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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm going to be getting a tank and I want to know how many Angelfish I can or should be able to hold in a tank of this size? I'm thinking just Angelfish plants and some catfish. However, I also want to know what are some good compatible fish if I go that route. My girlfriend likes Silver Dollars or Kissing Gouramis but I don't think plants would be a good idea with the Silver Dollarsand the Kissers may be agressive.

Thoughts?
 

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G'day Indilzar,

I've never kept Angelfish, but have kicked around this forum for the best part of two years, (never mind my joined date, this is my second reincarnation), and have read every thread in those two years, including a ton on Angels. So most of what I'm going to say is based on reading these posts, or based on general cichlid behaviour.

With that said, if some one like apistomaster or star rider says something different to what I've said, believe them.

So are you looking for pairs? or just a school of Angels? It's natural instinct for cichlids to pair up and mate, so it's often hard to have a proper school of cichlids like you sometimes see in documentaries on tv. Many SA cichlids, Angels included, form pair bonds that last the pairs life span.

Once two cichlids pair up, they will claim a territory. The size of this territory often depends on the species of cichlid and it's size. Some cichlids when not spawning, will interact with the other fish in the whole tank, but when spawning, they vigorously defend thier area of the tank. Some other species of cichlids defend thier territory all the time, whether they are spawning or not. I have read on here a number of accounts where pairs of Angels have defended thier part of the tank all the time, and not just when spawning. Again I have read here of pairs of Angels claiming a territory that measures about 2 feet in length of larger community tanks.

Also many SA cichlids show higher levels of aggression towards others of thier own species, than towards other cichlids in general. I believe this is true of Angles. That's not to say an individual or pair, won't be aggressive towards another type of cichlid that enters it's territory.

So with the above information I would guess two pairs of adult Angels would be a comfortable number in a 75 gallon tank.

Many people advise buying a larger number of juvenile Angels and letting them grow and pair up in an aquarium, and once you have the final number you desire, you return the rest to your LFS for store credit, or try and sell them yourself. Like many SA cichlids, juvenile Angels will scool together and not show the levels of aggression that adult Angels will.

As for possible tankmates. I like adding fish from the same geographic area, sticking to what's found in thier natural ecosystems. Usually with a little research, it's easy to figure out some basic guidelines that will and won't work.

Have you looked at the 75 gallon cookie cutter setup here at C-F? They have one for Angelfish. Though with good filtration and a propper water change schedule, I'd up the number of tetras and catfish.

So I would be looking at adding a school or two of tetras that are large enough not to get eaten by adult Angels.

As Angels inhabit the mid-water of the tank, you could look at adding some smaller, bottom dwelling cichlids. The cookie cutter setup recommends 4 Bolivian rams, these are a very good, sociable dwarf cichlid. Or you could look at 4 dwarf acaras, or a trio of Apistogramma (1m-2f).

As for catfish, what do you have in mind? Again the cookie cutter recommends some corydoras. These guys are very good at cleaning up uneaten food. Or you could look at a couple of smaller L#number, fancy plecos. Up to you if you want a vegetarian variety, or one that eats meat (usually prepared foods like bloodworm, shrimp, pellets, etc, not live fish :lol: )

Since you are wanting plants in your tank, I would strongly suggest 6 otocinclus catfish. These are a small algea eating catfish, that will help controll the levels of algea on your plants, driftwood and glass.

I hope this provides some valuable information, and if I've included some wrong information, the other regulars and Angel keepers will correct me.
 

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A planted tank with angels is a joy! I have two, although neither are as large as yours. In my experience, dealing with the plants are infinitely more difficult than dealing with the fish! I recommend doing a bunch of reading on plants so you're up to speed on what you need before starting out.

Some planting recommendations:

Start with a plant friendly substrate i.e. Flourite or Eco-Complete.
Have between 2 and 3 WPG of lighting ona time for 8-10 hours a day
Consider pressurized C02 from the onset (this will help your plants outcompete the algae from Day One)
Plant heavily from the start. (Some suggestions: anubias, java fern, swords, vals, onion plants, crypts; I have all of these in my angel tanks. I particularly like the swords and you can usually find some nice big ones, even at Petsmart, that fill your tank up nicely from the beginning.)

Some stocking thoughts:

I agree with the poster who recommended otos, but only after your tank is somewhat established as they can be sensitive. A bristlenose pleco (I happen to love the albino version) are a great addition both for personality and algae-eating.
No to the silver dollars. Don't know about gouramis, but I personally don't like their look with angels.
Good tetra options for angels: rummynose, pristella and black phantom (I have all of these). Other options: bloodfins, lemon and flame tetras. I'm not a big neon or cardinal fan myself.
In a 75, for myself, I wouldn't do more than 2 pairs of angel and a trio of apistogramma (1M-2F). I've personally found the Bolivians to be somewhat more aggressive than I like (just my experience). You should be able to do a pair of blue rams in your set up instead of the apistos, if you prefer.

Have you read up on the nitrogen cycle? There are a number of ways to do this, and some ways to speed it up, but that's probably a different post . . .
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the comments folks. I knew about the cookie cutters for Africans. My original plan was to do malawis but I decided to let my GF pick the fish she likes and after I talked her out of getting a moray eel :) she settled on Angelfish.

For the cats I was definitely going to go with cories.

Hollyfish, I really appreciate the plant comments. This is going to be my first attempt at a true planted tank so I'm looking forward to it!
 

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not sure if someone said this already, but if you add silver dollars with angels you will probably feel like you are constantly running in place. you will want to heavily plant for the angels and the silver dollars will eat the plants as soon as you put them in. i would avoid the headache and stay away from them!
 

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This is the perfect size tank for this type of set up,I had the same type of set up for a few years at one time.Like the other poster mentioned the plants will be much more challenging then the fish and a tank this size makes pressurized co2 a must and as a beginner with plants you want about 2-2.5 watts a gallon anymore and youre looking at an aggressive fertilizer program.The plantedtank.net is the best plant forum bar none go there for youre one stop and shop research.Second the fish: angel fish are great and fist size full grown ones are really impressive looking fish.Start out with about 6-8 small ones and as the grow you will probally have a loss or two,they seem to be pretty sensitive at this size and there also kind of tough on each other as well.Then as they grow you will probally end up with a pair then youre top number of angels will be about 4 or mabey just the pair which is great leaves you room for a nice school of tetra's(head and tail light tetras look great in a school).A couple of the smaller plecos and a ram or two.Makes for a very entertaining and atractive set up but I highly suggest doing lots of reaserch on the plants as getting started can be very fustrating.Good luck!
 
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