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FAQs about the Pomacanthus Angels: Systems

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 Selection, Pomacanthus Feeding, Pomacanthus Disease, Pomacanthus Reproduction, Marine Angelfishes In General, Angelfish ID, Selection, Behavior, Compatibility, Health, Feeding, Disease,   

All Pomacanthus species require systems of hundreds of gallons for long term growth, health and happiness. RMF

Angelfishes for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
New eBook on Amazon: Available here
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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Pomacanthus annularis, comp. w/SPS, sliding scale w/ sys. size     3/29/13
Hi, I was wondering if I could get your opinion on the suitability of Pomacanthus annularis in a reef aquarium dominated by SPS corals with just a single LPS. The LPS can easily be removed.
<In a system of one hundred or less gallons, a good deal of trouble to be expected... at two hundred, about 50:50 odds, and three hundred plus gallons not likely any issue. Bob Fenner>
Re: Pomacanthus annularis     3/30/13

Thanks Bob, the system is a 210gal with about 300lbs of live rock with lots of caves. The only other inhabitants are Naso lituratus, Paracanthurus hep<a>tus, Siganus unimaculatus, and Pseudocheilinus hexataenia.
<Ok, my odds/guess stands the same/200 gal.... BobF>

2 angels in same tank?  5/16/09
I have a 540ltr tank and with sump filtration etc. I have a 4" Picasso trigger, yellow tang, blue tang and blue angel (6" and in process of changing into adult colouration) which are kept in a 28" cube tank at the moment.
<Needs more room than this>
I want to put these in the 540ltr tank along with a blue-faced angel (6" adult and feeding well for over a year)
<It too needs more room>
kept in a different tank at the moment. Will both angels be compatible in this tank if put them all in at the same time?
<Not likely, no... and if they appear so, too likely to "change their minds" w/o notice...>
I've noticed the blue-face being aggressive towards a fox-face and the two clown fish currently housed with it.
Thanks for your advice
<Both these Pomacanthids need a few hundred gallons of space to do well...
as stated/archived on WWM. Bob Fenner>  

Asfur Angels Question... Hi Bob, I just purchased a beloved Asfur this evening. A real Beauty. I had been fortunate to observe and put him on hold for 6 months at my dealer's store. <Wow! A great species to have on hand for so long> He is great. Nice and plump from eating everything you throw at him. He shows the normal aggressive behavior and is my center piece. <A good place> I have 11 years of Marine Experience and have kept several Big Angels. Some of my accomplishments have been a Majestic Angel, Queen Angel, Koran Angel, and Flames of Course. After setting up my 75 Gal (First Big Tank At least big to me) I have added a 4 inch specimen with a maroon clown and a Fiji Devil. I plan on adding a Desjardini Sailfin Tang, a Red Sea Raccoon (In keeping with species from them same region) <Great> and a Bicolor Parrot or Hippo Tang.  <Skip the Cetoscarus bicolor, go with the Paracanthurus> Adding all a couple of weeks apart to let the Bacteria keep up. Now to my question. I have read much about the Asfur. I have read about there normal habits and feed, etc. After seeing the size of the systems of those in the QA portion 125+ I started to wonder about the size of my tank. <Me too... I generally suggest a 300 gallon about now...> I thought he would be in for the long haul in my new tank but I am beginning to scratch my head. I really am happy with a 75 and may upgrade a couple of years down the road to a 110 (It will fit on the stand) but is the Asfur going to grow too large?  <Yes, psychologically ahead of physiologically...> All of the material I have read stated that the Angel, in the wild, normally attains the size of 6 inches or so and has even been associated as a pygmy angel.  <What? Nah... have seen them near their full size of sixteen inches in the wild, had ones of over a foot in length in captivity... Who do you recall making such statements? Please see Pomacanthus Asfur on our site (www.WetWebMedia.com) and fishbase.org...> I am really confused. I understand that there is a firm distinction between the Asfur and Maculosus (Forgive the spelling) as it has been nonchalantly avoided by questioners. The Mac, I understand, can grow to 18 inches, I have seen one that large. I have a large Wet Dry Unit with in Sump Protein skimmer, a couple of power heads for circulation and an Aragonite bed. I have even added a high powered pump for a gentle mist of bubbles for added surface agitation to oxygenate the water even more then the wet dry unit will provide.  <Good idea> Lighting is on a timed schedule (Power compacts both white and actinic to stimulate algae for nutrition) There is a lot of free swimming space and he is doing quite well (Even coming out in the last couple hours and exploring his surroundings). He is fully shaped and the colors are very prominent. No sign of infection, disease, or lost finnage. <Yes, this is likely a tank-raised individual out of the Far East... quite common nowadays, and fabulous> Can you give me some advice pertaining to growth and true classification. Hardiness is no question in my mind. Surely rivaling and overtaking that of Navarchus (Her royal Majesty) Thank you in advance... <Do take a look on our site and Fishbase... Growth can be six inches in a year to nine in two to eleven or so in three... Bob Fenner> Mark, Maryland
Pygmy associated (re: Asfur Angels Question...)
It was referenced that the Asfur had been considered pygmy because of its small size in The Book of the Marine Aquarium by Nick Dakin.  <Wowzah! Nick is a much more careful writer than this... very surprising> It is a wonderful overview of marine keeping and very informative as far as the advanced portion of the hobby. Julian Sprung was also an associate writer on the book so the source seems correct and experienced. <Well...> Not that I am refuting your debate. <Not refutable in this case... have collected this fish in the Red Sea, N.W. Indian Ocean over years time...> Thanks for the info. Will check out your site. <And most recent book which includes a Fishwatcher's Guide to the Fishes of the Red Sea... Bob Fenner> Mark

Baby Blue Angel Greetings Boys, <Hallo... Sailor!> Just some help on how fast this baby will grow. I work at a pet store and am considered the Marine expert,  <we all have our faults... we forgive you> however I don't think my 8 years makes me an expert by far.  <you have valid and important experience... and none of us our experts. All aquarists are pioneers :) > Especially considering how often I email you guys :) . Anyway, on our order we ordered a Med. (3-4") Navarchus angel which I have taken care of and kept more than healthy before. However, we got sent a baby blue by mistake which they did not charge us for and said we could have,  <very cool> this was a first from Quality Marine for us.  <I like Quality Marine very much... a very good wholesaler overall> All good I suppose. This blue angel is extremely beautifully colored and healthy looking, the first potential problem however was that he was only about 1.5" long, NOT a good fish size.  <agreed> But in the last 3 years I have been good at getting hard to keep fish to eat (a Moorish Idol being my pride and joy at home). The little guy was put into a tank of mine and not at the store, I didn't want him in a community tank until I new he would eat and until he got some size to him. And like I hoped, that night he was eat, I was surprised as hell. He enjoys seaweed select, formula 1 and 2, brine shrimp and even took a few flakes on the 4th day.  <please don't feed brine shrimp to any fish that you hope will survive longer than a year...heehee. It is truly a hollow and useless food (adult brine). Its a shame that fish respond so well to it... like Americans to fast food!> He is without flaw and I am VERY pleased with him. Now for the question, the only free tank I had in my personal possession with 5 months of cycling on it was a 72gal bow front. How fast do blues grow per month and what is the minimum tank they will need to flourish?  <he'll be fine in this tank for about a year> I am thinking 155gal minimum but I think for a fish that will reach a bit over a foot at least 250 to make him happy.  <agreed on the latter> In my opinion a fish should be given what it needs to feel at home. <indeed...saltwater fishes have been shown to need length of tank more than water volume to prevent stunting and premature death> Kinda like the betta problem. A betta will survive in a 5gal jar, BUT will he be happy?  I prefer to go with the happy size so I always encourage our customers to get more than what they need. There is nothing that makes me happier than to see a fish that is happy. Thanks for the help men. John M. <let me suggest that you feed this fish a diet rich in meaty foods while it is young for faster growth and as it is natural (small Blue angels are cleaner fish that eat parasites off other fishes). So... no brine shrimp, but any freeze dried foods and especially thawed frozen Gammarus and Mysid shrimp, Pacifica plankton and shredded krill. Best regards, Anthony>

Annularis Angel Thanks for the answer. On your site it says the annularis reach eight inches, do they get bigger than this?  <much bigger in some cases. On the Reef they can reach almost 20"!!! Even half of this in captivity is quite large. A good hardy fish but needing a huge tank> Or is an eight inch fish too big for an 80 gallon tank?  <an 80 gallon might only support this fish for the first 2-3 years of its life. You will need a 6 foot long tank in the near future. See here for more specs: http://filaman.uni-kiel.de/Summary/SpeciesSummary.cfm?ID=7902&genusname=Pomacanthus&speciesname=annularis  > Thanks rich. <best regards, Anthony>

Blue Line Angel in small quarters Hello fellows, <Good morning to you!> I have a few questions if you'd kindly answer. I received yesterday a blue line angel from the Marine Center. The fellow told me it should do just fine in my 55 live rock system. <Wow, kind of small for such a large fish. I would not recommend any large Angelfish in anything under 90 gallons.> It would appear quite large for that to me, but I have no choice. The individual in question is a good 5 or 6 inches in length, beautiful, alert, and slightly skinny possibly as a result of shipping. Randy at Marine Center told me it was eating well for a month there. He also said he wouldn't expect it to eat anything for a week or so in its new home. Is this the norm? <Not for me. I would expect any healthy fish to eat in a few days.> Should I be comfortable with this? <I would begin offering various foods the day after introduction.> He said Mysis shrimp should be taken by the end of the week and other foods as well. Is this a hardy fish? <Generally, a hardy Angelfish, although the stress over confinement in this small tank may prove too much for this individual.> I was told it was. Do you have any experience with it? <Yes, a great fish, slightly under appreciated in the trade/hobby for more exotic looking species.> Sorry for the rambling length of this letter. I just really want the fish to do well, due to the fact it is amazing and all. LOL. Thanks, Brian <You can read more about this species here: http://www.wetwebmedia. com/marine/fishes/angels/index.htm http://www.wetwebmedia. com/marine/fishes/angels/bestmarangs.htm I would look for a larger tank or another home for this specimen. -Steven Pro>

Question About Pomacanthus annularis - 06/05/05 First of all, let me say that I think your website is wonderful, and I've read your book cover to cover. <<Hello Steve, Eric R. here today, and I assume you're referring to Bob's book...excellent reading it is.>> I've gained much knowledge from reading the FAQs and your readers' questions. <<Yes...much to be found/discovered among these pages.>> This started as my wife's hobby, but I found myself helping out allot, especially in the LFS.  I guess I'm a good listener so I've been able to help my wife decipher what the LFS sales guys are saying.  I also refurbished the filtration system on an old 125 that I bought used, so I guess I'm becoming a hobbyist. <<Tee hee!  Does go that way sometimes.  Hopefully you're enjoying the involvement.>> Finally, I have a question for you.  Currently, I have a fish only 125 gallon marine aquarium with the following fish. <<Wait!  What's this "I" stuff?  Thought you said this was your wife's hobby <Big Grin>?>> Clarkii Clown, Flame Hawk, Niger Trigger, Green Bird Wrasse, Hippo Tang, Wolf Eel Blenny Some of the sales people are telling my wife she can have a dozen or so fish (or more if they're small). <<Not surprising to hear, but, stocking a tank is MUCH more involved than basing numbers on the size of the tank and the size of the fish.  Factors such as hardiness, activeness, temperament/compatibility, etc. must be considered.  Each addition must be researched carefully, and any decisions on size should be based on the fishes SIZE AT MATURITY.>> She is definitely wanting to add an Annularis angel. <<Ahh...Pomacanthus annularis...beautiful fish.>> I'm thinking that this would still be ok, but we should probably not add any more after this.  Do you think there's room for an Annularis?  I realize the tang and trigger can get very large <<and that bird wrasse grows to a foot on the reef.>>,  but they're both still quite small.  Your input is much appreciated. <<To be honest Steve, I'm hesitant about this mix of fish.  The tank is large enough for the angel (though at a mature 20" I would prefer to see it go in to a tank twice this size) but will become quite crowded as all these large fish grow.  I think all would be happier/healthier in the long run without the tang or the trigger; my vote would be to remove the Hippo Tang (too skittish and disease prone in small systems, IMO).>> Thank you, Steve <<Welcome, Eric Russell>>
Annularis Angel, James' go
Hey crew, on the last question I forgot to mention in previous email:  How do you feel about putting an annularis angel in a 65g FOWLR setup?  He will be one of only about three other smaller fish, I really can't seem to find any angels I like that don't outgrow my tank and he's the smallest so I'm really considering him? <I've search a few sites and the Annularis (Blue Ringed Angel) can attain a length of 12'. They are considered hardy as far as the angel family. Myself, I would prefer the Blue Girdled Angel.  They would fair a little better in a 65.  Your tank size is slightly below borderline for any of these angels as they will grow.  James (Salty Dog)> Thanks <<This is a VERY POOR choice IMO... James, see WWM, the web, references re. RMF>>
Blue Ringed Angel
Hey Jim, blue- girdled angel? That's received a (3) rating and a "difficult maintenance" from everywhere I have researched. So, that angel is HARD to keep and dies often and mysteriously within a month or two. Why would I take my chances on something that has a poor and dismal survival rating. Are you sure you're knowledgeable about this particular thing and you should be replying to emails? And next time try to be a little more professional.  <Jay, I probably was in err suggesting that to you. My basis for that lies with other people and myself who have kept them. Together we felt they were not that difficult to keep as far as angels go. No angel is easy to keep. But also keep in mind that all other parameters have to be strictly maintained. That is a 125 or larger, pristine water quality along with 10% water changes and an excellent diet. The tank also needs to be loaded with live rock and been set up at least six months. I'm wrong in suggesting that since I don't know your experience or skill level. Most newbies (if you are one) generally will not go through the work necessary to maintain this fish and therefore the fish would probably rate a three on a one to four level. I do try my best to give professional, informative and safe suggestions in my responses. But since I am human, the chance for error can exist. My apologies, and you should stick with the Blue Ringed Angel or a Koran which I would rate at a two level in degree of difficulty. James (Salty Dog)>
Bad advice
Bob, Probably wrong, but I based this on my having kept a couple of Blue Girdled and on advice from a few site who sell these type angels. <Mmm, well, this is what you should do... and folks' experiences do vary... I assure you though... as recorded on the Net, in print... that the subgenus that includes this fish... almost never thrive in captivity> Then again, if LFSs want to sell them instead of flushing them down the toilet, they are not going to tell you they are difficult. But anyway, the two I've had lived a few years before they outgrew my 125 and had to be sold. They readily accepted any food I gave them. Quite possible that I was lucky, don't know. Thanks anyway for the response, and I will always keep this in mind. Regards, James (Salty Dog) <Thank you... will archive this with our input. Bob F> 

A very hardy marine Angelfish - Annularis (Blue Ring) 2/16/05 Thanks for the quick and accurate response Anthony. Let me ask you another question while your here, lol. I asked this before but the other person didn't seem to be too familiar with this angel. Would it be ok to start (I know it will eventually grow out of the tank) off a 5 inch annularis (blue-ringed) angel in a 65g FOWLR with about 65lbs of rock?  <the fish is fantastic... but the tank is way too small! Do a search for this angel on fishbase.org... see the adult size and do consider that a strong swimming active fish of even 5" is too small for a tank scarcely three times as wide as its length. It would be a disappointment to see such a beautiful fish placed here> If it is ok to START with, at what size/inches should I take him out and find him another home or get a bigger tank?  <many well intended folks mean to get larger tanks in time, but never do (life, business, money, family, etc). PLEASE do not take any fish into your care that you cannot properly house from the start. They grow fast mate... or they stunt when not given proper care (and die prematurely). A minimum of a six foot long tank please> There will only be one other medium sized butterfly in the tank and some really small bottom/rock dwellers. Thanks a lot Ant <I do hope you can keep this fish... they are fabulously hardy, long lived and so beautiful. Best regards, Anthony>
Pomacanthus annularis query
Hey crew, on the last question I forgot to mention in previous email:  How do you feel about putting an annularis angel in a 65g FOWLR setup?  He will be one of only about three other smaller fish, I really can't seem to find any angels I like that don't outgrow my tank and he's the smallest so I'm really considering him? Thanks >>>Hello Jay, P. annularis is not a beginner's angel number one. Number two, your tank is much too small to accommodate one for any significant period of time. If you can't find a dwarf angel that you like...well I'm worried about you quite frankly Jay. :) Consider C. acanthops or C. argi. Both are attractive, very small and VERY hardy. The only caveat being that they are rather aggressive, but this usually isn't a problem if they are added last. Just don't keep them with very shy fish. Good Luck Jim<<<
Annularis Angel, James' go
Hey crew, on the last question I forgot to mention in previous email:  How do you feel about putting an annularis angel in a 65g FOWLR setup?  He will be one of only about three other smaller fish, I really can't seem to find any angels I like that don't outgrow my tank and he's the smallest so I'm really considering him? <I've search a few sites and the Annularis (Blue Ringed Angel) can attain a length of 12'. They are considered hardy as far as the angel family. Myself, I would prefer the Blue Girdled Angel.  They would fair a little better in a 65.  Your tank size is slightly below borderline for any of these angels as they will grow.  James (Salty Dog)> Thanks <<This is a VERY POOR choice IMO... James, see WWM, the web, references re. RMF>>

Angel Stocking Pomacanthus/Systems 2/26/09 Hi There, <Hello Thai> I currently have a 96" by 30" by 30" salt water set up with sump. Was just wondering if I can house an Emperor Angel and Blue Ring Angel for life. <With a 375 gallon tank, I'd say you would have a good shot at it.> Also wondering if I can stock other fish with it such as Chromis, tangs and butterflies. Will there be any issue with compatibility, and what type of bio load would they produce. <Should not be any problems here, just watch your stocking level.> I believe I've got adequate filtration to house them but would like your opinion on the matter. <Adequate doesn't tell me too much. Pomacanthus Angel Fish require vigorous circulation and high water quality. Do read links here. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/fishes/angels/pomacanthus/imperator.htm  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/fishes/angels/pomacanthus/Pomacanthus.htm  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/fishes/angels/angelcompafaq.htm  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marangsysfaqs.htm > Thanks in advance. <You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)> Thai Pham
Re: Pomacanthus/Systems 2/27/09
Thanks for your quick response. <You're welcome.> I'm running a 48"by 18"by 18"sump. <Wow.> First compartment has the bio ball, filter wool and also running a protein skimmer rated for 1300 litres. It's a Marine Source skimmer, it seems to do the job but don't know how good it is. I've got a 3600 litre return pump though a little low I would consider upgrading this in the future. <You are fine here with the additional circulation from the powerheads.> I have also got 2 power heads in the tank which are rated for 12000 litres each. There is a lot of movement in the tank. If you think I need to upgrade anything or add anything to the current setup please let me know. And I also have 100kg of live rock in the tank. <Sounds good. Do read the links in the previous email.> Thanks <You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>

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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