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"I caught an angelfish! It looks divine!" —Animal Crossing (GCN)
"I caught an angelfish! How heavenly!" —Wild World
"I caught an angelfish! Where's its halo?" —City Folk
"I caught an angelfish! Now where's its harp?" —New Leaf
"I caught an angelfish! That other fish told me to do it!" —New Horizons
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Angelfish NH.png
Scientific name Pterophyllum altum
Family Cichlidae - Cichlids
Time of year May to October[nb 1]
November to April[nb 2].
Time of day 4 pm to 9 am (Animal Forest, New Horizons)
4 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Wild World, City Folk, New Leaf)
Location River
Size 11.9 cm
Shadow size Small (Animal Forest, New Leaf)
Tiny (Wild World, City Folk)
Rarity Rare
Common (Pocket Camp, tourney only)
Selling price 3,000 Bells
Main Appearances
Other Appearances

The Angelfish (エンゼルフィッシュ, Enzeru fisshu), Pterophyllum altum, is a rare fish with coloration similar to that of the Barred Knifejaw. It can be found in the river and appears from May to October (or from November to April in Southern Hemisphere in New Horizons). It appears from 4 PM to 9 AM, but from Wild World to New Leaf, it instead appears from 4 AM to 9 PM. It sells for 3,000 Bells and has a tiny shadow size.

Donating to the museum[edit]

As with all fish caught in the Animal Crossing series, the Angelfish can be donated to the museum. Blathers will also give some information on it.

In Animal Crossing[edit]

Blathers will say this upon donation to the museum:

"Gorgeous. Sim-ply gorgeuous. Heavenly, even. We will treasure your gift. I give you my word as an honest, upstanding owl."

It is found in the bottom-right tank, grouped with other rare fish.

In Wild World[edit]

It can be found in the second tank after donating it to museum. Upon donation, Blathers the curator will say this:

"The angelfish is called the queen of tropical fish, and quite rightly so, eh wot! Indeed, this one should bring a ray of sunshine to this dusty old museum! However serene these fish may look, they're actually rather feisty...Every rose has its thorn, isn't that what they say?"

It is found in the second tank in the aquarium after donation.

In City Folk[edit]

Blathers the curator will say this:

"The distinctive shape of the angelfish lets it appear larger than it actually is. ...It's quite beautiful, and though it is a tropical fish, it has many tricks for staying alive, eh wot? Those skills make it far more resilient than other, pampered tropical fish. Perhaps this fact is what earned the angelfish the title "Tropical Fish Queen."

It can be found in the bottom-left tank with other small river fish.

In New Leaf[edit]

An information board in the aquarium will display this description of an Angelfish after donation:

"These tropical fish move very gracefully because of long fins on their backs and underbellies. Males and females are almost impossible to tell apart, making identification tricky. They lay eggs among water plants. Both genders look after the babies while they cling to weeds. The young look like any other fish, but they gain their angelfish looks once they leave the weeds."

In New Horizons[edit]

Upon donation, Blathers will say this:

"The angelfish is truly a beautiful creature. Just look at the elegance of those fins! Despite the name, however, these lovelies are known to be rather aggressive. They've no qualms about relentlessly pursuing fish much smaller than themselves! Why, they even attack their own kin! It seems no fish is safe around these "angelic" bullies. It makes one wonder who comes up with these names. Appearances— and names— can be deceiving."

Encyclopedia information[edit]

Wild World[edit]

Angelfish WW.png ''Their tall fins discourage predators."
  • Size- 11.9 cm
  • Habitat- Rivers
  • Season- Spring to fall

City Folk[edit]

Angelfish (City Folk).png ''These tall fish extend their fins to make themselves look big to predators."
  • Size- About 12.2 cm
  • Habitat- Rivers
  • Season- Summer to fall

A real-life Angelfish

Further information[edit]

The Pterophyllum altum, or Altum Angelfish, as they are also known, grow larger than how they are represented in the game, in fact reaching over 50 cm in the wild (the size of a small barred knifejaw). It originates from South America, in the river basins of the Amazon River, Orinoco River, and Essequibo Rivers. They are ambush predators, meaning they hide behind roots and attack on small fish when they least suspect it. Their small bodies and striped coloration makes it easy for them to hide. They are monogamous, which means they only have one partner throughout their lifetime with which they lay eggs. It likes weak acidic water, with a pH of about 4.5 to 6.

Small Wikipedia logo.png More information on this topic is available at Wikipedia.

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Spanish Pez ángel Same as English name.
French Poisson-ange Same as English name.
German Skalar Scalar; also called "Segelflosser"
Italian Pesce angelo Same as English name.


  1. Northern Hemisphere in New Horizons
  2. Southern Hemisphere in New Horizons