Shubunkin Goldfish
Carassius auratus

Care Level




Reef Compatible


Plant Safe


Max Size

18 +

Minimum Tank Size



Black, Orange, Red, White



Water Conditions

36-90° F, KH 2-12, pH 6.8-7.2


General: Shubunkins are a great beginner fancy goldfish, as long as proper care and conditions are provided. It prefers cold water, usually ranging from 60-70F. Shubunkins produce a large amount of waste, so good filtration and oxygenation are necessary. It has been a mainstay in the hobby for a long time, having been the result of selective breeding in early 20th century Japan. Shubunkins may appear small at fish stores, but will ultimately require a large aquarium or pond, as they can exceed 18 inches over time. Speaking of which, shubunkins are a long-lived species and can live for more than ten years in captivity. Floating plants are best for aquariums or ponds with shubunkins, as they have a tendency sift through gravel and uproot species.

Dimorphism: When ready to spawn, males will develop notches on their head called tubercles, and females will appear more plump.

Fecundity: When breeding, it is recommended to keep shubunkins in a spawning group in a separate pond or aquarium. The separate enclosure should be furnished with numerous live plants or spawning mops for eggs to adhere to. Start out with a cooler temperature and gradually increase it until 70-75F is reached. Along the way, also perform water changes to further increase chances of spawning. Feed the shubunkin high quality food such as brine shrimp, blood worm, or live insects. The female shubunkin will scatter thousands of eggs, and afterwards the fish should be removed, as they are prone to consuming eggs. Once the fry hatch, they should be fed infusoria and later can be switched to live baby brine shrimp. Preform numerous water changes per week and feed the fry multiple times per day to ensure optimal growth rates. It can take time for color patterns to appear, so don't feel discouraged if the fry lack color the first few months.

Water Chemistry: 36-90° F, KH 2-12, pH 6.8-7.2

Aquarium Diet: Shubunkin omnivores and will accept most foods that are offered. Some options include goldfish flake, pellets, brine shrimp, blood worm, and plant matter.

Compatibility: Shubunkin are very peaceful and sociable fish. Due to being a coldwater species it is best to keep them with other shubunkin or related goldfish varieties. Keep in mind that by keeping a larger group will also require an even larger aquarium or pond to accommodate for growth rates and waste production.

Shubunkin Goldfish Videos

Author: Grant Stevens