How to Acclimate Angelfish

7 Essential Steps to Acclimate Your Angelfish

When you are about to move out of your house, leaving behind a familiar environment in search of something new, it is important that this change is stress-free and welcoming for both you and your family! 

So, you will have to research the new place you are moving to find out the best way to acclimate yourself and your family. The same goes for your fish.

Acclimating your new angelfish to their aquarium environment is crucial to their long-term health and well-being. 

In this guide, we will go over the proper steps for acclimating your angelfish to feel right at home in their new surroundings.

How to Introduce New Angelfish?

1. Prepare for the Arrival of Your Fish

Imagine that you’ve just brought home a new puppy. The first thing you would do is make sure your house is ready for a pet, right?

You’d want to create a comfortable and safe space to sleep and eat and explore, free of hazards.

The same is for your beloved fish. You’ll want to set up your fish aquarium ahead of time and slowly acclimate them to their new water conditions to give them the best chance at survival.

We suggest performing a water change and verifying that the water is similar to what the fish will live in.

2. Slowly Add Your New Fish to the Aquarium

Take your fish’s bag and float it in the aquarium for about 15-20 minutes. Doing this will help gradually adjust the fish to the temperature of the aquarium water.

After the 20 minutes have elapsed, start dipping out a cup of water from the aquarium and slowly pouring it into the bag with the fish.

You should continue this process for about an hour or until the water in the bag is close to being the same temperature as the aquarium water.

After an hour has passed, it’s now time to introduce your new fish to their home sweet home!

It is preferable not to place your new fish in the main tank. Keep the fish in a quarantine tank for one to two weeks before putting them into your main aquarium.

The quarantine period ensures that your fish is disease-free and healthy while being transported or kept in an open aquarium.

Slowly introduce your new fish to the aquarium
Slowly introduce your new fish to the aquarium

3. Feed Your Fish More Than Normal

When you first introduce a new fish to your aquarium, it’s critical to ensure you’re giving it the right food.

If your fish doesn’t eat anything for a few days or stops eating, it may indicate that it is stressed and isn’t adjusting well, leading to bigger issues.

Here is a youtube guide to help you acclimate your angelfish.

4. Turn Off The Lights At Night & Keep Them On During The Day

For most fish, including those living in aquariums, lighting is essential.

Some species need light while others don’t, so it’s good to conduct some research ahead of time.

The new fish require a period of darkness to help their bodies adjust before eating during the day.

So it’s important to use aquarium lighting that keeps your fish active during the day while turning it off after a certain hour (we usually recommend leaving it off for no more than 8 hours).

Some Good Lighting Options Include:

  • Metal halides.
  • T5s with VHO bulbs.
  • LED lights (preferably ones without the white spectrums).
  • Daylight LED bulbs.

If you can get a light that resembles natural sunshine, it’s even more effective and has been found to benefit fish (due to the color of light) and disease prevention benefits.

Fish tank lightning
Fish tank lighting

5. Monitor the Water Quality Regularly and Make Adjustments as Needed

Fish are particular about water quality, so don’t be surprised if they’re not happy with water that doesn’t meet their requirements.

It is suggested to change 20% of your fish water with clean, dechlorinated tap water every week or two.

However, some hobbyists may not be able to do this. If you are one of them, at the very least, keep track of your water conditions and make necessary adjustments as needed until you figure out what works best for you!

You should also test the pH of both the container and the tank before introducing the aquarium.

From our experience, we recommend a pH of 6.0 to 7.5 for Angelfish to properly acclimate since significant variations in pH will hinder the adaptation process.

If the difference in pH is more than 0.4, your fish are likely to suffer. So, it is recommended to maintain it first.

Monitor the Water Quality
Monitor the Water Quality

6. Add New Decorations

It is always a good idea to add plants, especially for angelfish. These fish enjoy hiding behind and nibbling on the vegetation.

Not only will this provide a new hiding place for the new angel, but it will also give the existing angelfish an intriguing new thing to examine.

In addition, other decorations such as rocks, caves, or driftwood can divert their attention away from the newcomer and make the transition smoother.

7. Post-Acclimation Care

After the acclimation process is complete, it’s important to continue monitoring the water conditions in your tank.

It would be best if you did a water change every week to ensure the levels of ammonia and nitrites are at a safe level for your fish.

You should also monitor the temperature of the water and make sure it is stable. A sudden temperature change can be stressful for your fish and lead to illness.

Why Is Quarantining New Fish Important?

Quarantining new fish is essential since the new fish could get sick or transmit an illness to your aquarium.

Fish that are wild caught or farmed are exposed to a variety of germs before you even get them.

For example, the Journal of Fish Diseases discovered that a single freshwater angelfish breeder population had a widespread outbreak of iridovirus, causing many fatalities.

Therefore, quarantining fish allows any diseases, infections, or parasites to manifest themselves so that they can be eliminated before you introduce the new fish to angelfish tankmates.

As a plus, quarantining allows the new angelfish to become somewhat acclimated to its altered environment while minimizing stress, especially if you used water from your existing tank.

Why Is the New Angelfish Staying in Corner?

Your new angelfish may get spooked easily for the first few days so it may hide in the corner or distance itself from other fish.

After they get used to their new surroundings, angelfish will move around the tank more freely.

However, if your angelfish is hiding in the corner and not moving much even after a few days, there may be something wrong with the water conditions or temperature.

Make sure to check the population density of your tank as well. If it’s too crowded, your angelfish may be feeling stressed and could be seeking refuge in the corner.

Also, it’s also possible that your new angelfish is sick. If you see any other abnormal behavior, such as listlessness or lethargy, record the symptoms and seek out the right treatment or advice from a professional.


What Is the Best Food for Angelfish?

Angelfish are omnivores, so they will eat both plants and meat. A good diet for angelfish includes pellets, flakes, live food, and frozen food.

How Often Should I Feed My Angelfish?

Angelfish should be fed 2-3 times per day, in small amounts that they can eat in 2 minutes.

How Do I Know If My Angelfish Is Sick?

Some common signs of illness in angelfish include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Lethargy
  • Clamped fins
  • White spots on the body
  • Torn fins

How Often Should I Clean My Angelfish Tank?

You should do a partial water change (20-25%) every 2 weeks. The gravel should also be vacuumed during each water change.

Do Angelfish Need a Filter?

Angelfish need a filter to remove toxins and debris from the water. Also, the filter provides beneficial bacteria that help to break down fish waste.

Do Angelfish Need Plants?

Angelfish need plants for shelter and to help with the nitrification process. Live plants are best, but you can also use fake plants. Just make sure that the plants are safe for aquariums and won’t release any toxins into the water.

My Angelfish Is Hiding, Is It Sick?

Angelfish hide when they feel unwell. Check the water conditions and make sure the tank is set up correctly. If you see other abnormal behavior, like lethargy or loss of appetite, seek professional advice.

Last Words

We hope that these hints assist you in successfully introducing your new angelfish.

If you have any other questions about acclimating fish or need help with something specific, feel free to leave a comment below, and we’ll be happy to help you out.