Are you thinking about getting some hatchetfish for your home aquarium? These are popular fish that have a very unique look.
Their hatchet-shaped bodies are almost flat, and they have a pretty aesthetic that’s hard to deny. Many people love keeping these fish in community aquariums.
What if you just want to keep them in a fish tank by themselves, though? How big of a fish tank do you need to buy for these fish?
Read on to learn about the ideal hatchetfish tank sizes. This will make it simpler to make good choices when buying what you need to set up a hatchetfish tank.
How Many Hatchetfish Should You Keep Together?
One important thing to know before going any further is that hatchetfish are shoaling fish. These fish need to be kept in groups.
You can’t just keep one or two hatchetfish in a tank and call it good. When keeping these fish in groups that are too small, you’ll notice that they’ll become stressed.
Stress will lead to the fish getting sick, and they might even die. So you want to avoid keeping them in groups that aren’t of the appropriate size.
So how many hatchetfish do you need to keep together for things to be fine? Most experts agree that six is the magic number.
Keeping six hatchetfish in the tank will keep them happy and healthy. You can also keep more than six hatchetfish in the tank, but six seems to be the minimum number of fish that’s recommended.
There are also reports that hatchetfish do best when kept in groups of ten or more. So if you have enough space, it would be good to go with a larger group of hatchetfish if you can.
If you only have room for six, it’s going to be okay. Just keep in mind that buying ten would be good if you have room for a large enough tank.
How Many Hatchetfish Can You Keep in a 10-Gallon Tank?
A 10-gallon fish tank is an appropriate size for some hatchetfish, but it won’t be good enough for others. Many hatchetfish would do better in 20-gallon fish tanks or 15-gallon fish tanks.
It all depends on the type of hatchetfish that you’re talking about. You see, there are different types of hatchetfish out there.
Different hatchetfish grow to be different sizes. The hatchetfish that are best suited to 10-gallon aquariums are pygmy hatchetfish.
These tiny hatchetfish grow to be around 0.9 inches long. Since they’re small, it’s easy enough to fit six or so of these fish in a 10-gallon fish tank.
Larger hatchetfish would feel a bit too cramped in a 10-gallon aquarium. So you don’t want to put common hatchetfish in a tank of this size.
The Best Tank Size for Common Hatchetfish
Common hatchetfish will do well in a 20-gallon fish tank. It should be fine to keep them in a tank of this size if you’re keeping around six of them.
These fish aren’t incredibly active and that means that they don’t need quite as much space as some other fish. That doesn’t mean that they like to live in cramped environments, though.
Common hatchetfish grow to be up to two and a half inches long. So they’re a lot bigger than pygmy hatchetfish.
Make sure that you use a 20-gallon fish tank as the minimum tank size for these fish. It might be prudent to buy a 29-gallon fish tank if you want to keep ten of these fish together.
The Best Tank Size for Silver Hatchetfish
Silver hatchetfish are a little bit smaller than common hatchetfish. Even so, they’re close enough to the same size.
It’d be best to stick with a 20-gallon fish tank when caring for silver hatchetfish. You can keep six of these fish in a 20-gallon aquarium comfortably.
Since silver hatchetfish grow to be up to 2.25 inches long, they’ll do well in tanks of this size. You should have an easy time keeping them happy in 20-gallon fish tanks.
Some people do go with slightly larger tanks when keeping silver hatchetfish in large groups. So a 29-gallon tank would also be appropriate for these fish.
The Best Tank Size for Marbled Hatchetfish
Marbled hatchetfish are even smaller than silver hatchetfish. These fish grow to be around 1.4 inches long at maximum growth.
Since they’re a bit smaller, it’s common for these fish to be kept in 15-gallon fish tanks. You can fit six of these fish in 15-gallon tanks without it being a problem.
Of course, you could go with a larger tank if you want to. There are many people that keep large groups of marbled hatchetfish in 20-gallon fish tanks or even slightly larger tanks.
Marbled hatchetfish are great fish that look very pretty in aquariums. You’ll enjoy these fish if you choose to go with them.
The Best Tank Size for Black-Winged Hatchetfish
Black-winged hatchetfish are close to the same size as marbled hatchetfish. They grow to be one and a half inches long on average.
So they’re slightly bigger, but it’s not enough to make a huge difference. As such, it’s common for these fish to be kept in 15-gallon aquariums as well.
However, experts say that a 20-gallon fish tank is much better. It gives the fish a bit more room and helps them to feel more comfortable.
So, if possible, it’s better to buy a 20-gallon fish tank for these fish. The fish will be in the best position to thrive if you give them enough space and keep the water very clean.
Giant Hatchetfish Tank Size Needs
There are some hatchetfish that are known as giant hatchetfish. Most giant hatchetfish are considered to be deep-sea hatchetfish, and these fish aren’t kept in aquariums.
However, there are some variants of silver hatchetfish that are also known as giant hatchetfish. For instance, a giant silver hatchetfish is known to grow to be around four inches long.
Since these fish are four inches long, they need to be kept in larger tanks. You still need to keep them in groups of six or more.
It’s best to keep giant hatchetfish in 50-gallon aquariums or even larger tanks. They need a bit more room to feel comfortable than their smaller counterparts.
All Hatchetfish Tanks Need Lids
Keep in mind that you need to buy tanks with lids when getting your setup ready. Hatchetfish are known to be jumpers, and they will jump out of the tank for various reasons.
It’s imperative to buy fish tanks with tight-fitting lids to keep the fish safe. Jumping is a natural action for these fish.
They jump to hunt insects, and they also do this to escape predators. It’s common for hatchetfish in aquariums to jump out of tanks and get killed when they’re kept in tanks with no lids.
So bear this in mind when you’re buying what you need. It should help you to pick out an ideal aquarium.
It should be easier to pick out the right tank size for hatchetfish now. Remember that you need to consider the type of hatchetfish that you’re buying.
Different hatchetfish come in different sizes. You’ll need a different tank size for common hatchetfish than you’ll need for pygmy hatchetfish.
Getting the tank size right is imperative because you don’t want the fish to feel overcrowded. This can lead to stress and will make the fish sick.
Now that you know the appropriate tank sizes, you can set up your new hatchetfish tank without worrying. Make sure you buy a good tank with a tight-fitting lid, and all will be well.
Jeff has always enjoyed having pets, but as a child, he was drawn to his family’s fish tank. Being able to maintain a small ecosystem and observe the behaviors and interactions in the underwater world peaked his interest early on and has kept him hooked until this day. On Avid Aquarist, Jeff shares everything he’s learned about helping aquatic life survive and thrive in a home aquarium.