When Should I Put My Guppy In The Breeder Box? {Guppy Fry Care}

Guppies give birth to their young ones alive. They are livebearers an their babies are their fry. When should I put my guppy in the breeder box?

These baby guppies are always at risk of being preyed upon by adult guppies including their parents.

In this article, we’ll calculate and explain the precise time to put your guppy in the breeder box.

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When Should I Put My Guppy In The Breeder Box?

You can keep the pregnant female guppy in the breeder box once you notice its birthing time is close. They can be removed in about 24-48 hours after giving birth before they start eating the guppy fry.

The baby guppies on the other hand, can be left in the box for about a week or two. By this time, they would have grown big and strong.

Also, they will no longer fit in the mouth of the adults. However, keeping them in the breeder box longer than this period can stunt their growth.

When Should I Put My Guppy In The Breeder Box

Why Use A Breeder Box?

There is a need to protect the guppy fry and keep them alive. One of the best methods of protecting these baby guppies is by making use of a breeder box.

The breeder box is also known as breeder net. The breeder box is a small container placed inside the tank to isolate pregnant females.

Are You Looking To Keep Guppies? If yes check out our care guide here

How Long Can I Keep My Guppy in a Breeder Box?

Ideally you should remove the mother guppy from a breeder box 24 – 48 hours after giving birth.  You can keep them in the box for longer as long as the water conditions are good.

  1. Make sure there is a good water flow with clean and oxygenated water.
  2. You will also need to make sure they are getting enough food.
  3. You should also monitor the guppy in the breeding box to make sure they are not showing signs of stress.

If they are showing signs of stress they should be removed from the breeding box,

Should I Put My Pregnant Guppy in a Breeding Trap?

It is recommended to put your guppy in to a breeding trap to protect the guppy fry from being eaten.  A Breeding trap will insure that the guppy fry that have been born can escape the breeding trap and from being eaten by mum and dad.

Once the fry have been born you should consider to move them to their own tank for 2 weeks – 6 weeks so they have the best chance of surviving

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When Should I Isolate My Pregnant Guppy?

When the pregnant guppy is
approximately three weeks along, separate it.

Keep in mind that keeping pregnant guppy in a breeding box for more than two weeks might cause stress and possibly lead to death.

To provide the optimal environment for giving birth, keep the water between 78 and 82 °F.

Can I Put My Pregnant Guppy in a Bowl?

No. It is not recommended to move your pregnant guppy to a bowl because:

  • they are more likely to become stressed and the water conditions will not be ideal for a pregnant guppy.
  • when the guppy fry are born, mum can easily eat them as they have no where to hide from mum.

The pregnant guppy will need to be isolated for minimum 2 days and up to 2 weeks and the conditions in a bowl will not be good enough for a pregnant guppy.

How To Use Breeder Box

One of the few difficulties encountered in breeding guppies is preventing adult guppies from eating guppy fry. One of the alternative methods employed is keeping the guppy fry in a separate tank, but the method is considered more expensive and stressful.

The use of a breeder box is relatively easy to maintain and less expensive. Breeder box is like a container designed to allow free flow of water in and out.

  • Once you get the breeder box, simply place it in the fish tank when you realize it is almost time for the pregnant guppy to give birth.
  • This breeder box is initially made to hold the pregnant guppy until the fry are released.
  • The female guppy is then extracted after releasing the fry before they start eating them.
  • The fry are safely kept in the box and adult guppies are prevented from reaching them.
  • They are kept in the box until they are big enough and can no longer fit into the mouth of the adult.

Keeping them longer than necessary can however stunt their growth.

Saving Guppy Fry From Adult Guppy

It is common knowledge among aquarium owners that aside from the breeder box, there are alternative ways to keep your guppy fry safe.

The two most common methods are:

  • making use of artificial or live plants.
  • keeping the fry in a separate tank.

The presence of artificial or live plants in the tank will provide a hiding place and cover for the guppy fry. Although the plants cannot possibly save all fry, they can still help many fry survive until they are big enough to move freely around.

The use of separate tanks for fry is quite effective but it is relatively more expensive and requires extra maintenance.

You can keep the pregnant guppy in the tank when it is almost time for it to give birth then remove after releasing the fry. This is easier than trying to separate the fry from the general tank after being released because of their size.

Guppy Fry Care

It’s critical to keep baby guppies secure since they are in danger the moment they are born.

Give them hiding places in the tank or at least keep them apart from the adult guppies to prevent them from getting eaten.

To help them develop fast, feed them frequently, maintain them in warm water, and offer them live food.

Should I Separate Guppy Fry from Mother?

Yes. If the baby fish stay in the same tank as the mother fish, she will consume them. Fortunately, you can take care of your newborn guppies by putting them in a different tank or giving them somewhere to hide.

After birth, baby fish are independent of their parents. Once the guppy offspring arrive, the mother fish can join the other guppies in the communal tank. The guppy fry care is now your responsibility. Newborn fry may now be raised in the breeding tank.

How Many Guppy Fry Survive?

The chance that guppy fry will survive changes with time. Various situations and causes affect how it changes. In an aquarium, the typical survival rate is between 10% and 20%.


If you consider breeding guppies and raising guppy fry then you must learn how to protect the fry from adult guppies. The use of a breeder box is one of the easiest and least expensive to keep your guppy fry safe.  Also, it will protect your pregnant guppy from stress.


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Hello, I'm Jason. I'm the guy behind HelpUsFish.com. I volunteer at my local fish shop and I created this site to offer tips and advice on the fish I care for.