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FAQs about the Pomacanthus Angels: Selection

Related Articles: Marine Angelfishes, PomacanthusPomacanthus imperator (Emperor Angel), Pomacanthus paru (French Angel), Pomacanthus semicirculatus (Koran Angel), Pomacanthus maculosus (Yellow-Band Angelfish), 

Related FAQs:  PomacanthusPomacanthus 2, & FAQs on: Pomacanthus Identification, Pomacanthus Behavior, Pomacanthus Compatibility, Pomacanthus Systems, Pomacanthus Feeding, Pomacanthus Disease, Pomacanthus Reproduction, Marine Angelfishes In General, Angelfish ID, Selection, Behavior, Compatibility, Health, Feeding, Disease,   

If the fish was properly handled by the collector, transhipper, and dealer, you stand an excellent chance of having a showpiece angel for many years to come. ScottF.
Angelfishes for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
New eBook on Amazon: Available here
New Print Book on Create Space: Available here

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Large angels in same tank    1/27/20
Hi guys hope all is well,
<Hi Steve, mostly yes.>
I am planning on upgrading and getting a new tank it will be 90"×30"×26" which is 300gallons,
I'm planning the stocking for the tank and was wondering could I keep a scribbled angel an Asfur angel and an emperor as the 3 big fish if all where added at the same time or would the tank be to small for all 3? If not could I keep a scribbled angel with either of the other two?
<I give you more than even odds that they will get along if you introduce them at the same time and if they are about the same size, be sure to add enough rockwork to diminish possible aggression due territoriality.>
I appreciate any help guys.
<You're most welcome. Wil.>

Update. Pomacanthus stkg/sel f.      1/13/15
Hey bob,
I believe the black trigger with blown eye has passed. I rehomed the volitans lion, and also cut ties with my niger trigger.
With that said I am back down to about 6 fish in my 155. My fave angel is the Koran, and I see live aquaria has a large one. I understand they Prazi there fish, and it's been there for at least 3 weeks I can see.
Having one other angel in my tank, a 3 inch asfur, is it a chance worth taking, adding a Koran two inches larger?
<Better to place the Asfur elsewhere first. BobF>
Re: Update....Pomacanthus stkg/sel f.       1/14/15

Thanks bob. On that thought, my lfs got a huge blue angel in, about 7 inches and very thick. Was bought from a diver in Florida along with some queens. No holding station or wholesaler. Just came in yesterday, I would of course wait to see how it eats being it just came in yesterday. Would this make a suitable inhabitant, with asfur gone?
<Should really have more room (like another hundred gallons) as well>

I have had two queens in past that died and heard they are hit or miss.
Are blue angels the same way, and would this size be ideal?
<Mmm; ideal.... no; better to start much smaller in captivity. SEE/READ on WWM re Pomacanthus stocking/selection.
Bob Fenner>
I know you have
said with angels 4 inch juries are the way to go, with angels such as
French, emps etc.
The blue sure is beautiful, similar like queen, just don't know if they
fall in same non hardy category as a queen.
Also do independent divers in Florida, make good sources for Caribbean
fish? I imagine it's less stressful, but lacks in quarantine resources
quality marine would have.

Pomacanthus xanthometopon; comp. w/ other large angel sp.       6/29/14
Sorry for piggybacking this old string of emails but your wisdom so valuable.
<Please send future corr. to the Crew@WetWebMedia.com addy>
I’ll try not to take much of your time here ... 375 gallon tank with 5” Mr. Zebrasoma xanthurum as the dominant fish, although a 5.5” Pomacanthus navarchus seems to be slowly becoming the Alpha fish. I have access to a Blueface Angelfish (Pomacanthus xanthometopon) – are these two angels too closely related to coexist in the 96x30x30 tank.
<Could go together... IF the new fish is much smaller (an inch or more) or larger likely>
As always, any feedback is greatly appreciated.
<And you, BobF>

Blue ring angelfish, Angel sel./stkg.  8/28/12
Hello guys and girls, hope all is well, I've been looking to put a large angelfish into my new 187 gallon tank, I like the Koran angelfish which is my first choice ( recommended by bob fenner ) but I have been reading about the blue ring angel ( Pomacanthus annularis ) it's a stunning fish and I also read they don't get to <too> big
<About 18"; compare w/ P. semicirculatus>
and are relatively hardy, I also read they can be territorial but that seems to be the case with most large angels, yet again I have been given mixed reports on the fish and I don't know why I just don't come to wet web media for more info as I'm never steered wrong, could anyone give me some info on the blue ring angel, its temperament and hardiness and whether or not a 187 gallon tank would be a good home for its entire life, any help would be greatly appreciated
<Search the species on WWM... your answers are archived there. I wouldn't choose this species over the Koran for this size system. BobF>

Help with choosing the right Angel
125 Gal Stocking: Pomacanthus sp 4/21/2009

Hello, Roger here,
<Hi Roger>
First time writer-long time reader. First of all, thanks for taking the time to answer and help out everyone that writes and needs assistance. Not only have you saved us a lot of hassle and money, but more importantly, the lives of countless marine life-Thanks.
<Thank You for the kind words.>
I have a 125 gallon (72Lx17Wx24T)FOWLR setup that I would really love to house an angel in(reason I got a 6ft tank). My current livestock includes a yellow tang, powder brown tang, blue hippo tang, 2 ocellaris clowns, flame angel, canary blenny, coral banded shrimp, and a purple stripe Pseudochromis.
<OK so far>
Now for my question. Which of the following angels would be best suited of my tank size and fellow tank mates? I would like to get either-Koran, Imperator, Blueface, Blue Girdled, or an Annularis. My two favorites of which is the Koran, and the Imperator. I would really like to get a Queen, but realize that I would be pushing the tank size with my above list, and know that it is too small for a Queen.
<At first glance, any of the above fish would work. However, if we dig a  little deeper we can rule out most of these fish as being inappropriate for the long term.
I would rule out the Blue-Faced and the Blue Girdled Angel immediately - These have a very poor history of survival in captivity, in my opinion, almost the equivalent of throwing your money away.>
The Imperator can get almost as large as a Queen Angel when fully grown, so we should eliminate that as well.
The Koran, is a better choice, provided you will provided a larger tank in the not too distant future; as it will still get rather large for this tank. With a maximum size of 13 inches (32.5cm) 125 gallons will be a
tight fit - particularly with a tank width of 17 inches (47.5cm)
Therefore, the Blue-Ringed Angel: Pomacanthus Annularis would be the best long term choice for this tank. With a maximum size of 8 inches (20cm) it should be able to live out its full life in this setting.>
Thanks again for your help, anxiously awaiting your response.
<My pleasure>

Marine angels I have asked you about the personifer angel and the maculosus angel, the pet store I go to has both in stock. The personifer is 5-7" (I'm making the range broad because I'm bad at judging size) and the maculosus is a little larger, lets say 7-8" Both seem healthy, active, alert and disease free. Both are eating. I would love to get the personifer but you have told me that you would still lean toward the maculosus. I was wondering what the maculosus has that the personifer doesn't to make it such a wonderful species. I was also wondering if the size of the personifer was to large. Does the personifer have any advantages over the maculosus, except for my opinion that it is more beautiful, if I am being to neurotic, then feel free to say so. Any advice you can give me will be greatly appreciated - Yaron Aronowicz >> < The distinction on which is "better" is not based on any aesthetic attribute... Historically the maculosus has a better survival record... The size difference in this case doesn't make any difference. Both specimens are beyond what I consider "ideal size at acquisition"... but if both seem "well adjusted"... then they'll both adjust to being moved/resituated... but If you had one hundred of each to do an experiment with and places to put all of each in parallel/identical conditions, you would find the maculosus living longer...  Bob Fenner>

Chrysurus Angel Do these angels have a good survival rate? <Yes, amongst the highest for the genus... Somewhere between an Koran and Emperor...> I'm interested in getting one, but I'd hate to lose it because of the large price tag. I believe they're around 400-500$.  <this is a bit steep... in US$? Should be about half this> Do they adapt well? <most small, 3-4" ones yes> Should I add live rock to the tank I wish to place the angel in? <Absolutely! A good few months before introduction> Oh and why is there a picture of an Asfur angel in your Maculosus FAQ page? just thought you'd like to know. <Hmm, will have to look. Hmm, both the Maculosus page and genus Pomacanthus pages have them as they should be... The maculosus with lighter caudal, head chevrons... the Asfur with the yellow up on the dorsal, yellow caudal... Bob Fenner>

Pomacanthus imperator and Pomacanthus maculosus Hello bob, my dealer had some show size angel and I fell in love with the 16 to 18 inches imperator and maculosus angel immediately I saw them. do you think at this size( 16-18inches) are they easy to keep? <Decidedly not as easy to keep as ones collected at "reasonable" (a few inches) in length and raised in captivity... Fishes (actually all animals) collected "large" are less adaptable to captive conditions... like food acceptance, getting along with other "novel" species... And shame on the collectors and retailers for extracting adults... leave these in the seas to reproduce.> at the moment they look great. if you were me which one will you purchase? the maculosus or the imperator angel. and why? <Mmm, neither... as I am morally opposed to their collection in the first place. Bob Fenner>

Camel shrimp, Angel Selection Howdy, <Hi there> First off really love the site, very informative. Three questions for you. First I tried ordering some inverts online as the selection in my area is horrible. I received camel shrimp instead of peppermint shrimp, will they eat/control the Aiptasia? <Not an uncommon mistake, and no. Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/aippepshrpfaqs.htm > Second question: Like stated above, the fish stores in town have pretty scary conditions, so I was wondering if you have any recommendations for a good online retailer (kind of leery ordering fish by mail though?) <A few of the prominent ones can be found on our links page: http://wetwebmedia.com/links.htm  I would read through the various chatforums, ask there (Ours: http://talk.wetwebfotos.com/) for actual users input> Last question: I read on this site that the blue face angel is not very hardy but the queen is better. <Yes, "statistically"... historically this is so> I have been told by several people the opposite? Which would be better for my 100 gallon tank. has appr. 80 lbs. live rock, 1 blue spot puffer, bicolor blenny, hermits, snails, serpent star)  <Of the two, in 100 trials, ninety some times a Queen> Only want to add a large angel and maybe a Christmas or Coris wrasse to complete the tank. Thank you for your time, Sincerely, Gary Peterson <Keep gathering those data points, opinions till you feel confident you know your own. Bob Fenner>

An Angel or A Bad Apple? Howdy Mr. Fenner (and rest of Crew), <Scott F. here tonight> Book is great, as is the website...  Question about the chrysurus angel (ear spot angel) I am thinking about purchasing one (actually Christmas present from mom) for centerpiece of tank(180) with a few Barberfish as tankmates but in the your book Conscientious marine aquarist, you call it one of the "bad apples" of the Pomacanthus genus, but in the website it gets a (1) and "seen rarely in the trade, and that is a shame" .  Just want to figure out which should go by, as it is a rather pricey animal and wouldn't want to risk it if still considered "bad apple".  Also how aggressive is  this particular genus??? <Pomacanthus Angels in general are the "Alpha Fish" of whatever tank they inhabit! This angel can be a bit more "Chippy" than some of the other larger angels, but they do settle down and make beautiful specimens. They are relatively simple to keep; however, this is largely a function of how they were collected and handled...Since they hail from East Africa and Seychelles, they can be rather uncommon, and usually suffer from the rigors of shipping more than, say, a fish from the South Pacific. Do make sure that the fish is eating well and has taken several types of food at the dealer before you take it home. Finally, due to its large size, you may actually need larger quarters(1) for it to comfortably live out its entire lifespan. If the fish was properly handled by the collector, transhipper, and dealer, you stand an excellent chance of having a showpiece angel for many years to come.> Thanks again for all the information Gary Peterson <And Thank you, Gary, for stopping by!>

Chrysurus angelfish Hello, I am thinking about getting a large or extra large chrysurus angelfish from the marine center, and was wondering what would you rate it's hardiness from 1-10. Do you know of any other place I can get one besides the marine center since they cost a pretty penny, although I know they all cost quite a bit. Thanks!!! <Not sure where they would place on a scale of 1-10, but I know they are one of the hardier Angelfish. The link below is to a list of "The Best Angelfishes For Marine Aquarium Use" http://wetwebmedia.com/marine/fishes/angels/bestmarangs.htm Depending upon the tank size and other fish that you have in the tank already it should be ok. I would not put it in anything smaller than 100gal, or with any other large angels. I am not familiar with any suppliers of the chrysurus. Good luck in your search, Gage>

Blue line angel... sel... Ignorance   7/28/06 Hello, I live in corpus Christi and I went to Houston and bought a Big BLUE LINE ANGEL. <Best not to buy "big"...> She has developed cloudy eyes and will not eat and stays up in the corner of the tank and she shakes every now and then. She also floats on one side. I think I am going to loose her. <And likely lose this fish as well> She has not eaten anything. <...> I have stayed up with her one night all night just to see if she would eat when the lights were off but nothing. <? Pomacanthids don't eat at night...> Please help me. Also I wanted to know if a fish had a bacterial infection <What?...> if it rubbed on another fish would that fish get sick and die also? <Where do folks get such notions? How can people get by with such ignorance of simple biology? Physics, chemistry? Do my fellow citizens know more about Oprah than reality?> Thanks, Kim <Where to start here? Have you read our archives on Marine Angels? Selection, Disease? What did you think re buying a "big" specimen? Please read what is posted. RMF>

Large Angel, sel.   4/22/07 Hello everyone <Matt> I been wanting to get a large angel for awhile and not to sure on which would be best for my system. I have a 200 gal that's 2'W X 2'H x 7'L. 120lb+ of LR, 40 gal refugium, Coralife Needle Wheel Skimmer rated for a 220 gal, and 3 XP3's. I have a 16" Panther Grouper, 5" Foxface Lo, 8" Spiny box Puffer, and a 4" Sargassum Angler & very peaceful. I really wanted a Queen angel but after reading your site I see that's not a good idea. And Dwarfs stay too small and might end up as lunch. Maybe a Koran or a Blueface? <The former is a far better choice... much more likely to live> I didn't see to much about the Blueface <I lumped this species with its two subcongeners (the subgenus Euxiphipops) as they're all about the same in terms of use, husbandry. Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/marine/fishes/angels/pomacanthus/euxiphipops.htm and the linked files above.> but I did read some about the Koran. And I been eyeballing LiveAquaria and they have had a large adult Koran that's 5" to 7" for  $130 over a month now, plus they have had a 8"in there Divers Den section for awhile too. I know you should get one around 4" but my LFS wants doesn't guarantee there SW fish and LiveAquaria has a great one. Any advice would be great! Thanks Matt Owens <Mmmm.... well... your tank is going to be very full... and by and large it is better to pick a sub-adult Pomacanthid... Bob Fenner>

Re: Purchasing an Established Majestic Angel/Also...... update: Eric R. & James (Salty Dog)-- 02/21/09 Greetings to you all, <<Hello again April>> Eric Russell requested an update on my situation regarding purchasing an established 8" Majestic Angel from the taco shop. <<Ah yes 'thank you for this>> James (Salty Dog) also replied to my query, so this is to both. <<Will share'¦>> Thank you kindly for your wise, generous feedback on this issue. <<We are pleased to help>> It proved invaluable. <<Ah!>> I decided not to get the Majestic. <<Oh?>> I fed my brood, and was reminded with all of the fish colors whizzing around that my occupants are a pretty lively bunch at feeding time. I went to the shop to see how the Majestic ate, and saw that he swam like a sea turtle. I'm afraid he wouldn't have a chance at a good meal with my group. <<Hmm'¦>> He is so used to his cramped quarters; I feel he'd suffer some hunger over here until (if ever) he got the hang of how feeding time works with us. He's in there with a Blue Hippo, a Jawfish, a Yellow Tang, and some Blue Chromis. Getting him out of his established home would be stressful on him as well as the Blue Hippo, would hate to trigger Ich. <<I think the Angel would learn to get its share of food 'and would also likely become 'king fish' in your system. And yes, fishing the Majestic out of the display would be stressful to all in the short-term 'and may well result in the need for some treatment to all re'¦but it would also measurably improve the environment for those fishes remaining 'assuming the owner of the tank didn't throw another large species in to take the place of the Majestic Angel. But no worries 'is your decision. And it is also possible the Majestic may well already be 'damaged''¦ Attributed to living/growing up in the too small system (possibly both physiologically and psychologically)>> His home is too small, but I'll just leave him where he is and get a nice 4" French Angel I see at my shop. <<A wonderful aquarium species 'and 4' is a great size for introduction to a captive system. These are beautiful fish 'a mature adult is even more attractive than the juveniles, in my opinion. This Pomacanthus species does get considerably larger than the Majestic (18' for the French vs. 12' for the Majestic 'in the wild), but should do fine in your 300g display if not too crowded (either with too many other fishes and/or too much structure/live rock)>> Bob rates the French pretty high for hardiness, so that's a much better choice. <<Much agreed>> I actually have been feeding my fish those New Life Spectrum pellets for 2 years now along with 5-6 other types of foods. <<Excellent!>> Thanks Eric! My local shop highly recommended them when I was first setting it all up, so it was great to read that you endorse them, as well. <<Indeed I do 'and very highly at that! In addition to my fishes being vibrant, VERY colorful, and healthy which, in addition to other elements obviously, I attribute to their acceptance/feeding of this highly palatable and nutritious pelleted food. I also have a 'spawning' pair of Macropharyngodon meleagris that eat the Spectrum pellets with gusto. There is no doubt in my mind that this difficult-to-keep species' social development, indeed their very survival for more than four years now, is due in no small part to the inclusion of the New Life Spectrum pellets in their diet. But enough of the fish food commercial [grin]>> My Coral Beauty and Bi-Color Pygmies are so fat and colorful from that food. <<Ah yes!>> This Majestic's home situation taught me a good lesson about the careful and conscientious stocking decisions Bob and the rest of the Crew teach all the time. <<Though they may sometimes seem harsh, and considering the broad audience and experience levels that view these recommendations/comments are often a bit reserved and leaning to the side of caution, we really do have the best interests of the livestock 'and the hobbyists 'in mind>> So much more thought and planning must go into your system than just the dazzling looks of a show specimen. <<Indeed 'impulse buying dooms more animals than many can imagine>> Thinking long term is the way to start out. <<Yes 'always>> Thanks again for all of your time and attention! <<Is a pleasure to share>> I'm sure this French Angel will work out great. <<Magnificent fish 'yes indeed>> April <<All the best my friend. Eric Russell>>

Angelfishes for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
New eBook on Amazon: Available here
New Print Book on Create Space: Available here

by Robert (Bob) Fenner
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