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I recently acquired some CPDs or Celestial Pearl Danios, and I thought I’d start a thread for breeding them. I have 4 males and 2 females (before today I thought it was the opposite ratio) that I got 3 days ago, today was my first day able to watch them the whole day and in the light, and my first day offering live baby brine shrimp. For several hours today I’ve noticed the dominant male chasing around one of the females, and occasionally another male will also try and chase for a few moments and then go off and do something else. I have some videos of this but I’m not sure how to add it (I’ll play around, advice would be helpful) and I’m wondering if this is breeding behavior or if it’s aggression. What are your experiences with the keeping and breeding of this beautiful species? (I posted a few videos on tiktok, I can’t get the video into the right format to post directly from my phone, would it be ok to post a link to the tiktok? If not what would allow me to post the video?)

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The Celestial Pearl Danio is a freshwater fish found in small, vegetated ponds in South East Asia. These fish boast plenty of color from the white pearl like...

This article seeks to separate fact from fiction regarding the relatively new celestial pearl danio (Celestichthys margaritatus).

Here's a couple articles I found. It says that it is normal behavior for the chasing to occur, and having hiding spaces for the non-dominant males will make sure they aren't picked on to death. That could either be in the form of live plants for them to hide in or decorations.

For the videos, I would imagine that posting a link to tiktok is fine.

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Ok I’m gonna try and post the tiktok link


This would be so cool if this was spawning behavior 🤞🏻 #babybrineshrimp #fish #fishbreeding #celestialpearldanios

please ignore my voice lol 

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Good luck with your breeding project! 

I got 5 CPD’s a few months back, but two died so I was left with 1 male and 2 females.

They were in a 10 gallon planted tank with my betta, but a few months after I got them the betta died (he got caught behind my heater)

so I decided to take the fish and equipment out of that tank and move it to  a different one. About a week later I look into that original tank and I see TINY TINY baby cpd’s, they hatched without a filter or heater (the water was in the mid 50s)

The little tank they were in was covered in algae.


I didn’t really have to feed them at all because of all the infusoria and little critters in there, until they were a few few weeks old then I started feeding Baby Brine, first bites, crushed up flake, freeze dried daphnia.

Now it’s been a little over a month and I love these little guys. It’s hard to get a picture but they are starting to get some Orange and some spots.



I don’t know if these accidental fry help but maybe it will lol.

Edited by James V.
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I've kept these for a little over a year and raised several dozen fry to adulthood. They are probably my favorite nano fish, and I think I'll always have a tank of them. Their behavior is so much more intelligent compared to a tetra. 

Your female looks super healthy and plump. I bet she's full of eggs.

Mine like to spawn early in the morning, and they like to spawn in dense plant mass. A cup of moss or carpet plant works well for this. The female will swim around and scatter her eggs, and the males will swim behind her and fertilize. The males seem to do lots of "shimmy" dancing during this. If you want to raise up the fry, you could put moss in a breeder box and scoop the female and a male into it in the evening. In the morning they'll spawn, then you can out the parents back in the tank later that morning and wait for the eggs to hatch in the moss (about 48 hour after spawning is when I see fry). The parents will eat their eggs and the fry, so if you want to raise them up it's important to separate them. I notice when one of my females is laying eggs, almost every male in the tank is trying to chase her. 

The males do seem to chase the females, but I've never noticed them doing it enough to distress the ladies. The females seem to just ignore the male if they're busy picking at a leaf or doing other fish stuff. I try to keep them in female heavy groups, 2 females per male at least. I think I've got about 15 in a 75gal community tank right now. They spawn every morning but I rarely see fry. Occasionally I'll see one fry, but then can't find it a few days later. I'll try to see if I can spot one tonight and get a video of it. I've also got swordtail fry in this tank who are getting big, and I think they've started eating the CPD fry. 

Over the summer I put the CPDs in a greenhouse tank with green water, and they bred like crazy. I scooped out 40 at the end of the season. 

Mine spawn every morning for about two hours, around 8am (before my tank lights come on). Watch for the two that go behind the rock and "hug" 😉 at :04 for about 10 seconds. Then the male lingers to finish fertilizing the eggs that she dropped. 


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They are probably breeding every day, but you will never see any eggs and rarely a fry if you leave the adults in there. They will eat every last one. They are very efficient micro-predators and the fry are very small for quite a while. I had kept one pair in a 10g shrimp tank. I would see a fry once in a while but it would disappear. When the shrimp were about to release their clutches, I took out the pair and put them in another 10g, and within a week I had over 20 CPD fry too. I would say they lay about 5 eggs a day, every day. I finally decided too stick the adults in the large community tank, a few days after I had removed them from the other 10g I had another 10 fry. I have between 30-40 growing out right now. The temp was around 75 and there were some heavily planted sections in each tank. I think dwarf hairgrass helps to keep them from eating their own eggs.

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