Fin rot in angelfishAngelfish fin rot isn’t a disease itself but can be a symptom of various underlying health conditions affecting your Angelfish. Even if you’re new to fishkeeping, you can’t deny that Angelfish is one of the most beautiful fishes in aquariums.

The distinct colors and fins can grab anyone’s attention quite easily, so if your fish’s fins are affected, its overall beauty fades away. To avoid this, you’ll find how to treat and prevent fin rot on Angelfish in our article below.

What Is Angelfish Fin Rot?

Fin rot affects many fishes, including Angelfish. This condition is found in saltwater fishes too, but is more common in freshwater fishes. In essence, it causes damage to the fins of Angelfish. Starting from the edges of the fins, the tissue damage moves towards the base of the fin.

It’s crucial to find the treatment for fin rot on Angelfish at an early stage. If the infection reaches the fin base, Angelfish loses the ability to regenerate the destroyed tissue. As a result, fin rot infection will attack the whole body of your fish, which is known as advanced fin and body rot.

What Causes Fin Rot in Angelfish?

The causes of fin rot in Angelfish include:

1. Fins Damage

The items or the fishes present in the aquarium can damage the fins of your Angelfish. The fin damage increases the chances of various infections that can lead to fin rot.

2. Poor Water Quality

If the water quality is low, you can expect many harmful bacteria and fungi in it. These micro-organisms can cause Angelfish fin rot.

3. Affected Immune System of Angelfish

If your Angelfish has a weak immune system, then it is highly prone to fin rot infection. Even mild exposure to the infectious particles can cause fin rot on your Angelfish.

4. Stress

Stress is a leading cause of fin rot on Angelfish. Major stress occurs due to improper diet, tank conditions, tank mates, etc. So, you should make sure that your Angelfish is comfortable in the aquarium.

5. Bacterial and Fungal Infections

Both bacterial and fungal infections can cause Angelfish fin rot. Sometimes, the condition develops due to bacteria and, in other cases, due to fungi. It’s also possible that both bacteria and fungi can attack simultaneously, leading to fin rot infection.

Symptoms of Angelfish Fin Rot: How To Identify This Condition

To identify this condition, look for the following symptoms:

  • White spots on Angelfish’s fins
  • Fins begin to fray
  • Fins become shorter over time
  • Inflammation of fins occurs
  • Swimming becomes difficult at the advanced stage of infection

How To Treat Angelfish Fin Rot?

Here are some treatment options that you can use to cure fin rot on Angelfish:

1. Use Antibiotics and Antifungals

The best medicine for fin rot is any antibiotic or antifungal that your vet will recommend. These medicines, when given to Angelfish, not only cure fin rot but many other infections too. However, you should keep in mind that if you’re using antibiotics or antifungals in your tank, you need to change the aquarium’s water daily.

2. Improve Water Quality

If you find out that the fin rot on Angelfish is due to poor water quality, you need to fix it. To improve the water quality, replace 50 percent of the tank water with fresh and clean water. By doing this, you’ll also remove almost 50 percent of the harmful bacteria and fungi that can cause fin rot.

In addition to this, check the filters in your pumps. If they contain any contaminants, it’s crucial to clean them too. It will ensure that the tank water is being filtered properly.

3. Check Water Quality

You should check the water quality often to know if it is safe and healthy for you, Angelfish or not. Water that isn’t up to the quality standards can increase the risk of Angelfish fin rot. Some parameters that you should check while testing the quality of water include:

  • pH
  • Nitrite and nitrate carbonate levels
  • Water hardness

You can check water quality using aquarium water testing kits.

4. Add Quickly Growing Plants

Plants that grow quickly need more nutrients than the bacteria or fungi present in the tank. Since these plants consume most of the nutrients of the tank, no or few nutrients will be left for infectious microbes. Due to the low availability of nutrients, these microbes will die and won’t be able to cause Angelfish fin rot.

5. Don’t Over Populate Your Tank

If the number of fish in your tank is more than its capacity, it can affect water quality. In polluted water, more bacteria and fungi can live. To reduce the number of these infectious microbes, it’s essential not to overpopulate your fish tank.

Another option is to transfer some fish to another tank. If you don’t have another aquarium, you should change the water frequently to avoid contamination.

6. Remove Infected Fishes From Aquarium

If you observe that some of the Angelfishes in your tank have fin rot, it’s better to remove them from the aquarium. You can shift them to another tank for some time. Treat them in a separate tank, and once they are cured, you can put them back into their original tank.

7. Add Aquarium Salt

Aquarium salt acts as an anti-fungal and anti-bacterial agent. It can kill bacteria and fungi that can cause fin rot on Angelfish. In addition, treating fin rot with salt is also helpful for curing open wounds.

Almost one tablespoon of aquarium salt is recommended for every three gallons of water. You can dissolve it in a cup of water to add it to your aquarium.

8. Monitor Water Temperature

Since Angelfish are tropical, they don’t like to live in cold water. If you keep them in water with lower temperatures, they can develop various infections, including fin rot. Also, their growth and development are compromised in cold water.

The ideal water temperature for Angelfish is 77 to 83 F. To attain this temperature, you can use aquarium heaters since they keep your aquarium water temperature at the recommended levels.

Can Angelfish’s Fins Recover From Fin Rot?

Angelfish fin rot preventionYes, Angelfish fins can recover from fin rot, as it’s not a fatal infection in most cases. The early fin rot that hasn’t been spread to the whole fins’ tissue can heal without any medication. You just have to ensure that your Angelfish is in an overall healthy condition.

If the infection is at the advanced stage, then you’ll need to use antibiotics or antifungals. Without these medicines, Angelfish fin rot will continue to spread without control.

How Long Does Angelfish Fin Rot Take To Heal?

There is no specific time limit for healing Angelfish fin rot. It depends upon the severity of the infection. If your Angelfish has mild to moderate fin rot, it can be treated in a few months with proper care. In cases when the infection is severe, the healing time increases.

Is Fin Rot Painful for Angelfish?

Yes, fin rot is painful for Angelfish. Like all organisms, these fish can also feel pain. However, there isn’t a scale to measure the level of pain your Angelfish suffers due to fin rot.

Fin rot destroys the tissues, and the destruction of fins can’t be less painful. To get an idea of the pain, your fish feels like it’s losing a part of its body due to this disease. Moreover, this disease can cause the death of your Angelfish. So, the pain must be unbearable.

Can Fin Rot Spread to Humans?

No, fin rot doesn’t spread to humans. Some diseases can transfer to humans from the fishes or the aquarium water, but not fin rot.

How To Prevent Fin Rot in Angelfish

Angelfish fin rot isn’t hard to prevent if you are a bit careful. If your Angelfish doesn’t have this condition now, follow these preventive measures to avoid it:

  • Keep the water conditions suitable for your Angelfish. For this, follow a proper maintenance routine for the water change. To keep the aquarium’s water clean, use a filter and ensure that the filter is clean and working properly. You can also use a tester to check the water quality weekly or biweekly.
  • Don’t add new fishes in the tank without inspecting them first.
  • Remove sick Angelfish from the aquarium.
  • Keep the tank peaceful by avoiding placing aggressive fish in there. Wounds are the root cause of fin rot in Angelfish which can happen easily in crowded tanks with aggressive tank mates.


Fish are more delicate than you imagine. Slight changes in the aquarium can also affect them. Here is how you can handle and prevent fin rot in Angelfish:

  • Causes of angelfish fin rotWhite spots on Angelfish fins are due to fin rot that can completely damage your fish’s fins as the infection progresses
  • The common cause includes a weak immune system, poor water quality, fin damage, bacterial or fungal infections
  • You can treat Angelfish fin rot by using medicines and changing the aquarium’s conditions
  • The healing time depends upon the severity of the infection
  • Angelfish fin rot doesn’t spread to humans and can be prevented too

Fin rot in Angelfish can turn into a severe problem if treated late. To keep your fish safe, remember these things and start practicing the preventive measures for a healthy Angelfish!

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