Does Black Skirt Tetra Like Water Current? What Should You Do?

Black skirt tetras are freshwater fish that is often purchased as part of a community tank. These fish have been bred for color and size, so they grow quickly and can be sold to aquariums at an affordable price. They need clean water conditions in order to survive, but also require current- usually provided by their owner through an air pump or filter. Knowing how much current your black skirt tetra needs is important because it will affect the health of this beautiful fish.

These little guys are very sensitive to their environment and require consistent care. One of the most important aspects of caring for these little fishes is providing them with adequate water current. If you don’t, they may become stressed or sick! Let’s take a look at what currents are good for your Black Skirts, how much water current they need, and some signs that show when they’re not getting enough!

Does Black Skirt Tetra Like Water Current?

Black Skirt Tetra is a popular fish for home aquariums, and one of the reasons is their adaptability. They can live in tanks with a range of water current strengths, from barely detectable to brisk. So the question arises, does black skirt tetra like water current? And the answer is it depends.

What Is The Natural Habitat Of Black Skirt Tetra?

Black Skirt Tetra is found in many different locations, including rivers and streams throughout South America. They are schooling fish and prefer to live in groups. This means they feel safe and comfortable when there is some current in their environment.

Why Is Current Beneficial For Black Skirt Tetra?

There are several reasons why current is beneficial for black skirt tetra.

Mimic Natural Habitat

First, it mimics their natural habitat which makes them feel more comfortable. They are schooling fish and like to live in groups, so providing some current helps them feel more at home.

Provide Exercise

Second, it provides exercise. Like all fish, black skirt tetra needs exercise to stay healthy. Swimming against a current is one of the best ways for them to get the exercise they need.

Clean Tank

Third, it helps keep the tank clean. Fish excrement and uneaten food can quickly build up on the bottom of a tank and create an unhealthy environment. Current helps to move this waste away from the fish and keeps the water cleaner.


Water current helps to bring oxygen into the tank for fish like Black Skirts. Second, currently provides them with a source of oxygen which they need to breathe.

Remove Waste

Current helps keep their environment clean by moving debris and waste away from the fish.

It can also help remove waste from the bottom of your aquarium up through filtration systems.

Safe And Comfortable

When black skirt tetras are in an environment with adequate current, they feel safe and comfortable. This means they will be less stressed and more likely to eat and breed. In addition, the current provides them with important oxygenation which helps keep them healthy.

Reduce Stress

And finally, it helps to create a stronger current that can help reduce stress on your fish.

How Much Current Should Black Skirt Tetra Have?

The minimum current that black skirt tetras can survive in is just barely detectable. They will feel more comfortable and safe with a stronger current, although they’re known to be able to adapt well even when there is less of one. Some owners prefer to keep the water level at or just below the top of their tank so that when they add an air stone or filter, bubbles go up to mimic current.

Black Skirts prefer water currents around medium strength generally speaking, and they will feel most comfortable with this type of flow in the tank.

Signs Your Black Skirt Tetra Is Affected By Current

There are a few signs you can look for if your Black Skirt Tetra is suffering from the water current.

Swimming At The Bottom

For one, they may stay at the bottom of the tank more often than normal. They might also try to swim against areas where there is stronger flow in order to get away from it. Finally, they will start swimming around erratically.


If you notice these signs, it may be a sign of stress or distress. If your fish continue to stay on the bottom and avoid swimming, this is definitely not normal for them and they could be suffering from current related issues!

Can You Decrease Current In Your Tank?

If you find that the current in your tank is too strong for your Black Skirt Tetra, there are a few things you can do to reduce it. One option is to add more plants or decorations to the tank which will help break up the flow. Another is to adjust the angle of the outflow from your filter.

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Does Black Skirt Tetra Need a Heater?

Black Skirts do not need heaters because they live in warmer waters naturally. However, if you did want to add one it is important that you make sure there is plenty of room for them to move away from the heater in case it is too close.

EHEIM Jager Aquarium Thermostat Heater is a great recommendation for the tank with Black Skirt tetra.

Does Black Skirt Tetra Need Oxygen?

Yes, Black Skirts need oxygen to survive just like any other fish in your tank. And the amount of oxygen they require depends on how big your aquarium is and what type of filter you have installed in it. For example, if you are using an air-powered filter then you will need to provide extra oxygen to the tank.


So, does Black Skirt Tetra like water current? It depends on the current’s strength and how comfortable your fish is with it. However, most Black Skirts prefer a medium-strength current in their aquariums. And if you find that your current is too strong, there are ways to reduce it. Thanks for reading!

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