Keeping and Breeding Angelfish in The Aquarium


Beautiful keep angelfish don’t last long in those tiny sizes. Many warn of the problems faced by many fish keepers when this popular tropical fish reaches adulthood. Keeping and breeding angelfish are not very difficult.

This fish is very easy to keep and breed. But not many who can develop it because these fish chicks can be eaten by their mother. therefore, it should be noted when the parent has started laying eggs and the eggs hatch.

I wish I had a pound every time I see two large angelfish in the dealer’s tank and are told they have been brought in by a desperate customer! It could be that these fish have become too large to fit in a community tank, or they are mates, continue to lay eggs, and attack other small inmates.

This is a common problem involving one of the most majestic freshwater tropical fish in this hobby, and I often hear from readers with angels in community tanks having this problem hoping to breed them in this scenari.

I don’t mean to look at genetics and methods on how to establish pure bloodlines – and I use the word ‘pure’ by reservation. Chances are the pair in the community tank is a mixed pair: one can be normal silver and the other pure black, or one gold and the other marble.

This mixed crossing does not prevent healthy fish production. Usually, each youngster produced will have mixed colors. So here are some solutions to problems associated with angel couples in community tanks.

Angelfish are members of the cichlid family and genus Pterophyllum. Here, the most popular species is P. scalare. From a real colored fish to a silver body and dark transverse bands, many variations in the color and shape of the fins have been developed. Other species such as Pterophyllum Altum and P. leopoldi when seen in a shop are usually wild fish and are quite expensive compared to P. scalare.

Angelfish are members of the cichlid family and genus Pterophyllum. Here, the most popular species is P. scalare. From a real colored fish to a silver body and dark transverse bands, many variations in the color and shape of the fins have been developed. Other species such as Pterophyllum Altum and P. leopoldi when seen in a shop are usually wild fish and are quite expensive compared to P. scalare.

Tank size for keeping angelfish?

gold manfish

With a large disc-like body and broad dorsal and anal fins, Angelfish can be over 15 cm / 6 inches tall. So a fish bought with a size of 5cm / 2 ”, which is the size usually found in a store, immediately grows up and becomes that elegant adult.

The fish that started at 5cm in the 30cm / 12 ”deep fish tank suddenly became confined. They do best in the aquarium with a depth of at least 38cm / 15 ”.

Not long ago my living room tank was 127cm / 50 “x 46cm / 18” x 30cm / 12 “, containing only eight adult catfish and some Corydoras catfish. It was one of the best set-ups I have kept in this aquarium. and I regret changing it.

In the aquarium, there are tall plants on the back, such as sword plants (Echinodorus spp. And Aponogeton bolivianos) and Javan ferns (Microsorium Pteropus). Ahead are the lower growing Cryptocoryne species. The angels were eager to glide through the tall vegetation in the background into the empty space ahead.

The temperature is set to 27ºC / 80ºF and the built-in power filter supplies filtration. The water flow from the filter is set low because the nymphs don’t like to swim in fast conditions.

The large size of the tank and this type of arrangement will help alleviate the problem of having to move angelfish later.

Angelfish also prefer water that is slightly acidic, pH 6.6 to 6.8, and fairly soft, although many of the color types we see will reproduce under a wide variety of conditions. Hard, alkaline water should be avoided.

Feeding keep fish

zebra black and white

The broodstock will benefit from a variety of diets while inbreeding form. Try quality dry food options, along with frozen bloodworm, and add a live food source. I use live white worms that are fed once a week to keep them in their best condition.

The fry will take the brine shrimp nauplii as their first meal and will take up to three weeks. After this, they will immediately receive a fine flake food provided as a healthy supplement.

Problems that arise from captive breeding angelfish in general, planted tanks can be overcome in two ways. Whichever you choose, at least one additional tank will be needed – because once a pair of Angelfish spawn in the aquarium with another fish, the problems can start!

They include the possibility of the couple assaulting other inmates. If these are smaller fish, they can be killed. Other tank inhabitants can also eat eggs and catfish can eat them at night.
Even if the mother can protect the eggs until they hatch, other inmates can take out the small, free-swimming fry.

The parents then become frustrated trying to protect their eggs or fry and eat them.
In this community scenario, the fish keeper has two options. If a couple decides to deposit their eggs on something that can be moved, such as plant leaves or on the vertical side of a slate or rock, then my ‘method one’ should be used.

If a pair decides at any spawning to deposit eggs in a stationary area or object, such as the side of a tank or even a heating wire/thermostat, then the keeper should use ‘method two’.

To help the pair decide where to spawn, offer them a choice of portable breeding sites, such as a piece of slate or flat stone set near-vertical. Also offer plastic sword plants that have large leaves, or the leaves of real plants.

Method For Breeding Angelfish

breeding angelfish

Method One how keeping?

Once angelfish have started the mating cycle, they can lay eggs regularly, creating the time needed to prepare for preparation.

The first method is based on transferring the eggs and portable breeding grounds, be they leaves (real or plastic), slate or rock, to a separate tank.

The tank, which is not less than 60 x 30 x 30cm / 24 x 12 x 12 “, is based on an empty tank arrangement without gravel substrate and contains only a heater/thermostat set to 27-28ºC / 80- 82ºF. A sponge type filter should be installed.

A clear glass container large enough to hold an egg and a portable egg holder is now needed. I use a medium-sized sweet jar or a small homemade tank.

Now we are ready for the Angelfish to spawn again!

Once this happens and spawning is complete, take tank water and pour it into a jar or small tank. Now carefully grab the eggs that are attached to the portable breeding ground and, with the jar/tank just below the water level, place the leaves, slate, or rock into it.

Try to prevent the eggs from leaving water during this operation. If they are on the leaves of the native plant, just discard the single leaf.

At this point, some breeders place methylene blue into the container to help prevent egg mold. I never considered this necessary because if the eggs are fertile they will hatch without any problems.

The container with the eggs is now placed in the empty tank set-up – and makes sure that no tank water gets into the container at this stage. Into the container, place an open-air outlet that allows water movement through the eggs. This must be properly regulated because if it is too fierce it will make the hatching larvae out of the leaves or slate too quickly. This movement replaces the old fanning movement.

Small changes of water should be carried out regularly in the container and if any of the eggs show signs of mold, they can be discarded carefully.

At the recommended temperature the eggs will hatch within 48 hours and for about six to seven days will wriggle the tiny head and tail masses attached to the leaves or slate. Some will fall and fall to the bottom, but this usually won’t stop their development.

During this time they feed on their yolk sac, so no other form of feeding is required.
Around the seventh day, they should swim freely, perhaps in the middle and top area of ​​the container.
Now is the moment of truth. Take the container carefully and tilt it slowly to allow all the fry to swim into the large growing tank. Let them settle and feed them the newly hatched brine shrimp, which they will eat in large quantities. The brood can be very large – up to 400 – but this will vary according to the size and age of the brood.

Method two how to breeding?

red manfish

Angelfish will always tend to be independent and sometimes lay their eggs in places that won’t allow removal. These could be the glass sides of the tank, filter body, or even heater/thermostat cable.

If this continually happens in our community tank scenario, use method two.

This bare tank set-up has the same basic heating and filtration units, with the addition of a choice of breeding angelfish sites for the pair to deposit their eggs.

These could be avoided and they will still choose to use the sides of the tank. The pair are removed and placed in their new home — and note the need for adequate depth of the tank. Don’t use a 30cm/12” one for an adult pair, but one that’s 38cm/15” deep is ideal.

When the pair spawn for the first time in this set -up to trying to give them peace and quiet. Avoid sudden movements that will alarm and make them eat their eggs.

Given this type of set-up. you may be lucky in that the parents tend the eggs and, when the brood is free swimming, will look after them until large enough to fend for themselves. A pair of angelfish looking after a large brood is one of the hobby’s most stunning sights.

You may have a pair that keeps eating the eggs or fry. If so, then if the eggs are laid on a leaf or slate remove it and revert to the container used in method one. The eggs can then be hatched as in that method.

Go for quality

Growing on will depend not on how many fish you have but, how efficient the tank space is for the breed. Do not try and raise a large brood of fish in a small aquarium.
A few good fish – say 50 – are far better than 200 runts.

Want to breed angelfish? More help’s at hand

This is by no means a detailed article, more an offering of ideas on how to save some young from that lone pair of angelfish in the community tank. It also hopefully makes you aware of problems that can arise when buying two fish the size of 50p pieces but that will soon attain spans of 15cm/6”.

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