Marble Hatchet Fish

Updated August 5, 2019
Author: Mike - FishLore Admin
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The marble hatchet fish is a truly unique looking fish that will always hang out at the top of your tank. In general, hatchet fish do not have the reputation as being one of the hardier species to keep in the home aquarium, but the marble hatchet fish seems to do better than the other hatchet fish.

Make sure that you slowly acclimate Hatchet Fish to an established tank that has completed the aquarium nitrogen cycle. They really do well in a small school of 6 or more and with peaceful tank mates.

Carnegiella strigata Carnegiella strigata


Marble Hatchet Fish are accomplished jumpers so you will also need a hood that has no escape points that will give them the opportunity to jump out. Keeping them with skittish fish may increase the chances of them deciding to jump out. It's a good idea to turn on the room lights before turning on the fish tank lights to prevent spooking them.

Carnegiella strigata Carnegiella strigata

Many of the hatchet fish are wild caught so you should plan on using a quarantine tank for a few weeks for monitoring before introducing them into your main tank.

This Hatchetfish will accept all sorts of tropical fish food, including flakes, frozen and freeze dried foods and definitley live fish foods.

Marble Hatchet Fish Care

Scientific Name : Carnegiella strigata

Common Names : Marbled Hatchet Fish

Hatchetfish Care Level : Medium, need to slowly acclimate them to your tank. If you have added them to a new tank be advised that they will probably not make it through the nitrogen cycle.

Size : Up to 2 inches (5 cm)

pH : 5.5 - 7, prefer water slightly on the acidic side

Temperature : 75°F - 80°F (24°C - 27°C)

Water Hardness : 4° to 12° dH

Lifespan : 2 - 5 years

Origin / Habitat : South America, Amazon River

Temperament / Behavior : This is a very peaceful tropical fish and best kept in schools of 6 or more.

Hatchetfish Breeding : Hatchet Fish can be difficult to breed in the home aquarium. They are egglayers and the adult fish must be removed after dropping the eggs. Provide a lower pH (peat moss) and very soft water (3° to 5° dH). Feed the fry brine shrimp.

Aquarium Size : 10 gallon or larger.

Tank Mates : Many, given their peaceful nature. Avoid keeping with tropical fish large enough to eat them or fish that may bother them, such as Tiger Barbs.

Disease : Freshwater Fish Disease - always a good idea to use a quarantine tank. This fish was studied to determine the effects of pro-biotics during shipping and how it affected survival rates during shipment.

Diet / Foods : Will go after flakes, live and freeze dried foods. They really seem to enjoy mosquito larvae which can sometimes be found in frozen cube form at your local pet store.

Tank Region : Top of the tank, surface dweller.

Gender : The female marble hatchet may have a thicker belly, otherwise can be difficult to determine.

Similar Species :Common Hatchetfish

Fish Lore Forum : Hatchetfish Forum

Photo Credit : Photos copyright

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Marbled Hatchetfish

Marble Hatchetfish Comments

From: Jessica
Make sure you have a secure top to your aquarium! The marble hatchets that I had were quite fond of jumping.

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