What time of year do goldfish have breeding tubercles?

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When should you look for signs that the goldfish breeding season is under way? Paul Green advises.

Goldfish will normally sport full tubercles during the breeding season which can run from spring through to autumn.

However, because we are able to easily regulate the temperature of the goldfish in our care we can actually maintain them in breeding condition throughout the year. I have spoken to breeders who purposely hold their fish at around 18°C/64°F year-round just in case they want to have a spawning!

I’ve never tried this and prefer to follow seasonal changes which in my opinion gives the fish more vigour come the spawning season.

Female goldfish can have the odd tubercle by the way, so this shouldn’t always be taken as a guaranteed sexing method.

This article was first published in the November 2009 issue of Practical Fishkeeping magazine. It may not be reproduced without written permission.