Black Moor Goldfish

The telescopic-eyed Black Moor goldfish changes color to black as its eyes start to develop.

Black Moor GoldfishBlack Moor Goldfish

The black coloration of the Black Moor goldfish comes from an excess of melanic pigment deposited in the scales.

Most young Moor under 60 days old are quite bronze with normal eyes, but from five or six weeks of age the black pigment begins to appear in some early developers along with the telescopic eyes.

The best Black Moors have a deep velvety blue-black coloration that covers the entire body, including the fins and ventral area.  If Black Moors show an underlying bronziness, they are likely to change color later in life, usually changing to orange or red.  Many Red Moors are just Black Moors that have changed color.

Those with a white or silvery ventral (belly) area will probably remain black throughout their lives.

Black Moors should be veiltails, but for commercial grade specimens the finnage usually resembles that of the Fantail.

These goldfish will suffer digestive problems if fed low quality food and not enough live food.  This typically shows up as balance problems.

There is a belief that they are more susceptible to flukes but this may be because the flukes are more easily seen against the black coloration.

Many aquarists make the mistake of using Moors as a color contrast in an aquarium full of gold colored fish.  Unless the other goldfish are also telescopic-eyed or are Water Bubbles Eyes or Celestials, the Moor won't get enough food and will eventually starve to death.

There are several other metallic scaled varieties of goldfish such as Oranda and Lionheads that are being bred to exhibit black coloration, but none have the telescopic eyes of the Moor.  The black coloration on these varieties seems just as unstable as in the Moor as they often change color when they get older.

Black Moor Goldfish Characteristics

Country of Origin: China

Maximum size (body length): 5 inches (125mm)

Caudal Fin: Paired, should be a veil tail to follow the British Standard but usually forked in commercial grade fish and of varying lengths.  The American Standard allows forking of the caudal fins but also recognizes the veil tail variety.

Dorsal Fin: Present

Anal Fin: Paired

Scale Group: Metallic scale group

Eyes: Telescopic

Distinguishing traits: Black coloration

Breeding:  The telescopic eyes make it harder for the male to find the female.  Don’t clutter the breeding container so the female can hide.  Use as many males as possible per female, the more the better as it also increases fertilization rates.

Male/female differences are less obvious outside the breeding season because of the short round body shape.  Often the female will have a slimmer body shape than the male giving the impression she is a he.

The white tubercles that appear on the male’s operculum (gill plates) and leading edges of the pectoral fins in the breeding season are easily seen against the black coloration.

Special requirements: Not to be kept with normal eyed goldfish.


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