How to Make a Fish Hatchery Tank

Baby Fish
Baby Fish (Image: Timmy Toucan, Creative Commons License)

Making a fish hatchery tank is particularly important any time you have infant or adolescent fish mixed with adults. They are fish, after all, and they have a natural instinct to devour one another, so it is important to keep the baby fish in a safe environment until they are large enough to survive on their own. That is where having a fish hatchery tank comes in handy. Here’s how to make one.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape Measure
  • 1” x 1” Trim Board
  • Window Screen
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • 4 Small Pieces of Tack Stripping
  • 4 Long Pieces of Tack Stripping
  • Hammer
  • Hand Saw

Use your tape measure to take a measurement of the dimensions of your aquarium. There are two measurements that are important to make. First, measure how tall your fish tank is from bottom to top, then measure how wide the inside portion of the tank is. It is important that your measurement be limited to the inside, not the outside, because you will be making a divider to slide into the tank.

Using a hand saw, take a length of 1" x 1" trim board and cut it into four separate pieces. First measure a piece that is as long as the inside width of your aquarium and cut. Repeat this length for the second one. These will be the top and bottom of your divider. Then measure a length of 1" x 1" trim board that is equal to the height of the aquarium, minus two inches (to compensate for the thickness of the top and bottom board. Repeat this cut twice. These will be the sides of the divider.

Lay your boards out on the work area in the pattern they will be used in. They should be placed together as a tall rectangle, with the boards measuring the width being the top and bottom, and the other two being the left and right side.

Lay the four pieces of tack strip over the areas where the boards join together, and lightly tap them into the wood with your hammer. Now instead of four loose pieces of board, you have a firm rectangle that will serve as the frame from your hatchery divider.

Get your roll of window screen, which can be purchased from any hardware or home improvement store. Unroll a portion and stretch it over your rectangle. Measure and cut a piece of screen that will efficiently, and completely, cover the rectangle you made.

Lay the window screen over the rectangle, and using your long tack strips, secure the screen into place so that it is joined to the wooden rectangle firmly. You have just made a screen divider for your tank.

Slide the screen divider into your tank, so that it completely divides the tank into two sides. One side should represent about 25 percent of the tank space, and be used for infant fish. The other side will make up 75 percent of the tank and be used for adult fish.

Tips & Warnings

  • In addition to baby fish, this method can also be used to introduce new fish to your aquarium.

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