TIP from FNM: How to Raise Live-Bearing Fish

Setting up the tank

  • Before deciding to try and raise live-bearing fish, you need to formulate a plan on what you will do with the young.
  • Livebearers give birth about once a month to between 1 and 100 or more babies at a time
  • They are also able to store sperm inside their bodies for up to six months, so keeping the male out of reach is not always an option.
  • If you plan on raising them, purchase the largest aquarium tank you can afford.
  • If possible, have two tanks set up. This will allow you to either separate the males from the females or move the adults from the tank with the babies.
  • Set up the tank as you would any other freshwater aquarium. This includes adding a filtration system, heater, gravel and water.
  • When selecting plants for the aquarium, you would want to include bushy foliage that will give the babies plenty of spaces to hide.
  • This includes having a few plants afloat on the surface of the aquarium. Water sprite as well as java moss are two recommended choices.

You are now ready to purchase your fish. You will need at least one male and one female. While you can start with more, you should bear in mind that you will soon have more of your own. It is better to select two of the nicest fish you can afford than several lesser quality fishes.

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