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View Full Version : Angelfish fighting or kissing??



majorzeb
03-09-2007, 8:05 PM
Yesterday I noticed that my two angelfish seemed to be kissing. They had their mouths stuck together, and they were pulling away from each other but still holding on. It looked like they were trying to kill each other, so I knew then that they probably wont kissing. They separated and then started charging at each other and biting each other. This went on for about 10 minutes!! When I turned the fish tank light on they stopped, and they haven't done it since. Has anyone else ever witnessed this odd behavior?

jm1212
03-09-2007, 8:19 PM
it sounds to me like they were lip-locking, which is fighting over dominance. what is your tank's size? havent heard angels to do this before.

Dangerdoll
03-09-2007, 8:23 PM
This is typical Angel behavior when competing over territory or when competing for a female. Do you have 3 angels in the tank?

majorzeb
03-09-2007, 8:34 PM
Its a 10 gallon, and I have 2 angelfish. They aren't really big, and they have plenty of room for now. I plan on putting them in a 20 gallon soon.

Madcrawdad
03-09-2007, 8:56 PM
when I was a kid, my dad had a few angels in his 55g... I remember 2 of them exhibiting the behavior you've described. must've been competing for a female, as DD notes, as 2 of the handful of angels in the tank spawned shortly thereafter. unfortunately nothing ever came of the spawn.

Dangerdoll
03-09-2007, 8:59 PM
being that there are 2 and they are in a 10 gallon, it's most likely due to the space issue. They can be aggressive buggers when they don't have their way. If you're going to upgrade to the 20, please make it a 20 high as they need the height for their verticle fins.

Ghostshrimp55
03-09-2007, 9:09 PM
Yeah, they were fighting. Since you only have 2 in a small tank, I'd say they were fighting over dominance. Even though they seem to have stopped, I'd expect it to get worse. If it hasn't happened already, one will eventually establish dominance. After that, the loser's life will be made miserable until it eventually dies.

I had 2 angels in a 55 community tank with plenty of plants. One of them became the dominant one after a lip-locking incident. After that, it went downhill for the loser. He was constantly harrassed. He would always hide in the plants, usually in whatever position he landed in after a panicked retreat from the dominant angel. He'd only come out to feed and then be quickly chased back into the plants. Eventually, he got so stressed that he began to lose color. His fins even began to erode. I took him out and fixed him up in a quarantine tank. He seems to be a little larger than the dominant angel now so I'm going to try and reintroduce him. If that doesn't work, I'll have to trade him in to the LFS.

Anyway, IME, the behavior you've seen will most likely get worse with time. I would get a larger tank ASAP or you'll probably lose an angel. You really need a bigger tank anyway. Your angels will also need something larger than a 20 gallon.

Star_Rider
03-09-2007, 10:16 PM
females will lip-lock a male..it's kind of a test of fortitude. to decide if he is a worthy mate.

I have several breeding pairs..I have seen this most predominantly in pairs..
if you watch males fight..they are NOT lip locking... males fighting for territory is much more aggressive..blind side hits are common. it is pretty scarey when males go at it..especially if one male ie the third wheel out.

now that said..young angels may spar..if these are young..it could be sparring or a possible pair starting early.

I would recommend you get a much larger tank..a 29 is good for a pair..btw..you will be amazed at their growth rate when they are moved to larger quarters.

Ghostshrimp55
03-09-2007, 10:34 PM
females will lip-lock a male..it's kind of a test of fortitude. to decide if he is a worthy mate......males fighting for territory is much more aggressive..blind side hits are common. it is pretty scarey when males go at it..especially if one male ie the third wheel out.

Hmm......so what does it mean when the agressor does blind-side hits and then follows them up with lip-locking? Oh, and then throws in charges with fins flared and head shaking? That's the behavior I saw between my two angels. BTW, the loser didn't just cower at first. He/she did fight back. For a brief time, it was the loser that was doing the chasing and attacking.......I mean for about a day or so. For whatever reason, the dominant player was a complete wuss for that day.

majorzeb
03-10-2007, 3:37 PM
I already have a 29 gallon, but I decided not to put the angels in there b/c they love to eat smaller fish!! I had already planned to upgrade to a 20 gallon. The angels seem to be doing fine now...they are swimming around together, and I haven't seen another "lip-locking" incident. Hopefully, they will be fine until I can upgrade.

I think that they have plenty of room right now, but I think within a month or so I'll upgrade to a 20 H or a 29 gallon. I want to hold off upgrading because I was thinking about upgrading my 29 to a 55, and it would be a waste of money to upgrade now if I'm going to upgrade my other tank as well.

I really appreciate all of the info about "lip-locking", and all of the suggestions.

Star_Rider
03-10-2007, 10:14 PM
Hmm......so what does it mean when the agressor does blind-side hits and then follows them up with lip-locking? Oh, and then throws in charges with fins flared and head shaking? That's the behavior I saw between my two angels. BTW, the loser didn't just cower at first. He/she did fight back. For a brief time, it was the loser that was doing the chasing and attacking.......I mean for about a day or so. For whatever reason, the dominant player was a complete wuss for that day.

You have a good chance of a fish deciding territory..most likely a male(not always)
keep a close eye out..angels can hit pretty hard ..I have seen some hit's so hard they stun the lesser fish.

I have also lot angels from this behavior.

jm1212
03-11-2007, 2:48 PM
females will lip-lock a male..it's kind of a test of fortitude. to decide if he is a worthy mate.

I have several breeding pairs..I have seen this most predominantly in pairs..
if you watch males fight..they are NOT lip locking... males fighting for territory is much more aggressive..blind side hits are common. it is pretty scarey when males go at it..especially if one male ie the third wheel out.

now that said..young angels may spar..if these are young..it could be sparring or a possible pair starting early.

I would recommend you get a much larger tank..a 29 is good for a pair..btw..you will be amazed at their growth rate when they are moved to larger quarters.i love lerning new stuff :D

knew the part about the males fighting though, which is why i thought it was unsual.

a 20 gallon will not be big enough for them. a 29 is probably your best bet and it gives you a little wiggle room for a group of corydoras to add some activity to the bottom of the tank.

keep the ten gallon cycled jsut in case they do turn out to be a spawning pair. it will give you a place to keep the babies.

kimwangsong
09-10-2008, 1:50 PM
I had two angels, one of them started bullying on the other. Trying to resolve the issue I brought another two assuming the first couple were both males fighting over territory. Well, it worked sort of. The aggressive one started bullying on all other three now removing the pressure from only one poor angel. To make the Bully behave, I quarantined him in a breeding net for two days, then set him free again.

Okay, now for the fun part. The quarantine worked, bully slowed down a bit. He still annoys the others but not as aggressively. And later, I started seeing this kissing between bully and another smaller angel. Although it is significantly smaller, it exchanged the pushing and what looks like kissing with bully. That must be flirting as bully is bigger and stronger, yet he took it easy with his mate. This is fun :)

mooch4056
09-10-2008, 2:24 PM
Yesterday I noticed that my two angelfish seemed to be kissing. They had their mouths stuck together, and they were pulling away from each other but still holding on. It looked like they were trying to kill each other, so I knew then that they probably wont kissing. They separated and then started charging at each other and biting each other. This went on for about 10 minutes!! When I turned the fish tank light on they stopped, and they haven't done it since. Has anyone else ever witnessed this odd behavior?


I have three angles in a 55. They do that all they time over territory. Thye use to lip lock before the couple paired off. really it has settled down a lot and the third angel who doesnt have a female partner stays away from them for the most part. Angles do better in larger groups from my understanding. Mine dont do any physical harm to each other and at times they all seem to get a long. But as stated above by others... its typical angel behavior. They are very peaceful fish when other angles arnt present. But my 3 angles seem to have worked out there territoy issues.

Star_Rider
09-10-2008, 2:25 PM
I had two angels, one of them started bullying on the other. Trying to resolve the issue I brought another two assuming the first couple were both males fighting over territory. Well, it worked sort of. The aggressive one started bullying on all other three now removing the pressure from only one poor angel. To make the Bully behave, I quarantined him in a breeding net for two days, then set him free again.

Okay, now for the fun part. The quarantine worked, bully slowed down a bit. He still annoys the others but not as aggressively. And later, I started seeing this kissing between bully and another smaller angel. Although it is significantly smaller, it exchanged the pushing and what looks like kissing with bully. That must be flirting as bully is bigger and stronger, yet he took it easy with his mate. This is fun :)
you may have the beginning of a pair bond forming

lovejonesx
09-10-2008, 3:02 PM
Most likely, nuffin romantic about it at all.

gjx