How to Prevent My Angel Fish from Eating My Neons (Useful Tips)

When we refer to angel fish, we have a few things coming to our mind. It refers to a fish that has bright colored and wonderful pets to have in your aquarium.

Though these fishes are considered to be highly popular amongst fish and aquarium enthusiasts, not many people are aware about the life and habits of these exotic swimmers. They are also known for their liking of neon fish because of some unique and perhaps even weird habits.

In this article, we will try and learn something more about these wonderful and gorgeous looking fishes. We will learn some of its habits and also find out ways and means to care for them.

What Are The Special Characteristics of Angel Fish And Neons?

Also known for their animosity towards neon tetras, these fishes are known to be aggressive in their behavior. Many fish and aquarium owners often complain about these fishes eating other fishes and perhaps even indulging in cannibalism.

While it is a fact that in the wild these fishes are known to eat other neon tetras. Hence, it is quite possible that these fishes should also end up eating neons in an aquarium.

Initially angelfish could appear docile and at peace with other fishes in an aquarium. But in many cases, the peace and tranquility may be short lived, especially when you decide to keep these fishes in your aquarium for long periods of time.

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They exhibit aggressive behaviors even more when they are protecting their spawn. They are highly territorial and would not mind going to war with other fishes to protect their territories.

Keeping Neon Tetras And Angel Fish Separate Is a Good Idea

Because of their aggressive and unpredictable behavior many aquarium owners keep them separately away from other breeds of fish. There are also a few more things that one should keep in mind as far as these fishes are concerned.

It would be a risky proposition to add new angelfishes in an aquarium where there are some existing fishes of the same breed. This will create territory issues and you can be sure that the old and new fishes will fight for territory and many will end up dying.

You also must keep in mind the size of the tank. The first group of angelfishes should be kept in a 20-gallon tank and for every new addition, you must have aquariums or tanks of 10 gallons each. This will give them enough space to be on their own and stop bloody fights over territory

Importance of Mixed Diet in Captivity

We also need to bear in mind that in the wild angelfish are carnivorous in their food habits. Therefore when you are keeping them in captivity you must be careful about the diet.

When they are in their natural habitats, they are known to feed on arthropods and insects. However, when they are kept in captivity, you should ensure that you give them a mix of food. It should include commercial food consisting of pellets or flakes.

You also could add frozen or live or even dehydrated arthropods such as mosquito larvae or brine shrimp. Avoid giving live food because it could increase the chance of infection and disease.

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This is How You Prevent Angelfish Eating Neons

Let us now try and find answers to the question as to how can we prevent Angelfish eating Neons. From a theoretical perspective it may be quite tough and perhaps even impossible to prevent neon tetras being eaten by Angel Fishes.

If you plan to keep Angelfishes and Neon tetras in the same aquarium, you should be prepared to lose neon fishes or neon tetras in large numbers. Angelfishes might look docile during their infancy. However, as they grow they tend to become quite aggressive.

Neon Tetras are comparatively smaller in size and therefore angelfishes do not mind snacking on them. Though the reasons are not known, angelfishes have a natural instinct to attack neon fishes. Hence, it is important to be aware of this behavior pattern of these fishes and take action accordingly.

The best way to prevent angelfishes from feasting on neon tetras is to keep them separately. If this is not always possible, we are listing down a few more things that could help in reducing the risk of neon fishes being lost to angelfishes on a large scale.

Providing more hiding spots could be a good idea to prevent angelfishes attacking neons. You also could look into the possibility of adding more plants. The plants should be spread across the length of the Aquarium. This will help Neons some hiding place and they also can move away from angelfishes even when they are sighted at a distance.

Angelfishes are known to hunt more aggressively when they are hungry. Hence, always try to keep these fishes well-fed because this could help them to remain calm and prevent them from their natural tendency to hunt for fishes in general and neon fishes in particular. Always try to keep small sized fishes in place of the big ones. The big sized ones are always trouble mongers and are notorious for attacking the neon fishes that are much smaller in size even when they are fully grown.

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Go For Long Finned Variety

It would be a good idea to replace the angelfishes with the long-finned variants. The long-finned ones are slower in speed and are not as mobile as the short-finned variants. Neons are quite fast and therefore the long-finned angelfishes may not be able to chase and track them down.

Have a combination of discus fished with other big variants. They could act as a deterrent and prevent the angelfishes from running amok through the small sized neon tetras.

However, we need to bear in mind that angelfishes by nature are extremely aggressive and even when they are full and well-fed their nature makes them take on smaller sized fishes in general. They seem to have a complete and total animosity towards neon fishes and therefore you must try and find out ways and means by which this problem can be overcome.


Certain fishes have certain attitudes and behavioral tendencies and they cannot be changed in spite of taking the best efforts. Hence, in such situations, the best option would be to go in for proactive measures rather than reactive.

The safest and most effective solution is to keep angelfishes and neon fishes in separate tanks and aquariums. In case if this is not always possible, go in for long-finned angelfishes and provide enough hiding spaces for the neon fishes so that they can stand a better chance of escaping from the vicious attacks of angelfishes.

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