Hobbyist goldfish breeders and enthusiasts

Winter Spawning Goldfish – Breeding For Christmas

A couple years ago a member of the Goldfish Keepers forum asked where in the United States was the best place for keeping and breeding goldfish. Dave Mandley’s answer was North Carolina. Now, I’m not sure if it’s true that North Carolina is the best place in the country for breeding goldfish but we do have a lot of advantages. We have hot summers and moderate winters with few freezes. These make for great conditions for keeping goldfish outside year round.


Our friends in the north such as Ohio still keep goldfish outside over the winter, but only in deep enough ponds and the fish must hibernate. Any winter grow out requires bringing the fish inside for the winter. This is not to mention that here in North Carolina we have and advantage for winter spawning.

Now even in the north winter spawning is a common practice amongst a lot of breeders. For those in the north though that means bringing fish in late fall to warm up and spawn with enough time left to reintroduce them outside to winter, or else keeping the parents indoors for the whole season. Here in our more southern climate though winter can give us more opportunities. We had a good cold spell at the end of November and early December. Temperatures were in the thirties and forties most days for several weeks. However by mid December we started to warm back up with temperatures in the sixties creeping towards seventy.

Winter Breeders

One of the best ways to prep your goldfish for spawning is to cool them off and fast them. Then you gradually warm them up while feeding heavily. Nature does this through the changing seasons and their adjustments in food supply that goes along with this. As a goldfish breeder the more you can leverage nature for this the easier your job is. So accordingly we like to use the cool weather to start this conditioning process.

For Christmas we’ve brought in some of our breeders that have been outside since early summer. We’ve brought in red and white as well as calico butterfly telescopes. This will be the first time breeding these red and whites so we’re particularly excited for that. Nature has given us a nice Christmas present with this winter warmth and we’re happy to take advantage of it.


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