View Full Version : Angelfish eggs turn white

10-10-2017, 12:31 AM
Okay, it's been awhile since I've been on the forum. I'm still stuck with ~ 200 mystery snails. I traded out the 20 gal for a 29 gal and moved the snails. I would like to get rid of most of these snails. Thinking about taking the snails to the vet and have them spay and neutered. LOL
But this is not why I posted on the forum tonight. My angelfish has had several egg laying episodes. Each time the eggs are gone within 24 hours. The first couple times I thought my adult mystery snails or one of the other fish in the 125 gal aquarium ate the eggs. Then I moved the eggs that was on a piece of slate and the adult angelfish to the 29 gal tank. Next morning, eggs were gone. This last time I moved just the eggs. Within a couple hours the eggs started turning white. Within 12 hours all eggs had turned white.
I have read that when the eggs turn white the parents will eat the eggs because those eggs will not hatch. I believe the eggs are getting fertilized due to watching the behavior of the fish. When the female lays the eggs the other fish follows rubbing it's underside on the eggs. The shape of their private parts are different and meet the descriptions I have read. I'm pretty confidant I have a mating pair of angelfish.
What are the other reasons the eggs turn white?
Any help would be appreciated.

10-10-2017, 09:31 PM
It's hard to say exactly what the issue is. The spawning process sounds right. A few eggs turning white is normal, but among those, you should see some eggs turning yellowish.

The angels might eat the eggs even if they are viable if they feel the tank isn't big enough, or they feel their fry are threatened by other tankmates. If you want to try breeding a pair of angelfish in a 29g, it would be best to move them prior to laying their eggs, rather then moving the angels with the eggs. A change in aquarium might confuse the pair further.

Did you acclimate the eggs when you moved them to another tank? An abrupt change in parameters could kill the eggs, or if you kept them out of water for too long.

What type of angelfish do you keep? The other thing I'm thinking is the possiblity that one of your angels is sterile. OR sometimes it takes a long long time for angelfish to get the spawning process right. Don't give up hope.

If I were you, I'd try breeding the angelfish in the 29g. Add a nice spawning site, keep the angels in a nice quiet location if possible and do large water changes (50-70%) if you can weekly at least. The WCs in my experience are a big advantage with breeding angels. Make sure they are fed nutritious foods and a variety. I also like to use Indian Almond Leaves (IALs) to create tannins in the tank, similar to the waters they are accustomed to in the wild. My angels are far from wildcaught, they are all colour morphs and scale mutations, but they still seem to appreciate the tannins like they know all about it.

Good luck, if you do set the angels up in the 29g, can you get pics of the eggs without stressing them out the next time they lay them?

10-10-2017, 10:00 PM
^^ This lady knows her angel fish, she'll give you some great help, erwatt

10-10-2017, 11:24 PM
Thanks so much for the information. These are my first angelfish and I've only been in the tropical fish aquarium for a couple years. So I am not very experienced. I don't know for sure the type of angelfish. I went online and they look a lot like Altum angelfish. But also similar to the common silver angelfish. Their ventral fins are 5" long, their anal and dorsal fins are between 3 & 4" long, and their caudal fins are between 2 & 3" long. They are not timid but do get a little aggressive when spawning. They are in my 125 gal tank along with several other species but they all seem to get along well. I do bi-weekly partial water changes and sometimes weekly. The filter is a C530 Marineland canister. I have LED lighting. There are more than a dozen plants. The background is homemade 3D. I have an Ecoair air pump supplying 5 air stones. The gravel is cleaned and graded river rock mixed with a substrate purchased at Petco.
You mentioned the eggs should turn yellowish. I have not seen any of the eggs turn yellowish during any of the 4 spawning occasions. They start out clear looking then turn white.
The water in the 125 gal and 29 gal are the same temperature and the parameters are very close.
As you suggested, I will move the angelfish to the 29 gal - AFTER I find a home for my 200 mystery snails. The 29 gal doesn't have any substrate. Is there a preferred substrate?
My angelfish eat well. They get a variety of food, flakes, brine shrimp, blood worms, and they also munch on the food I put in the tank for the other critters.
Based on what little research I have done I suspect one of two things. 1) fungus, I have an UV sterilizer I plan to install, and 2) the water movement is too strong and dispersing the males' fluid before it has time to fertilize the eggs. I can eliminate this possibility by moving the angelfish to the 29 gal.
Those are my guesses, but I am open to investigate other possibilities.
Oh yeah, you mentioned Indian Almond Leaves. I don't know what that is or where to get it. Is this just the leaves or is it an aquarium plant? Please let me know.
The next time they lay some eggs I will definitely post some pics. Although I will not be able to do this for a couple weeks when I return back home.
Again, thank you. I will make good use of your advice. Cheers

10-11-2017, 02:20 AM
I love helping out if I can, and Slaphppy7 was very generous to say what he did. I have been keeping and breeding primarily angelfish for more than 10 years, I've seen a lot of things, so sometimes other's experiences I can relate to. If I can help in any way, I'm happy to do so.

There is a scalare/altum cross labelled as Pterophyllum altum Dantume, here's a pic...

It sounds like you've created a nice enviroment and take care of your angels very well. If they are the only fish in the 125g, I don't think it would matter to move them to the 29g, unless you want less current, or to keep two tanks and fill the 125g with more fish hahaha :poke:

If you do setup the 29g as a breeding tank, you don't even need substrate. It's easy to vacuum the detritus on the floor in a bare-bottom tank. I like to use little glass pots of planted amazon swords for spawning sites myself (I plant swords in organic potting soil and cap it with gravel/sand) Java fern and driftwood for decor, floating plants like amazon frogbit to filter the light a bit are all things you can do to add plants to a bb tank) If you want substrate for added bio or aethetics, I'd go with a fine layer of pool filter sand. The dirt stays on top and is easily removed with a mild suction siphon.

For your own piece of mind, although angels prefer less current you are correct, my angels have kept their eggs right next to the filter output with no issues being blown around and dislodged until they are wigglers. Is the male dragging his breeding tube along the eggs (making full contact the with eggs)? The parents should keep catching the wigglers in their mouths, that happen to fall off and spit them back into safety with the group. At first, the eggs are very adherent, that why I think your filter might be ok, as they get closer to free-swimming stage (5-7 days), then the fry consume the egg as nutrients, and they are only attached at the head by a little strand. Parents spend lots of time keeping the babies together, that's one of most fun things to watch. Also, just so you know, many angelfish in my 120g over the years have successfully protected fry until they started investigating on their own and got eaten by other tankmates. Without tankmates in your 125g, I think they can do this. I have an Eheim 2075 on my 120g, used to have a powerhead too while I once had two angels raising babies on each side.

My first thought was fungus as well. Fungus may consume viable eggs, but the parents should instinctively eat the fungused eggs, or move the wigglers (just the tails sticking out of the egg) to a new area they feel is secure, and leave the fungused eggs to disintegrate. Since the eggs never got to that wiggler stage, and 12 hours isn't that long, I assumed you weren't seeing fungus. What pH will you be keeping your breeder tank at? Fungus will be fuzzy. If you can see the eggs clearly round, but white, these are unfertlized eggs (something went wrong) If there is fungus on eggs that you take out and artificially raise, you can remove the fungused eggs each day with a pointy skewer, just pick of the dead eggs that fungus up being very careful not to touch the viable eggs. You can tell the difference between a viable egg and one that is successfully fertilized at a certain point (about 24-48hrs). All my angel eggs have turned yellowish, the ones I've bred. Not all fish eggs turn yellow. (what I mean, is you can see the embryo, could be a different color, but something inside the egg). Although I never really took notes about the time it takes for the eggs to be visibly viable, it must be temperature dependant, I should ask what temp you keep the breeding tank at?

Decide where you want to keep the angels, 29gs is fine for a breeding pair, but you'll have to remove the babies once the tank is stuffed. The angels week let you know when they think they are running out of room....they'll start hunting the fry, especially if your pair decides to spawn again while there are still babies in the tank from last spawn.

I'm getting way ahead, let's work on getting pics of those eggs. I'm try to watch for it :)