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Fish Of The Month (Fotm) December 2016 - Pterophyllum Scalare (Angelfish)

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#1 Bostave



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  • Joined: 30-August 15
  • Location:South Guildford
  • Location: South Guildford

Posted 15 November 2016 - 05:17 PM

As the Fish of the Month for December, there will 2 lots of bags of 2 adults (most likely a male and female but haven't spawn) Pterophyllum scalare around 8-10cm available at the PCS Meeting for auction. These are special lots to raise money for Stuart Grant Fund for Cichlid Preservation and have kindly been donated by one of our PCS Members - Terry. Terry has been breeding South American cichlids for decades.




Freshwater Angelfish

Pterophyllum is derived from the Greek word for "winged leaf" and scalare means "like a flight of stairs" in reference to the dorsal fin. Angelfish are laterally compressed or look like a disc on edge with long fins coming out of the top and bottom and have 2 'feelers' in front of the anal or bottom fin. The tail is vertically oriented and may be from scoop shovel shape to long and relatively narrow depending on the variety.


There are three species that are seen in the hobby


Pterophyllum altum deep Angelfish, altum angel size 10 inches and more.


from Orinoco, Rio Atabapo, middle and upper Rio Negro

Water paramters: Temperature : 28-30ºC, pH:5.8-6.2, Hardness: 1-5ºdgh soft acid water.


Pterophyllum dumerilii, P. leopoldi longnosed angelfish (size 4 inches)

l1.jpg l2.jpg

water parameters: Temperature : 24-28ºC, pH : 6, Hardness : 5ºdgh soft acidic water.


Pterophyllum scalare angelfish (size 6-7inches)

Pterophyllum_scalare5.jpg sa.jpg

Water paramters: Temprature : 26-30ºC, pH 6-6.9, Hardness : 1.2-5ºdgh soft acid water.



Order: Perciformes Family: Cichlidae



Amazon and its tributaries



There is no sexual dimorphism among angelfish. During spawning, females develop a rounded genital papilla while the genital papilla of the males is pointed.



Live feeds such as bloodworms, mosquito larvae, tubifex worms, daphnia. Frozen and freeze dried live feeds.

Commercial fish feeds.


Feeding frequency

Feeding quantities depends on the amount of the feed being consumed in 5 minutes. 2-3 such feedings each day is advised.



Needs a well planted tank with Amazonian plants.


Water changes

weekly 1/3rd water exchanges has been recommended.



Slightly territorial, but still a shoaling species. Does well in both species and community tank .



The Scalare is easy to breed and millions of tank-raised specimens are sold every year over the world. Different colour and finnage varieities have been developed such as marble, albino, platinum, ghost and veil tail varieties. Once a pair is formed, the pair isolates itself. Both fish will take turns to clean a vertical substrate such as breeding slates or tanks wall or broad leaves of Amazon. Once the site is clean, the female with the broader papilla will lay eggs in a rows and will be followed by the male who fertilizes the eggs. The pair fan the eggs and remove any undeveloped eggs. The fry take 48 hours to hatch and another 48-60 hours to be swim freely.


Some pictures of my own angelfish spawning.








Some Europeans have bred altums in captivity.



Baensch Aquarium altlas Volumes 1 and 2 br Dr Rudiger Riehl and Hans A Baensh

The enclyclopedia of freshwater tropical fishes by Axelrod, et al.

Breeding aquarium fishes by Dr. Herbert R Axelrod




from google and few of my own.

#2 Hood

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  • Joined: 06-February 08
  • Location: Clarkson, WA

Posted 17 November 2016 - 07:02 PM

Great write-up. I have tried breeding angels a few times but never had actual success unfortunately. Paul from Morley always told me that Angels have been soooo bred that they have lost their instinct to parent properly. I dunno if this is true. Or if I just suck at trying to breed angels. Haha. Would love to hear of anybody's successful spawn and just how they did it. Maybe one day I'll try these fish again. :)

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#3 Bostave



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  • Joined: 30-August 15
  • Location:South Guildford
  • Location: South Guildford

Posted 17 November 2016 - 08:05 PM

Thank you. Growing up all my cousins had angelfish in their tanks. When I had my first tank, everyone asked me to get them except for one uncle who said that he would get those for me and he did. Eight of those. Since then angelfish have been a part of my life. I have great luck breeding them. The pictures of the breeding ones in the post above ate from Hobart. They spawned on glass chopping board bought from chickenfeed stores. Bred regularly every three weeks for 4 months.
I look forward to meet you and discuss angelfish breeding at the PCS meetings.

#4 Hood

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  • Joined: 06-February 08
  • Location: Clarkson, WA

Posted 17 November 2016 - 09:10 PM

Awesome. That sounds great. I'd love to hear about your experiences. Thanks. :)

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