The Black Tetra, also known as the Black Skirt Tetra or Gymnocorymbus ternetzi, is an iconic species in the world of aquarium enthusiasts. A freshwater fish indigenous to the Paraguay and Guapore Rivers of South America, it’s a popular choice for community tanks, thanks to its hardy nature, elegant appearance, and peaceful temperament.
Characterized by a dark, almost black color, the Black Tetra has a fascinating physical profile. Its most distinctive feature is the long, ‘skirt-like’ anal and dorsal fins that billow out from its sides, resembling the delicate layers of a ballet skirt. These fins, combined with its semi-transparent body, create a striking contrast that is particularly noticeable against lighter backgrounds or when the fish are schooling.
The black tetra (Gymnocorymbus ternetzi), also known as the black skirt tetra, petticoat tetra, high-fin black skirt tetra, black widow tetra, and blackamoor, is a freshwater fish of the characin family (Characidae). It is native to the Paraguay River basin of south-central Brazil (mainly Pantanal region), Paraguay and northeast Argentina.
The black tetra includes a roughly tetragonal body form and is greyish in color, fading from around black in the tail to light in the nose. Two notable, black, vertical bars seem just anterior to the gills.  it’s readily distinguished from all its congeners from the existence of a dense area of dark chromatophores disperse homogeneously within the anterior one half the entire body unlike the deficiency of this pigmentation in most congeners.
Black Tetra in Aquarium
Adult Black Tetras usually reach 2-3 inches in length, with females being rounder and more robust than males. Black Tetras are generally peaceful fish, making them suitable for community aquariums. They are also highly social, showcasing an intriguing schooling behavior when in groups of five or more. However, they may exhibit occasional fin-nipping tendencies, particularly when kept in small groups or stressful conditions.
Aquarium setup is crucial for the health and wellbeing of Black Tetras. Ideal conditions include:
Aquarist Experience Level: Beginner
Minimum Tank Size: 20-30 gallons
Care Level: Easy
Water Conditions: 20° to 26°C (68° to 78°F), pH 6.0-8.0
Diet: daphnia and mosquito larvae, and frozen foods like bloodworms.
Size: normally 6 cm. But Can Growing up to 7.5 cm (3.0 in) in length
Lifespan: 3-5 years
Substrate and Decor: A dark-colored substrate can mimic their natural habitat and highlight their colors, while adding driftwood, rocks, and plants can provide hiding spaces and contribute to a more stimulating environment.
Tank Mates Black Tetras can coexist peacefully with a variety of other species. Compatible tank mates include other types of tetras, gouramis, barbs, and bottom-dwelling species like corydoras and loaches. Due to their occasional fin-nipping tendencies, avoid pairing them with slow-moving or long-finned species.
Breeding Breeding Black Tetras can be a rewarding endeavor for aquarium hobbyists. They are egg scatterers, with females releasing eggs that are fertilized by males in open water. It is advised to remove the adults post-spawning, as they may eat the eggs. The fry can be nourished with infusoria or finely crushed flake food.
The black tetra has readily adapted to the aquarium which Lifespan is roughly 3-5 years supplied with great tank conditions. Black Tetra is not demanding because of its feed, therefore any sort of live, frozen or synthetic feed is going to do. Care is undemanding and this really is really a fish for a novice. It adapts nicely and it eats any sort of feed. The fish favors flakes and other kinds of feed which remain on the surface.
The black tetra is peaceful and lively for community tanks, but it might be somewhat nippy toward slow-moving or long-finned tankmates. When stored in classes, as it needs to be, the plants’ energy is generally included within the category, where it stays harmless. While its color scheme is basic white and black, its manner and pattern supply energetic contrast and interest to more vibrant species. It’s particularly striking when retained in massive schools of a dozen or more fish.
Black Tetras are a fantastic addition to any community aquarium. Their unique appearance, coupled with their active and social nature, creates a captivating aquatic display. They are relatively easy to care for, making them suitable for both novice and experienced fish keepers. With the proper tank conditions, a varied diet, and the right tank mates, Black Tetras can truly thrive, showcasing the fascinating behaviors and interactions that make the aquarium hobby so rewarding.