Hatchetfish get their name from their peculiar shape. From the side, they look like triangles that are rounded only at the bottom, not unlike the shape of a hatchet. From the front, they are thinner than a cracker, tapering to a wedged knife-edge along the belly. The disproportionately deep body contains large muscles that contribute to the fish’s ability to flap its fins in flight.
This fish is an inhabitant of exclusively blackwater environments. They prefer fallen branches, live plants, rock outcroppings and require room to swim in and around them. Putting these unique fish in a bare tank will make them feel very vulnerable and insecure; they will not long survive.
Hatchetfish are a very popular addition to aquariums, however, it is important to remember that this is fish that lives under the forest canopy. Provide a large aquarium with subdued or dimmed LED lighting. Use plant species that grow up to the surface of the water to simulate their natural environment. Use a dark substrate to simulate the river bottom.
It is unlikely that the fish that you buy in local stores and bred in captivity would try to fly, but do not take the chance; it has been known to happen. It should go without saying that any aquarium containing hatchetfish should be covered with a full aquarium hood to avoid unscheduled flights.
In the aquarium, it will accept dried foods of a suitable size but should also be offered regular meals of small live and frozen fare such as Artemia nauplii, Daphnia, Moina, or grindal worms. Drosophila fruit flies or other young insects you can raise in bulk can also be fed, although it’s best to fill the stomachs of these insects (bio-loading) by feeding them fish flakes and vegetable matter before offering them to the fish.
- Species -Gasteropelecus Strigata)
- Common Name – Marbled Hatchetfish
- Origin – Columbia, Peru and Brazil
- Diet – Omnivore
- PH Range – 4 – 4
- Temperature – Tropical 24-28°c
- Breed Type – egg layer
- Current Size – approximately 2.5cm (Grows to approximately 9cm)
- Sex – Un-sexed