Pet goldfish stun owners by producing a surviving baby

TWO fantail goldfish have astounded their owners by producing a single live young after six unproductive years at home in Gorleston.

Experts say the tiny offspring is a rare survival in a domestic setting where fish require all things to be “just right.”

Susan Dack, 42, of Peterhouse Avenue, said the family including daughter Charlotte, 12, were delighted with the lone little fish which, like a real baby, had generated upheaval and a move.

To protect the youngster from being eaten by its never-named parents they have had to buy a new tank and baby fish food just as they are upping sticks to a new home too.

Mrs Dack, who has her own cleaning and gardening company, said the fish had been full of surprises from the start growing from tiddlers to become 4ins long. To accommodate their size she had had to buy a 4ft tank but had never had any idea of their sex and didn’t think they could breed anyway.

After spotting the baby a few days ago she contacted Pets at Home, where they came from, and was told it was unusual for them to breed in the hands of ordinary owners who had little interest in adding to their brood, and immediately advised taking the baby away until it was too big too to be gulped.

Oliver Bolton, assistant manager at Pets at Home, said it was rare for fantails to breed in home aquariums.

Most Read

“We don’t get people coming in saying our fish have bred can you take the babies. If you have a large tank and the right conditions then they will breed but it doesn’t tend to happen.”

Christine Pitcher, displays supervisor at Great Yarmouth’s Sea Life Centre said the offspring had “defied the odds” to reach a survivable level of maturity.

She said the babies were so tiny it was possible the fish had bred before, probably at night, and either been eaten and lost in the filter before anyone noticed.

In this case the youngster could have hidden itself away, until it felt big enough to come out.