What Do Goldfish Eggs Look Like (& What To Do With Them)

Fertilized goldfish eggs are small, ovular eggs that are yellow-orange with a black spot on one end. They are usually attached to vegetation or tank decorations. Goldfish eggs can also be clear or off-white. Eggs of this color are unfertilized are in the fishkeeping community are considered “bad.”

If you notice fish eggs in your tank, decide what you want to do with them before taking action. 

Based on your intention, you should either remove the eggs from your tank or leave them. Removing the eggs and placing them into a fry tank will allow them to hatch. By leaving them in with your community tank, the adult goldfish will eat them. 

What Do Goldfish Eggs Look Like?

Goldfish eggs have an ovular, bubble-like appearance. These eggs range in color from clear, white to yellow-orange, depending on whether the egg has been fertilized. Unfertilized eggs are semi-clear white. 

Fertilized eggs are yellow with a small black speck at the top of one end. As the goldfish eggs mature, a crescent shape will begin to form around this black dot. This crescent shape is the spinal cord of the goldfish beginning to form.

Throughout the seven days of development, the eggs will not grow in size. When the fry hatches, it is relatively the same size as its egg.

What Should I Do with Goldfish Eggs that I Find In My Tank?

Before you can determine what to do with your goldfish eggs, you need to decide on your intention with them. It will take roughly 4-7 days for the eggs to hatch. 

Fish owners like yourself must take action immediately when you notice fish eggs in your tank. Most large fish species view these tiny eggs as delicious treats. 

The steps you take in those first few days determine whether they will hatch. If you intend on hatching your goldfish eggs, the most important factor is moving your eggs to another tank. If you do not separate the goldfish eggs from adult goldfish, the adult goldfish will eat them.

Move The Fish Eggs To a Fry Tank

You must separate goldfish eggs from your adult fish if you intend on hatching them. Separating your goldfish eggs protects them from large predators, allows you to monitor them safely, and lets you manipulate their environment.

Create a separate goldfish fry tank using another aquarium. Separate the fish eggs from your community tank as soon as possible so you can begin raising your fries in a safe environment.

Leave Goldfish Eggs in The Community Tank

Only leave goldfish eggs in your tank if you are uninterested in letting them hatch. Adult goldfish will eat unfertilized and fertilized goldfish eggs, and they will be gone in no time. The goldfish eggs are a great source of protein for the adult goldfish. 

Dissolve The Eggs

If you are uninterested in hatching your goldfish’s eggs, then you can use a mixture to dissolve the eggs. Consult with your local pet store to find the best solution for your fish tank, so you do not interfere with any fish species in your tank. Furthermore, it is impossible to dissolve specific eggs. Before beginning the dissolving process, confirm that you are sure this is the right decision.

Dispose Of The Eggs

Remove the eggs from the tank and dispose of them in the trash can if you do not care to hatch them.

This method will not provide any nutrition to your larger fish, which is a major downfall. On the other hand, it rejects any potential that the eggs will hatch.

How Long Does It Take Goldfish Eggs To Hatch?

Goldfish eggs can take between four and seven days to hatch. The amount of time it takes for goldfish to hatch usually depends on their environment.

Eggs going longer than seven days without hatching could mean male goldfish did not fertilize them. Unfertilized eggs will be white or clear. In this case, you will need to remove these eggs from your tank or introduce a shrimp to do it for you.

Since female goldfish can lay up to one thousand eggs, it is common for many of them to go unfertilized. If some of your goldfish eggs do not hatch, do not let this worry you. 

Swimming Goldfish

How to Take Care Of Goldfish Eggs

Even if you “hire” a reliable shrimp nanny, you are still obligated to care for your goldfish eggs. Keep an eye on your eggs each day and pay attention to their progress. 

Tank conditions like water temperature and pH levels are critical, even for eggs. To hatch the healthiest goldfish possible, you must take great care of your goldfish eggs from the first day your female fish lays her eggs.

Give Them Great Water Conditions

Poor water conditions will lead to a bad batch of goldfish eggs. Measure your water conditions daily and keep a strict eye on rising pH. If you notice any significant changes, be sure to adjust the conditions.

Set Up A Good Tank

Before letting your goldfish breed, set up a proper fry tank. If you create a fry tank before you breed your goldfish, you will make separating your adult goldfish from your eggs much easier. 

This tank should have water conditions, temperatures, decorations, and companions already set up beforehand. 

Record Goldfish Growth Progress

When hatching goldfish eggs, track your progress in a journal or spreadsheet file. Mark growth, water conditions, etc., to get insight on your breeding skills, fish development, and much more. Having progress reports is great for casual fish owners or people looking to hone their breeding skills.

Employ Some Shrimp Babysitters

Shrimps feast on decomposing organisms like algae and dead goldfish eggs to maintain a clean environment in your fish tank. Species like cherry shrimp are even known to clean algae and other surface grime from goldfish eggs. 

At least one shrimp in your fry tank will increase the health of your goldfish eggs.  They prevent fungus from growing on your eggs, which keeps them disease-free.

Maintain Good Water Temperature 

68 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal water temperature for egg hatching. You should maintain this temperature throughout the whole 4-7 day hatching process. 

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Do Goldfish Eat Their Eggs?

Adult goldfish will eat their eggs if you leave them in the same tank. If you want to hatch your goldfish eggs, you must place them in a fry hatching tank.

Will Unfertilized Goldfish Eggs Hatch?

Unfertilized goldfish eggs will not hatch. Unless a male fertilizes the eggs, a larger fish (like the adult goldfish) will eat the eggs. Males can only fertilize the egg for the first few minutes after the female has laid the egg.

What Do You Do With Unfertilized Goldfish Eggs?

You may remove unfertilized eggs from your fish tank by using a methylene blue and dechlorinated water mixture in your tank. Introducing shrimp to your tank is another great idea. Shrimps love to eat bad or unfertilized fish eggs.

Will Goldfish Eggs Hatch In A Community Tank? 

Larger fish, including their parent goldfish, will eat goldfish eggs left in community tanks. If they manage to hatch, they must still grow into adult fish which is essentially impossible at their size.


Female goldfish lay neon yellow-orange eggs that stick to the side of underwater foliage. If you notice these bubbly eggs in your tank, decide if you want to hatch them. Depending on your intention, you can supply your goldfish with food or hatch them. Hatching your goldfish eggs will require separating your eggs by moving them to a new fry tank. 

You must keep goldfish eggs in specific environments to keep them healthy. Create a fry tank inhabited with cherry shrimp or another friendly shrimp species. Shrimps are helpful because they eat bad eggs and remove harmful fungus from the exterior of your eggs. Infertile, bad eggs can harm your fertilized eggs, so having shrimps in your fry tank can help your tank. 

If you are interested in breeding goldfish, set up your fry tank ahead of time. Setting up a fry tank ahead of time is the best way to hatch healthy goldfish eggs successfully. Provide them a tank with the right water conditions, proper temperatures, adequate tank size, and an environment that they can hatch and continue to grow in.

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