How to tell which angelfish should be culled

SandyDL

I have a batch of about 150 angelfish fry that are my first successful attempt at hatching eggs. They're 5 weeks old today and and I've been watching them carefully for flaws that require culling. The problem is, I'm not positive about which fish to remove: I've read that belly sliders should be culled but am not 100% sure if that's what I'm observing, because I've also read the fry develop at different rates and I'm wondering if these guys will catch up and develop properly. Out of the approx. 150 fry, I have 20-30 that are not floating around gracefully as angelfish do, but swimming up and down the glass and sometimes resting on the bottom. They're still pretty small, so it is hard to tell what's going on re fin development. I've read that methylene blue can cause developmental issues, and I did use it as I had to remove the parents and wanted to protect the eggs from fungus.

Any info, would be really appreciated on belly sliders, culling in general (I've read everything I could find in the forums and Youtube), and especially any pictures or a quick video of belly sliders would really help me identify whether these fry in question are sliders.

Thanks! Here are the parents, for interest.
 

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ayeayeron

I have no idea but hopefully someone more experienced in angel breeding than me can chime in! bizaliz3 is the angelfish guru here so perhaps they have some wisdom that can be shared
 

Atomicfish

Technically no fish should ever be culled Im not a fish breeder but one place to start will be to get rid of the ones that have defects or have proper fin development.
 

IndusNoir

I don't really know anything that pertains to angelfish and their development so I can't give specifics, but when I bred guppies I would cull the ones with serious defects like bent spines or ones that visibly lacked behind the rest in growth and development, sorting as I went into my gender divided grow-out tanks. Still ended up with a lot of fish and if I'm to breed again one day I would probably be harsher in sorting for quality as well. Different people will have different opinions of culling, I'm of the opinion that culling benefits welfare in the end, higher quality fish are generally treated better.
 

SparkyJones

Id need to see their stage of development, but at 5 weeks is it safe to assume they have taken angelfish shape yet?
Mine hit that point at about 4 weeks.

The first thing you'd be looking for is "belly sliders". Those guys stay on the bottom all the time, they have a swim bladder issue and just kind of scoot around on the bottom of the tank most of the time and during feedings. Maybe dart up and return to the bottom.They will be less developed from having less access to food.. they'll have short ventral fins and bent analfin from laying on their stomach all the time.

Next thing to cull for would be runts. You will have overachievers and the main group but by 6-8 weeks the ones that aren't growing will start to stand out. They are never going to grow the size of the others and as the rest get bigger, they won't get food, get bullied and die. You don't have to cull them, but they will need to be separated and given extra time and attention and still they won't hit maximum potential, they just don't thrive and take 2x the effort and resources to get an undersized adult angel.

After that, you'd be looking for development problems, missing ventral fins, short fins, undeveloped eyes or short gill plates (exposed gills). When theybare bigger it's easier to identify than when they are tiny.

Then bent dorsal and analfins or squiggly ventral fins. this is a cosmetic thing. The fish can live fine with them like that but they look bad and don't sell well, so selling might be hard if you left them in the group. A fish can live with only one developed eye but again, this doesn't help the quality of the fish if you tried to sell a couple dozen to a LFS, they will be likely to refuse it.

And yeah, you don't need 150 angelfish, and so.... yeah culling becomes necessary so you can sell the excess, and so you don't waste time and money on fish that would have been eaten in the wild.. it's why they have so many, a good portion of a spawn isn't expected to survive to adults, either they starve by getting outcompeted or easy pickings for other fish.

You don't have to cull anything though, just might find yourself stuck with 150 angelfish and a bunch of them that are jacked up.
Even after going through and culling defects and slow growers,, you'll still probably have 100 angelfish or more. How many there really are is really deceptive.

but I'd say it's necessary to do it so that you only have the best of the bunch, your angels will spawn every 12-15 days or so, plenty of spawns to raise if you want or need to and you really can't keep every fish. They'll take over all space and more and eat you out of the house if you try to keep them all.
 

PeterFishKeepin

instead of culling them, you could sell them online for like $2-10 and just call then culls, people still buy them just because they may not be hobby grade
 

coralbandit

Next batch remove the MB when the eggs become wigglers .
It is not needed once they hatch and hazardous to the young fry then .
Lose the belly sliders IMO.
Do not cull by size as very often cichlid females grow slower then males for first 4 months on average .
Look at behavior to see who is the strongest.
100 fry may need to separated soon or culled down to reasonable number for tanks size and water change habits.
 

SandyDL

Id need to see their stage of development, but at 5 weeks is it safe to assume they have taken angelfish shape yet?
Mine hit that point at about 4 weeks.

The first thing you'd be looking for is "belly sliders". Those guys stay on the bottom all the time, they have a swim bladder issue and just kind of scoot around on the bottom of the tank most of the time and during feedings. Maybe dart up and return to the bottom.They will be less developed from having less access to food.. they'll have short ventral fins and bent analfin from laying on their stomach all the time.

Next thing to cull for would be runts. You will have overachievers and the main group but by 6-8 weeks the ones that aren't growing will start to stand out. They are never going to grow the size of the others and as the rest get bigger, they won't get food, get bullied and die. You don't have to cull them, but they will need to be separated and given extra time and attention and still they won't hit maximum potential, they just don't thrive and take 2x the effort and resources to get an undersized adult angel.

After that, you'd be looking for development problems, missing ventral fins, short fins, undeveloped eyes or short gill plates (exposed gills). When theybare bigger it's easier to identify than when they are tiny.

Then bent dorsal and analfins or squiggly ventral fins. this is a cosmetic thing. The fish can live fine with them like that but they look bad and don't sell well, so selling might be hard if you left them in the group. A fish can live with only one developed eye but again, this doesn't help the quality of the fish if you tried to sell a couple dozen to a LFS, they will be likely to refuse it.

And yeah, you don't need 150 angelfish, and so.... yeah culling becomes necessary so you can sell the excess, and so you don't waste time and money on fish that would have been eaten in the wild.. it's why they have so many, a good portion of a spawn isn't expected to survive to adults, either they starve by getting outcompeted or easy pickings for other fish.

You don't have to cull anything though, just might find yourself stuck with 150 angelfish and a bunch of them that are jacked up.
Even after going through and culling defects and slow growers,, you'll still probably have 100 angelfish or more. How many there really are is really deceptive.

but I'd say it's necessary to do it so that you only have the best of the bunch, your angels will spawn every 12-15 days or so, plenty of spawns to raise if you want or need to and you really can't keep every fish. They'll take over all space and more and eat you out of the house if you try to keep them all.
Thanks very much. Some excellent advice and ideas here. I appreciate your, and all the responses. I spend quite a lot of time
Observing them so think I have some
Obvious ones—slider types, and a few others to go. Ty.
 

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