Any fish that I breed are bred in a small 5 imp. gallon tank but when not breeding are in my 40 imp. gallon community aquarium. I also have a 15 imp. gallon tank for goldfish.
PLEASE do not cull any fry, even if they are deformed!
This is my male (blue) and female (yellow) trichogaster trichopterus in my 5 gallon breeding tank.
This species of fish is very easy to sex: the male has a longer, more pointed dorsal fin while the female has a shorter, more rounded dorsal fin. It is important not to keep two males together unless you have a large tank and plenty of females. Ideally for breeding I should have about three females for my male and let him choose but unfortunately I only have one female and have no space for more at the moment.
If you want to breed this fish you must put it in a separate tank as it will not breed in a tank with other fish. start off by separating the two for about a week and feed them well (a variety of foods, live if possible) and then put them in the breeding tank which should only have a water level of 20-30 cm. Ensure the breeding tank has plenty of places for the female to hide as the male may attack her and make sure that there is floating vegetation or other suitable material (a half polystyrene cup floating on the surface?) for the male to build his bubble nest in. usually the male will make the nest within a couple of days but in my latest case it has been four days and there is no sign of any sufficient nest for breeding as of yet! :-( You can try adding in a betta bubble nest (or any other fishes bubble nest) to try and get the male to start building but I think it is best to let him figure it out for himself!!
When the male has made the nest (which can be up to 15cm in diameter) he then starts to swim back and forward under it to entice the female over. He may nip at her a little and when she is ready and full of eggs she may bite the male and then come under the nest where the pair circles each other. The male then wraps himself around the female and turns her upside-down to squeeze the eggs out and fertilise them. The male will then collect the eggs and spit them into the bubble nest. This "breeding" may occur several times but when spawning is over the female should be taken out as the male may kill her!! As many as 4000 eggs can be laid but many of these will not survive.
The male then takes care of the nest and eggs which should hatch within 30 hours of spawning. The fry become free swimming in about 3-5 days and at this stage the male should be taken out as he will try to put the fry back into the nest and may eventually eat them if he is not taken out. The free swimming fry should be fed baby brine shrimp but i only ever feed fry with crushed flacks and boiled egg yolk.
This is the bubble nest and fry!
This is my male and female guppies!
These fish are also easily sexed: the male usually has the long, fancy fins and is more colourful while the female is less colourfull and usually has a smaller tail. The male also has a gonopodium which is a modified fin which delivers sperm into the female. Ideally for breeding you should have 2-3 females per male so that one female is not chased to death.
This fish is extremely easy to breed, in fact the question is how to stop them from breeding not how to breed them. I just put my males and females into my 40 gallon community aquarium where I leave them most of the time. When I notice that a female has a dark gravid spot (near their vent) and are starting to fatten and look almost a square shape from behind I take them out and put them into the 5 gallon breeding tank. Usually within a couple of days the fry are born and when they are you take the female out as she will eat the fry!! Up to 193 fry have been recorded in a single brood but it is more commonly 30-60 fry. I then usually feed the fry on crushed flakes and boiled egg yolk (good for protein). Within 2-3 months the fry will be mature enough to breed but if you separate the males and females before they get the chance to breed then they should grow much larger!
Don't worry if you don't get the female in time because they should give birth about once a month. If they do give birth in your community aquarium it is very unlikely that any of the fry will survive. The good news is that after the female is fertilised by a male she can store the sperm for several months and have many broods of fry, although numbers of fry in each brood will lessen.
Breeding guppies is very interesting as you can breed an endless variety of colours and fin varieties! Last year I just bought a pair from my LFS and they bred some lovely green snakeskin fry which now reside in my uncles 30 gallon aquarium although I lost the parents to a bacteria that took most of my live bearers last year!]
This is my male and female molly!
They are easily sexed as males have a gonopodium and are usually smaller and slimmer than the females. Ideally for breeding you should have 2-3 females per male so that one female is not chased to death.
Breeding of this fish is the same as the guppy above^ but i find it a little more difficult to tell when a female molly is about to drop her fry. Again you most separate the female when the fry are born and if fry are separated they will grow larger.
Don't worry if you don't get the female in time because they should give birth about once a month. If they do give birth in your community aquarium it is very unlikely that any of the fry will survive. The good news is that after the female is fertilised by a male she can store the sperm for several months and have many broods of fry, although numbers of fry in each brood will lessen. There has been reports of guppies and mollies inter breeding but i have never seen any evidence of this (although my male guppy does chase my female molly!) and most so called guppy/ molly hybrids for sale are just fancy finned mollies!
Well most livebearers are easy to breed and breed just like guppies and mollies!
This is a list of livebearers that breed similar to the above:
This species of fish is very easy to sex. the male is larger and less colourful than the female. Males have a pointed tail fin (caudal fin), while a female's is more rounded. As you can see in the picture the female is on top and the male on the bottom!
This fish will readily breed in a community aquarium and 2-3 females should be kept per male... I used to have two males and five females. This way the males will not fight but they will change partners! I did notice however that my females seem to prefer albino males while the male prefer fully coloured females! These fish lay adhesive eggs on the roofs of caves so plenty of caves should be available to choose from (even a flower pot!).
You will know when a pair has paired up as they will find a cave and the male will defend their territory! When they are ready to breed the pair will develop purple coloured bellies like in the picture above. The female will start to "vibrate" in and around her chosen nesting cave to try and attract her mate. When the male is ready to breed he to can be seen "vibrating" around the cave. The female will then lay her eggs on the roof of the cave and the male will fertilise them. Both male and female will stand guard at the caves entrance and chase off anybody that comes too close. Sometimes the male may want to take charge and may chase away the female.
The eggs hatch between 3 to 8 days. The fry are free swimming in about 5 to 10 days. Once fry are free swimming I feed them crushed flakes and boiled egg yolk. The parents may move the fry around the tank one by one in their mouth and they often bring them on little trips around the tank. Both parents still take on guard duties but despite this my fry have never survived in the community aquarium and I usually take them out and put them in the breeding tank.
When the parents are ready to breed again it is a good idea to take out the old fry as the parents will eat them and chase them away. It doesn't take long for the fry to care for themselves anyway... in fact they can be taken from their parents as soon as they are free swimming.
This is the first fish which I bred and is still one of my favourite aquarium fish to keep!