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How To Breed Angelfish

Updated on April 8, 2010
My young Angelfish at about 2", if you are raising them up to breed, you may want to skip the tank mates.
My young Angelfish at about 2", if you are raising them up to breed, you may want to skip the tank mates.

Breeding Angelfish is an activity recommended for the semi-experienced fish keeper as it requires a fair amount of space and patience to achieve. Angelfish are some of the most popular fish in the hobby, and breeding and raising a successful spawn of Angel babies is a real achievement for any fish keeper.

Finding A Breeding Pair

The first challenge in breeding Angelfish is determining which fish are male and which fish are female. Unlike some other breeds of fish, like Siamese Fighters which are easily identifiable as being male or female, Angelfish are not obviously male or female and so the Angelfish breeder needs to identify a breeding pair from a group of fish that may be male or female.

The first step therefore, is getting between 6 and 10 young Angelfish and raising them together in a fairly large tank. 50 gallons is recommended, but you may be able to get away with smaller living quarters. The young fish should be about 3'' tall when you first obtain them. By the time they reach 4'' they should have formed breeding pairs and be ready to start breeding.

It is therefore, a game of patience and letting nature take its course. Over time, breeding pairs will start to form among the young angels. It is best to make your own breeding pairs rather than purchasing them, as occasionally Angelfish that were breeding pairs will 'break-up' over the stress of a move.

Some breeders believe that any two healthy male and female Angelfish will want to spawn. This may be true, but it still means that you will have to know which are male and which are female, which leads us back to the initial method of creating breeding pairs.

It is only once your fish begin to spawn that you will be able to tell for certain whether they are males or females. The spawning female Angelfish has a thick tube that protrudes during spawning, the male also has a tube, but his is smaller.

If you find that you have two Angelfish spawning with tubes about the same size, you are being confounded by two females that have decided to pair up and give spawning a go. For obvious reasons, this will not work as there is no male to fertilize the eggs. The animal kingdom is not always entirely straight, and this is simply an occurrence that the breeder will have to tolerate on occasion. Still, if you started with a reasonable number of babies, you should still have quite a few male / female pairs to choose to breed from.

Read on further and find out how to set up a breeding tank for Angelfish

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