Black Phantom Tetra

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Black phantom tetra - Hyphessobrycon megalopterus

Scientific name: Hyphessobrycon megalopterus

Common name: Black phantom tetra

Family: Characidae

Usual size in fish tanks: 4 - 5 cm (1.57 - 1.97 inch)


Recommended pH range for the species: 6 - 7.5

Recommended water hardness (dGH): 12 - 20°N (214.29 - 357.14ppm)

0°C 32°F30°C 86°F

Recommended temperature: 23 - 28 °C (73.4 - 82.4°F)

The way how these fish reproduce: Spawning

Where the species comes from: South America

Temperament to its own species: peaceful

Temperament toward other fish species: peaceful

Usual place in the tank: Middle levels

Food and feeding

Black phantom tetras will accept all foods offered. Use a fine quality flake for the staple diet but give them treats of brine shrimp and white worms to get the best colouration from them.


South America; Black phantom tetras are found in the waterways of Brazil.


The fins of the male fish will be edged in black; with the females the fins will have a reddish tint.


Floating plants and subdued lighting should be used for the breeding tank. The pH should be dropped right down to 5.5 and the water should be very soft. Condition the parents with live foods and then place them in the tank. When spawning has taken place, the parents should be removed and there should be approx. 300 eggs in the tank. When the eggs have hatched, the fry can be fed on newly hatched brine shrimp. In a couple of weeks, crushed flake can be used to feed the fry.


The expected life span for Hyphessobrycon megalopterus is 3-5 years.

Short description

Black Phantom Tetra is a shoaling fish so should be kept in groups of at least 6 fish. Provide a well planted tank with subdued lighting and soft water.