Angelfish Community Tank


Angelfish can be successfully kept in a community tank by carefully selecting compatible tank mates. In an angelfish community tank, it is important to choose fish species that have similar water temperature and ph requirements, and are peaceful in nature.

Creating a harmonious angelfish community tank requires careful consideration and selection of suitable tank mates. Angelfish (pterophyllum scalare) can thrive in a community setting if compatible fish species are chosen. These elegant fish, known for their elongated bodies and graceful fins, are native to the amazon river basin.

While angelfish can be territorial, their aggression can be managed by providing plenty of space and hiding spots in the tank. In addition to maintaining appropriate water parameters, it is crucial to select peaceful and non-aggressive fish species that can coexist with angelfish. By following these guidelines, you can create a vibrant and tranquil angelfish community tank that showcases the beauty and charm of these captivating aquatic creatures.

Understanding Angelfish: An Introduction

What Are Angelfish?

Angelfish are a popular species of freshwater fish known for their stunning appearance and graceful swimming. Here are some key points to understand about angelfish:

  • Angelfish, scientifically known as pterophyllum, are native to the amazon river basin in south america.
  • They are called angelfish due to their unique body shape, which resembles the wings of an angel.
  • Angelfish come in various colors and patterns, including silver, black, and marble.
  • These fish can grow up to 6 inches in size, making them suitable for medium-sized aquariums.
  • Angelfish have long, flowing fins that add to their elegance.

Characteristics And Behavior Of Angelfish

To create a suitable community tank for angelfish, it’s essential to understand their characteristics and behavior. Here are the key points:

  • Angelfish are generally peaceful, but they can exhibit territorial behavior during breeding or if the tank is too small.
  • They are known to form pair bonds and exhibit monogamous behavior.
  • Angelfish are omnivorous and can eat both live and prepared foods.
  • These fish prefer water with slightly acidic ph levels and temperatures between 75-82°f (24-28°c).
  • Angelfish are known for their ability to communicate through body language, such as fin movements and color changes.

Popular Angelfish Species

There are several popular species of angelfish that aquarium enthusiasts love to keep. Here are some examples:

  • Pterophyllum scalare (common angelfish): This is the most widely recognized angelfish species, known for its triangular body shape and long fins.
  • Pterophyllum altum (altum angelfish): Altum angelfish have a more elongated body shape and higher dorsal fin compared to common angelfish.
  • Pterophyllum leopoldi (leopoldi angelfish): Leopoldi angelfish has a unique, dark coloration with striking white stripes on their head.
  • Pterophyllum dumerilii (dumeril’s angelfish): Dumeril’s angelfish display vibrant colors and patterns, making them a sought-after species for aquarium enthusiasts.

Importance Of Creating A Suitable Community Tank For Angelfish

Creating a suitable community tank for angelfish is crucial to their well-being and overall health. Here’s why it matters:

  • Angelfish are generally peaceful but can become aggressive if kept with incompatible tank mates.
  • They require ample swimming space and prefer tanks with vertical height to accommodate their tall fins.
  • Tank decorations, such as plants and rocks, provide hiding spots and mimic their natural habitat.
  • The appropriate water parameters, including temperature and ph levels, ensure the fish remain healthy.
  • A well-maintained tank with regular water changes and suitable filtration helps maintain optimal water quality for angelfish.

By understanding what angelfish are, their characteristics, popular species, and the importance of creating a suitable community tank, you can successfully care for these beautiful fish in your aquarium.

Selecting Suitable Tankmates For Angelfish

Criteria For Choosing Tankmates

When setting up an angelfish community tank, it is important to carefully select suitable tankmates to ensure compatibility and a harmonious environment for all the fish. Here are some key criteria to consider when choosing tankmates for your angelfish:

  • Size: The size of the potential tankmates should be compatible with angelfish, as larger or more aggressive fish may intimidate or harm the angelfish.
  • Behavior: It is essential to select fish species with compatible behavior to avoid any conflicts or stress in the tank. Peaceful and non-nippy fish are generally good choices.
  • Water parameters: Check the requirements of the fish species you are considering as tankmates for your angelfish. Make sure they have similar temperature, ph, and water hardness preferences.
  • Diet: It is convenient if the tankmates have similar dietary requirements to angelfish, making it easier to feed them all with the same type of food.
  • Compatibility with angelfish: Some fish species naturally get along well with angelfish and are less likely to trigger aggression or territorial behavior. Research compatibility charts or consult with knowledgeable aquarium enthusiasts to find suitable tankmates for angelfish.

Compatible Fish Species For An Angelfish Community Tank

Here are some fish species that are generally compatible with angelfish in a community tank:

  • Tetras: Small tetra species like neon tetras, cardinal tetras, and rummy-nose tetras can create a stunning visual contrast and peaceful coexistence with angelfish.
  • Corydoras catfish: These bottom-dwelling catfish are known for their peaceful nature and can add activity to the bottom region of the tank.
  • Gouramis: Species like dwarf gouramis or honey gouramis can complement the angelfish with their vibrant colors and peaceful demeanor.
  • Rasboras: Schooling fish like harlequin rasboras or celestial pearl danios can add movement and color to the tank, while being compatible with angelfish.
  • Mollies and platies: These livebearers can coexist with angelfish as long as the tank provides enough space and hiding spots.

Avoiding Aggressive Or Fin-Nipping Tankmates

To maintain a peaceful and stress-free environment for angelfish, it is crucial to avoid aggressive or fin-nipping tankmates. Here are some fish species to steer clear of when selecting tankmates for angelfish:

  • Cichlids: Most cichlids are territorial and can be aggressive, which may lead to conflicts with angelfish.
  • Barbs: Some barb species, especially the more boisterous ones like tiger barbs, can be fin-nippers and cause stress to angelfish.
  • Guppies: Male guppies tend to nip at the fins of angelfish, which can result in unnecessary stress and potential fin damage.
  • Bettas: Since bettas are highly territorial, they are not suitable tankmates for angelfish, as clashes between the two may occur.

Considerations For Tank Size And Layout

Both tank size and layout are critical aspects to consider when setting up a community tank for angelfish. Taking these factors into account will provide a comfortable and visually appealing environment for all the fish:

  • Tank size: Angelfish require a minimum tank size of 20 gallons, and it is recommended to provide additional space for the tankmates. A larger tank helps reduce territorial behavior and provides more swimming space.
  • Hiding spots: Incorporate plenty of plants, driftwood, rocks, and other decorations to create hiding spots and break line of sight within the tank. These areas not only offer shelter for shy tankmates but also help reduce aggression.
  • Open swimming area: Ensure there is ample open swimming space, especially in the middle and upper levels of the tank. Angelfish are known for their graceful swimming, and providing enough space for this behavior is essential.
  • Balanced stocking: Avoid overcrowding the tank to prevent competition for resources and territorial disputes. A balanced and well-stocked tank allows all the fish to establish their territories without excessive aggression.

By carefully selecting suitable tankmates for angelfish, considering criteria such as size, behavior, water parameters, and diet, as well as avoiding aggressive or fin-nipping species, and taking tank size and layout into account, you can create a harmonious and visually appealing angelfish community tank.

Setting Up The Perfect Angelfish Community Tank

Tank Size And Dimensions For Angelfish

Angelfish are known for their graceful swimming and stunning colors, so it’s essential to provide them with a suitable tank size and dimensions for them to thrive. Here are the key points to consider:

  • Tank size: Angelfish need a spacious tank to accommodate their active nature and territorial behavior. A minimum tank size of 20 gallons is recommended for a small group of angelfish.
  • Dimensions: The tank should have a length of at least 24 inches, width of 12 inches, and height of 16 inches to provide enough swimming space for angelfish.
  • Vertical space: Angelfish have elongated fins and love to swim vertically. A tall tank with sufficient height allows them to explore the upper levels of the aquarium.
  • Avoid overcrowding: Angelfish should have ample space to establish territories and swim freely. Overcrowding can lead to stress, aggression, and health issues.

Water Parameters And Temperature Requirements

Creating the perfect water conditions is crucial for angelfish to thrive. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Temperature: Angelfish prefer tropical waters, so maintaining a stable temperature between 75°f and 82°f (24°c – 28°c) is ideal.
  • Ph level: Aim for a slightly acidic to neutral ph level between 6.8 and 7.8. Regularly testing the water and making necessary adjustments will help keep the ph level within the recommended range.
  • Hardness: Angelfish are adaptable to a wide range of water hardness. Aim for a general hardness (gh) between 5 and 13 dgh and a carbonate hardness (kh) between 3 and 8 dkh.
  • Filtration: A good filtration system is essential to maintain the water quality. It helps remove waste, toxins, and ensures proper oxygenation. Choose a filter suitable for the tank size and ensure regular maintenance.

Choosing The Right Filtration System

A reliable filtration system is crucial in keeping the angelfish community tank healthy and clean. Consider the following key points:

  • Hang-on-back (hob) filters: These filters are easy to install and provide effective and efficient mechanical and biological filtration. They hang on the back of the tank and have a variety of filter media options.
  • Canister filters: Canister filters offer excellent filtration capacity and can handle larger volumes of water. They are often recommended for larger tanks or when housing a significant number of angelfish.
  • Sponge filters: Sponge filters provide gentle water flow and are ideal for fry and juvenile angelfish tanks. They provide biological filtration while creating a gentle current that won’t harm the delicate fish.
  • Regular maintenance: No matter which filtration system you choose, regular maintenance is key. Clean and replace filter media as recommended to ensure optimal performance and water quality.

Importance Of Angelfish Habitats And Hiding Spots

Creating a suitable habitat with hiding spots is crucial for angelfish to feel secure and exhibit their natural behaviors. Here are some important points to remember:

  • Plants and decorations: Dense vegetation, such as live plants or artificial plants, provides hiding spots and mimic their natural environment. Use sturdy plants like amazon sword, anubias, or java fern so angelfish won’t uproot them.
  • Caves and driftwood: Angelfish love to explore and seek shelter in caves, crevices, or driftwood. These structures not only offer hiding spots but also provide visual barriers to reduce aggression.
  • Substrate: Choose a soft and fine substrate to prevent injury to angelfish fins. Sand or rounded gravel works well. Avoid rough or sharp substrates that could lead to abrasions.
  • Territory boundaries: Arrange decorations in a way that creates natural boundaries or divisions within the tank. This helps angelfish establish territories and reduces aggression.
  • Line of sight: Ensure there are enough hiding spots, plants, and decorations to break the line of sight between angelfish. This reduces aggression and stress levels.

Remember, providing a spacious tank, maintaining optimal water parameters, choosing the right filtration system, and creating suitable hiding spots will contribute to a harmonious and thriving angelfish community tank.

Feeding And Nutrition For Angelfish In A Community Tank

Dietary Requirements Of Angelfish

Angelfish have specific dietary requirements to ensure their overall health and well-being in a community tank. Here are some key points to consider:

  • A balanced diet is essential for angelfish as it provides them with the necessary nutrients for growth and vitality.
  • They require a combination of protein-rich foods and plant-based options to meet their dietary needs.
  • Angelfish are omnivorous, meaning they can eat both meat and plants.
  • They need a high-quality flake or pellet food that is specifically formulated for angelfish.
  • Live or frozen foods such as brine shrimp, bloodworms, and daphnia can be provided as treats occasionally.

Types Of Food For A Balanced Diet

To ensure a balanced diet for your angelfish in a community tank, consider incorporating the following types of food:

  • High-quality flakes or pellets designed for angelfish, as the main staple in their diet.
  • Frozen or live foods such as brine shrimp, bloodworms, and daphnia to provide essential protein.
  • Fresh vegetables like blanched spinach and peas that offer necessary vitamins and fiber.
  • Spirulina-based food for a natural source of plant-based nutrition.
  • Occasionally supplement their diet with small quantities of fruits and other vegetables for variety.

Feeding Frequency And Portion Sizes

Feeding frequency and portion sizes play a crucial role in maintaining the health of angelfish in a community tank. Here are some important considerations:

  • Feed adult angelfish at least twice a day, providing them with enough food to consume within two to three minutes.
  • Young angelfish may require more frequent feedings, up to three to four times a day, to support their growth.
  • Ensure that the portion sizes are appropriate, avoiding overfeeding, which can lead to health problems and compromised water quality.
  • Remove any uneaten food after each feeding to prevent it from decomposing and polluting the tank.

Addressing Specific Dietary Needs Of Different Angelfish Species

Different angelfish species may have specific dietary requirements. Consider the following points when addressing their needs:

  • Altum angelfish: These angelfish prefer small live foods like brine shrimp and blackworms.
  • Discus angelfish: Discus angelfish benefit from a diet that includes high-quality flakes, live or frozen bloodworms, and beef heart as a treat.
  • Veil angelfish: Veil angelfish have similar dietary requirements as other angelfish species and can thrive on a variety of high-quality flake, pellet, and live/frozen foods.
  • Wild-caught angelfish: If you have wild-caught angelfish, it is essential to replicate their natural diet by providing live or frozen foods like insects, worms, and crustaceans.

Remember, observing the feeding habits of your angelfish and adjusting their diet accordingly will help ensure their overall health and longevity in a community tank.

Maintaining Water Quality And Health In An Angelfish Community Tank

Having a well-maintained angelfish community tank is crucial for the long-term health and happiness of your fish. Proper water quality is essential to ensure your angelfish thrive in their environment. In this section, we will explore the importance of regular water testing, the tank maintenance and cleaning schedule, dealing with common water quality issues, and preventing and treating diseases in angelfish.

Importance Of Regular Water Testing

Regular water testing is a vital aspect of angelfish tank maintenance. It allows you to monitor and maintain the water parameters necessary for the health and well-being of your fish. Here are some key points to remember:

  • Test the water parameters at least once a week using a reliable aquarium test kit.
  • Keep track of essential parameters such as ph, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate levels.
  • Monitor the water temperature consistently to ensure it falls within the suitable range for angelfish.
  • Regular water testing helps detect any potential issues or imbalances in the tank’s ecosystem, allowing for timely intervention.

Tank Maintenance And Cleaning Schedule

A well-planned tank maintenance and cleaning schedule is essential to keep your angelfish community tank in optimum condition. Consider the following points:

  • Perform a partial water change of 20-30% every 1-2 weeks to remove accumulated waste and maintain water quality.
  • Use a gravel vacuum to remove debris and waste from the substrate during water changes.
  • Clean the filter regularly to ensure proper functioning and prevent buildup of harmful substances.
  • Wipe down the glass to remove algae and maintain the aesthetic appeal of the tank.
  • Avoid overcleaning the tank, as it can disrupt the beneficial bacteria necessary for biological filtration.

Dealing With Common Water Quality Issues

Sometimes, despite your best efforts, you may encounter water quality issues in your angelfish community tank. Here are a few common problems and their solutions:

  • High ammonia or nitrite levels: Perform more frequent water changes and consider using a suitable water conditioner to detoxify the water.
  • High nitrate levels: Increase the frequency or volume of water changes to reduce nitrate accumulation. Live plants can also help absorb nitrates.
  • Low ph: Add crushed coral or a ph buffer to raise the ph level gradually. Regularly test and monitor the ph to maintain stability.
  • Algae bloom: Ensure proper lighting duration and intensity. Avoid overfeeding and limit nutrient buildup by controlling fish population and maintaining a balanced diet.
  • Cloudy water: Check the filtration system, perform water changes, and consider using a water clarifier to tackle cloudiness.

Preventing And Treating Diseases In Angelfish

Maintaining optimal water quality is crucial for preventing diseases in angelfish. Here are some measures to consider:

  • Quarantine new fish before introducing them to the main tank to minimize the risk of introducing diseases.
  • Provide a balanced diet with high-quality food to boost the immune system of your angelfish.
  • Regularly observe your fish for any signs of illness, such as loss of appetite, lethargy, or abnormal behavior.
  • In case of disease outbreak, promptly quarantine the affected fish to prevent the spread of infection.
  • Consult a veterinarian or knowledgeable fish enthusiast to diagnose and treat angelfish diseases effectively.

Remember, a well-maintained angelfish community tank with optimal water quality and health not only enhances the beauty of your aquascape but also ensures the well-being of your beloved angelfish. Regular testing, proper maintenance, and timely intervention are key to creating an environment where your angelfish can flourish.

Frequently Asked Questions On Angelfish Community Tank

Can Angelfish Be Kept In A Community Tank?

Yes, angelfish can be kept in a community tank as long as they are compatible with other fish species and the tank is properly set up.

What Are Some Suitable Tankmates For Angelfish?

Popular tankmates for angelfish include mollies, tetras, gouramis, and corydoras catfish, as they share similar water and temperature requirements.

How Big Of A Tank Is Needed For An Angelfish Community?

For an angelfish community tank, a minimum tank size of 30 gallons is recommended to provide enough space and ensure proper water quality.

What Should I Feed My Angelfish In A Community Tank?

Angelfish have a varied diet, so it is recommended to offer them a mix of high-quality flakes, pellets, frozen or live foods such as brine shrimp and bloodworms.

Are Angelfish Aggressive Towards Other Tankmates?

While angelfish can display territorial behavior, their aggression level varies. Proper tank setup, sufficient space, and compatible tankmates can help minimize aggression.


Creating an angelfish community tank can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience for fish enthusiasts. By carefully selecting compatible tankmates, providing adequate space and hiding spots, maintaining water quality, and monitoring the behavior of the fish, you can create a harmonious and thriving environment for your angelfish and their tankmates.

Remember to research the specific needs and behaviors of each fish species before adding them to the tank. This will help ensure a peaceful coexistence and reduce the risk of aggression or stress. Regular water testing and maintenance are crucial for the health of your fish and the overall stability of the tank.

Consistency in water temperature, ph levels, and cleanliness will go a long way in preventing diseases and promoting the well-being of your angelfish community. By following these guidelines and dedicating time to properly care for your angelfish, you can create a beautiful and vibrant community tank that will provide joy and fascination for years to come.

Happy fishkeeping!


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