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I have six wild caught leopoldi angels, I've had them for about a year and half. I don't find them much different than scalare and altums which I have kept both before, the only thing i see is they seem more skittish, spooked easily. I keep them in my regular tap water which is from a well, pH 7.4-7.8 and temp is right about 78. I know @Danielkeeps them and has even bred them, so hopefully he'll chime in here as well. I am hoping to try and work with them this winter to try to get them to spawn. Good Luck!

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Like @Andy's Fish Den they seemed very similar to scalare to me (I've never kept altums, though I have always wanted to).

If my leopoldi ever had the inclination to be skittish, that was beaten out of the them by my cats which spent an inordinate amount of time of on the top rim of the angelfish tank. I think that this desensitized them when they realized that no matter how scary that cat monster above looked that in the end nothing ever happened so the angelfish quit worrying about anything.


I kept mine at a pH near neutral and temperature of about 80°F.

In the end they were bulletproof. It didn't seem to matter what I did or didn't do they just rolled with the punches. I think they were by wife's favorite fish of all time.

@TJB5280 I think you are the right track. Getting a half dozen and letting them sort out the pairings has always worked for me.

The longer I keep fish the more mysterious it all becomes. I really have no idea why some things work and some things don't. Biology has too many variables to be reduced in to a simple formula (at least for me). I think I have tried enough different things over time that at least something was bound to work out.

I look forward to seeing the updates on your angelfish project!

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All the fish were in that same tank the entire time.

No fish (except the parents) was ever netted until it came time to sell the whole lot, and even then I had to drain almost all the water out of the tank in order to catch the fish.

I had purchased half a dozen dime sized leopoldis. They grew up in the tank and formed 3 pairs. Each pair had about a 2 1/2 foot cube bounded by plants that they patrolled. Eventually all 3  pairs were breeding simultaneously, all successfully raising fry (talk about thunder dome). They would raid the other pairs territories when they got a chance. There might have been 1000 - 2000 babies spread between the 3 pairs early on, but 98% of the fry gotten eaten at some point . Those six original fish are the biggest ones now. I don't think any of the babies that eventually grew up have ever gotten as large as the founders.


The babies would pick off the parent's side similarly to what baby discus do.

I fed the founders like crazy with blackworms, mosquito larva and scuds, but after I ended up with 50 angelfish in the tank, it was only TetraMin from then on. Also 6 angels in 500 gallons is nearly 100 gallons a fish. 50 angels in 500 gallons is 10 gallons a fish. So diet and room limited the babies just a little bit.

And yes they were incredibly aggressive with the other pairs and there were lots of torn fins. But you can only do so much damage to a rival that is 7 feet away from you, and any time you spend harassing that rival is time not spent guarding your fry.

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@DanielI know you had mentioned in another post, but my memory has lost it, what parameters have you been keeping your leopoldi to breed in? I got hold of some live blackworms and have been feeding them, along with frozen bloodworms and brine shrimp, to hopefully convince mine to spawn for me. Should I start doing more frequent smaller % water changes or let it go for a couple weeks and then hit them with a larger water change with RO water?

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Hitting them with a big water change is not likely the answer. I would go with regular smaller water changes in an effort to have clean water and just stick to that. But on the other hand it probably wouldn't hurt to hit them with a big water change. The point is I don't think any of that really matters.

I kept them in slightly acidic water with a temperature slightly above 80°F. But I don't think precise water parameters in terms of pH and temperature are critical either. I think anywhere between 6.6 and 7.4 will probably work just fine for pH. And any temperatures between 78°F and 83°F will work.

As long as the water is clean, I think the most important ingredient is just a good diet. It's hard to go wrong with black worms, blood worms and brine shrimp. Variety in diet is always a good thing as is giving them a lot of protein.

The fish will breed when you have a well-fed, healthy paired male and female who feel comfortable in their environment. That's the formula.


Several hundred baby angelfish on an Amazon sword leaf being watched over by mom.

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Thanks @Daniel my well tap water has a pH of 7.8 so I think I am going to use a mixture of some RO and tap to help bring that down some and do smaller more frequent water changes, as well as raise the temperature a little as I have their water at 77 or so right now. Thanks again, and hopefully soon I can report some breeding activity. 

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