Originally Posted by Inga
Very pretty fish. As I am new to Angelfish, I don't know what is normal. What causes the deformed fins in your fish? Does allowing fish from a same batch to breed cause that or is it just a random thing?
Deformity in the fins is usually a genetic flaw/defect that can be passed down through generations, though it doesn't typically affect all fish from a spawn. Many breeders use culling to prevent this trait from passing down through to the next generations, only breeding those fish that don't show the trait, and over time, breeding that trait out of them all together. Inbreeding/line breeding is one of many things that can cause it to happen. I know that my adult fish are not inbred, however, I don't know about generations in their bloodline before them. By breeding the healthy fish to another bloodline that doesn't or is less likely to carry that trait, it can often be eliminated with time, patience, and plenty of space for successive and selective breeding.
There are situations where it can be a random genetic defect. By not breeding the fish that are obviously affected it can thus eventually be eliminated within a blood line as described above.
The fish I have are not having any physical issues with the deformed fins, they all swim just fine... its more a matter of how it looks and people finding it unattractive. They still make wonderful pets and can live a normal, happy, healthy life.
I will take some photos of the parents tonight and add them to this thread so you can see what I started with. My parent fish came from some freebies I won online in a drawing... I started with 6 and ended up with 3 mated pairs. (very unusual) I have lost 1 female, she was egg bound and there was nothing I could do for her... but the other 2 pairs continue to breed regularly, only one successfully raising fry thus far. The other pair is still learning.
Breeding angelfish is not as easy as breeding guppies or other live bearers. Finding a mated pair of angelfish can be a challenge in itself. I have been keeping angelfish in pairs or groups of 3 - 5 for many yrs but this is the first time I've had mated pairs form and spawn. When they are small they are impossible to sex, so its always a toss up to get male/female in the same tank... and then they can be very selective when it comes to a mate, which makes it even harder. Had this entire spawn survived I would have approx. 150 - 300 fry instead of the 50+ I ended up with. These fish have been in a tank with a red tail shark from time of egg/hatching to present. There were also cherry barbs, gold barbs, and red & blue columbian tetras in the tank with them in the beginning weeks. All fish besides the shark and rubber pleco had to be removed because they were eating the fry. The parents did their best, but it was too many predator fish to make it possible for them to protect them all. So... as you can see... breeding is not always "easy".
If your angels are in a community tank and begin to spawn you will want to watch everyone/everything carefully. Parent fish can be extremely aggressive and can cause a lot of damage to other fish while protecting eggs and fry. My parent pair has done a number on my red tail shark over the past few months, but thankfully he has learned to coexist peacefully now.
Thanks for the interest!