Details of all species referred to in these Fish Care Sheets can be found in the FBAS Booklet No 6 - National Show Fish Sizes. Click HERE for information.
Genus: Pterophyllum Typically Pterophyllum scalare, P. altum. P.eimekei,
P.dumerilii andP.leopoldi have also been used in literature.
Geographic Origin: South America. Many of the species are native to Brazil,
but most aquarium stock probably comes from commercial
breeders in the Far East!
Common Names: Angelfish
Compatibility: Generally peaceful enough for a community collection.
Adults may become territorial when spawning and small fish
(Neon Tetra size) may not be safe.
Minimum Aquarium Size: One pair of Pterophyllum will be fine in an aquarium
600 x 380 x 300mm (24" x 15" x 12") providing that
it is glazed so that it is 24" tall rather than long,
to give this 'tall' species enough depth of water.
A 1200 x 380 x 450mm (48" x 15" x 18" high) tank
will hold several pairs of fish.
Temperature: 23oC to 28oC for general care. A rise of a couple of degrees is
better for breeding.
Habitat: Fine gravel /coarse sand. Several clumps of 'grassy' plants
(Vallisneria, Sagittaria) will provide resting places.
Large pieces of inclined slate or thick 'bamboo/cane' sticks will make
ideal spawning surfaces.
Water Parameters: Ideally, these fish prefer soft acid water but most
specimens adapt to whatever comes out of the tap.
Water should be filtered. Regular partial water changes
advised. This is specially important in the breeding
aquarium to where fertilised eggs (removed from the
parents) are transferred for separate hatching.
Any accumulation of dirt will result in fry deaths.
Health: Generally hardy.
Diet: Omnivorous. Relish live or frozen foods. Daphnia, Mosquito larvae
excellent for getting fish into optimum condition for Showing
Plants: Will not destroy plants, although some broad-leaved specimens may be
'over-cleaned' and left a bit battered if not regarded as an acceptable
Breeding Notes : Eggs may be removed from the spawning tank and raised
artificially using an airstone to simulate parent fish action in
keeping eggs well-oxygenated and clean of debris.
Availability: A number of colour variants, together with 'Lace' and 'Veil'
long-finned cultivated specimens, are readily available.
Only select fish that are alert and swimming with fins erect.
Inspect carefully for signs of disease. Reject lethargic, damaged
or hollow bellied specimens. Whilst fish with split, or branched,
pelvic fins may well be healthy, they will not make good
Show Class: FBAS Show Class Da.
© FBAS 1999. RDE/RCM Fish Care Sheet 7 1/1