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hatchetfish compatibility... or silver dollars

8551 Views 17 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  RSVBiffer
I was in an lfs purchasing an angelfish and the silver hatchetfish caught my eye.
I'd like to get some if they are compatible with my other fish.

But I'm also wondering about silver dollars... they're supposed to be in groups of at least 3, right? Will they be ok in a 55 gallon tank?

Here is my current stock in my 55 gallon tank:
angelfish (1)
dwarf gourami (1)
serpae tetra (15)
pearl danio (15)
platy (6)
amano shrimp (3)

I would get one or the other- silver dollars or hatchetfish but not both.
Are they compatible?
Will I be over stocked?

Also wondering about the hatchetfish being able to fly... do they do that often and is it easy for them to fly out of an open-top aquarium with water about an inch below the top?

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Personally I would say you are already overstocked and I am wondering about the compatibility of Hatchets and Serpaes. The Tetra may just be a little too 'lively'' as tank mates should be peaceful for Hatchets and Serpae are one of the more 'boisterous' Characidae. The Hatchet is the one fish that can actually fly rather than just jump/glide and would have absolutely no problem getting out of the tank you have described, tight fitting cover glasses are an essential for Hatchets.

The Silver Dollar is a six inch fish which should be kept in groups of 5 or more. I would say that your tank is considerably less than the minimum required to house them.

Sorry :-(
I wouldn't worry much about the hatchets and serpaes. The hatchets will stay near the surface and the serpaes stay near the bottom.
I think the one thing we will have to agree on is that Serpae are very variable. Some, for whatever reason, can be very peaceful whereas others can be absolute demons. I will also say our Serpae tend to sit quite high in the tank, certainly within striking range of Hatchets when the mood takes them.
What are the dimensions of your tank? Must admit, looking at the figures from Aqadvisor, I think the tank may be lower than I assumed (blame the Angelfish ;-)).

Hatchets tend to 'jump' both in the pursuit of food and as a defence mechanism. If they can get out of a tank and onto the floor, they will. My father used to have a fairly large group and had a 1inch dia. hole in his cover glasses, they found it!
Assuming the 12" is front to back (rather than top to bottom) then Aqadvisor has you at 106% stocked otherwise you are way too low for an adult Angelfish ;-).

I would say that Hatchets, particularly as you have an open top, are out. I wouldn't risk it as I think you will just end up picking them up off the floor. That is my personal opinion but that is one of the joys of this hobby as there are numerous grey areas, far more than are set out in black and white.
Bizarre, images attached

I agree, no flying fish without a top.

Aqadvisor is a very conservative stocking guide, which is good. But "100%" is not anywhere near being overstocked.
To be honest, I think European stocking levels tend to be far more conservative than US ones, I know many people are shocked over here by the stocking recommended on Aqadvisor (as in being way too high). I think it is just one of those grey areas that shows a real a divide between the opposite sides of the Atlantic....we can't even agree on the volume of a gallon ;-)
Yep, that is pretty much the recommendation over here. I can understand why stocking figures are lower as it leaves a bigger margin of error but they can be carried too far (45l minimum for a Fighter is just ridiculous to my mind). I had a play with Aqadvisor and it tends to tie in with my own thoughts on stocking so I ain't as bad as most Brits ;-). Mind you, we still have the other extreme of people sticking a Red Tail Cat in a three foot tank.
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