Angel Fish Start up tank - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 7 Old 04-29-2010, 03:15 PM Thread Starter
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Angel Fish Start up tank

I am new to this forum and have found there is a lot of good stuff here. I am going to (want to) start up a 55 gal community tank primarily for angelfish. I have had angels in my younger days and I have always done fine with them. I have since moved and now I want to make a habitat to try and get them to breed and be very happy. My problem is my tap water has a ph of 7.9 and that is a bit on the high side. I have experimented a bit with ph lowering chemicals and don't want to go that route ever again. Has anyone else kept angles in a higher ph tank successfully and is there a way to lower my ph naturally. For now I plan on under gravel filter, HOB penguin 400 and a very light fish count, maybe 6 young angels, small school of neons, farlowella catfish (if I can find one) and not much more. Then when they grow and maybe pair up change to a sump, planted tank without UGF and more natural tank and try and breed them. I am building my stand tonight hopefully. Thoughts? Thanks.
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post #2 of 7 Old 04-29-2010, 03:18 PM
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Welcome to TFK, speck. Glad to have you join us! I know people that are breeding Angels in tanks with a ph of 7.8 (my LFS) but I'll defer to others with more experience in that department as I have ZERO experience with Angels. Looking forward to following along with your progress. You're building your own stand?? I wish I had that kind of talent!

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post #3 of 7 Old 04-29-2010, 05:22 PM
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Hey Speck, welcome to the forum.
I only have one angel but she consistently lays eggs every month with a Ph of 7.8 and Kh of 5. I think if you buy locally bred fish that are used to your water you may be fine.

150 Gallon - Mostly American Cichlids
135 Gallon - Angelfish Community
75 Gallon - Odd couple (Polleni/Angelfish)
55 Gallon - African tank
20 Gallon Long - QT
10 Gallon - Empty
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post #4 of 7 Old 04-30-2010, 03:46 AM
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Welcome to the forum! As for your stocking list, you might want to pick something larger than neons for your tetras as neons are likely to end up as snacks for the angelfish once the angels get some size on them.

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post #5 of 7 Old 04-30-2010, 06:54 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you and Thank you. I will check out where the fish came from. That is a good point on the local. I will also split the snacks up from the angels if they get bigger. I really want angels but the kidswant "COLOR DAD". Thanks again.
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post #6 of 7 Old 04-30-2010, 11:15 AM
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There are many colourful fish that would manage with angels. Neons tetras are not one of them; it is the angels' natural instinct to eat such fish, and even if they can't manage it yet, the neons can sense it. Aggressive fish (in this respect angels are aggressive) send out signals that other fish who are "prey" can sense, and that leads to stress and health problems. Best to avoid such things for the good of the fish.

Check out the fish profiles section; many of the characins are suitable, just notice the water parameter information as some of these are wild-caught and thus will not manage well in hard water; but the tank raised species and those that are naturally more adaptable will work. Species that work with angels are noted as such in the temperament section of the profiles. There are also livebearers, matching your harder water, and some of these are highly colourful. Mixing males and females will lead to copious fry which would be gobbled up by the angels, so bear that in mind; having only one sex eliminates that issue, though bear in mind that females can produce several batches of fry once they have first mated.

A Farlowella will not survive in hard water, unless you manage to find locally-raised fish and I can't say how long that might work anyway. These catfish are wild-caught in streams with very soft acidic water.

A comment on angels, they are shoaling fish that live together in groups; 4 or 5 in a 55g would work. They should also have plants and wood, branches, etc. They require security; their stripe pattern is a clue to the fact they they occur in water that has vertical camouflage, tree roots, branches, tall plants; and fish will always feel more secure and be less stressed in surroundings that provide what nature has programmed into their instinct. Filtration should be minimal, they occur in very slow or standing waters, and in very dim light.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

Last edited by Byron; 04-30-2010 at 11:20 AM.
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post #7 of 7 Old 05-01-2010, 12:55 PM
I kept congo tetras with my angels - they get their color when the mature, but they were good tank mates as they were quite large.
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