Angelfish are popular in the aquarium hobby. These fish are hardies, visually appealing, and easy to breed.
But how do angelfish mate?
Angelfish Mating Process
Angelfish can reproduce in either a community aquarium or a separate breeding tank.
However, it’s best to set up a breeding tank to de-stress the angelfish and ensure a smooth and successful mating process.
Given below are the steps that are involved in the mating process of angelfish.
1. Formation of an angelfish pair.
A male and female angelfish will pair up to reproduce. This signals the start of the mating process.
The two will engage in chasing and shaking their tails. Eventually, the pair will lock their lips and start twitching each other.
There is no need to worry since this is simply the mating ritual of angelfish, and it indicates the formation of a pair.
2. Female angelfish starts spawning.
In their natural habitat, angelfish choose to lay their eggs near the vegetation for safety.
Angelfish in an aquarium with live plants will lay their eggs on a large leaf or similar vegetation.
Occasionally an angelfish can pick an unfavorable location for its eggs, like the aquarium glass or the filter.
However, you can provide ample good locations inside the breeding tank to assist the angelfish in selecting a favorable location.
3. Male angelfish fertilizes the eggs.
The male angelfish must fertilize the eggs by spraying them to make them viable.
Sometimes, the male angelfish won’t fertilize the eggs if the female has laid them at an unsecured or open location.
So you must create places in the tank that the female angelfish can use to lay her eggs.
4. Angelfish pair guards the eggs.
The angelfish pair will safeguard the eggs to keep them safe until they hatch.
Besides guarding the eggs, the pair will keep them clean and supply them with oxygen to ensure that they hatch successfully.
Once the eggs hatch, the parents will continue to protect them as the larvae stay connected to the yolk for several days.
What to Do After the Angelfish Fry Are Born?
After the completion of a month, the parent angelfish can be taken out of the breeding tank and returned to the main tank.
For the angelfish fry, you can begin by feeding them infusoria.
Afterward, you can feed the young ones brine shrimp larvae until they reach six weeks of age.
Finally, you can switch to an adult angelfish diet. This typically includes flakes and other types of food.
How Often Do Angelfish Mate?
Angelfish are known to lay eggs once in two weeks if you immediately separate the parent angelfish from their fry.
However, there can be a slight delay if you allow the parent angelfish pair to tend to their newborns.
Angelfish are hardies and easy to breed. However, parenting doesn’t come instantly to them.
The inexperienced angelfish pair may consume the early egg clutches before their parenting instincts develop.
However, they provide excellent care to the eggs and fry once they get the required experience in parenting.
When Are Angelfish Ready to Mate?
The male angelfish will reach reproductive maturity between six to twelve months of age.
A female angelfish will also reach reproductive maturity at a similar age, usually ranging from six to twelve months.
Once the angelfish reach the age of 8 months, you can expect them to form pairs and start mating.
However, you can’t determine the exact time an angelfish reaches reproductive maturity, and there is no way to speed up this process.
How to Set Up The Ideal Conditions for Angelfish Breeding?
To ensure successful breeding, you must create an environment that makes your angelfish feel comfortable and safe.
Given below are a few tips to create the ideal conditions for breeding angelfish successfully.
1. Set up a breeding tank.
Angelfish prefer an aquarium with a minimum height of 12 inches for optimal living conditions.
These species can grow to their potential size when provided with ample space.
More space for the breeding angelfish pair will increase the chances of successful breeding.
2. Maintain stable water parameters.
Ensuring tank water is within the optimal parameters will boost the chances of successful breeding.
Ideal temperatures for breeding angelfish range from 79°F to 82°F (26°C to 28°C).
The pH level should be 6.5 to 7, with water hardness not exceeding 8 dGH.
3. Create hiding places.
In the wild, angelfish seek shelter under vegetation and debris inside the water bodies.
That’s why to breed angelfish successfully; it’s essential to set up an aquarium that replicates their natural habitat.
So instead of gravel, you can add tall and broad leafy plants and driftwood in the aquarium.
4. Provide a nutritious diet.
Angelfish are omnivores and require a well-balanced diet to produce healthy eggs and fry.
To ensure successful breeding, you must provide them with protein-rich food.
Feed them various food, including flakes, pellets, chopped veggies, dried or live bloodworms, brine shrimp, and mysis shrimp.
How Long Do Angelfish Take to Lay Eggs?
The male and female angelfish will typically clean an area in the tank where the female will lay her eggs.
These cleaning sessions can take up to a full day as they are trying to get the site ready for laying eggs.
Once the female angelfish lays her eggs in rows, the male fertilizes them.
The female angelfish lays her eggs only at the specifically selected place in the tank.
So you can help your female angelfish by creating good places in the tank for her to lay eggs.
Interesting Reading: 17 Freshwater + 24 Saltwater Angelfish Species | Are Angelfish Classified as Cichlids?
Once the male and female angelfish approve of each other, they will start the mating process. They will flare fins at one another and lock lips during mating. The pair will then locate a safe place in the vegetation where the female angelfish will lay her eggs. The male angelfish will then fertilize the eggs.