I think you’ll agree with me when I say:
“Goldfish are so awesome.”
And if you didn’t know how many eggs a goldfish can lay before…
… it will blow your mind!
I guarantee you’ll have a new respect for your female fishy friend after reading this 🙂
Just How Does a Goldfish Lay Eggs (And How Many)?
Let’s set the record straight:
A female goldfish can never be pregnant. (Read why here.)
But she can swell up with the eggs, and even perish from a condition called egg-binding if things get complicated and a male doesn’t spawn with her.
How many babies she will have depends on her age and how much she’s been eating…
But a goldfish can easily lay over 1,000 eggs at one time!
That’s just at one time.
During breeding season, goldfish will often spawn multiple times on a weekly basis.
Talk about a family reunion 😀
Like chickens, a female goldfish actually CAN lay eggs without spawning with a male goldfish.
They won’t hatch though.
These infertile eggs usually get eaten up or decompose in the water.
If she’s ready to spawn, she’ll start releasing pheromones into the water that let the males know it’s time to breed.
They will then chase the female around, nudging her sides until the eggs come out.
As they fall through the water, he’ll fertilize them with his milt.
A Bit About Goldfish Eggs (and How to Take Care of them)
Healthy goldfish eggs are clear, and can range in color from white to yellow-orange.
They are also EXTREMELY sticky.
Of course, this is part of their survival strategy.
By clinging to the plants as they would fall to the bottom, they have a better chance of not being devoured.
That’s why breeders put “spawning mops” in their tanks. Usually these are made of yarn and the eggs stick to them instead.
If fertilized, you can see tiny black specks after the first day or so.
Those are the eyes of the tiny fry developing inside 🙂
In 4 to 7 days, the eggs hatch (depending on the temperature).
That is – unless fungus has taken over and killed them before they had a chance. 🙁
Some people add a medication that turns the water blue to prevent fungus from taking hold…
But personally I wouldn’t do that.
The condition of the water is REALLY important when it comes to successfully hatching them.
Clean water with plenty of aeration will help to prevent fungus, as well as removing infertile eggs right away (which will spread the fungus).
The tiny little wriggling creatures that emerge look like some kind of strange insect.
They feed off of their egg sack until they are ready for their first meal in another 3 days – no point in feeding them before then. 🙂
Once full grown, it all starts over again.
Goldfish make HORRIBLE parents.
They will eat all of their eggs faster than you can dial up Child Protection Services…
… And they will even eat their own newly hatched fry.
Any other bystander goldfish around will happily join in the cannibalistic buffet.
So if you want to make sure your eggs hatch, they will need to be separated as soon as possible.
What do You Think?
I hope you were amazed by what you learned.
Now I’m turning it over to you.
Have you ever tried to take care of goldfish eggs, or seen any your pond or tank?
Drop your comment below (I love hearing from my readers!)