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Why Can’t I Find Eggs?


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So I’m a huge fan of cpd’s, if you couldn’t tell by my name?!?! Lol. Anyways I had bought a group of 6 cpd’s months ago and I had to grow them out. Unfortunately 3 died so I had 2 females and 1 male but I didn’t know untill they grew a little more. So they were just about sexing out and I decided to buy 6 more to build my colony and add some extra blood into my colony to strengthen the colony for when they were old enough to breed. My 3 from the first order had grow and now just sexed out and is raring to go and breed. Luckily I was blessed with 2 females and 1 male. The other ones are still a month maybe two out from sexing out and breeding. Anyways so I have them all in a 10 gallon with a couple panda corys to grow out and albino bn plecos. Everyone leaves each other alone. So the 1st 3 cpd’s started doing the dance a couple days ago in the Java moss and deli cup. I noticed the younger ones go in and out of the moss at times too quickly... so that has me a little scared because idk if since this is my cpd’s first time trying to spawn if these first couple of days are “dry” runs? Or are the little guys eating the eggs? With as much as the females and male dance in the cup I’d expect to find at least one egg but the couple times I’ve checked I haven’t found not 1 egg? I know the panda corys are leaving them alone (surprisingly) and so are the plecos.

So I’m curious and would love to hear what you guys would think is happening? Or any advice on how I should go about this?!?! Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thank you and have an amazing day!

p.s. don’t judge my tank lol, it’s not a show tank it’s a breeding tank. I’ve had more success with “dirty” tanks and breeding!


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I'm a big fan of the egg trap method using vegetation in a deli cup. I think what you're doing will work great.

Here are the thoughts I would offer:

Consider an 8 oz rather than 16 oz cup. Sometimes they get nervous in the taller cups and struggle against the tall clear plastic. 

Moss is a go-to for spawning media but they will actually spawn in just about any loose vegetation. You can lay a few weighted sprigs of water sprite or something down in a cup and they will spawn in it. My point isn't just they they can spawn in looser, lower density vegetation, but rather that sometimes it's easier for them. If you've ever seen them mate up physically during spawning, it actually takes some room for (usually the male) to swim in a tight arc and line himself up against the side of the female. Sometimes too dense a spawning medium won't give them room enough for that maneuver. 

To get more egg production I definitely recommend dedicated conditioning with higher protein food (I use live BBS). When things are really moving, the females become visibly gravid with eggs.

Lastly I've noticed that too many males in one spawn (almost regardless of how many females) can slow down spawning. The competition between males for a female's attention or claim of the spawning site can distract from getting the job done.

Good luck, under the right conditions they breed like rabbits. 


Edited by Lowells Fish Lab
Found a photo of my last egg trap
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@Lowells Fish Lab thank you so much for taking the time to reply and give your great advice!!! I will most definitely try using a smaller 8oz deli cup and maybe try a spawning mop, water sprite and continue to use java moss! They are just starting the breeding literally a couple days ago so I feel I have a while to try new things, and since they literally spawn for hours every morning EVERY SINGLE DAY!!! I have plenty of opportunities try new things! Also the bbs...? Is that live bbs or can you supplement frozen bs? I have plenty of high protein foods with flake, frozen and if need be I can brine up some bs too!

Again thank you so much for taking the time to help me out! It’s greatly appreciated and I’ll make sure to keep you and the forum posted on my journey! 

Between trying to breed cpds and some medaka rice fish (in tanks) I’ve had my hands full. I don’t have a big huge fish room. I have a small rack to play musical fish with! So it’s a fun experience that I love!

Have an amazing day and I’ll keep you posted!

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  • 1 year later...

@Lowells Fish Lab - I really enjoy your videos.  How long do you recommend "conditioning" your CPD's prior to trying to breed?  For example, feeding BBS, frozen food, etc.   I have 8 but only 2 females. Would you also recommend, pulling the two females and one of the males out to try and initiate some breeding behavior?  - thanks

Edited by Von Hoff
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On 12/11/2022 at 7:16 AM, Von Hoff said:

@Lowells Fish LabHow long do you recommend "conditioning" your CPD's prior to trying to breed? I have 8 but only 2 females. Would you also recommend, pulling the two females and one of the males out to try and initiate some breeding behavior? 

I think if you have males and females in the same space they'll start spawning whether they're super well conditioned or not, which is totally fine. The amount I feed (a lot) to make big healthy fish is the same amount I would use to encourage good egg production. If you look at your fish and say "wow, those are some fat, healthy looking fish," that's probably a good sign they are ready for some very productive spawns. If the adults are already in good condition and you want to separate sexes before reintroducing for a larger single spawning event, probably just a few days? 

And I think using the one male and two females is a good plan. 

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