Introducing Angelfish

Discussion in 'Angelfish' started by Brokenshadows34, Jul 28, 2014.

  1. Brokenshadows34Valued MemberMember

    Hey guys. I recently discovered something about angelfish.

    Several months ago, I bought a young pair of angelfish; a marbled and a black lace. Within twelve hours, the marbled had died, presumably from stress, as I was careful to slowly acclimate the fish.

    Thus, the black lace was left as a lone angelfish among tetras. She has since grown quite large, a beautiful fish with bright copper eyes and full fins. I named her Kai.

    I decided to get another angelfish a while ago, so I bought a silver one, larger than her, in the hopes that she couldn't push the new one around. But, within a few days, Kai's fins were shredded by the new one, so he was immediately taken back to the fish store. Apparently, he thought he was the king of the tank, but I couldn't stand watching him do that to Kai.

    But, I decided to try it out a little differently, after her fins healed.

    I bought a single, small, quarter-sized baby angelfish from my LFS. Half koi, half silver, with some chocolate brown speckles. I just fell in love with this baby, whom I named Cole almost instantly.

    Kai reacted as I expected her to. She went after the poor little guy.

    But, Cole dove into one of the plants, and Kai couldn't reach him.

    This went on for a while. I fed them, she chased him, he hid. I watched them, she chased him, he hid. She just kept going after him.

    But, she never could catch him. And he knew it.

    It turned into a game with them. He would swim towards her, all proud, with his little fins on regal display, until he invaded her bubble and she chased him, and he hid in his wisteria, mocking her. At first, it scared me. What if she'd caught him? But he was too fast, too small.

    Cole eats like a little pig. His colors are vivid, and he's not in the least bit stressed, despite being the newbie. He loves exploring the whole tank.

    I've noticed that her "chase-zone" with him has gotten smaller, and she doesn't chase to hurt. He can almost swim beside her now.

    So, contrary to what most people would think, if you want to introduce a new angelfish, your best bet is one considerably smaller than the one you have, ESPECIALLY if you have plant cover. The babies are faster and can hide in small spaces that the adult can't fit into.

    The adult will most likely soon realize they can't really push the little one around, and give up the chasing.

    Don't get me wrong, introducing new angels to an established tank with other angels is tricky business, but I just figured I'd share what I found.

    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 28, 2014
  2. ricmccWell Known MemberMember

    Hi: While not at all disagreeing with your approach, which is, after all working, I've always found it easier to keep angel in groups, 3 at least, 5 if you have room.
    This is because angels do establish pecking orders, and any aggression produced by this is therefore spread out and therefore less intense between any two fish.
    On the other hand, what works for me might not work for you--fish are at times rather contrary beasties at times:).-all the best, rick
    If you do add more, I would suggest that they also be juvenile, and therefore far less likely to draw any aggression response, btw.

    Last edited: Jul 28, 2014
  3. Brokenshadows34Valued MemberMember

    I agree completely, that a group is much less likely to target all the aggression on one fish. If any problems do arise, I could always take the little one back, or get more juveniles. Things seem to be fine though, maybe I just have a bold young angelfish and a laid-back adult. That's what I love about angels; they are very unique individuals. They can be as aggressive as any cichlid, or be total pushovers.
  4. delta5Well Known MemberMember

    Why do you suggest odd numbers? Won't pairing leave one singled out?
  5. ricmccWell Known MemberMember

    No legitagitment reason, really, other than habit, sort of like my habit of running screaming whenever I chance upon a harmless centipede:).
    Angels also rarely pair off all at once, so if space is of concern, odd numbered groups do tend to reduce the total fish needed to achieve the desired result.
    Also, as I find non spawning or unless immediately pre-spawning angels to range from extremely difficult to impossible to sex, the chances are that you will not end up with an group comprised of an equal number of either gender in any event---------rick
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2014
  6. Brokenshadows34Valued MemberMember

    Here's this, that I stupidly posted onto another thread, but that was meant for this one:

  7. ricmccWell Known MemberMember

    Hey, that's not stupid, its's love--sent from another old hippy.

    older. sad to admit:)-----rick, and with that, look into a glass onion, or Du la Dee, Du la Dah, 'Oh, how life goes on'---------Honey Pie.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2014
  8. k9z3boysValued MemberMember

    if you get them both at the same time are they less likely to show aggression-- at least over territory?
    or is this erroneous?
  9. DelaneywWell Known MemberMember

    They are a beautiful pair! :)

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum mobile app
  10. Crissandra331Valued MemberMember

    Glad you found something that worked!! & took the time to update :)
  11. Brokenshadows34Valued MemberMember

    Well, to answer your question, I've never gotten more than one angelfish at the same time, excluding the original two I bought in which case the marbled died within twelve hours. I assume there would be less aggression if you got two at the same time, because angelfish tend to think of the whole tank as "theirs" especially if you only have one lone angelfish. If you got several at once, there wouldn't be an issue over whose tank it is already. But, as Rick mentioned above, they do establish hierarchies among themselves, and the least dominant one might be pushed around a bit.

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