Silver Hatchet
Gasteropelecus sternicla

Care Level




Reef Compatible


Plant Safe


Max Size

2" - 5"

Minimum Tank Size

20 gallon





Water Conditions

73-79° F, KH 8-12, pH 6.0-7.0


General: The SilverHatchetfish (Gasteropulucus sternicla) is a schooling species, native to a large portion of the Amazonian River Basin. Naturally, the Silver Hatchetfish prefers "blackwater" (acidic, soft water) conditions. This peaceful fish is one of the few, in the hobby, that will occupy the upper niche of an aquarium. Hatchetfish should be kept in schools of six, or more. They should also be kept in an entirely covered aquarium, as they may try to jump out of the water. The Silver Hatchetfish will reach a length of two inches, and live up to five years.

Reproduction: Silver Hatchetfish have scarcely been bred thru-ought the hobby. However,
reproductive behavior of this species can be encouraged by mimicking natural conditions. Maintain acidic, soft water conditions in a planted aquarium. Being fed foods that contain large amounts of protein will aid in the development of viable offspring.

Preferred Water Chemistry: Acidic (5-7 pH), soft water (3 to 6 dH)

Aquarium Diet: Brine shrimp, Baby Brine Shrimp, general flakes, Blackworms, Spirulina

Dimorphism: It is very difficult to determine the gender of Silver Hatchfish (Gasteropulecus sternicla). However, the female will take on a more gravid appearance when ready to reproduce.

Compatibility: The Silver Hatchetfish (Gasteropelecus sternicla) are typically compatible with other Hatchetfish, Danio, Tetra, Rasbora, Apistogramma, Pencilfish, and Corydoras.

Silver Hatchet Videos

Author: Aquatics Unlimited