Guide to the Common Hatchet Fish
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Guide to the Common Hatchet Fish

Like most freshwater fish species, the common hatchet fish rarely breeds in captivity. If they do lay eggs inside the fish tank, it will be under the perfect fish tank conditions. Do not expect to regularly breed them even in an optimal fish tank environment.

Hatchet Fish

The common hatchet fish is a freshwater fish that is usually found in tropical areas. Its name is derived from its distinguishing feature which is its protruding belly that resembles a hatchet. The common hatchetfish is a jumper. It jumps out of the water when it is startled or to catch small flying insects. They use their pectoral fins to fly through the air by flapping them, which makes them technically the true flying fish. Here are more information about the common hatchet fish.

Behavior

The common hatchet fish is usually friendly, and sometimes timid, towards other types of fish, but not so much with their own kind. Strangely, they thrive when they are in a group of 5 or more inside the fish tank. This characteristic makes them very suitable in fish community tanks where several species of fish are present. They stay mostly near the top of the water where they eat their food, which can be attributed to the fact their mouths are located on the upper part of their faces and their tendency to propel themselves out of the water.

Fish Tank

Hatchet FishThe common hatchet fish like floating plants where they can hide. Do not put too much floating plants so there will be enough clear areas on the surface of the water so they can easily feed on the food you are giving them.

Because of their tendency to jump out of the water, it is recommended that you put some sort of covering on top of the freshwater aquarium that does not necessarily block off air that is also needed to provide oxygen for the water. A fish net or a slightly elevated solid covering will provide the safety feature to your fish tank that will prevent hatchetfish from jumping out of it.

For the fish tank's water conditions, it is best to keep its hardness within 2 to 15 degrees dGH. Keep the water's pH level at 6.0 to 7.0, For the fish tank water's temperature, the ideal condition is to keep it at 26 to 28 degrees Celsius.

Feeding

Because of their tendency to eat their food on the water surface, it is best to keep a lot of space on the water surface, especially if you have a small fish tank with some floating plants. The common hatchet fish's diet mostly consists of insects and flakes, so you can give them any combination of these every day. A good balance of diet for them would be brine shrimp, fruit flies and blood worms. You can feed your hatchet fish with these kinds of food in an alternating fashion so they can have a steady source of protein.

Breeding

It's pretty hard to distinguish between a male and a female hatchet fish. One thing you can do to determine the sexes of your hatchet fish pets is to look at them from a top view. The more plump fishes are females.

Like most freshwater fish species, the common hatchet fish rarely breeds in captivity. If they do lay eggs inside the fish tank, it will be under the perfect fish tank conditions. Do not expect to regularly breed them even in an optimal fish tank environment.

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