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. A breeder box can be used to protect the fry from larger fish and increase their chances of survival in an aquarium.
What is a Breeder Box?
A breeder net, also known as a box, is a container designed to temporarily house tiny babies, eggs, and sick fish, 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. The Ziss Premium Breeder Box is a great choice to keep the water in the container clean, clear, and oxygenated. It can be hooked up to an electric pump to bring water in the box. There are three mesh screens that allow 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 a length of airline tubing that is approximately 18-24 inches (45-60 cm) long. Attach the Ziss breeding box’s air stone (attached to the end of the airline tubeing) to the other 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. Choose whether you want to attach the tank’s breeder container to the aquarium with the hook or the suction cup bracket. Attach four suction cups to the bracket’s corners. 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. To lock the bracket in place, insert the tab into the bracket. Slide the bracket vertically up to lock it in place.
To use the hanger, slide the clear tab from the breeder box into the hanger’s rung and slide it upwards. Insert the downward tab into another of the rungs to adjust the height or depth at which the aquarium houses the breeder box. Screw the large plastic screw into place.
1. Attach the breeder container to the fish tank. The loose end of the airline tube without the airstone should be hung outside the tank. Position the top of the breeder box slightly above the water line. – If using the suction cup bracket, press the breeder box into the tank wall until the suction cups engage and the breeder box is firmly attached. – If using the hanger, hang it on the aquarium rim and use your fingers to tighten the screw until the breeder box is fixed 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. The second piece of airline tubing is used to connect the check valve and the air pump. The air pump should be plugged in and bubbles should appear in your breeder box’s oxygen stone. 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: You can add an air valve to regulate the water flow to the breeder box by cutting the second length of airline tube into two pieces. Attach an air valve between check valve and air pump.
1. The box can be used to store the eggs, fry, or sick fish. For babies’ shelter, you can add live plants or other decorations.
1. Cover the top of the breeder box with the lid. The lid’s hole is for feeding the fish and opening it easily.
A Few Questions to Ask About Breeder Boxes
How do you clean a breeding box?
Uncooked fish waste or uneaten food can build up inside the breeder boxes. To easily remove them, use a turkey baster to suck out the debris. If the sides of the Ziss breeder box start growing algae, you can use a toothbrush or algae scrubber to wipe them down.
How long do you keep fry in the breeder box? In general, the babies should be large enough to not fit in mouths of the adult fish before you add them back into your main tank. Livebearer fry may take up to 4 to 5 weeks.
What to do with baby fish that you don’t like? You can give them to friends or donate them to a chain of pet stores. Or you could sell them to your local fish shop. Find out how you can make some extra cash by breeding fish to support your aquarium hobby.