How Long Does It Take For Fish Eggs To Hatch?

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Written By Fun Fish Tanks

I Love my Fishes 

When you start raising fishes in your home aquarium, you might consider the possibility of breeding them too. Fish naturally tend to spawn in spring and you can artificially manipulate the water temperature to imitate those conditions. It isn’t too difficult to trigger spawning. Once you have fish eggs in your aquarium, you might wonder how long it will take for them to hatch. After all, you can’t wait to see baby fishes swimming around.

On average a fish egg takes about Two to Seven days to hatch. However, how long it takes for a fish egg to hatch can vary depending on factors like the species of the fish, the conditions the eggs are exposed to, and the overall health of the eggs. Fish eggs should at most hatch within ten days of spawning. Protecting the eggs and providing them with a safe environment is crucial during this period.

There is a lot to learn for beginner aquarium enthusiasts, so we’ve broken down everything you need to know about fish eggs.

Can Fish Lay Eggs In Aquarium?

Generally, fish can lay eggs in aquariums. However, if fish eggs will be laid or not depends on the aquatic species involved. Fish breeding and spawning is a complex process that requires you to be alert. When spawning occurs, the female fish lays hundreds to thousands of fish eggs depending on their species. If you’re not keeping a good eye on the fishes and their spawning process, you might lose all the eggs.

If the water is warm enough, the fish may spawn multiple times of the year. Do note that fish eggs are very vulnerable after spawning. If they are not provided with enough protection, the parents or other adult fish may begin to eat the eggs. Therefore, you need to act quickly when you realize that fish eggs have been laid in the aquarium.

Which Fishes Lay Eggs In Aquariums?

Most schooling fish tend to lay their eggs in the aquarium. Examples include the goldfish and the angelfish which are easy to breed in confinement and are also likely to lay eggs that are fertile. Other fishes that can lay eggs in the aquarium include African Chichid, Dragon Fish, Gourami, and Barb Fish. The time it takes for these fish to hatch slightly varies but usually is within the 2 to 7 day range.

How To Protect Fish Eggs and Fry?

After spawning, it is of critical importance that you separate the fish eggs from other fishes. In some breeds, it is common for the parents to feed on their fish eggs. Moreover, even if the parent fish will not consume the fish eggs, other larger fish that are present in the aquarium might. Therefore, it is essential to separate the fish eggs to provide them with the best chance of hatching.


Even once the fish eggs have hatched, you can’t reintroduce them to a tank with other adult fishes. These immature fishes, which are also known as fry can be eaten up by others. Therefore, you should keep them separately until they’re strong enough to fend for themselves.

Fish eggs should be kept in warm water which is not more than 5 to 7 inches deep. This gives the eggs the best chance of survival. If you do not provide the eggs with the ideal environment to hatch, they will not hatch at all. If your eggs are hatching within 2 to 5 days, you are keeping the water warm enough.

How Do You Know If The Fish Eggs Are Fertilized?

If you have separated the fish eggs from other mature fish, you can begin to observe the eggs more closely. When eggs are fertilized, they tend to slowly change their color with the eyes of the fish becoming more visible. Unfertile fish eggs tend to be opaque. Through these signs, you can ascertain which eggs are going to hatch and which won’t.

So How Long Does It Take For Fish Eggs To Hatch?

Fish eggs typically hatch in about two to seven days in an aquarium. To ensure that the fish eggs hatch,  you should keep the water warm and separate the eggs from the rest of the fish. Do refrain from introducing the fry or the immature fish that have just hatched immediately into the tank with other fish.


It can be quite exciting to have your beloved fish spawning in your aquarium. If you provide the fish with enough warmth they can spawn multiple times of the year. When cared for properly, these fish eggs will hatch between 2 to 7 days if they are fertile.

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