Guppy Live Fish Bowl: Will They Die In A Small Swim Area?

You may have seen movies or home decor magazines showing that the fish bowl is a cool piece of decoration that adds elegance and class to your living room or bedroom. You wonder if you can also replicate it in your house with your guppy. No. Do not keep your guppies in a fishbowl. In fact, no fish likes living in a small glass bowl. Here are a few reasons why you should not keep your guppies in a fishbowl.

Is It Cruel To Keep A Fish In A Bowl?

Even though it looks cool to have a fish bowl in any house, it is quite cruel to put any fish in this environment including guppies. Guppy fish and other types of tropical fish or freshwater aquarium fish require space to swim around. A larger tank also allows waste to be diluted. The typical fishbowl is usually 1-3 gallons in size, the small amount of water volume is not adequate enough to dilute the produced toxins.

The little fishbowl can’t hold enough water to sustain proper temperatures, water parameters, and oxygen levels. In our guppy care guide, the recommended minimum is a 5-gallon aquarium for keeping guppies. There are also other things that a fish bowl does not have compared to a proper fish tank.

Can Guppies Live In A Fish Bowl Without A Filter?

Most fishbowls don’t have a filtration system and many pet owners don’t usually set up a filter. The reason is that it can be very difficult to find a filter suitable for a tiny fishbowl. It is possible for guppies to live in a fish bowl without a filter provided you have a proper setup of a guppy fishbowl which mimics an underwater ecosystem. While it is not difficult to build, it does require you to delicately balance several elements.

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If you’re keeping male and female guppies, then they are bound to reproduce. In such a small bowl, the mating process can be stressful for females. And, stress is one of the main causes of death in pregnant guppies.

Additionally, when the females do give birth, there won’t be enough space for the baby guppies and they can and will be eaten by adult guppies if they can’t find places to hide.

While I don’t recommend keeping any fish in a bowl or vase, there are some who argue that it can be done and is safe to do once you take proper precautions:

Do be aware that keeping a guppy in a fishbowl does not simply mean adding water; your fish will die within days, if you do that!  Grietje Hans

Grietje explains what to do when setting up a fishbowl without a mechanical filter. Usually called the ‘Walstad method’, ‘natural aquarium’, ‘no-tech’, and ‘low-tech’ fish tank.

Fishbowls are very attractive, however, keeping guppies or other fish in a glass bowl is not something that I would recommend for beginners. Instead, why not try out a planted bowl (with no fish).

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