Angelfish and Cherry Barbs

Aquarium enthusiasts are often faced with the question of whether certain fish species can live together peacefully in a community setting. One common pairing that people consider is the angelfish and cherry barbs. In this article, we will explore the compatibility factors and considerations needed when keeping these angelfish and cherry barbs in the same tank.

Angelfish and Cherry Barbs Can Live Together?

Yes, angelfish and Cherry Barbs can be kept together. As they are generally peaceful fish that can coexist without any issues. However, it is important to keep in mind the size difference between these two species. Angelfish (Pterophyllum scalare) and cherry barbs (Puntius titteya) are both popular freshwater fish among aquarium hobbyists.

Angelfish are graceful, elegant fish with a distinctive triangular shape, long fins, and vibrant colors. Cherry barbs, on the other hand, are known for their bright red coloration and active, playful behavior.

Compatibility Factors to Consider

Before putting any fish species together in a community aquarium, it’s important to consider various factors to ensure that they can coexist harmoniously. For angelfish and cherry barbs, some of the key considerations include temperament, size, and feeding habits.

While angelfish are generally peaceful fish, they can become aggressive towards smaller fish or those with similar body shapes. Cherry barbs, on the other hand, are small and active but can be somewhat nippy. Therefore, it’s important to monitor their behavior closely when introducing them to ensure that they get along.

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Tank Size and Setup Recommendations

When it comes to tank size, both angelfish and cherry barbs need sufficient swimming space to thrive. For a community setup with these two species, we recommend a minimum tank size of 30 gallons. This will provide enough room for each fish to establish its territory and reduce aggression.

It’s also important to provide hiding spots and plants to replicate their natural environment. Angelfish prefer tall plants or driftwood, while cherry barbs enjoy dense vegetation and rock formations.

Water Parameters for a Community Aquarium

Both angelfish and cherry barbs have specific water parameter requirements that must be met to maintain their health and well-being. Angelfish prefer slightly acidic water with a pH range of 6.5-7.5 and a temperature of 75-82°F. Cherry barbs, on the other hand, can tolerate a wider range of water conditions, but they do best in slightly alkaline water with a pH of 6.5-7.5[1] and a temperature of 72-79°F.

Feeding Requirements for Angelfish and Cherry Barbs

Proper nutrition is crucial for maintaining healthy fish. For angelfish, a varied diet consisting of high-quality flakes, pellets, and frozen foods such as brine shrimp or bloodworms is recommended. Cherry barbs are omnivorous and will eat a variety of foods, including flakes, pellets, and live or frozen foods. It’s important to avoid overfeeding and to provide only what the fish can consume within a few minutes.

Behavioral Considerations for Keeping Angelfish and Cherry Barbs Together

Angelfish and cherry barbs have different behavioral tendencies that can affect their compatibility. Angelfish are known to be territorial and may become aggressive towards smaller fish, while cherry barbs are active shoaling fish that prefer to swim together. Therefore, it’s important to provide adequate hiding spots and territories for each fish species to reduce aggression.

Are cherry barbs aggressive?

Cherry barbs are generally peaceful and not considered aggressive. They are a popular choice for community aquariums, as they can coexist with other small, peaceful fish. However, it’s important to note that individual fish can have their own personalities, and some may exhibit more aggressive behavior than others. Additionally, if they feel threatened or uncomfortable due to overcrowding or other factors in their environment, they may become more territorial and aggressive.


Angelfish and cherry barbs can coexist in a community aquarium if proper care and consideration are given. By following the recommended tank size and setup, water parameters, feeding requirements, and behavioral considerations outlined in this article, you can successfully keep these two species together in the same tank. Remember to monitor their behavior closely and make adjustments as needed to ensure a harmonious environment for all your fish.