Methods for Breeding Angelfish

Angelfish are one of the most popular aquarium fish. It was once believed that acidic water was required to successfully breed angelfish. Nevertheless today angelfish are bred in both acidic and alkaline, hard and soft waters. In order to breed angelfish it is best to commence with half a dozen fish. When 10-15 months old, pairs will form. Each pair is then transferred to a 24 x 15 x 15 inch tank. Fish will spawn on broad-leaved plants or artificial spawn receptors made of vitriolite (opaque colored glass) or slate strips. Eggs can be left with the parents or transferred to a small container for hatching. It has been found that although angelfish will spawn freely, the eggs do not hatch, or if they do the fry die before they become free-swimming.


The remedy is to transfer the eggs to distilled water (with a few drops of methylene blue added) for hatching, immediately after the spawning is complete. A delay of an hour or so can ruin almost every egg present. Add a small bubbler to oxygenate the eggs, allow a gentle stream of bubbles to flow over the eggs. It is not recommended to attempt the removal of dead chalky white eggs, since these actions usually injures neighboring eggs. Methylene blue is added to prevent fungus growth on the eggs, the water should be deep blue in colour to ensure adequate protection. When the fry hatch they collect in little groups resembling vibrating masses of jelly. Once the fry become free swimming they may be feed newly hatched brine shrimp. Do partial water changes about once a day. The methylene blue should be removed by these changes within a few days, this is important since brine shrimp do not live long in the presence of the dye.

When male and female lace angelfish are mated, ordinary angelfish, lace angelfish, and black angelfish are produced. Mating two perfect blacks is difficult. When accomplished, it is reputed to produce all black angelfish. Good blacks are fully pigmented within a few weeks of birth.

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