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Life Cycle of Pond Fish

Updated April 10, 2017

The life cycle of pond fish is an interesting one, especially as pond fish will breed regularly when the right conditions are met. Understanding the life cycle of pond fish is especially important when breeding fish intentionally, as the fry have a much greater chance of survival with humans tending them.

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The life cycle of pond fish begins with the parents, which typically breed between late spring and early summer months. Mature female fish swell with eggs, and males become alert and agile in anticipation.


Eggs are laid and fertilised, or fertilised and laid, depending on the fish species. Once the eggs are attached and fertilised, development begins, and the eggs will hatch four to five days following fertilisation.


The fry stage of life involves rapid growth and a constant threat of being eaten. When fry venture out from vegetation several weeks after being born, many parents eat them.

Juvenile Adult Fish

By the juvenile adult stage, at 10 to 12 weeks of age, fish will be better able to survive the winter months. You should start seeing the true colouring and ornamental fins of species such as goldfish.

Mature Adult Fish

The fry reach mature adulthood after at least three years have passed. This is when the growth peak ends and is generally when regular breeding habits begin to pick up.

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About the Author

Jennifer Uhl

Jennifer Uhl has been writing professionally since 2005. She writes primarily for the web and has been published as a ghostwriter in "Tropical Fish Magazine" and "Entrepreneur." She is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in health care from Mira Costa College.

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