- Scientific name: Hyphessobrycon megalopterus
- Synonyms: Megalamphodus megalopterus
- Common name: Black phantom tetra
- Group: Characins
- Habitat: South America; Guapore river (Brazil).
- Size: 4,5 cm
- Biotope: Calm, shallow water.
- Social behavior: Peaceful schooling fish
- Diet: Omnivore, eats most foods.
- Breeding: Hard
- Tank: Minimum 90 litres
- Population: 6-8 fishes for 90 litres
- Decoration: Phantoms prefer a well-planted tank (particularly with floating plants), subdued lighting and a dark substrate.
- Temperature: 24-26°C
- pH: 6-7,5.
- Hardness: 3,3-4,2 NK°
- Lifespan: 3-5 years
Description: An attractive and peaceful member of the tetra family, Black Phantoms make an stunning contrast fish to their red hued cousins such as the Red Phantom, Jewel, or Serpae tetras. Their flat oval body is silvery gray with a distinctive splash of black edged in white just behind the gills. The fins of the male are edged in black, while the fins of females have a reddish hue which somtimes causes them to be confused with other species of tetras.
A breeding tank should be set up with abundant floating plants and dim lighting. Setting the tank up without substrate will make thee tank easier to keep clean while raising the fry. Males can be identified by their longer fins and lack of red color. Females will have a definate red tint to the fins, and even the body, which is fuller than the males. Prior to spawning the mating pair should be conditioned with small live foods, such as mosquito larvae. Once placed in the breeding tank, feeding should be kept to a minimum.
Spawning can be triggered by lowering the pH to 5.5 and dropping the hardness of the water to 4 dGH. Peat filtration is the best method to achieve the desired water parameters. Males will engage in an elaborate courtship display that ends with the female releasing up to 300 eggs.Once the eggs have been laid, the breeding pair should be removed from the tank. Fry should be fed every few hours with very small commercially prepared fry food or freshly hatched brine shrimp. After ten days they may be fed finely crushed flake foods. Water changes should be performed at least once a week.