easy
  • Temperature Range: 22 – 28°C (72 – 82°F)
  • Preferred pH Range: 6.0 – 7.5
  • Minimum Aquarium Size: 38 liters (10 gallons)
  • Potential Tankmates: Gouramis, small non-aggressive Cichlids, other Tetras
  • Care Level: Intermediate
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