How to Save Your Baby Fish with a Breeder Box
Most fish do not show any parental care toward their offspring, so when they lay eggs or give birth in an aquarium, the next generation can easily become a quick snack for the adults. Baby fish in the wild try to hide from predators using camouflage, swimming in shallow water, and hiding in dense vegetation and small nooks. We can increase their survival rates by using a breeding box in an aquarium to keep the fry contained and protected from larger fish.
What is a Breeder Box?
A breeder net or box is a container used to temporarily hold tiny babies, eggs, or even sick fish that need to be isolated while they heal. Many breeder boxes can be attached to the side or surface of an aquarium to allow fry to share the same water with the rest of the fish. We like the Ziss Premium breeder box. It prevents the water from stagnant, getting dirty or being low in oxygen. It hooks up to an air pump to bring water into the box and comes with three mesh screens for maximum water flow.
How to Install the Ziss Breeder Box
1. Gather the following materials: Ziss Premium Breeder Box Airline tubing Air pump Check valve – Air valve (optional)
1. Cut lengths of airline tubing approximately 18-24 inches (45-60cm) in length. Attach the Ziss breeder kit’s air stone to one end.
1. Fit the air stone inside the water lift channel so that the air stone rests at the bottom in front of the grate and the airline tubing exits out the hole at the top.
1. Attach the water lift cable to the two vertical ridges in the breeder container, starting at the bottom.
1. Select whether to attach the breeder box to the aquarium using the hanger or the suction cup bracket. Attach the four suction cups to each corner of the bracket to use the suction bracket. Locate the clear tab on your breeder box, which is located opposite the water lift channel. It juts out at a 90deg angle and then turns downward. Place the tab in the bracket, then slide it vertically upwards to lock it into place.
– To use the hanging device, place the clear tab of the breeder container into one of the rungs and then slide the hanger upwards. (To adjust how high or low the breeder box hangs in the aquarium, try inserting the downward tab into another rung.) Tighten the large, plastic screw into the hole in the hanger.
1. Place the breeder box in the fish tank and secure it to the side of the aquarium wall. (The loose end of the airline tubing without the air stone should hang outside of the tank.) The top of the box should be slightly higher than the water line. – Use the bracket with the suction cups to press the box into the tank wall. Hang the breeder box on the aquarium rim using the hanger. Then tighten the screw with your fingers until it is in place.
1. Attach the check-valve to the loose end on the airline tubing. The flapper is a horizontal or colored bar that faces towards the aquarium.
1. If necessary, place the air pump so that it can reach an outlet. Cut another length of airline tubing so that the air pump can reach the check valve. Connect the air pump and check valve using the second piece of airline tubing. After plugging in the air pump, bubbles should appear inside the breeder’s airstone. If you do not see bubbles, it is possible to either check for air leaks in the check valve or turn the check valve upside down. Optional: To control the water flow through the breeder boxes, you can attach an air valve between your check valve and the air pump by cutting the second length.
1. The box can be used to store the eggs, fry, or sick fish. You can also add live plants or other decorations to provide shelter for the babies.
1. Cover the top of your breeder box with a lid. The lid has a hole that can be used to feed the fish or open the lid easily.
Common Questions about Breeder Boxes
How do you clean a breeding box?
The breeder box may become a breeding ground for fish waste and uncooked food. You can easily get rid of them by using a turkey baster. You can wipe the Ziss box sides with a toothbrush or an algae scrubber if they start to grow algae.
How much time do you allow fry to stay in the breeding box? The babies must be big enough that they won’t fit in the mouths or the mouths the adult fish. Before you put them back in your main tank, For livebearer fry, this may be as soon as 4 to 5 weeks.
What do you do with baby fish you don’t want? Once the fry are older and capable of eating flakes and pellets, you can give them away to friends, donate them to a pet store chain, or consider selling them to your local fish store. Learn how to make extra money with fish breeding in order to help your aquarium hobby.