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FAQs on Genus Chaetodontoplus Angels Compatibility

Related Articles: Chaetodontoplus Angels,

Related FAQs: Chaetodontoplus Angels 1, Chaetodontoplus Angels 2, & FAQs on: Chaetodontoplus Identification, Chaetodontoplus Behavior, Chaetodontoplus Selection, Chaetodontoplus Systems, Chaetodontoplus Feeding, Chaetodontoplus Disease, Chaetodontoplus Reproduction, Marine Angelfishes In General, Angelfish ID, Selection, Behavior, Compatibility, Health, Feeding, Disease,

Angelfishes for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Mixing Scribbled Angelfish  <Video Link>    8/3/18
Dear Crew
<Hi Ignatio>
I just want to ask you the possibility mixing scribbled angelfish (male and female) more than 1 pair in one tank (as you can see in the attached video).
<Next time please place the video in the cloud or YouTube and send us just the link to see it.>
Tank dimension in that video only 2 m * 1 m * 0.5 m with so many fishes in there without any aggression at all with no rock or a hiding place.
<Is this a holding tank? If so, fish won´t be there for long and aggression is dissipated because of the number of fish kept in there>
Will they eventually sick in long term or not? (or fight each other) or they can be maintain just like that.
<Angelfish are very belligerent towards its own kind and Dubolays are no exception, You may try starting with a trio of small specimens as they are less aggressive when young, be sure to introduce them all at once; nevertheless a 130 gallon tank like the one on the video is too small for long term success, you should attempt this in a tank of a few hundred gallons as a bare minimum.>
Note: the salinity was set on 1.015 to prevent disease. I saw the fishes in there are really in top condition .. ate like a pig and didn't afraid with human
<Yes, they look in excellent health>
Thanking you all in advance
<You are welcome. Wilberth>
Re: mixing scribbled angelfish male        8/7/18

Dear Wilberth
Sorry for late reply
<Next time please place the video in the cloud or YouTube and send us just the link to see it.>
ok sorry for the trouble
<Is this a holding tank? If so, fish won´t be there for long and aggression is dissipated because of the number of fish kept in there>
Yes it is a holding tank but I've watched the fish already 2 weeks now
What about if I put 4 adult male scribbled angelfish (30 cm each) in tank dimension 300 cm * 90 cm * 40 cm with no rock in there, I'll give plenty vigorous water circulation, Wavemaker, will they fight or still they confused who is going to attack who?
Thank you for your advise Wilberth
Re: mixing scribbled angelfish male        8/7/18

Dear Wilberth
sorry for late reply
<<No worries>>
<Next time please place the video in the cloud or YouTube and send us just the link to see it.>
ok sorry for the trouble
<<It´s ok, we posted it >>
<Is this a holding tank? If so, fish won´t be there for long and aggression is dissipated because of the number of fishes kept in there>
Yes, it is a holding tank but I've watched the fish already 2 weeks now
What about if I put 4 adult male scribbled angelfish (30 cm each) in tank dimension 300 cm * 90 cm * 40 cm with no rock in there, I'll give plenty vigorous water circulation, Wavemaker, will they fight or still they confused who is going to attack who?
<<You can try but they will still need hiding places as they are very territorial, there is no absolute guarantee that they won´t fight, eventually the dominant male will harass the other three.>>
Thank you for your advise Wilberth
<<Glad to help. Wilberth>>

Zoanthid ID & juvenile angel & eel ID 3/8/2010
Hey Crew !!!
<Hey Abdo!>
Abdo here, from the land of the pharaohs :D (AKA aquarium no man's land!!!)
<Ahh, hope to be diving w/ friends in Sharm this coming May>
First I just want to show my deeeeep gratitude for you guys being there,
really makes the difference !!! from the bottom of my heart: THAAAAAAANK YOUUUUUUUU
now down to business
I have just ventured into invertebrates and I'm having a hard time identifying that group of polyps I just bought, the tank they were in at the retailer's was such a biohazard that a military submarine wouldn't survive !!!

anyway I attached a picture, it was taken the day after I put them in the tank, they were acclimated very slowly over 4 hours and now I think 80% of them have opened completely :D Yay :D Hope you guys could help me treat the polyps well :)
<Looks to be some species of Zoanthid; very nice>
Another question, hope I'm not being a pain in the neck here......
I bought what I identified positively as a vermiculated angel, at just under an inch long!!!, do you have any special recommendations regarding such a fish, given its size and other tank inhabitants ??? any advice ???
<Mmm, yes... keep it with small-ish, easygoing fishes, non-predatory invertebrates and you should be fine. These angels grow quite quickly when small, given good circumstances>
lastly (I promise), I had bought those 2 eels a while ago, and I've been having such a hard time identifying them it drives me crazy !! their looks are not special but their behavior amazes me!! They are grey with white bellies, 30cm long with 1cm diameter or so, small eyes, dotted lateral line near the head and curved, burrow under the sand and they do it backwards, meaning they stick their tails in and slip into the sand bed, and once they grab a piece of food they quickly pull it down under the sand to eat it, the retailer said they we're from the red sea, but I wouldn't count on anything he says.
the closest matches I could find in Dr. Burgess's atlas of marine aquarium fishes were "Pisodonophis cancrivorus" and "Muraenichthys tasmaniensis" but I'm not so sure..... I attached the best picture I could take, hope it helps.
<Mmm, is an Ophichthid... a Snake Eel... looks a bunch like an Apterichthys species... Unfortunately I don't see this species in my in-print reference works, and Fishbase.org is running VERY slowly currently. I would go there, and search "By Country" (I did for Jordan), Marine fishes (which will come out by default by species) and re-sort by family... Look at the Ophichthids found there (the Red Sea)... and try to find these species for photos, further descriptions>
I have a 110G + 20G sump, since August 2008, sandy bottom with one pile of LR, some locally obtained Ulva, 2 four stripe damsels, 1 domino, 1 silver moony, 1 Aidablenius sphynx, many coastal shrimps, 1 vermiculated angel, 1 common goby, 1 red tomato, 1 urchin with short sharp spines (red sea), several mussels and oysters, some Nerites, the 2 eels and the clump of Zoas.
<Sounds very nice indeed!>
Thank you in advance, and sorry for the long email :S
<Thank you for sharing! Bob Fenner>

I really want a Personifer... 9/5/09
I have a 350+ gallon reef aquarium. (8.6 feet x 3 x 2.2). I currently have it stocked with various SPS corals (Acros, Montis, etc.) along with a few LPS such as frogspawn and hammer corals. My water quality is good, i.e. very low nitrate (< 5), 10-11 Hardness, 450 Calcium. My current fish are 3 yellow tangs, 1 purple tang, 1 Sailfin tang, 1 powder blue tang, 1 chocolate tang, 1 Goldflake Angel (7"), 1 regal angel (4"), 1 solorensis wrasse, 2 percula clownfish, and a large magnificent Foxface. I want to add a Personifer and flame wrasse to the mix. My Regal and Goldflake are very passive as Angels go, but is
a third pushing it too much?
<I think you'll be okay in this size, shaped system>
Will the flame wrasse be ok with the solorensis?
<Likely so as well>
I have searched everywhere for compatibility questions with angels, and I know that it isn't a sure thing. I have had this set up for over 2 years without losing any fish, and I am just ready for a new challenge.
Eric Alspaugh
<A good choice. Bob Fenner>

Angelfish Inquiry Hi bob, I have a one year 300L old marine tank and have just put in a Personifer (9cm) and scribbled (12cm) angel. I have read places that these angels of the same species should not be put together in the same tank. <yes... in most aquaria they will be aggressive in close confines> They don't seem to be attacking each other, in fact they seem to be getting on alright. <the problems often occur as the fish mature> Have I made the wrong choice? <very likely my friend> If so, I also have 600L coral tank, which one should I move as to keep my coral intact? <neither are categorically "safe" choices although either has been known to work in some reef displays.> Thank You Ed Chiang <best regards, Anthony Calfo>

Chaetodontoplus Angels How dangerous are the Chaetodontoplus Angels (specifically the Black Velvet/Gray Poma) in Reef Tanks? Are they similar in nature to the Centropyge Angels? <Have seen the genus, this species kept in very large (hundreds of gallons) reef systems with stinging-celled life of all kinds... and seen it/them eating jellyfishes (scyphozoans) in the wild with relish (not the condiment) and nibbling on various species of soft corals (Alcyonaceans). Bob Fenner> Thank you, -Eric

Chaetodontoplus Hiya Bob, Just wondering what your you opinion on a C. melanosoma in an SPS reef tank. Couple of years ago I tried a mesoleucus, but that picked. But then again, that fish kinda sticks out of the Chaetodontoplus complex , doesn't it? <Yes... the "oddball" of the group in appearance... but all members are likely to chew on sedentary invertebrates of various sorts... have seen them (just a week or two back in Australia) doing this in the wild. Bob Fenner> regards, Jason

Chaetodontoplus mesoleucus Hi Bob, I have a 6 yr. reef tank w/ mixed coral population (mostly SPS), mushrooms, , Cataphyll, and Caulastrea. ( 110g). Would it be a mistake to add a Chaetodontoplus mes. to the system? <A medium one to start with (3-4" should go) okay. It might pick on your corals in time, but probably not.> I currently have a 6 yr. old Cent. argi, 2 g. Chromis. and a 4" Golden wrasse -hall. species. I do have plenty of turf algae and some unwanted Valonia, as well as some Sargassum growing in this system. Also, what foods would I need if you think adding the angel would be a good idea- would I need to get sponge, or Ocean Nut. angel formula? <This species very often eats most any/all types of foods> <Please read here re the genus and then back to the family in general: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/chaetodonoplus.htm  Be chatting, Bob Fenner> Thanks for any help! Gary Pikarsky

Singapore angel Dear Crew, <Hi there> I ran across a Chaetodontoplus mesoleucos at a LFS and had some questions concerning it's compatibility. I have a 37 gallon with an assortment of SPS, LPS, some softies and a clam. Tank has been est. for several years. There are 3 fish, a Sunburst Anthias and 2 yellow clown gobies. I would like to add a compatible angel and was wondering if a Singapore Angel would do fine in such a setup. Or want would you suggest? <Not this fish... it needs more space than your system. Perhaps a "dwarf dwarf" species like one of the smaller Centropyges if you had to have an angel. Please see: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/fishes/angels/centropyge/index.htm Bob Fenner> Thanks much, Doug
Re: Singapore angel
Bob, Thanks for your reply. I was certain that you would say that that the Singapore would be too big. <It may be time for you to start answering queries> Okay a "dwarf's dwarf", another LFS has a C. Fisheri, C. Potteri (about 1 1/2 months in the store) and C. flavicauda. Do I just flip a coin and go for it? <Not the Potter's. Bob Fenner> Thanks again,

Friends For An Angel Dear Scott, <Hello again!> I went to the LFS on Friday and finally bought an angel. There were a few different varieties there but the most striking was a Grey Poma. I didn't really plan on buying this fish but they look so much better in "person" than all the photos I've seen and it showed so much more personality than the other dwarf angels on offer. <I love this species! It doesn't get too large, generally feeds well, and has fabulous colors (although not as flashy as some other species> It is about 4.5 inches long, very healthy-looking with bright colours. It was feeding in the shop and it has been pecking the live rock and happily snapping up whatever food I put in the tank (I have offered Nutrafin Spirulina flake and marine diet as well as chopped prawns and a tiny bit of Banana) as well as destroying a small native featherstars. <That's gonna happen with this angel!> She is still a bit shy but is slowly starting to come out of the rockwork and swim around the tank. <Really a great choice. I'm sure that you'll love her!> I also bought ten "boxing shrimp", they were 10 for $4 and the guy there said they would be good for eating leftover food. They are between 2 and 3 inches long, transparent, light brown with burgundy spots with elongated pincers. They readily consume any uneaten food and do not appear to hassle the angel or each other. I will be getting a pair of gold-banded maroon clowns next week but apart from them I am not sure what other fish would make suitable inhabitants. I assume the Poma will fight with other angels so what about some type of butterfly or wrasse? <I really like Halichoeres species wrasses, myself. Check 'em out!> The guy suggested a Bicolour Parrot but those fish grow to 90cm. <Yep...Really not a good long-term choice for most captive systems, IMO!> Do you have any other suggestions for fish that will cohabitate with as well as compliment these fish? <Well, there are literally hundreds of possible choices. I really encourage you to check out some of the many neat smaller wrasses, some of the more peaceful Dottybacks, blennies, gobies, and many, many others! How was that for unhelpful!> Thanks again for all your advice Yours Sincerely Adam Harbeck <My pleasure, Adam! I love your Angel choice! Have fun looking into the many other possibilities for companions for the angel! Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Friend For His Angel? Hello Scott, <Hi there!> Thank you again for your helpful replies. Well the Poma and the clowns have not shown any sign of Ich reinfestation since I started medicating. <A good sign!> However, I have dismantled my other tank (20 gallon ) and set it up as a permanent quarantine/hospital tank, and this meant transferring my unidentified (Chrysiptera?) damsel into the 6 foot tank. <You know- it is not necessary to leave a quarantine tank up and running on a permanent basis- just keep a sponge filter or other media in the display tank, ready to go at all times, add some water from the display tank, and there you go...> I did a big water change and gravel-wash before I introduced him and he was fine on the first day but the next day he had developed Ich (the others were unaffected). I have started treating the tank again (the hospital tank is not yet up to scratch) and all the spots have gone. I am not going to add anymore fish for at least three weeks so that hopefully the Ich does not re-establish itself. < A wise decision> I do not think I would be able to get a cleaner goby as my dealer mostly sells Indo-Pacific and Red Sea varieties as Caribbean stuff is VERY expensive. <Just as well. Although cleaners can help, they are not a sure cure for parasitic infestations> I will probably get a pair or banded coral shrimp, I've had them before and they look nice and they might do some occasional fish cleaning. My family thinks that I need a blue fish of some type in there as the rest blend into the rockwork from a distance. I like the regal tangs but they would get too large for my tank and I don't think I would take the risk when it comes to Ich, I think a Bicolour Angel would be more suitable but is it different enough in colouration to not fight with the Poma? <Well, you can usually keep a Centropyge with other genera of angels, but the Centropyge is usually added first. It will be an interesting dynamic-one that you will have to watch very carefully, so that you can intervene if required> I have read nearly all the FAQ's on Bicolours and the major problem seems to be getting them to feed. <In most cases, this is the problem. Careful selection of your specimen, and knowledge of its area of collection can help assure greater success. Hopefully, you'll be able to support the "home team" and get an Australian specimen, which, in my opinion, are of the best quality and are almost always properly collected and handled!> If I made sure to get one that was feeding and then isolate it for 4 or more weeks in quarantine would it make a suitable, colourful addition to my tank? As always, your advice is greatly appreciated. Yours Sincerely Adam Harbeck <Well, Adam- as I mentioned before, it is certainly possible to mix this fish with the Poma in a sufficiently large tank. However, fish, like people, are individuals, and you never know how they are going to respond. It's just going to be one of those things where you'll have to roll the dice, so to speak. If your tank is large enough, and you have enough rockwork to break up territories, it may be workable. Id put the odds at about 60/40 in favor of it working...Just know what you may be getting into with this combination, and work out an "escape plan" should it become necessary to remove the Bicolor. Good luck! Regards, Scott F.>

Supporting Members For A Big Star (C. conspiculatus Angel) Hello All, <Hi there! Scott F. with you today!> With your help from the website and books, I have my 200-gallon aquarium ready and awaiting its first inhabitant. I would like to house the Conspicuous Angelfish (Chaetodontoplus conspiculatus) as the star of the aquarium and I would like your advice on which type of fish I could put in the aquarium with the Conspicuous Angelfish? Would one of the butterfly fish be possible tank mate? The aquarium has been running since March and the marine set-up includes a refugium, Euro-Reef skimmer, chiller, Live Rock and a tank cleaner crew of crabs and snails. I also have a quarantine tank for anything that will go into the main aquarium system. I know this fish is expensive and I expect I will have to wait in order for this fish to be the first in the aquarium since it is hard to locate a specimen. Again, Thanks for your help, Gary <Well, Gary- I certainly admire your choice for the star of your tank!. This fish is absolutely worth the wait! Do try to get a juvenile or smaller fish if you can, as they may adapt more readily to captive life than a full-sized 10 inch adult. I think that a fish like this is so spectacular that to put another larger beautiful fish would be distracting! Rather, I'd opt for some smaller, colorful fishes, like wrasses- such as Halichoeres chrysus (the "Canary Wrasse") or maybe a small group of Fairy Wrasses (your choice of species). Make sure that you choose tank mates that will not disturb the Angel. Other good choices might be the Purple Firefish (Nemateleotris decora), or perhaps some Cardinalfish (your choice). Some hardier Anthias might fit the bill, too. These more diminutive fishes add interest and color to your tank without detracting from the beauty of your "star"! Be patient, and you will be rewarded! Good luck! Regards, Scott F.>

Chaetodontoplus septentrionalis in a captive reef? Gambling With Corals (Risking A Large Angelfish With Invertebrates)? 1/16/08 Hey guys and gals: <Scott F. your guy tonight!> Simple question. Is Chaetodontoplus septentrionalis an angel that can be placed in a captive reef aquarium (90G) without being too destructive? < I guess it's all relative..."Destructive" to some reef people is the loss of one polyp of coral. Yes- fishes in this genus will nip at all sorts of sessile invertebrates. It's rather uncommon in the U.S. trade, seeing how it has a rather limited distribution (mainly Southeast Asia and Japan). If you have a source and are up to keeping this beautiful fish, the risk may be worth it! My main concern is the size of the fish. This species can and will hit around 10 inches, and a 90 gallon aquarium is simply not large enough to house this species for anything close to a normal life span, IMO. You really will need an aquarium that is six feet or greater in length (preferably 8 feet), as they roam over large areas of reef in nature, and they do like caves and crevices to hide in.> I have a few LPS corals and a few softies (no SPS) and I'm willing to tempt fate on one of my favorite fish of all time if it could possibly be kept without tearing everything up. <A total dice roll, my friend!> If the fish is well-fed enough (3 times daily with New Life Spectrum pellets along with frozen foods -- all soaked in Selcon), could it be somewhat trusted not to be a holy terror to corals? I was thinking about keeping a clam, but I wouldn't trust a large angel with a clam since I've seen first hand one getting nibbled to death in the past and I'd much rather have a huge want of mine in the septentrionalis if at all possible. <Again- there is no guarantee. Even fishes with a "reputation" for NOT munching on corals can turn on them. Like people, fish are individuals, and we cannot expect them to conform to our behavioral expectations.> It's either that, or I was thinking of going with a Pomacanthus annularis which is my distant 2nd choice (but another gorgeous fish to say the least) which I've read in the FAQ's is one of the 3 large marine angels Bob would tempt fate with in a reef environment.- Jon <Well, Jon, I have seen the P. annularis in reef systems. Again, it's a gamble, but it's up to the hobbyist to decide his/her threshold. A more pressing concern is the HUGE size that this fish can attain (like 15 to 18 inches), and its need for correspondingly huge quarters! Keeping one of these fish in anything less than an aquarium of hundreds of gallons is cruel and unusual, in my opinion. My advice to you, my risk-taking friend: Try fishes better suited to the quarters that you can provide, such as a rare Centropyge species (try pricing a C. hotumatua or C. joculator if you want sexy and expensive!), which are just as challenging (and potentially destructive to reef invertebrates), but generally max out at 4 inches or less. Regardless of what route you take, there are tradeoffs that you must make, so be prepared and go for it based on what is best for you and your animals. Good luck! Regards, Scott F.> Jonathan Philpot

Re: Chaetodontoplus septentrionalis in a captive reef? Big Angels- Little Angels! 1/17/08 Thanks for the quick response, Scott. <MY pleasure! Didn't want to be a "buzz kill", but I just felt that I needed to highlight a few things.> Question in regards to P. annularis -- on the WWM site it's listed as a max-out of 8 inches or so in captivity and I must say that I've never seen one anywhere near the size you gave me (the 15-18 inches). The two older specimens I've seen (one around 6 or so years old in the LFS display tank of around 600 gallons and another in a 125 gallon tank belonging to a friend of mine) have both been roughly the 8 inches listed from what I've been able to tell. <I must be honest with you- I have seen at least 3 specimens of this species well over 12 inches, and one that was darned close to a foot and a half. I'm gonna render advice based on what I have seen. Sure, they may not all reach that size, but the potential does exist...And you can't ignore that, IMO.> But I've seen the fish listed anywhere from 8 inches to 12 inches and now you mention possibly a foot and a half as well. A bit confusing (and trust me, I'm not doubting you -- just confused by my own witness of the fish and by the multitude of length listings out there in both print and online). I've also seen so many different tank size suggestions which really makes it a bit frustrating since I've had the possibility to attain a few nice specimens at a reasonable price but passed because I've been so confused! <I totally agree! It is confusing. I can only speak from my experiences/observations. They can and do get quite large. Always take any advice you find-mine or anyone else's-with a grain of salt. In the end, you need to gather your information for yourself, from sources you know and from personal observations, and temper your decision with a healthy dose of skepticism. In the end, go with what your observations tell you. However, always think of the "end game" with large fishes. They need such large quarters to live healthy, happy lives.> I'll probably pass on both large angels until I can make a move to a larger aquarium in the future and stick with the Centropyge angels that I've had success with in the past. <I commend you on this decision. If you can house these fishes successfully (and I have no doubt that you can), you will enjoy much success, and the fishes will enjoy longer, happier lives!> I do a lot of "trading" of fish with a few fellow aquarists I know and trust so I've had quite a few species of fish over the years and have kept my tanks pretty varied. <Cool!> Thanks for the response, again, though. I'll likely give the Centropyge potteri another go since I did have success in my first go-around until my tank crashed in a very rare power outage. Though I'd love to find the blue/black variant of it since it is a truly magnificent coloration in my opinion (not that the normal coloration isn't magnificent). - Jon <I hope you have every success, Jon! I have seen a blue morph of the C. potteri in a store in Chicago, and it was awesome! Probably a temporary aberration, but what a beauty! Take care! Regards, Scott F.>

Singapore Angel Compatibility 02/06/2008 Hi Crew, <<Hello, Andrew today>> I have been trying to determine if a Singapore Angel would be OK in my tank. My main concern is with the corals. I have Leather, Kenya Tree, Xenia, Yellow Polyps, Zoas, Mushrooms, Bubble, Frogspawn, Torch, Galaxea, Hammer and Ricordea. I currently have a Flame Angel and it seams he only nips the Xenia a little, but not enough to kill it, just slow down the growth, which isn't too bad. Which corals do you think would be most at risk? I know some large angels eat Zoas, but do Singapores? <<Chaetodontoplus mesoleucus, vermiculated angel or Singapore angel is very nice fish indeed. Ensure you are strict on getting and keeping this fish to eat. Very common for these to simply not eat in the home aquaria an die. It is possible for these to pick at sps and soft corals, however I do class them any more of a danger than you other angel, the flame. As with a lot of angels, its a bit of a gamble. Is it one your willing to take? Read more here and linked articles and FAQ's. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/fishes/angels/Chaetodonoplus/index.htm >> Thanks, Craig <<Thanks for the questions Craig, hope this helps. A Nixon>>

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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