Why Do Angelfish Die? (Reasons & Solutions)

Such an adorable creature is Angelfish, isn’t it? They are basically non-aggressive and easy to live with. However, many hobbyists claimed they noticed Angelfish dying and could not really locate the cause. 

So, Why Do Angelfish Die? There can be a bunch of reasons for the Angelfish to die. For instance, the poor water conditions might be a prominent reason for the death of the Angelfish. Other reasons might include the presence of aggressive tank mates, disease, insufficient diet, or attack by parasites. 

Due to insufficient knowledge, many people fail to take proper care of their fish and end up with dead fish. Angelfish is hard to maintain, but small mistakes can invite unwanted disease and sometimes death. 

In this article, I will help you understand the causes behind the Angelfish’s premature death, and the bonus part is you will get to know the solutions so that you can prevent the death. I will also mention the warning signs so that you can start as soon as the problem arises. 

Enjoy the read. 

Do Angelfish Die Easily?

To be honest, Angelfish do not die easily. They can live up to 10 to 12 years, depending on the level of care and support you provide. That is, they are not sensitive, but proper care is needed for the proper growth. 

If you notice you Angelfish are dying very easily, then there can be a few reasons for that. The notable reasons behind the easy death of Angelfish include

  • Genetical problems
  • Insufficient oxygen level
  • Water temperature not up to the mark; maybe too hot or too cold
  • Absence of proper filtration
  • The aquarium is suffocated or more fish present in the tank
  • Irregular feeding pattern or inadequate food
  • Fluctuation in water pH level; very low or high
  • The extreme level of stress
  • Presence of aggressive fish in the tank
  • Too much water waste or irregularity in the water cleaning process
  • Mate or pair is missing

What Causes Angelfish To Die?

Numerous factors can cause the death of your favorite Angelfish. The common cause is poor water conditions.

Although the Angelfish can cope with various water conditions, poor water conditions do not fall under that as the harmful substances can be toxic for them. 

The causes for Angelfish to die to include:

1. Inappropriate Or Insufficient Food

Each fish needs to have a proper dietary chart and needs to be provided with healthy food, or else they might cause complications. Angelfish is no different. 

Unhealthy food might cause the death of the Angelfish. Insufficient food or unhealthy food is equally dangerous. Overfeeding can also create complications and eventually cause death.  


You cannot overfeed or feed less amount of food to your Angelfish. They need a balanced diet containing all the nutrients. Starting from flakes, pallets, veggies, they should also be given frozen and live food as well. 

You also need to make sure the Angelfish are provided with healthy food. For any fish, a proper diet should be maintained. The food diet chart should contain adequate food in an acceptable amount at an appropriate amount. 

2. Unfriendly Tank Mates

Unfriendly or incompatible tank mates can be aggressive towards Angelfish, making them attack each other. Although Angelfish are not aggressive fish, they might attack others as a defense mechanism. 


Carefully selects the appropriate tank mates who are non-aggressive and share the same water conditions. You also need to provide the fish as per the tank size requirements.

3. Spread Of Diseases

Diseases can weaken the immune system of the Angelfish and cause diseases. Then again, the presence of parasites can also be harmful to Angelfish.

Along with parasites, bacteria and fungi play a great role in carrying infectious diseases.


In this case, prevention is the best cure. It would help if you made sure the water conditions were up to the mark.

If required, you need to look for symptoms and take the necessary precautionary steps. Prepare a healthy diet that meets all the needs and nutritional requirements. 

4. Presence Of Death Fish

Having dead fish in the tank can release numerous toxic chemicals that pollute the water faster.

It is because the fish starts to decompose very quickly and contaminate the water very fast.

These can be dangerous for the fish and kill them.


Regularly checks the tank for any dead fish, and if you find any, take these out as soon as possible. 

5. Unhealthy Water Conditions

Water condition is something that needs to be maintained as per each fish’s requirements. Can it be about the water parameters or the water cleaning timing, you need to maintain all these, or else the Angelfish are prone to die.


When it comes to Angelfish, you need to remember a few specifications that need to be maintained. Let me make it clear by providing a chart. 

Tank Size (for two)20 Gallon
Temperature78 – 84 Degree Fahrenheit 
pH Level6.8 – 7.8
Hardness3 – 8 Degree dKH or 54 to 145 ppm
Water Cleaning10% Weekly;25% Every Other Week

Angelfish Dying Symptoms

As you know, prevention is better than cure. You need to ensure the Angelfish are cured before it is too late. As a result, you might be curious about how to know if the angelfish is dying?

There are certain symptoms that can alert you about these things. Let me mention a few dying symptoms so that you can take the necessary steps;

  1. Laying at the bottom of the tank for an extended period of time
  2. Starting to rub their body with the décor present in the tank
  3. Their body color, that is, the skin might go pale, or the color starts to fade away. 
  4. The tails and fins might start to stiff, fall apart, or be clumped. 

How Do I Save My Dying Angelfish?

When you keep your Angelfish stress-free and provide healthy food, you make your Angelfish healthy. As a result, they will hardly get sick or die early. Remember, with proper care; the Angelfish can live almost 12 years. 

These are the things you should adopt when you notice the Angelfish are going to die in order to save;

  1. Acclimate Properly: Take adequate time to make the Angelfish adapt to the new environment. You can use the floating bag method. 
  2. Treat Separately: Separate the sick fish from the tank. It will help to treat the fish as well as let the other fish away from catching the disease. 
  3. Monitor Water Conditions: Regularly check the water parameters so that they do not fluctuate much. You can use an  API testing kit to check them regularly. 

I would recommend an API water kit tester to maintain appropriate water parameters, which you will find on Amazon, currently costs $33.45; you will get accurate results within 10 minutes; you can check it here

Tip: Use the Cobalt Aquatics Neo-Therm Pro Aquarium Heater so that you do not need to worry about temperature fluctuation.

  1. Cycle Tanks Water: The water cleaning cycle needs to be fixed so that 50% of the tank’s water is cleaned every four weeks. 
  2. Maintain The Tank Filter: Make sure the filters are present and are working properly so that there remains no oxygen deficiency. 
  3. Provide Balanced Diet: Give your fish a balanced diet that contains a whole bunch of nutrients. 
  4. Maintain Proper Water Parameters: Do not let the water condition get toxic, and remove any toxic substances that hide under the décors. 
  5. Take Care of your Fish: Clean the fish if they are somehow dirty and remove any kind of dirt or obstructions of the gills. Remove any kind of parasites from the fish’s body. 
  6. Use Air Pump: Use an air pump so that there remains a proper flow of water. 
  7. Consult With a Veterinarian: The best way to prevent death is to consult a veterinarian. 

Related Questions:

What Is The Lifespan Of An Angelfish?

An Angelfish can live up to 10 to 12 years, and the only condition is to take proper care and provide adequate support. You need to maintain water parameters, clean the water on a weekly basis and provide adequate food (not more nor less). 

Why Is My Angel Fish Swimming Sideways?

The main reason behind your Angelfish swimming sideways is when the bladder of the fish is overly filled. 

This usually occurs when you overfeed your fish, make the aquarium crowded, or frequently change the water. Moreover, stress can also lead to such problems. 

Final Thoughts:

No matter how hard you want your Angelfish to stay alive, if you do not offer proper care and support, you will not succeed.

You need to give the Angelfish a proper aquatic environment in the tank but what is more important is that you need to keep them stress-free. 

You need to maintain the water conditions and parameters. You cannot over-feed or feed less to your fish. You simply need to maintain a proper diet that will deliver appropriate nutrients to your Angelfish. 

You need the symptoms as a hint and take necessary steps as precautions to death. 

Asif Iqbal

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