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 frequently make spawning mops to allow baby fish to place their eggs. This helps protect them from being eaten as well as improves their survival rate. 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. Because the mop has many strands, it provides a dense covering for the fry to hide among. These are the steps to make two types of spawning mop for your aquarium fish.
Instructions for Yarn Spawning mop
This popular spawning mop can be used with rainbowfish, goldfish, tetras and barbs. 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. You will need to cut a 12-inch to 24-inch length from yarn. Then, use the yarn to tighten the knots that are wrapped around your notebook.
1. Slide the yarn strands onto the notebook. Then, cut the loops at either end of your yarn knot. Trim the mop if you find that the yarn strands have become too long or are not even.
1. Take the excess ends of the knot and securely tie them around the cork, rock, or suction cup.
1. The mop should be rinsed in tap water. 2. Depending on which species you are using, wait several days to two weeks after fish have spawned. Move the eggs from the mop into a container with an air stone or breeder net. Some people carry the whole spawning mop along with the eggs. Others prefer to take the eggs out with their fingers, tweezers or fingers.
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. For the eggs to be released from rice fish, stiffer bristles are needed to rub against.
1. Gather the materials A pool noodle that has a hollow in the middle. Scotch-Brite pads (with no cleaning chemicals in them) 3. Kitchen knife and cutting board 4. Scissors
1. With a knife or a cutting board, cut a 1/2-inch circle from the pool noodle.
1. Take one pad and position it in a horizontal, landscape orientation so the pad is wider than it is taller. Begin at one of the corners of the pad. Make a vertical cut upwards, stopping approximately 1/2″ from the top. The “strands of mop” are created by multiple vertical cuts at 1/4 inch intervals along the bottom.
1. Roll up the pad so that the top 1/2 ” of the pad looks like a spiral, while the bottom “strands” of the pad spread out like a skirt.
1. The spiral end of your mop should be stuck through the middle pool noodles disc.
1. Place the spawning mop in the aquarium and rinse it with no soap.
1. After spawning has taken place, you can move the eggs, whole spawning mop, into a separate grow-out tank, or breeder net.
Best of luck with your breeding projects. If you have hatched and raised too many fish, consider selling them to your local fish store or other fishkeepers to help support your aquarium hobby. Read our article How to Breed Aquarium Fish to Profit.