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The Goldfish Gazette, Issue #082 Responsible Goldfish Breeding
October 30, 2020
Goldfish Care Tips
A Free Monthly Resource For Goldfish Enthusiasts
In This Issue
Given reasonable conditions, Goldfish will readily spawn in spring producing large numbers of fry, but is the owner able to care for all these fry?
Responsible Goldfish Breeding
Celestial fry spawned 11 days agoWith the spawning season well under way in the Southern Hemisphere, Facebook is full of postings about fry, some from obvious experts showing large numbers of young healthy fish of excellent quality, but many with images of hundreds if not thousands of newly hatched fry seeking help and asking the question “what do I do now?”.
Not a good start and most likely a poor outcome for the fry.
When breeding any animal, there are responsibilities that go with it.
In my opinion there are three to consider before breeding Goldfish:
1. Welfare of the fry
Welfare of the FryTo thrive, fry need clean water, space, and food almost continuously.
Clean water is probably the easiest necessity to provide, and by making large water changes frequently, many fry can be kept cramped in a small container… but only for a few weeks at most.
Fry grow extremely fast. Two weeks after they are free swimming, they have gone from 5mm to 11mm in body length. It is frightening how quickly a small brood of a few hundred fry suddenly look overcrowded in an aquarium after the first few feeds.
Do you have enough space for the fry to grow for at least a month until selection of the best can begin?
For the first month fry must be fed live food, otherwise the particular physical traits of a breed such as a wen will not develop fully, and the fry will be in danger of being stunted.
Do you have the time and space to set up a brine shrimp hatchery and feed the fry at least twice daily?
Improving the VarietyOne of the most central reasons serious breeders breed Goldfish is to improve their own stock. Any surplus fish from a serious breeder that find their way to market are usually far superior to examples found in the local pet store.
On many occasions I have advised not to mix varieties when attempting to spawn Goldfish (unless you are an expert and have a specific reason to do so).
By mixing varieties all you are producing are fish that few want, and have little value.
Why spend your valuable time and resources on growing inferior fish when they could be better spent on raising quality fish?
Care of the EnvironmentAny reasonably successful spawning will produce several hundred to a few thousand fry.
The majority of us only have enough space to keep a few of the best fish as future breeders.
So here lies the problem.
How will you responsibly dispose of your unwanted fry?
Goldfish have descended from the wild Prussian or Gibel carp. Any of the single tailed varieties readily adapt to their environment if released into the wild. In many countries Goldfish are considered a pest, and it is illegal to release them into natural waterways.
Releasing any of the fancy varieties into a natural waterway would be pointless as their ability to survive is very limited.
If you have had an unplanned spawning and do have the resources to raise some fry, issue 067 covers in more detail some of the issues raised here including whether to save or abandon the eggs.
Comments? Ideas? Feedback? I'd love to hear from you. Just reply to this e-zine and tell me what you think, or what topics you want covered.
Next Month's TopicRepairing Glass Aquariums
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