How To Tell If A Fish Is Pregnant?

If you own an aquarium at home and tend to raise various fish species, you may have many questions about fish popping into your head. And among those questions, one of the essential ones can be how to tell if a fish is pregnant.

Well, you can look for symptoms like your pregnant fish will stay lower at the bottom of the tank, swim slowly, and eat less frequently than usual. And those fish can develop various pregnancy indicating spots.

Aside from that, a pregnant fish exhibits other distinct behaviors, which we have covered in this blog post. So, let’s give it a read.

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How To Tell If A Fish Is Pregnant

Below, we have shared the steps to follow to identify whether your aquarium fish is pregnant or not. Let’s delve into it.

Step 1:

First, check the fish belly to see if it is bloated or increasing its size daily. Some fish come with large tummies; hence it gets challenging to figure out whether those fish with huge stomachs are pregnant or not.

However, here’s a tip: try to find out a square outline on their bellies as it is one of the indications for pregnant fish.

Step 2:

Some fish develop a gravid spot on the abdomen near the tail section, which gets darker and larger when fish fertilize eggs. Hence, when you notice black gravid spots on your fish, you can rest assured that the fish are pregnant.

Step 3:

Look for whether fish have bulges or not. Bulges can be another sign of your fish’s pregnancy. Some fish grow bulges at their abdomen’s back during pregnancy. These bulges continue to grow over 20 to 40 days and form into a large rounded or boxy shape.

However, some fish species like balloon mollies come with natural bulges. So, you don’t confuse those bulges with pregnancy bulges while examining the balloon mollies.

Again, in some cases, male fish also grow bulges in their front chests. That means whenever you notice bulges on fish’s bodies; you shouldn’t assume that those fish are pregnant.

Step 4:

Monitor fish’s eating and swimming behavior. Pregnant fish are more prone to nesting and swimming in a sluggish stream when getting close to giving birth. You will see that pregnant fish enjoy hiding in the aquarium’s foliage.

A pregnant fish will also eat less amount of food than usual. Another interesting behavior you may notice is that the fish swims up and down constantly. Usually, pregnant fish swim up to gasp for oxygen as during the pregnancy period, their pulse rate increases.

Step 5:

Observe your fish whether they shake unusually or not. Some pregnant fish may tremble for a few seconds several times a day while swimming.

Usually, it happens when fish get close to giving birth. So, it can be a sign of pregnancy when you witness your fish shuddering more frequently than usual.

So, these are all the steps you can follow to check whether your aquarium fish are pregnant or not. Now, let’s discuss how you should take care of baby fish.

How To Take Care Of Baby Fish

Caring for baby fish and raising them is daunting work, though. But you can make the job less strenuous and more manageable by following the guideline mentioned below.

As soon as your fish lay eggs, you need to keep those eggs in a separate aquarium because many fish species eat their own eggs or fry. So, by placing those eggs or fry in another aquarium, you can give them a better opportunity for survival.

Before moving the eggs or fry to another fish tank, ensure that you use the same water from the original tank. Also, you need to be cautious that you shouldn’t use any net to transfer baby fish; instead, you can just scoop them with a cup.

However, some fish are known for taking care of their hatchlings. So, if you notice that your aquarium fish is guarding the eggs or fry, you better keep them together in the same tank.

Baby fish are more susceptible to disease and infection than full-grown fish. Hence, you need to take special care of the fry, such as ensuring that the fry tank is properly maintained.

You must change the tank water frequently and keep ammonia and nitrite levels neutral. Also, you can add some gravel from the parent tank to the baby fish tank to balance the nitrogen level.

Ensure you cycle the tank and test the water before adding the fry. If you have any aeration system in the fry tank, you need to turn it off before placing the fry in the tank. So, that’s how you should take care of the baby fish.

How To Feed Baby Fish

Like the baby fish care, their feeding process differs from species to species. For instance, if your tank fish release larvae instead of eggs, those larvae will get their nutrients from an attached yolk sac. So, here you have nothing to do.

When those larvae grow and become fry, their yolk sac will vanish. And from here on, you need to start feeding those fry several times a day. Typically, fry eat live foods, including micro worms, infusoria, baby brine shrimp, plankton, etc. So, ensure you feed them such foods.

Cautions: try to filter out any other food from the tank that fry don’t eat and always keep the fry tank clean.

Concluding Remarks

Now you know everything about the exact signs related to fish pregnancy. Hence, when you notice any of the symptoms mentioned above, you can be sure that there is a high chance your tank fish are pregnant.

However, in this blog post, we tried to share accurate information regarding fish pregnancy and also talked about how you can take care of baby fish. We hope you will utilize this information and stay connected with us on Facebook, Twitter & Pinterest for more updates on exciting content.