Angelfish attacking glass, hurt lips
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Old 10-18-2012, 04:21 PM   #1
junko
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Angelfish attacking glass, hurt lips


Hi everyone! My tank has been running smoothly and so I kind of slipped away for awhile, but of course I'm coming back when there is a problem... sorry

I have a pair of gorgeous koi angels and a school of rummynoses in a 56 gallon. The angelfish have started spawning and I just let nature run its course because I am not really interested in breeding- but they are male and female for sure because I saw wigglers. They've spawned maybe 3 times over 6 weeks, and haven't spawned since for maybe a month. Last night I caught them viciously attacking the glass! Upon closer inspection I see both of them have irritated, sore mouths- I assume from attacking the glass.

Should I do anything else regarding the lip damage? They did eat okay yesterday. I did a big water change (tank was a little overdue anyway) and I'm hoping the damage will clear up on its own with good clean water. I hesitate to treat because there are a couple of cories and otos in there, too- but if you all think I should start some sort of antibacterial or antifungal treatment, then I will.

Also, how can I keep them from attacking the glass and hurting themselves again?

Thanks everyone!
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Old 10-18-2012, 04:35 PM   #2
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Fish will attack the glass because they see their reflection. Sorry, that is really obvious, I am sure you know that.

Therefore, the best way to stop them from attacking the glass is to make sure they don't see their reflection as much.

Think of the tank as a house, and now think of your house. During the day when it is bright and sunny outside, you dont notice your reflection in your window. At night, with the lights on, your window practically becomes a mirror.

Therefore (if you arent already doing this) if you make sure the room that the tank is in, is well lit while the tank light is on, your angels might not notice their reflections as much. This works with my betta. When the tank light is on, but the room light is off, he gets very angry at his reflection, but with the room light on also, he doesnt even notice.

As far as preventative treatment I am pretty inexperienced with medicating fish. I'm very interested to hear what people say about that. I hope your angels feel better soon!
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Last edited by Public Alias; 10-18-2012 at 04:37 PM.. Reason: spelling
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Old 10-18-2012, 04:40 PM   #3
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Hello Junko. I've got several angels and haven't observed that behavior. Do you think they could be seeing their reflection ? Might be worth taping some black paper over the area as an experiment. If you have a uv sterilizer you could run it on a low flow rate to help with keeping the water clean and healthy. Hope your angels behavior improves along with their lips !
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Old 10-18-2012, 05:58 PM   #4
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My angel pair beat each other up pretty much every time they spawn. Torn fins, mouth wounds, etc. Seems they like it a little rough.

I don't think it is much to worry about if all parameters are fine, which in your case they must be.
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Old 10-18-2012, 06:01 PM   #5
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Thanks! Yes, I realized it was their reflections, but thank you, Public Alias, for explaining when and how they are able to see them! Last night, it was dark- we were watching TV, and they were attacking the glass facing the TV. The back of the tank is black. Right now, I see they are attacking the glass on the opposite side, which is away from a window. I turned on a light on that side, and they are still attacking! Ugh, I can't figure this out. They treat each other well- it's just these phantom angels that has them so upset.

I also find it odd that they haven't done this before now. I think the best thing to do at this point, since turning on lights isn't helping, is to turn off the lights on the tank for a few days to allow them to heal? I have low light plants so hopefully it won't affect the plants too much. I just hope they don't start up again later. The female looks worse than the male.
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Old 10-18-2012, 06:08 PM   #6
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Cleaning a slate or chosen section of tank glass my pairs end up with white lips. (no biggie)
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Old 10-18-2012, 06:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wkndracer View Post
Cleaning a slate or chosen section of tank glass my pairs end up with white lips. (no biggie)
These lips have little bits of skin floating off and are swollen, though- is that extent typical? I tried to get a photo but can't get a clear shot. I was worried about lip fibroma but their behavior pretty much explains their condition.
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Old 10-18-2012, 06:57 PM   #8
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lip fibroma is a general swelling without being damage induced (fish botox)
Striking the glass shouldn't create tears, lip locking and fighting with each other does though.
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2012 update adding table top pleco pans & a 90g (Nutz)
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Old 10-18-2012, 07:02 PM   #9
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Thanks! I'll keep watching. Yeah- it's nothing like fibroma at all. I haven't seen any more agitation since I turned out the lights.
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2500g koi pond, 300g frog/goldfish pond, 100g indoor "pond."
Helping my daughter with her 10g
56g angel tank
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Old 10-25-2012, 02:18 PM   #10
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Just an update- yes, they actually were fighting with each other- they would come at each other at an angle, ending up at the glass, so it seemed like they were attacking their reflections. I put the lights back on, and yeah, they do fight, but they are not getting any worse so I'm just going to let it go and keep the water extra clean to prevent infection.

Thank you for the advice!
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2500g koi pond, 300g frog/goldfish pond, 100g indoor "pond."
Helping my daughter with her 10g
56g angel tank
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Old 10-25-2012, 07:40 PM   #11
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If it continues, there might be something else going on besides attacking the glass. Do you have a spot like a piece of slate hanging where they might choose to spawn? I find they really get worked up cleaning glass to prefection before laying eggs. To help keep them from laying on the wrong things like heaters, filters, etc. I hang a flat piece of slate type rock on the top near the back. They seem to prefer using it when handy and that keeps them off the glass. Figuring fish is a pretty tricky thing sometimes.
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Old 10-26-2012, 02:27 AM   #12
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They have been spawning on the glass cleaning magnet. I did put a piece of slate in there, but haven't figured out a way to hang it- I live in slate country but just quickly found a 2" by 1.5" by 8 inch piece of slate, scrubbed it and stuck it in there a few weeks ago, but it's far too short for the tank. I need to look for a lighter piece that I can rig up some kind of hanger for.
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2500g koi pond, 300g frog/goldfish pond, 100g indoor "pond."
Helping my daughter with her 10g
56g angel tank

Last edited by junko; 10-26-2012 at 02:37 PM.. Reason: added something for clarity
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