Can You Breed Molly Fish At Home? How To Breed?

Mollies are one of the most popular fish in home aquariums. They come in a wide range of colors and patterns, making them easy to find something that will fit your taste. But don’t you just sit back and wish your mollies breed and fill your tank with all their smaller version without you spending a penny to buy another fish. So, here is the thought: can you breed Molly fish home?

Yes, you can breed Molly fish at home. But unlike people’s assumption that keeping male and female Mollies will be enough for breeding, there are many things to take care of for breeding these fish. If you want some variation on what is available at stores, then breeding mollies at home can be an option.

Besides this, owners may have many other questions regarding breeding Mollies at home. So, we will look at what you need to do to have your molly fish breeding facility right in your home aquarium.

How Does Molly Fish Breed?

Molly fish breed by releasing their eggs and sperm into the water. You can also breed them via artificial insemination with a needleless syringe. You can also use assisted reproduction techniques like stripping (taking them from one tank to another). But these are not as common.

Molly fish will lay anywhere between 100 – 2000 eggs of various sizes. When Molly Fish are born, they do not look like their parents, so it’s difficult to tell which adults might have been the fathers or mothers unless you know what type of Molly she is and see if any other fish match up that way.

Molly’s parents cannot always take care of all those babies because there are only two. Thus, it would help if you bred Molly fish in large schools. Then, as Molly Fish grows, they will change colors and shape to look like their parents.

Is It Easy To Breed Molly At Home?

Molly fish are among the easiest species to breed in captivity. This is because you can keep them together with many other aquarium fishes. As a result, they do not need the special attention or feeding that most breeds require.

These Fish will mate following breeding season from March until September when water temperatures reach 60 degrees Fahrenheit or higher.

They give live birth on a flat surface, such as the leaves of plants. After spawning, you should separate within 24 hours to avoid cannibalism between parents and fry.

This may occur if you leave them together for too long after laying their eggs. For example, Molly fish lay about 1000 eggs, and the fry will hatch within 24 to 36 hours.

Most owners prefer larger tanks for a successful spawn with less chance of cannibalism occurring among parents, and they’re young. But Molly breeding is typically possible in aquariums with at least 20 gallons of water.

It would be best if you separated mature Molly fish pairs from other species so they can focus on reproducing without distractions. Such as smaller fry or overly assertive males harassing them.

Can You Breed Molly Fish At Home?

Breeders breed Molly fish in a commercial setting rather than at home. They usually use hormones and temperature manipulation within an incubator to accomplish the breeding process.

This process takes about six months due to water conditions, feeding, and monitoring required before the eggs hatch into fry that will grow into adults with sexual organs. As a result, most fish owners breed Mollies outside rather than in the fish tank.

Molly Fish Breeding Process

Professional breeders use hormones and temperature manipulation within an incubator for successful breeding.

However, this process takes about six months due to water conditions, feeding, and monitoring required before eggs hatch into fry that will grow into adults with sexual organs. 

You should introduce brand new Mollies slowly and cautiously. They can cause other inhabitants harm if you do it incorrectly or too quickly. (Treat them like any strange animal you’ve never seen)

After introducing your Molly fish, you’ll need to watch for any changes in behavior. Molly Fish are usually prone to biting or fighting during this introduction process.

If you observe this behavior, Molly will likely be aggressive toward other inhabitants. So, you should remove them from the tank until they adjust fully.

Things To Consider While Breeding Molly Fish At Home

Molly fish are tropical freshwater species, and they do not breed in their natural environment. They can only live outside their native habitat if captured by an aquarist or imported from another country. So, there are some things that you should consider when you breed Molly fish at home:

Maintenance Of Water Parameters To Breed Molly Fish

Molly fish is a freshwater species. So, you can breed them in captivity. They are easy to breed because the breeding process is very straightforward and predictable for this particular fish species.

However, for Molly fish breeding success, you must maintain water parameters within specific ranges throughout the entire cycle.

These range from temperature, pH, oxygen levels, and dissolved salts. Suppose any parameter falls outside of these ranges. In that case, it will have detrimental effects on Molly’s reproductive ability, which could result in death or poor health condition if not corrected quickly enough.

Tank Requirements To Breed Molly Fish

Molly fish need a lot of room to swim around, so you’ll want at least 20 gallons for just one Molly. You can keep these Fish in saltwater or freshwater tanks because they are livebearers, not egglayers.

However, in general, it’s better to use water with fewer minerals like pH-neutral tap water or RO (reverse osmosis) filtered water. The specific type of tank doesn’t matter as long as the size is right and there is plenty of swimming space.

A five-gallon aquarium will work well as long as it includes these features:

  • A filter system (aquariums don’t come with filters)
  • Air pump
  • Live plants like Java Fern (they grow quickly!)
  • Lighter gravel instead of black sand. This ensures your Molly won’t ingest any rocks when they eat.

Ratio Of Male And Female To Breed Molly Fish At Home

The male Molly should be three times the number of females in a tank for successful mating and spawning. This is also true if you plan on using an outside source such as a pet store or breeder.

This will ensure that enough males are available to mate with the Molly female population when they become ready, which happens once a month during their breeding season from April through October.

Molly breeders recommend at least six females per male because some Molly fry (baby Molly Fish) may be hermaphrodites, containing both sets of reproductive organs–one set being the majority gender. In contrast, others have both male and female organs.

Molly breeding ratios change depending on the type of Molly fish you are trying to breed, but in general, males should outnumber females by two or three times.

Hiding Place To Breed Molly Fish

Molly Fish like to live in shallow waters with a lot of vegetation. These Fish don’t swim as fast as other types of Fish, so they rely on plants for cover from predators.

Thus, one of the most important things for breeding is a hiding place. Molly needs places where they feel safe when breeding (including sexual maturity and pregnancy).

Plants work well because there’s lots of coverage but make sure your plant isn’t toxic before introducing it into your tank or pond.

Rocks will also offer some protection; keep an eye out for sharp edges that could injure them while breeding/pregnant.

How Can You Breed Molly Fish At Home?

With the popularity of Molly fish, the owners are keener on breeding these breeds in the home for their beautiful fry. Although breeding these fishes is easy, you need to put in some effort.

However, the steps for breeding Molly fish at home are:

Step One: Selection Of Molly fish Breeds

You can breed Molly fish at home without a breeding tank or aquarium. But there is a possibility of Molly fry dying because they need water to breathe.

So, it would help if you got Molly fishes compatible with your environment and easily available nearby so that the breeding process will not go haywire.

Steps Two: Setting Up The Environment

It will help if you put a Molly fish tank in an area where it’s safe from any danger like fire or direct sunlight, as these conditions might kill Molly fish eggs before they hatch out.

In addition, make sure if you want to breed Molly fish outside, then place them on sand instead of on a concrete surface, or else the chances are high that Molly Fish Eggs will dry up due to the lack of moisture.

Step Three: Obtaining Molly fish Eggs

To obtain Molly fish eggs, you should gently pull them off Molly fishes which are in the breeding mode, so that they may lay their eggs on your hand.

Then, place them into an egg container with a lid to keep it from drying up and shaking vigorously every few minutes, as this will make the process faster for Molly Fish Egg hatching out.

You must open or remove the top cover when Molly Fish Eggs hatch out. Next, put some freshwater inside to let fry get oxygen through a bubbling device placed at one end of a tank. It is necessary because there is a possibility that fry might suffocate due to stopping the flow of oxygen.

Step Four: Feeding Fry And Maintenance

Breed Molly fishes at home and feeds them with Artemia, which is present in abundance in saltwater. This is important because Molly fish fry need a lot of protein for their growth.

However, when Molly Fish Fry becomes an adult, you can provide them live food like white worms or blood worms. Don’t deprive Molly Fishes of eating these foods as it could lead to death.

Moreover, keep changing the water by using a siphon, especially if you breed Molly fish outside to not die due to a shortage of oxygen.

Step Five: Breeding Outside The House

If you have an outdoor pool and want to use your backyard as a breeding area for Mollyfish, try adding some rock formations or plants like Java moss to make Molly fish feel comfortable.

Then place some bubble breakers or equipment which will keep Mollies from jumping out of the pool and keeping their eggs safe in dry condition.

Finally, if you have a pond, do not breed Molly Fishes. Living with many breeds confuses Molly fish, and they will forget their way home.

Step Six: Breeding Exclusively Indoors

You can easily set up the breeding tank using any container like an aquarium with a lid and a few rocks at one end for the bubbling device.

Fill the container with purified water so that Molly Fish Eggs don’t die because of a lack of oxygen supply when they hatch out.

Keep adding fresh air into the tank now and then not to suffocate the fry. In addition, you can add some Molly Fish food like flakes or pellets into the tank to provide Molly Fishes with protein which is essential for their growth.

Step Seven: Spawning Just One Time

Breeding Molly fishes at home will be easier if you are careful. Breed them once and then move them back into an aquarium while providing enough space.

Molly fish fry needs oxygen and might suffocate if you overcrowd them. Moreover, make sure that the temperature of the breeding place stays between 68-82 degrees so that babies don’t freeze easily from cold water conditions outside.

Finally, when breeding Mollies at home, follow all these steps attentively. Otherwise, there is a high chance that Molly Fish Eggs won’t hatch out, resulting in Molly Fishes dying.


In conclusion, you can breed Molly fish at home if you are attentive and care for a few things. Molly Fish breeding is a great way to have more Molly fish for your tank or propagate the species in other areas. Researching and taking help from different articles and professionals is the best way to know more about Molly fish breeding.

Hopefully, this post provided all the necessary information that you need to start Molly Fish breeding.

Try reading a few more posts about Molly fish care at home if you want to breed them at home.

Best of luck and happy Molly Fish breeding.

Happy Fishkeeping!!