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How to look after
Pterophyllum scalare
Angel Fish
Lichenstein, 1823

Pterophyllum scalare - Angel Fish - There are many angelfish cultivars; this is the half-black
There are many angelfish cultivars; this is the half-black
more images here

(Other members of the genus Pterophyllum)

ADULT SIZE: 15 cm

WATER CONDITIONS: Moderately soft and acidic

TEMPERATURE RANGE: 24-28 C

FOOD: Feed Pterophyllum scalare live and dried foods

DISTRIBUTION: This species comes from Brazil, Ecuador, Peru

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AQUARIUM CARE: A very well-known and easy to care for species. Thrives in a large tank, with a good varied diet. Several different colour forms have been cultivated: black, white, gold, silver, orange, and mixtures of all of these(see the images for some examples). Generally peaceful, although a little more aggressive when spawning.

The angelfish thrives along the Amazon river, and up its tributaries. It lives amongst dense vertical roots where the stripes of the wild-type fish give it perfect camouflage. An aquarium set-up should be well planted at the edges, but also have roots or driftwood, and an open area for swimming. Best kept with peaceful tankmates; other Amazonian species such as tetras are ideal. Avoid fish with any tendancy to fin-nip.

BREEDING: Breeding is possible, with adult pairs spawning on a pre-cleaned leaf, or stone. As with many cichlids, the parents will guard their fry. If spawning takes place in a community aquarium, it is better to remove the spawning site to a seperate rearing tank, as other fish will eat the larvae.

Have you bred Pterophyllum scalare? Why not fill in a breeding questionaire?, or examine existing Pterophyllum scalare breeding reports

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Fishkeeping Facts and Tips

Cichlids? There are estimated to be over 2000 different Cichlid species in the wild, of all sizes, shapes and colours. Many require very specialist conditions such as those coming from the sandy/rocky waters of Lake Malawi and Lake Tanganyika. Others, such as the Apistogramma dwarf cichlids from the Amazon basin require softer water and a well-planted tank. In general cichlids do not make good community fish as they can get quite aggressive, especially when spawning - but a specialist cichlid tank is certainly a sight to behold, and can be very rewarding for the more experienced aquarist


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