The Fish Keeping & Aquarium Guide.

Can You Safely Keep Angel Fish with Tiger Barbs?

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Angelfish and tiger barbs are two of the most popular types of freshwater fish among aquarium enthusiasts. However, many people wonder if keeping these two species together in the same tank is possible. The answer is not straightforward and depends on several factors.

Firstly, it’s important to note that tiger barbs are known to be nippy and aggressive towards other fish, especially those with long fins. On the other hand, angel fish have long, flowing fins that can make them a target for tiger barbs.

Therefore, keeping them together is generally not recommended unless the tank is large enough to provide ample hiding spaces and territories for both species.

Overall, keeping angel fish with tiger barbs is possible, but it requires careful consideration and planning. In the following article, we’ll explore the compatibility of these two species in more detail and provide tips for keeping them together successfully.


Compatibility of Angel Fish and Tiger Barbs

Behavioral Differences


Angel fish and tiger barbs have very different personalities and behaviors. Angel fish are known for their calm and peaceful nature, while tiger barbs are known for their aggressiveness and territorial behavior.

Tiger barbs can be fin nippers and may attack slower-moving fish, such as angel fish, especially if they feel threatened or stressed.


Water Requirements


Angel fish and tiger barbs also have different water requirements. Angel fish prefer warmer water temperatures, between 75-82°F, and a pH range of 6.8-7.8.

They also require a well-aerated tank with plenty of hiding places and vegetation. On the other hand, tiger barbs prefer slightly cooler water temperatures, between 68-79°F, and a pH range of 6.0-7.5.

They also prefer a well-lit tank with plenty of swimming space and hiding places.

In conclusion, it is possible to keep angel fish and tiger barbs together in the same tank, but it is not recommended due to their different behaviors and water requirements.

Keeping them in separate tanks or with other fish with similar temperaments and water requirements is best.


Tank Size


When considering keeping angel fish and tiger barbs together, the size of the tank is an essential factor to consider.

Both species have specific requirements regarding tank size, and it’s essential to ensure their needs are met to ensure their health and well-being.

Angel fish are known for their graceful swimming and can grow up to 6 inches long. They require a minimum tank size of 20 gallons, with a recommended size of 30 gallons or more for a pair of adult angels.

On the other hand, tiger barbs are active swimmers and can grow up to 3 inches in length. They require a minimum tank size of 20 gallons, with a recommended size of 30 gallons or more for a group of 5 or more tiger barbs.

When considering keeping both species together, ensuring that the tank size suits both species is essential.

A tank size of 30 gallons or more is recommended to ensure both species have enough space to swim and establish their territories.

Additionally, a larger tank size will help to reduce aggression between the two species, as they will have more space to avoid each other if necessary.

It’s important to note that tank size is not the only factor to consider when keeping angel fish and tiger barbs together.

Water quality, temperature, and tank decorations are also important factors to consider to ensure the health and well-being of both species.


Tank Setup

Plants and Decorations


When setting up a tank for both angel fish and tiger barbs, it is essential to create a natural and comfortable environment for both species.

Adding live plants such as Java ferns or Anubias can provide hiding places for the angel fish and break up the line of sight between the two species, reducing aggression.

Additionally, adding driftwood or rocks can create natural hiding places for the fish and add to the overall aesthetic of the tank.


Filtration and Aeration


Proper filtration and aeration are essential for maintaining a healthy environment for angel fish and tiger barbs.

A canister filter with a flow rate of 5-10 times the tank’s volume is recommended. The filter should also have mechanical, biological, and chemical filtration media. Aeration can be provided by adding an air stone or air-driven sponge filter to increase oxygen levels in the water.

It is important to note that while a well-maintained tank with appropriate plants, decorations, and filtration can reduce aggression between angel fish and tiger barbs, there is still a risk of aggression and compatibility issues.

Therefore, monitoring the fish closely and having a backup plan is recommended in case aggression becomes an issue.




When it comes to feeding angel fish and tiger barbs together, it is essential to consider their different dietary needs.

Angel fish are omnivores and require a balanced diet of meat- and vegetable-based foods. On the other hand, tiger barbs are primarily carnivores and require a diet high in protein.

To ensure that both species get the nutrients they need, feeding various foods such as flakes, pellets, and frozen or live foods is recommended. This will provide a balanced diet that meets the needs of both species.

It is important to note that tiger barbs can be aggressive eaters and may outcompete the angel fish for food. To prevent this, feeding the angel fish separately or in a different location within the tank may be necessary.

Overall, feeding angel fish and tiger barbs together is possible but requires careful attention to their dietary needs and feeding habits. Providing a varied diet and monitoring feeding behavior can help ensure the health and well-being of both species.

Food Type Angel Fish Tiger Barbs
Flakes Yes Yes
Pellets Yes Yes
Frozen Foods Yes Yes
Live Foods Yes Yes

Note: It is essential to ensure that any live foods fed to the fish are free from parasites and diseases that could harm them.




In conclusion, putting angel fish with tiger barbs in the same tank is not recommended. While they can coexist peacefully, it is not a guaranteed outcome.

Tiger barbs are known for their aggressive behavior, and they may nip at the fins of the angel fish, causing them stress and potential health issues. Additionally, angel fish prefer a more peaceful environment and may become stressed by the more active and boisterous tiger barbs.

It is essential to consider the individual personalities of each fish before introducing them to a shared tank. Even if the fish are of different species, they may not be compatible due to their unique temperaments.

Overall, it is best to err on caution and avoid mixing angel fish with tiger barbs. Instead, consider creating separate tanks for each species to ensure optimal health and well-being.

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