Angelfish and Bala Sharks

In this article, we will understand the relationship between Angelfish and Bala Sharks. We will also learn more about their requirements and explain if they can be set up together in a community tank.

Angelfish and Bala Sharks

Angelfish and Bala sharks are great additions to a fish tank. These two species are compatible and can be housed together in a tank. Bala Sharks are known as “The Gentle Giants” due to their dimensions and personality. However, to be kept in tanks they require some expertise and attention when choosing tank mates.

Fish Biology and Behaviour

Angelfish Biology and Behaviour 

Angelfish are very appreciated by aquarium hobbyists all over the world. Their appearance and behaviour convince almost anyone to have an Angelfish in a tank. They can grow up to 10 inches in height and 6 inches in length. Additionally, they are one fish with a relatively long lifespan, up to 15 years.

Although Angelfish are members of the Cichlid group, they are classified as peaceful fish. In general, they only get aggressive towards other fish, when feeling threatened or when their territory is invaded.

They prefer living with the company of at least one conspecific, they feel safer. Angelfish are also very nice fish to keep in community tanks. 

Bala Sharks Biology and Behaviour

Bala Sharks are known for their very soft and gentle temperament. They are timid and very peaceful fish. They are great tank mates to many other fish species. However, their size is limiting, as they are large fish, they can see smaller fish as food.

They usually reach 12 inches in length. They have yellow, black, and grey colouration and they can live up to 10 years of age if in ideal tank conditions. 

Although they are not true sharks, their body shape gave them the name, as they own a shark-like appearance. They are schooling fish that require plenty of space to swim, as they keep growing for several years.

They are omnivore fish. For this reason, they eat almost any type of fish food it is offered. Flakes, freeze-dried, and frozen foods are great choices for these fish. They also enjoy some live foods, like bloodworms, Daphnias, some larvae, and shrimp. Vegetables can be also a good source of nutrients for Bala Sharks, spinach, peas, and some fresh fruits can also be offered to them.

Water Parameters and Tank Requirements

Angelfish Water Parameters and Tank Requirements

As Angelfish are originally from South American freshwater bodies, they prefer higher temperatures in the tank, between 73 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit. The ideal pH balance for Angelfish is between 6.5 to 8.0.

To resemble their natural habitats in the Amazon River basin, it is recommended to keep a well-planted tank with a sandy substrate. Some live plants that can be used in the Angelfish tank are the Amazon sword, Java Fern, Java Moss, and Anacharis. The plants will also provide plenty of hiding spots and a food source.

As Angelfish are medium-bodied fish, they require a tank with at least 10-15 gallons of water per individual.

Bala Sharks Water Parameters and Tank Requirements

Bala Sharks are originally from Southeast Asia. Thus, They also enjoy warmer temperatures, similar to Angelfish, between 72 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit. The ideal pH range is between 6.5 to 7.0. Bala Sharks are quite sensitive to water conditions. Thus, to keep these fish healthy, it is essential to control and provide ideal conditions of pH and temperature. They are also highly prone to white spot disease.

They also appreciate plenty of hiding spots, as they are timid fish. They also spend a lot of time swimming around in school. Thus, resting spots are also very significant. Some plants, roots, and rocks would work well for these purposes. 

As active swimmers, they require plenty of open space. Thus it is important to keep plants and other decorations on the periphery of the tank.

Bala Sharks are schooling fish. They require at least 5 conspecifics to group around. However, this requires large tanks, as they can grow up to 12 inches and are active swimmers. The minimum tank size for keeping Bala Sharks is 125-gallons, although larger tanks are recommended.

A tank with Bala Sharks should have a tight cover, as they are prone to jump and can fall out from the tank. Floating plants may also assist in avoiding jumping behaviours. However, it is important to keep a good water movement.

Can I keep Bala Sharks with Angelfish?

Yes, Bala Sharks and Angelfish make awesome tankmates. As the Angelfish is not a small fish species, the Bala Sharks will not see them as food. And thus, would not bother the Angelfish and vice-versa, as the Angelfish would not feel threatened and become aggressive towards the Bala Sharks.

Additionally, they require very similar water conditions. Warmer temperatures and the same pH range. Making it easier to find great conditions for both.

Angelfish ideal tank mates

Angelfish are peaceful fish most of the time. However, smaller fish can become prey, due to their size difference and the Angelfish feeding behaviours. Nice tank mates to Angelfish are non-fin nipper and peaceful non-tiny fish, such as Corydoras, some peaceful Gouramis (i.e. Dwarf Gourami), Rainbowfish, Guppies, and Loaches (i.e. Kuhli Loach)

Bala Sharks ideal tank mates

The gentle Bala Sharks can be kept with many other fish species, mainly while they are juvenile. When adults, their size can become an issue. Thus, small-bodied fish should be avoided. Otherwise, they could be devoured by the Bala Sharks. Tiny fish as Neon Tetras, Guppies, Harlequin Rasboras should be strongly avoided in Bala Shark tanks. Additionally, invertebrates as shrimp and snails should never be housed with them, as they could easily become part of their diet.

Bala Sharks are active swimmers. Therefore, they could stress out some slow-moving fish species. It is also extremely important to keep them with conspecifics, once they are schooling fish. At least 5 Bala Sharks are necessary to keep the individuals healthy and happy. They are prone to become stressed and aggressive if alone or without hiding and resting spots.

Tank mates should be at least medium-bodied and peaceful fish species, such as larger Tetras, Rainbowfish, Angelfish, and Gouramis. 


In this article, we understood the relationship between Angelfish and Bala Sharks. We also discussed their requirements and explained if they can be set up together in a community tank.

If you have any thoughts or doubts, feel free to drop us in a comment below!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Angelfish and Bala Sharks

Can Angelfish live with Bala Sharks?

Yes, they are a good match for a community tank. They require the same temperature and pH levels range and their body sizes would not be an issue.

What fish go well with Bala Sharks?

Bala Sharks are very peaceful fish and can be kept together with many other peaceful fish species. However, it is suggested medium to large-bodied fish species, as they could seed tank mates as prey.

Thus, Corydoras, Gouramis, and Angelfish make nice tank mates for Bala Sharks.

Will Bala Sharks eat other fish?

Juvenile Bala Sharks will probably not eat other fish that easily. However, adult Bala Sharks can see smaller fish species as prey. This occurs due to their size. Neon Tetras and Guppies can easily become prey to adult Bala Sharks. Some invertebrates, as shrimp and snails can also become part of the Bala Sharks diet.

Can you put Bala Sharks with Guppies?

No, it is not recommended to keep Bala Sharks with small-bodied fish species, such as Guppies. The Guppies would probably be devoured by adult Bala Sharks.

Can Bala Sharks live with Red Tail Sharks?

Yes, Bala Sharks and Red Tail Sharks are both very peaceful species. However, it is important to introduce both with similar body sizes to reduce the chances of the Bala Sharks seeing the Red Tail Sharks as prey.

How big will a Bala Sharks grow?

Bala Sharks can grow up to 12 inches in length. 


Sharpe, S. 2021. Bala Shark Fish Species Profile.

Sheppard, M. 2020. Bala Sharks: Care Guide, Tank Size, Food, And Tank Mates.

Stanton, L. 2021. 10 Best Tank Mates for Bala Sharks (Compatibility Guide 2021).

Fabian. 2020. !0 Best Bala Shark Tank Mates.

Morgan, K. 2021. Best Bala Shark Tank Mates (And Who You Must Avoid).