Common Name: Marble Hatchetfish

Marbled Hatchetfish are very peaceful but because of their small size and timid nature do not make good candidates for a community tank. If they must be kept in a community environment, at least 10 or more should be housed together along with similarly sized tetras, peaceful characids and smaller sized loricariid or callichthyid catfish. When kept in larger groups they tend to become bolder and exhibit more of their natural behavior.

Other Marbled Hatchetfish Names: Marbled Hatchetfish, Marbled Hatchet Fish

Marble Hatchetfish are somewhat delicate, and will appreciate warm, soft, acidic water. They make an excellent addition to planted aquariums, and are also a great dither fish for dwarf cichlids. As they reside at the top of the water, they're seldom bothered by Apistogramma or similar, even when breeding.

Water parameters for Marble Hatchetfish

Marbled Hatchetfish Temperament:  Generally a peaceful schooling fish but may eat fry. Though quite original looking, it is very similar in shape to other freshwater hatchetfish, including its close cousin the . The two can be told apart by the Marbled Hachetfish's distinctive, marbled coloring and smaller size.

A couple of my marbled hatchetfish chilling out.

Marbled Hatchetfish are an omnivorous species that will consume insect, meaty and vegetable based foods. The bulk of their diet should consist of high quality frozen, freeze-dried or flake commercial foods. They should also be fed live, frozen or freeze-dried blood worms, daphnia or tubifex worms. They can initially be a little reluctant to feed, but in time will become very active feeders that will compete with the most boisterous tank mates for each morsel of food.

Marble Hatchetfish, Carnegiella strigata


It is important to provide the proper aquarium setup in order to successfully house Marbled Hatchetfish and allow them to thrive. Like most fish species, replicating their natural environment is the best way to create a habitat that the fish will adapt quickly to and thrive within. In terms of the Marble Hatchetfish the aquarium needs to have plenty of plants and floating vegetation, along with moderate to high water flow. Marbled Hatchetfish should also be kept in groups of at least 6 or more individuals as they live in good sized groups in the wild and will often do poorly or perish when kept singularly. Another equally important factor in keeping Marbled Hatchetfish within the aquarium environment is to keep the tank fully covered as this species is highly prone to jumping from the water when startled or during aggressive feeding. Tank mates should include other peaceful to semi-aggressive South American tropical community species. Being a top water to upper middle water species, the Marbled Hatchetfish tends no to compete with too many species for swimming space within the aquarium.My Marbled Hatchetfish have moved away from the surface since I adjusted my LED lighting above them. I also get a look at my Ctenopoma and SynodontisWhile they are not easily bred within the aquarium environment, Marbled Hatchetfish have been bred in captivity. For any real chance at breeding this species, they will need to be kept in a separate aquarium that is specifically setup for this purpose. A small group of 4 to 6 individuals should be added to a 20 to 30 gallon aquarium filled with aged acidic water pH of 5.5 to 6.5, temperature of 76 to 79 �, plenty of floating vegetation, dim lighting and a thin layer of gravel substrate mixed with peat to help maintain water conditions. The breeding group should be fed a quality diet of live insects and worms like fruit fly and blood worms or other highly nutritious small insects. Successful breeding will produce eggs that will be scattered both in the plant material and on the substrate of the aquarium. The parents need to be removed after successfully breeding as they will consume both the eggs and young fry. The fry will hatch within 36 hours and will become free swimming a day or two later. They should be fed micro foods like infusoria for the first 2 weeks, after which they will be large enough to accept baby brine shrimp or similar fare.The marbled hatchetfish found in the local fish store are all caught in the wild they have been spawned, but not on a commercial basis. Also, there are at least two species, and probably some others, that come in under the common name of marbled hatchetfish.