Full grown Angelfish, what can go with him? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 14 Old 05-02-2009, 07:20 AM Thread Starter
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Full grown Angelfish, what can go with him?

My aunt just gave me her 55 gallon tank which included a gorgeous full grown Angelfish and 1 white tetra. She's had just these two in there for several years. I'd like to add some more fish in there but have to be very careful because this Angel is huge and territorial. Does anyone have any suggestions?

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post #2 of 14 Old 05-02-2009, 06:04 PM
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Some corys for the bottom level would be OK, in a 55g you can do it right and have a nice group (they should be maintained in groups as they are highly social and shoaling fish by nature), say 12 but no fewer than 6 or 7. Same species or mixed, they fare well, although given the choice they seem to be "chummier" with their own species; I've had good luck with minimum 3 of each species and up to 20+ in a 90g. If you like plecos, there are smallish species that would work. And ottocinclus to handle the algae if you have plants (which the angels would appreciate).

Some types of tetras would be OK, but not the active ones. Angels are quiet almost sedentary fish that like to slowly cruise the environment browsing and grazing plant leaves and wood. Active companions could stress it, or worse cause it to nip at them or eat them, depending upon size (the angel and the tetras). Cardinal tetras are frequently suggested as suitable tankmates for angels, moreso than neons which tend to be seen more as food or sometimes nip the angels' fins. Angels also like warmer water than many "community" fish, and cardinals also do well in warmer temperatures. Rummy nose tetras are the same. Some of the Hyphessobrycon species would work. And if the water pH is 7 or slightly above, livebears are often housed with angels. The fry will get eaten, which is a good source of live food for the angel.

Angels are also social shoaling fish, and a few more would be OK. However, as it has been years since I've bred angels (1980's) I've somewhat forgotten their traits to others if they're used to being alone. I'm sure one of the other members having experience with angels could advise us whether or not it is safe to find yours some companions.
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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]
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post #3 of 14 Old 05-02-2009, 07:02 PM
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post #4 of 14 Old 05-02-2009, 07:07 PM
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My angels love the community atmosphere, even with flighty tetras they are fine.

It depends on the sub- species of Angel as well, got a pic?
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post #5 of 14 Old 05-02-2009, 08:46 PM Thread Starter
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Here's a picture http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pi...&id=1328478444

I love cardinals and have another tank full of them but I'd have to add full grown cardinals or he would eat them.

Shannon Kimes
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Last edited by sweetwaterarabians; 05-02-2009 at 08:50 PM. Reason: link didn't work
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post #6 of 14 Old 05-03-2009, 08:48 AM Thread Starter
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What about a red tailed shark? I had one for many years that recently died of old age. I had him with guppies and neons and he was always really good with anything I put in with him. He did protect his hiding area. Would a big Angelfish mind or are they both too territorial?

I definitely want some more otos but they are hard to find around here.

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post #7 of 14 Old 05-24-2009, 07:14 AM Thread Starter
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I did end up adding some new fish successfully and they are all working out perfectly.
I added:

1 Rainbow Shark
2 Male Swordtails
3 Black Skirt Tetras
7 Oto catfish
2 Glow Fish

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post #8 of 14 Old 05-25-2009, 01:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Byron View Post
Some corys for the bottom level would be OK, in a 55g you can do it right and have a nice group (they should be maintained in groups as they are highly social and shoaling fish by nature), say 12 but no fewer than 6 or 7. Same species or mixed, they fare well, although given the choice they seem to be "chummier" with their own species; I've had good luck with minimum 3 of each species and up to 20+ in a 90g. If you like plecos, there are smallish species that would work. And ottocinclus to handle the algae if you have plants (which the angels would appreciate).

Some types of tetras would be OK, but not the active ones. Angels are quiet almost sedentary fish that like to slowly cruise the environment browsing and grazing plant leaves and wood. Active companions could stress it, or worse cause it to nip at them or eat them, depending upon size (the angel and the tetras). Cardinal tetras are frequently suggested as suitable tankmates for angels, moreso than neons which tend to be seen more as food or sometimes nip the angels' fins. Angels also like warmer water than many "community" fish, and cardinals also do well in warmer temperatures. Rummy nose tetras are the same. Some of the Hyphessobrycon species would work. And if the water pH is 7 or slightly above, livebears are often housed with angels. The fry will get eaten, which is a good source of live food for the angel.

Angels are also social shoaling fish, and a few more would be OK. However, as it has been years since I've bred angels (1980's) I've somewhat forgotten their traits to others if they're used to being alone. I'm sure one of the other members having experience with angels could advise us whether or not it is safe to find yours some companions.
Will cories, rummynose, or cardinals eat angel eggs or fry? I'm working on getting a 50 gallon lined up to do a breeding pair of angels in. I would like to add fish to fill in the tank, but do not want to lose babies.
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post #9 of 14 Old 05-25-2009, 10:05 AM
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Will cories, rummynose, or cardinals eat angel eggs or fry? I'm working on getting a 50 gallon lined up to do a breeding pair of angels in. I would like to add fish to fill in the tank, but do not want to lose babies.
Angels should be spawned in a separate tank to better ensure success. They (like most cichlids) will frequently spawn in a community tank, and try to defend the eggs and fry from predation, but depending upon how many other fish you have they can be very persistent and usually will find a way to snap up the fry especially, like at night. I once had rams spawn in a 90g, and the female successfully defended the eggs and then the fry for about two days and nights, then the corys suddenly noticed them and it was game over. The female could not fend off a shoal of corys once they tasted food and came at the fry from every angle at once. Any fish in the tank will see eggs and fry as food, regardless. My various tetras spawn regularly, and I usually notice it because the rummynose or cardinals or other tetras are all hovering in a plant thicket and snapping up eggs the moment they are released by the female.

I have also read that angels that are young or first spawners sometimes get panicked by other fish and will themselves eat the eggs or fry. Of course, this can happen even if they are in their own breeding tank. It may take a few spawnings before they settle down.

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]
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post #10 of 14 Old 05-26-2009, 12:49 AM
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Good to know. That is about what i expected. What is a good size tank for breeding the angels? I plan on housing them in a 50 gallon tank regularly, but it would be nice to not have to find room to keep two 50's if possible.
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