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Do Angelfish Like Current? (Why Too Much Can Be a Problem)

Do Angelfish Like Current? (Why Too Much Can Be a Problem)

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This post is written to the author's best knowledge and is not intended to be used in place of veterinary advice. In addition, this post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Sometimes you need to take a step back and consider whether the fish tank environment is appropriate for the fish. If you are keeping certain types of fish in the tank, then they may not like certain things.

There are fish that might like there to be a stronger current in the aquarium. Other fish might only be able to tolerate weaker currents.

If you’re going to be caring for angelfish in your fish tank, then you might be wondering how these fish feel about currents. Do angelfish like currents or do they prefer that the water stays still?

Continue reading to learn more about angelfish and currents. This information will allow you to take care of the angelfish and keep them in a tank where they can thrive.

Angelfish Do Like Slow-Moving Water

The simple answer to whether angelfish enjoy having a current in the water is “yes.” However, it’s important to note that angelfish like the current to be slow-moving in nature.

When you find angelfish in the wild, they’re going to be in water that moves slowly. These fish are more used to slow currents, and they might not react positively to stronger currents.

If you want the angelfish in your tank to thrive, then exposing them to a strong current is not a good idea. This could wind up causing the fish significant stress.

The flow of the water in your aquarium will be determined by the filtration system. You’ll need to ensure that the current is gentle enough for the angelfish.

Typically, people don’t purposefully make the currents strong in fish tanks. You might accidentally expose the fish to a stronger current than expected if you make some mistakes, though.

There are ways that you can fix current strength issues. You’ll learn a bit more about that later.

For now, you just need to know that your fish tank should try to replicate the natural environment of angelfish. Angelfish are found in the Amazon Basin, and the water current moves slowly there.

If you’re able to get the flow rate right, then it’ll be that much easier for the angelfish to thrive. When you’re looking for a good filter, it’s necessary to think about both the needs of the fish and keeping the water parameters in the right range.

Sometimes getting things perfect will seem to be a bit challenging. However, you can always seek out a recommended filter that angelfish enthusiasts approve of.

For example, a filter made by Tetra is one of the best internal filter options for small fish tanks. Sometimes you need to consider different filters depending on how large your fish tank is.

What to Do About the Current Being Too Strong

So what if you already have a filter, but you’re finding that it’s a bit too strong for the angelfish? If the angelfish appear to have problems swimming against the current, then you’ll want to make some changes.

There are some things that you can try that will make it better for the angelfish. This should help the angelfish to be able to tolerate the strength of the current.

Decorations and Plants Can Reduce the Flow of the Current

One very easy thing that you could try involves purchasing decorations and aquatic plants for the aquarium. If you place decorations and plants in the fish tank, then that can help to make it easier for the fish to move around in there.

Basically, the presence of these objects will reduce the strength of the current naturally. It’ll be a lot more pleasant for your fish to swim around in the tank when there are plenty of aquatic plants in the tank.

Honestly, it’s not a good idea to keep angelfish in a tank that doesn’t have plants anyway. When you place angelfish in a barren tank, it causes them to feel exposed.

When you find angelfish in the wild, they’re going to be hanging out near aquatic plants. They use them as hiding places, and the plants are even important for breeding purposes.

Female angelfish usually try to lay eggs on or near underwater plants. It’s typical to see a female try to lay the eggs on a big leaf.

It gives them a spot where the eggs will be safe and the male will be able to fertilize the eggs away from potential threats. If you’re thinking of breeding the angelfish, then you’ll definitely want to have aquatic plants in the tank.

Even if you don’t care about breeding the fish, it’s wise to have the plants there. It helps with the current, and it makes the fish feel more comfortable.

Your fish will be able to utilize the plants as hiding spots when necessary. Sometimes a fish will just want to get away from the other fish, and giving it a nice hiding spot will keep it from becoming stressed.

Make Use of a Pre-Filter Sponge

Another idea to reduce the strength of the current is to use a pre-filter sponge. You could place a pre-filter sponge on the filter to keep the strength of the filter in check.

This might be the easiest solution to your problem if adding aquatic plants and aquarium decorations didn’t do the trick. It won’t cost much at all to get the pre-filter sponge that you need, and installing it is decidedly simple.

All you need to do is wrap the pre-filter sponge around the aquarium filter’s nozzle. This decreases the flow of the water, and you won’t have to worry about the angelfish so much moving forward.

You should be able to easily get the pre-filter sponge at any store that sells fish tanks and fish. It’s also possible to order what you need online if you don’t have a good store in your area.

When you don’t want to spend a lot of cash, this is going to be a great choice. It should help you to get your tank in order so that the angelfish will be okay.

You Could Also Create a Filter Baffle

Have you considered the idea of creating a filter baffle? Depending on the type of filter that you’re using, it might be possible to create a baffle that will solve your problems.

This idea only works if you’re using a cascading filter. The good news is that this is very easy to do if you have the right filter.

Simply get an empty plastic bottle and place it next to your filter output. You’ll need to measure how long everything is.

Once you’ve done the measurements, you should cut the plastic bottle. You want to ensure that the length of the bottle matches the length of the filter.

Wash the bottle before proceeding further because you need to ensure that it doesn’t contain any chemicals. With this done, you’ll be able to attach the bottle to your filter in order to reduce the strength of the current.

This is a simple, fast DIY method for fixing current strength issues. You can make it so that the current is much more tolerable for your fish using this idea if you have a cascading filter.

Buy a Different Filter

Of course, buying a different filter is going to be a good option as well. If you want to ensure that you have better control over the current, then you should seek out a filter that has an adjustable flow mechanism of some kind.

There are many different filters on the market that you can look at. A significant number of them will come with adjustable flow mechanisms.

This will make it easy to adjust the flow yourself so that you can fine-tune it until it’s perfect for the angelfish. Filters such as these will be among the best that you can purchase for angelfish tanks.

It’s also nice that these filters aren’t prohibitively expensive. You might be worried that the filters would be costly compared to ones that don’t have adjustable flow features, but that’s not the case.

You should be able to find a very good filter for under $50. It’s even possible to find filters for as little as $10, but it is recommended to seek out a high-quality filter for your system.

Some of the easiest to control filters will come with flow-control knobs. The knobs are very intuitive and they allow you to restrict water flow by simply turning the knob a bit.

It’s easy to get used to using the simple knobs on these filters. If you’d like to have something that isn’t too complex, then seeking out a filter with a flow control knob will be a solid choice.

Will There Be Problems If You Don’t Fix the Strong Current?

Yes, the angelfish will likely experience various problems if you don’t fix the strong current. If the current is only a bit too strong, then it might not be a huge deal, though.

Substantially stronger currents than normal can be a real problem. The angelfish might experience a variety of different issues that will start to impact their health.

Below, you’ll see some of the reasons why you need to address your current problems in your fish tank. This will help you to understand the urgency of getting the strength of the current right in your aquarium.

Extreme Stress Issues

Angelfish that are living in a fish tank with a current that is way too strong will become stressed. Fish do indeed enjoy exercise, but currents that are very strong will be too much for them.

If the fish continue to be forced to live in a tank with a strong current, then they might start getting more and more stressed. Stress does many different things to a fish, and none of them are positive.

Stressed fish will have weakened immune systems. It’ll make the fish more likely to get sick, and they’ll even become susceptible to infections.

Under normal circumstances, a fish with a healthy immune system doesn’t need to worry about such things. Stress makes a fish feel completely different, and this is why it’s important to take care of improper current settings right away.

It’s also worth noting that stressed angelfish will look much duller than healthy ones. The brilliant colors of the angelfish will start to fade, and that will make it so that your tank isn’t quite as beautiful as it once was.

Granted, you should care more about the health of the fish than the appearance of the fish. Even so, it’s just another reason not to ignore current issues.

The Fish Will Be Fatigued

The fish will likely be quite fatigued if they have to work too hard just to swim in the tank. Strong currents make it so that the fish have to struggle to get around and do what they need to do.

As you might know, angelfish need to come to the surface from time to time. They can breathe underwater, but coming to the surface is important for the labyrinth organ.

When the current is too powerful, it might make it so that the angelfish won’t be able to reach the top. It’s an unfortunate situation, but it’s something that you can avoid by fixing the strong current.

You don’t want your fish to suffer and have health issues because of the current. Taking the time to fix the current and weaken it slightly will be all that is necessary to turn things around.

Problems Eating

You might not have thought of this, but a really strong current can make it tough for angelfish to eat properly. A normal current will be just fine, but a strong one will keep the fish from being able to get to the food as normal.

When fish can’t reach the top of the tank very well, they won’t be able to reach the food. A very strong current could push the fish food away, and that will keep it out of the reach of the fish.

Even fish who make it to the top of the tank might struggle because of the food being pushed along the current. Food that doesn’t get eaten can wind up causing problems in your tank as well.

Debris that is left in the water will wind up causing issues with bacteria. This can make the tank dirty, and it’ll eventually throw off the water parameters.

It’s generally recommended to scoop out any food that your fish don’t eat. However, you want to solve the current problem because the true issue is that the fish aren’t able to eat the food normally.

Use one of the many solutions listed earlier to try to solve the current problem. This should allow the fish to eat the food as normal, and they’ll be able to stay healthy.

A Strong Current Could Cause Damage to the Fins

A strong current has the potential to cause damage to the fins as well. Angelfish have beautiful fins, but they can become damaged for various reasons.

You might notice that a fin will become bent or broken. In some cases, fish fins will get torn off completely.

Generally, a strong current isn’t going to rip an angelfish fin clean off. But it could easily cause damage to the fin if the fish has to struggle just to swim around.

It’s more common for angelfish to get damaged fins when they bash into objects or if they get into fights with other fish. The fins can heal and they’re even capable of growing back.

This doesn’t mean that you should ignore fin damage that is being caused by a strong current. This is something that should act as a call to action.

It’s showing you that the current is not appropriate for the fish. Fix the current issue so that your fish don’t get hurt simply by trying to swim normally in the tank.

Final Thoughts

You’ve learned quite a bit about angelfish and currents. Angelfish do enjoy flowing water, but a strong current is not appropriate for these fish.

Angelfish are found in the Amazon Basin where there is slow-moving water. You want the environment in the fish tank to replicate the natural experience of the fish as much as possible.

This means that a gentle current is going to be much more appropriate for these fish. Thankfully, it shouldn’t be that hard to get a filter that will make things just right.

Ideally, you should buy a filter that makes it easy to adjust the flow of the current. You’ll be able to make adjustments so that the current isn’t too strong for the fish.

If you fail to make adjustments, then the fish could suffer consequences. It can stress the angelfish, and this will eventually lead to various health problems.

Angelfish might not even be able to eat properly if the current is very strong. You must pay attention to issues such as this as a fish tank owner.

Now that you know what to do, it’ll be simple enough to solve the problem. You can either take steps to alter the current or you can buy a filter that makes it easier to make adjustments.

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