Freshwater angelfish can be a breathtaking addition to any fish tank. They can grow large, and you can select among many varieties. Some types will need more water, require more or less vegetation, or be more aggressive than others. Hence, we suggest conducting some research before you pull the trigger.
We’ve compiled a list of 13 freshwater angelfish found in aquariums worldwide. We’re going to take a look at every single one and show you how it differs from the others. And you can also receive useful information about angelfish feeding and breeding as well.
- 9 Stunning Freshwater Angelfish
- Which is The Best Food for Angelfish?
- Tips for Tank Setup
- Tips for Breeding
- Freshwater Angelfish Health
- Closing Words
9 Stunning Freshwater Angelfish
1. Black Lace Angelfish
Black lace angelfish appeared on the scene by carefully choosing silver and zebra angelfish that had extra dark greens.
Angelfish that possess a single dark green belong to the black lace type, while those with two dark genes fall into black, double black, or double dark types.
The long trailing fins can go up to 14 inches (35.5 cm) with great care.
And if you select the proper lighting, you’ll find the subtle patterning of those silver and zebra roots from which the type originates.
Black lace angelfish are not the most active fish. They tend to have a more relaxed temperament, even though they are sensitive to loud noise.
Make sure you keep your tank somewhere quiet so they don’t show the typical angelfish startle reflex.
2. Koi Angelfish
If you fall in love with the patterns and colors of koi goldfish, but you prefer to have a tropical aquarium, the koi angelfish is the go-to choice. You will get the same shades of orange, white, or gold, but on the flattened angelfish body.
Juvenile kois feature a red patch beneath their eyes. This patch eventually fades away when they become older, though, so don’t get attached.
Some koi angelfish carry patches of black, simulating the marble angelfish, yet they lack stripes. Koi angelfish will change color based on their mood. When they’re stressed, the orange tone becomes darker. It sounds interesting, but it’s a warning sign you will need to pay attention to. Whenever you see color changes, it’s about time to check on your fish.
3. Altum Angelfish
Altums are not as popular in the aquarium trade. If you love to have one, you might need to research a famous breeder.
These angelfish are the biggest in the group, and they’re often wild-caught. You can also find them with the name Orinoco angelfish or blue angelfish. When they come from the original environment, they are more difficult in their tank requirements.
You have to pump the heater slightly to 82 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit, raise the acidity to 4.8-6.2, and maintain your water soft (no higher than 5 dH).
Fortunately, you will get a sturdier angelfish than the flashier types. And they still look amazing in an aquarium. Most possess silver bodies with bars of brownish-red.
4. Albino Angelfish
Not everyone loves to flash and drama for their community aquarium. If you need something a little out of the normal, the albino angelfish may match your tastes.
These freshwater angelfish carry a complete lack of pigment with stereotypical pink eyes. If you keep your albino in the right light, you can achieve pale gold stripes along the sides. This will harken back to the original angelfish the mutation came from.
That’s true – this type of fish demonstrates a natural genetic aberration.
The sad news is, even if you do everything right, your albino angelfish won’t survive long. They have the shortest lifetime in the group.
5. Gold Angelfish
Strange as it sounds, gold angelfish appeared in a school of black lace fry.
In the 1960s, a breeder found a gold fry in the aquarium. The color was a buried recessive trait occurring to turn up in the batch. That started the careful breeding for the gold angelfish.
Golds contain a split pattern of gold and silver. Juveniles do not have the gold, so keep patient. That rich golden hue will appear after one year, as long as you keep them comfortable and healthy.
Goldfish angelfish carry long, trailing fins, so you need to consider their tank mates carefully. You won’t want anyone nibbling on them. Moreover, you will want to select your lighting carefully to get the best saturation of their color.
6. Marble Angelfish
Marble angelfish is the combination of the best features. They have got fins that are not too flowing to tempt nippers, with swirling patterns in white, black, orange, and silver.
There are no two similar fish, enabling you to set up shifting colors within the aquarium.
Marbles have the same strong genetics as the common angelfish. That means you can get a sturdy fish that is not sensitive to disease.
Breeders didn’t have to do any dramatic inbreeding to gain the marvelous patterns, leaving you with a healthier fish. Marble angelfish can withstand temperature fluctuations better than other freshwater angelfish, even if they are captive-bred.
7. Veil Angelfish
Vei angelfish is one of the most popular types of angelfish. More than 40 years of selective breeding have generated the over-the-top-fins in every pattern and color you could desire.
The “veil tail” gene offers a couple of options. A single gene produces the typical veil angelfish. Two genes yield even more elaborate fins and the type of a super veil angelfish.
However, veils swim far slower than other angelfish, which makes them more prone to fin and tail rot.
8. Zebra Angelfish
Some freshwater angelfish contain stripes (their type came from the silver angelfish). On the contrary, the zebra angelfish carries four to six stripes across the body, including the one through the eye. The extra lines are what makes them different from the others.
Zebras are a bit smaller than some of the other types. They are also a little quicker and more active swimmers.
Bear that size in mind when you add them to a community aquarium because you won’t want them to be bullied by a bigger fish.
Moreover, you can maximize your chances by maintaining water conditions and lighting at their best.
9. Leopard Angelfish
Leopard angelfish originate from common angelfish. Natural spotted patterns form in the wild mixed with captive-bred fish to produce angelfish with spots on their sides instead of the usual stripes.
If you want these spots to be clear and dazzling, you have to keep the lighting as close to natural as possible. If you overdo or underdo it, the spots will fade, and you will end up with a smoky angelfish.
What’s more, you’ll see many variations in the spots with your leopard angelfish. They are also hardier than some of the more inbred species.
Which is The Best Food for Angelfish?
Angelfish are simple to feed and will consume all types of fish foods, sinking or floating. Some of their favorites include freeze-dried bloodworms, krill flakes, tubifex worms, and Hikari Vibra Bites. If you want to flatten up the grown-up fish to condition them for breeding, you should go for frozen bloodworms.
For the fry, hatching out live baby, brine shrimp is the go-to choice to guarantee fast growth and optimal survival rate. The yolk sacs of newly-hatched brine shrimp are beneficial for baby fish. And their jerky swimming motions promote the babies’ feeding responses and stimulate them to fill up their bellies.
Ensure you offer the adults and their young a large range of food so that they receive all the essential nutrients required for healthy development.
Tips for Tank Setup
As freshwater angelfish can reach up to 6 inches long, you should keep these fish in a tank from 20 gallons in capacity – the larger, the better.
The recommended temperature range for these fish is from 75 and 84 degrees Fahrenheit. Plus, the water should be slightly soft, from 5 to 18 dH.
As they are derived from the Amazon River, freshwater angelfish require a slightly acidic pH between 6.0 and 7.5, and they will love a densely planted tank setup.
Freshwater angelfish can live with other community fish, but you should not keep them with fin-nipping species or any small fish that might become prey. Besides, you also should not overcrowd the aquarium as this could trigger aggressive and territorial behavior.
Tips for Breeding
Freshwater angelfish are hard to sex – the physical differences that can be used to identify the sexes are only visible during the spawning time.
For instance, male angelfish carry smaller, more pointed genital papillae than females; they may not be easily seen except during mating periods. Angelfish typically breed in pairs. However, as they are so hard to have sex with, you should start with a group of 6 juveniles and wait for them to pair off naturally.
To support your freshwater angelfish for spawning, you will have to provide them with a proper diet of live and frozen foods. You can also want to separate the breeding pair into a dedicated breeding aquarium.
In addition, it is essential to make frequent water changes to protect the water quality and keep a consistent temperature between 80 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
As your fish are ready to spawn, the female will start depositing eggs in organized rows, and the male will follow her, fertilizing every egg. After the spawning process is done, separate the adult angelfish from the aquarium as they might consume the eggs and newly-hatched babies.
Freshwater Angelfish Health
If you do not keep up with frequent tank changes or source quality food, your freshwater angelfish might get stressed and catch infections.
Especially, there are two parasites cropping up in freshwater angelfish:
- Hexamita: This protozoan enters angelfish via ingestion. It attacks the intestines and gallbladder, resulting in weight loss, color loss, and weakness.
- Nematodes: The eggs and larva come to the aquarium through poor-quality food. When ingested, the roundworm grows within its hose in more than three months. You will notice inflammation, bleeding, and weakness. Nematodes develop quickly and they can lead to fish death.
Both parasites can be treated with the help of medication. As soon as you see any symptoms, separate the affected fish to save your tank from possible infestation.
Always clean foods carefully and ensure you build a frequent aquarium cleaning schedule. Moreover, you should stay on the lookout for ich (white spot disease). It affects angelfish negatively, resulting in loss of appetite, swimming ability, and proliferation of parasites.
Aquarists are fond of incorporating freshwater angelfish into their community aquariums. The long, sweeping fins and a brilliant range of colors and patterns bring a touch of elegance to any tank.
These fish are comparatively demanding in their care, and they are easy to buy.
Which type of freshwater angelfish will be your last choice? Please tell us in the comment box.