What Do Flame Angelfish Eat? (In the Wild and In Aquariums)

Flame angelfish searching for food

Flame angelfish are popular, brightly colored exotic saltwater fish that quickly adapt to home aquariums.

But what do they eat?

Flame Angelfish Diet

Flame Angelfish are omnivores found on the slopes of coral reefs and lagoons, grazing on algae and tiny animals. In a home aquarium, you can feed them a diverse diet consisting of marine algae, spirulina, algae-based flakes, pellets, and diced meat of shrimp, clams, mussels, squid, and krill.

Let’s understand in more detail what flame angelfish eat.

What Do Flame Angelfish Eat in The Wild?

Flame angelfish are tropical fish that inhabit the salty waters of the Indo-Pacific ocean.

These omnivores scavenge between crevices of the coral and reef for algae and tiny creatures.

Given below are some food items that the flame angelfish eat in the wild.

1. Marine Algae

Flame angelfish mainly prefer to eat microalgae or diatoms.

The coral reefs that these fish inhabit have an abundant supply of marine algae.

These fish graze on every nook and crannies of the coral reefs eating algae and other microscopic flora that grows naturally in this habitat.

2. Marine Invertebrates

Flame angelfish are omnivores that consume marine invertebrates in the wild.

Marine invertebrates are different groups of organisms that can be found in seawater.

They occupy different water depths from the sea surface to the seafloor and even inside the substrate.

Some of the marine invertebrates that flame angels eat in their natural habitat are tunicates, hydroids, sponges, bivalve mollusks, and tiny crustaceans like brine shrimp and krill.

What Should You Feed Your Flame Angelfish?

Angelfish are omnivorous; they eat both plants and meat.

They’re also known to eat tiny animals living within the algae.

It’s therefore important to provide them with a healthy balanced diet.

Given below are some food items you can feed flame angelfish in your aquarium.

1. Manufactured Food

Manufactured food is cheap and readily available. It’s ready to use and saves a lot of your time and effort.

Given below are some examples of manufactured food items for your pet flame angelfish.

A) Spirulina

Spirulina is a must because of its nutritional benefits to flame angelfish. It contains protein that is extracted from plants.

It helps keep your fish healthy by boosting their immune system to fight diseases and bacteria before they start causing any problems.

B) Fish Flakes

Flakes are delicate and rich in algae.

They can be used daily for feeding omnivores like flame angels because algae are their preferred diet.

C) Fish Pellets

Flame angelfish can be fed algae pellets in their diet.

Bottom dwellers enjoy pellets because they sink quickly to the bottom of the tank.

2. Frozen and Live Food

It’s the second most common type of food used by many fish keepers.

You can buy this fresh produce from a local shop, online retailer, or in your own backyard.

Here, you have an option between live and frozen food. Frozen food will generally cost less than live food.

However, live food provides more nutrition, and your pet fish will eat it happily.

A) Frozen Food

Feeding fish

Frozen food includes algae formula, angelfish formula with sponges, and more.

You can also feed them meaty food like prawns, shrimp, krill, mysis, brine shrimp, etc.

These food items are an excellent way to get protein and are often fortified with vitamins to promote good health.

Before serving your angels, you shouldn’t refreeze the food and keep them at room temperature.

B) Live Food

Live food is rich in protein and highly nutritious. However, finding the right food for your angelfish is costlier and often challenging.

Most people try to manage their supply by breeding live fish food such as worms, shrimp, larvae, etc.

It takes a considerable effort but can significantly cut down the cost of fish food.

3. Vegetables

Vegetable matter is important and must be part of an angelfish diet. It keeps them healthy.

You can keep some seaweed aside specifically to feed your flame angelfish.

You can place it on clips and leave it there for them to eat whenever they want.

What Should You Feed Flame Angelfish Fry?

Breeding flame angelfish isn’t an easy task.

There are numerous challenges, and very few aquarists have successfully bred flame angels.

Once the eggs hatch, the fry need proper care and attention. So you must provide adequate nutrition for their survival and growth.

Given below are some food items you can feed your flame angelfish fry.

1. Phytoplankton

Phytoplankton is also known as microalgae, a food source for many sea creatures.

The angel fry can easily consume these tiny algae, and it will provide them with the required nutrition to grow.

2. Zooplankton

Zooplankton is another fish food you can serve your young angel fry.

They’re an intermediate species in the food chain and a source of energy to large invertebrates and fish.

Zooplankton are tiny aquatic microorganisms, including rotifers, insect larvae, aquatic mites, crustaceans, etc., that can be served to your angelfish fry to satisfy their nutritional requirement.

The young fry should be fed up to four times daily to support their development.

How Much Food Should You Feed Your Flame Angelfish?

Many aquarists are confused about the right meal size and feeding frequency for their pet flame angels.

As a result, some underfeed or overfeed their pet fish.

Underfeeding can result in poor nutrition, which can stunt fish growth.

It can also create aggressive behavior because the fish has to compete with other tankmates for food.

Conversely, overfeeding has its share of problems.

The uneaten food can rot and result in a spike of ammonia, nitrite, and nitrates in the tank water that can severely harm the fish.

Therefore, getting the right balance while feeding your pet angels is essential.

Besides, flame angels prefer frequent feeding in tiny proportions.

So you must aim to feed a small amount of food at least three times daily.

Offer only the amount of food that they can consume within a minute or two.