How to Make DIY Spawning Mops for Breeding Aquarium Fish
Many aquarium fish like to lay their eggs by scattering them or sticking them onto plants and various surfaces. Veteran breeders make spawning mop for fish to use in order to protect them from being eaten. Unlike live aquarium plants, this artificial spawning media does not require any light or fertilizer, and they are quite easy to transport without breaking any plant leaves or roots. People even use them with livebearers (or fish that bear live young) because the many strands of the mop provide dense cover for the fry to hide between. Follow these simple, step-by-step instructions for making two types of spawning mops for your aquarium fish.
Instructions for Yarn Spawning mop
This popular type of spawning mop is commonly used with goldfish, rainbowfish, tetras, barbs, killifish, and more. You can choose to make floating, sinking, or attachable mop depending on which species you are breeding.
1. Gather the materials 100% acrylic yarn 2. You can use cork for a floating mop or small rocks (for the sinking mop), and suction cups (for mops that attach to the tank walls or bottom). A flat, hard object that can be used to measure the height of the mop (e.g., a notebook, book or piece of cardboard). Scissors
1. Wrap the yarn around the notebook about 40 to 100 times and then cut off the rest of the yarn.
1. Cut a 12- to 24-inch length of yarn and use it to tightly knot together the yarn strands wrapped around the notebook.
1. Slide the yarn strands off the notebook and cut the loops at the opposite end of the yarn knot. If the yarn strands are too long or uneven, trim the mop.
1. Take the excess ends of the knot and securely tie them around the cork, rock, or suction cup.
1. Place the mop in the aquarium by rinsing it with tap water. 2. Depending on the species, wait a few days to a couple of weeks after the fish have been spawning. Then move the eggs in the spawning mop into a breeder net or specimen container that has a gentle air stone in it. Some people will transport the whole spawning mop and eggs together, while others prefer to remove the eggs using their fingers or tweezers.
Instructions for Ricefish Spawning Mop
Regular yarn mop does not work well with certain species of Japanese medaka ricefish, as the yarn strands tend to be too fluid. Rice fish need stiffer bristles to rub against in order for the eggs to come off.
1. Gather the materials: 1. Make a pool noodle with a hole in the middle. Scotch Brite pads (without any cleaning chemicals) Cutlery and kitchen knife 4. Scissors
1. Slice off a 1/2 -inch circle of the pool noodle using a knife and cutting board.
1. One pad can be used. Position it horizontally in landscape orientation. Start at the bottom corner of the pad and make a vertical cut upwards. Stop approximately 1/2 inch from the top. You will create the “strands” by making multiple vertical cuts along the bottom of your pad.
1. The pad should be rolled up so that the pad’s top half looks like a spiral and the bottom “strands”, like a skirt.
1. Stick the spiral end the mop through middle of pool noodle disc.
1. Place the spawning mop in the aquarium and rinse it with no soap.
1. Once spawning is complete, transfer the eggs or entire spawning mop to a breeder net or specimen container or separate grow-out aquarium.
All the best with your breeding endeavors. To help your aquarium hobby, you might consider selling any fish that you have raised to the fish shop or other fishkeepers. Find out more about How to Breed Aquarium Fish to Make Profit.