Guppy Fish and Angelfish – Can Live Together?

Many fish owners, including yours truly, love having a varied fish tank. It just adds up to the overall aestheticism and joy of owning fish. But is it alright to keep guppies and other fish varieties together?

Will they get along or will they bug each other out until they butcher themselves? Well, some fish are indeed incompatible with one another. Guppies don’t do well with aggressive fish in their tanks, for instance. In this article, we’ll talk about guppies and angelfish.

How do they get along? What do you need to keep in mind if you’ll have a mixed guppy-angelfish aquarium? That’s what we’re about to see, so stay tuned, put on your reading glasses, and enjoy these guppy-infused bits of information!

Can Guppies and Angelfish Coexist?

No point in chasing around our tails. I’ll just get to the point and say that angelfish and guppies aren’t exactly bunkmates. Both species behave differently, with guppies being very peace-loving, while Angelfish are more aggressive in nature. They like fighting each other, and they’ll often pick on the smaller guppies. The guppies become stressed, they develop an illness, and they die. That’s about it with your aquarium.

Angelfish are just aggressive fellows that may invade the territories of other fish. They’re also a bit bigger than guppies. So, you can imagine what happens when the angelfish will occupy most of the aquarium, and the guppies try to take it back. They’re in a losing position already, being smaller and less aggressive. A resounding defeat is in store for our cute guppies. Violent conflicts will occur, with angelfish being on the winning side most times.

I’ll present a few reasons why it’s a bad idea to keep guppies and angelfish together:

– It’s Very Stressful for Guppies

Guppies are lower on the food chain, compared to angelfish, who are more aggressive and bigger. So, the angelfish will chase around the guppies, trying to eat or beat them up. Instead of fighting or facing off their attackers, guppies prefer hiding because they’re not as swift or strong as angelfish. But being chased all the time, the guppies will become stressed out to the absolute maximum.

So, what happens is that guppies will only occupy a small portion of the aquarium, with the angelfish ruling the rest. It’ll be an overcrowding problem, plus the stress that I talked about earlier. Eventually, many guppies would leave their forced territory and be confronted by the aggressive angelfish. When angelfish mark their territory, they stop guppies from reproducing and enjoying their sweet, peaceful time.

How would you like being forced into a corner with 20 other people, because another group is beating you into submission? Left to hide in crevices for fear of being beaten out, that’s not exactly a relaxing and happy life. Well, that’s how guppies will feel if you put angelfish in the same aquarium as them.

– Angelfish Eat Guppies

The fish food chain relies on one single precept – size dominates everything. The big fish eats the small one. Of course, ferocity and feral instincts also come into play, but generally, size is king. Angelfish are bigger than guppies, so guppies will become food in no time. Angelfish also grow quite quickly, and once they grow bigger than guppy adults, they’ll eat them.

If somehow, the guppies manage to breed, then the fry will become the angelfish’s new meal. Sure, you could offer many hiding spaces for the fry but the reality is that few fry will ever survive the onslaught. The angelfish will get all of them eventually. The conclusion is simple – don’t put guppies and angelfish in the same aquarium if you want your guppies to survive.

– Angelfish Get Big

Did I mention this before? Angelfish get pretty big, up to 6 inches long and 8 inches tall. Compare this to a guppy fish, which only grows up to 1.5-2 inches long, and you get the idea. Angelfish are bigger, so you won’t be able to put so many in a single aquarium. So, you may think that adding smaller fish like guppies will liven things up. And that would be a good idea if it wasn’t a bad one. A very bad one, I might say.

Quite honestly, angelfish can completely exterminate the guppy population in a few weeks if left unchecked. Even sooner, if the angelfish are particularly hungry. There will be so many conflicts that many of the guppies will die from stress and illnesses if the angelfish don’t eat them. As I said, guppies are not confrontational at all, so they’ll only hide and suffer in silence. The accumulated stress is not conducive for their health, not at all.

– Guppy Fry Are Most Vulnerable

Did you know that guppy fry are only 0.25 inches in length when born? Angelfish are known fans of these tiny nuggets, so they’ll feast on all of them. It’s not like the adult guppies can do anything to stop this, either way. Plus, even guppy adults find the little nuggets irresistible and they also eat them. Confronted by dangers on both sides, guppy fry will have nowhere to go. Most likely, they’ll die one after the other.

What’s more, angelfish are very swift swimmers, and not even adult guppies can easily escape a chase. Guppy fry will be at the angelfish’s mercy, only that angelfish have no mercy for tasty nuggets. Even if you provide hiding spots like plants, angelfish are quite tenacious and patient. They’ll stalk the fry constantly, waiting for a nugget to get out of its hiding spot, and then the feast begins!

You could try to grow the fry in a different aquarium. But you’ll eventually have to introduce them to the main tank, with the rest of the adult guppies and the angelfish. By that time, the angelfish will have grown to their full size and became able to hunt even adult guppies. The newly-introduced guppies will have no idea what to expect, and the angelfish will take advantage of that. The result will be all the same – either death or stressful hiding.

Finally, you could get a bigger aquarium and hope the angelfish have enough space to leave the guppies alone. But it’s not like that. Even if the angelfish have enough space, they’ll eat the guppies out of the goodness of their own hearts. Guppies are tasty little snacks that angelfish adore. They won’t pass up the chance to eat their fill when they see the little nuggets swimming around.

What’s There to be Done?

Simply put, you shouldn’t house guppies and angelfish together, in the same aquarium. It’s a death sentence for your guppies. Instead, buy two aquariums and put guppies in one, and angelfish in the other. A better idea would be to buy a single, big aquarium, and insert a divider so that the two fish species don’t mingle. The guppies will be just fine, no stress and all, if you do this.

There you go, now you know that guppies and angelfish don’t break bread. Well, the angelfish break some bread when they eat the guppies. If you love both species, it’s not impossible to have your cake and eat it at the same time. Follow my advice and you’ll be fine!

Guppies   Updated: September 16, 2022
avatar I’m Noah, chief editor at VIVO Pets and the proud owner of a playful, energetic husky (Max). I’ve been a volunteer at Rex Animal Rescue for over 2 years. I love learning and writing about different animals that can be kept as pets.
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