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Angel fish question

Meg0000

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Hi, I did a thread about 50 gallon tank stocking Idea and I loved the pearl gourami idea but I am still open to new stocking idea so I would like more information on angelfish in community tank. Byron talked a bit of it in my other thread but I would like more information. Exemple: Tankmate, number of angelfish, agressivity, spawning...
 

Byron

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I've posted so much about angelfish of late that I can't remember where I wrote what. So at the risk of repeating...

Angelfish is a shoaling species so there must be five minimum or preferably more, and that means a tank of 4-feet (a 90g is really about minimum) or larger. Once the angelfish are together in the tank, a fairly good hierarchy will quickly develop. This is one reason why additional fish cannot be added to a group that has been together for even a few weeks. There are no guarantees as individual fish can deviate from the normal, so when setting up a shoal of angelfish there should always be a back-up plan just in case. Also, one or more pairs will likely form within any group, and if the tank is not sufficient space this may mean moving either the pair elsewhere, or the other angelfish elsewhere. And there could obviously be one, two, or more pairings depending upon the group size. Again, a back-up plan is needed.

The only other humane way to keep this fish if not in a proper shoal is as a bonded pair if one forms. One solitary fish is sometimes seen, and while I cannot say how the fish might feel about this abnormal environment being forced upon it, I don't consider it advisable.

The species is mildly aggressive generally. Males are territorial, but within a good sized shoal this plays out usually without incident. But it may not. I have frequently posted an illustrative video of a group of 11 wild Peterophylum scalare in a 750 liter (200 gallons) tank with dimensions 200cm x 65cm x 65cm (78 by 25 by 25 inches). Down in the comments the owner mentions this tank not really being sufficient and intending to move them to a larger. But the interaction between the fish in this video is exactly what can be observed in the habitat, and this is how this fish should be housed.

Tankmates are possible, if carefully chosen. Corydoras obviously can work (C. duplicareus in the video as this species manages with the warmth wild caught angelfish must have, commercially-raised fish are different), upper level shoaling fish like some of the medium sized peaceful characins (never linear fish, the disk-shaped species like the Rosy Tetra clade work well). In very large tanks, the Black Ghost Knifefish in a group makes an excellent tankmate. Both fish prefer dim light, another feature of good husbandry of angelfish.

Spawning is another topic and easily found online. I'll just note that a pair may spawn a few times, but if they have not accepted each other and actually bonded, one will be dead before long. Bonded pairs have been known to live together for years. But divorce cannot be ruled out.
 
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Retired Viking

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I had a bonded pair that lived around 5 years+ in a 55 gallon tank, one grew to just over6 inches the other over 4 almost 5 inches. They are aggressive eaters at feeding time. They also died in a month or so of each other.
 
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Meg0000

Meg0000

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I've posted so much about angelfish of late that I can't remember where I wrote what. So at the risk of repeating...

Angelfish is a shoaling species so there must be five minimum or preferably more, and that means a tank of 4-feet (a 90g is really about minimum) or larger. Once the angelfish are together in the tank, a fairly good hierarchy will quickly develop. This is one reason why additional fish cannot be added to a group that has been together for even a few weeks. There are no guarantees as individual fish can deviate from the normal, so when setting up a shoal of angelfish there should always be a back-up plan just in case. Also, one or more pairs will likely form within any group, and if the tank is not sufficient space this may mean moving either the pair elsewhere, or the other angelfish elsewhere. And there could obviously be one, two, or more pairings depending upon the group size. Again, a back-up plan is needed.

The only other humane way to keep this fish if not in a proper shoal is as a bonded pair if one forms. One solitary fish is sometimes seen, and while I cannot say how the fish might feel about this abnormal environment being forced upon it, I don't consider it advisable.

The species is mildly aggressive generally. Males are territorial, but within a good sized shoal this plays out usually without incident. But it may not. I have frequently posted an illustrative video of a group of 11 wild Peterophylum scalare in a 750 liter (200 gallons) tank with dimensions 200cm x 65cm x 65cm (78 by 25 by 25 inches). Down in the comments the owner mentions this tank not really being sufficient and intending to move them to a larger. But the interaction between the fish in this video is exactly what can be observed in the habitat, and this is how this fish should be housed.

Tankmates are possible, if carefully chosen. Corydoras obviously can work (C. duplicareus in the video as this species manages with the warmth wild caught angelfish must have, commercially-raised fish are different), upper level shoaling fish like some of the medium sized peaceful characins (never linear fish, the disk-shaped species like the Rosy Tetra clade work well). In very large tanks, the Black Ghost Knifefish in a group makes an excellent tankmate. Both fish prefer dim light, another feature of good husbandry of angelfish.

Spawning is another topic and easily found online. I'll just note that a pair may spawn a few times, but if they have not accepted each other and actually bonded, one will be dead before long. Bonded pairs have been known to live together for years. But divorce cannot be ruled out.
Thank you for all of this information, this will help me to choose my stocking:)
 

Barry Tetra

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oh and another thing to tell you is their name are 'angel' but they act like a 'devil fish', my angelfish had killed so many of her own kind before, so dont trust them.
 
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Meg0000

Meg0000

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oh and another thing to tell you is their name are 'angel' but they act like a 'devil fish', my angelfish had killed so many of her own kind before, so dont trust them.
I didn't know they were that much agressive:(
 

Byron

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I didn't know they were that much agressive:(
If you have a group less than five--and sometimes this can happen with five or more--it is likely one of the males will become more dominant. Having a larger group keeps this in a better check, as that video demonstrates with all the pushing and shoving; but if there are not enough to maintain a normal balance, the one can easily kill all the others within a matter of days. This is why understanding their natural habitat expectations is so important.
 

Barry Tetra

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If you have a group less than five--and sometimes this can happen with five or more--it is likely one of the males will become more dominant. Having a larger group keeps this in a better check, as that video demonstrates with all the pushing and shoving; but if there are not enough to maintain a normal balance, the one can easily kill all the others within a matter of days. This is why understanding their natural habitat expectations is so important.
Mine is female and still kill all fish nearby her, I had to put her in 10 gal tank alone :(
 

kribensis12

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Mine is female and still kill all fish nearby her, I had to put her in 10 gal tank alone :(
Unless it's a baby angelfish (and a temp home), a 10g is not an acceptable size for any angelfish. You really should not have an angelfish in anything smaller than a 30g; but for Angel's bigger is really always better as they really need a school and a very large tank. They have long fins which are easily damaged by gravel, ornaments etc., they are wide and need a ton of room.

I would highly suggest selling the angelfish.

As noted previously, they are typically somewhat aggressive depending on tank mates. Dither fish are very helpful.
 
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