May 26

Sarah Robertson

Black Moor Goldfish Care, Lifespan, Breeding & More

The most popular ornamental fish are goldfish. There are many different types, but fancy goldfish are becoming some of the most popular due to their distinct appearances. The Black moor goldfish is one of the most distinctive. They have a brilliant coloration and an intricate structure that make them appealing for home aquariums.

Black Moor is also known as Chinese Moor and they are created by crossing a Red Telescope and a Veiltail or Fringetail Fancy Goldfish. They are not found in the wild.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, goldfish competitions in Korea and Japan popularized them, giving birth to a slew of gorgeous varieties. As a result of these shows, many exquisite breeds were developed.

Because they are quiet, they may be added to a tank without harming the rest of your fish. They are easy to maintain, are healthy if the tank is kept clean and fed with a balanced diet, and make excellent pets for novices.

Key Facts:

  • Nicknames : Chinese Moor and Black Telescope.
  • Color Forms : Black.
  • Black Moor Goldfish size : 6-8 inches.
  • Diet : Omnivore
  • Family : Cyprinidae
  • Experience Required : Fancy Goldfish keeping.
  • Tank Size : Minimum 20+ gallons.
  • Tank Temperature : 60°F to 75°F.
  • Care Level : Easy
  • Temperament : Peaceful
  • Black Moor Goldfish Lifespan : 10-15 years
  • Tank Set-Up : Freshwater, Plants and Swimming Space
  • Compatibility : Other Peaceful Community Fish

Origins of the Black Moor Goldfish

The Black Moor is a black-colored goldfish with a telescope eye. The name comes from the egg-shaped body and bulging eyes. The fins are also long and elegant. The Black Moor was developed through selective breeding to have these features.

The Black Moor is descended from the relatively ordinary common carp, which is often a drab olive color. Goldfish varieties are thought to have originated from selective breeding of Prussian carp (Carassius Gibelio) or Crucian Carp. In ancient times, carp were raised for food, and they are one of the first types of fish farming.

The Common Goldfish was first described by Swedish naturalist Carl Linnaeus in 1758. They had already been introduced to Chinese home aquariums by the early 1800s.

As their popularity grew in East Asia, selective breeding began. In the mid-nineteenth century, it is said that the Black Moor breed originated in China.

This unusual fish was on display in competitions all over its native country, which caught the attention of people from other countries. Soon after that Black moor became popular in aquariums around the world. The breed was first brought to the United States in the early 20th century.

They were scrutinized by animal rights organizations in the 2000s. While the criticism has raised awareness, it has not reduced the popularity of the Black Moor. They have become one of the most popular fancy Goldfish breeds in recent years.

Black Moor Goldfish Behavior

The peaceful Black Moor Goldfish should not cause any problems for their tankmates. They are somewhat quiet, so they don't get along well with boisterous fish.

They are sluggish swimmers, which is why they need other calm species in the aquarium.

The majority of their time is spent in the middle levels of water, and when they are frightened, they will hideaway.

They prefer to be with their own kind and will often shoal when maintained in groups.

Black Moor Goldfish Appearance

Black Moor Goldfish Appearance

Black Moor Goldfish are generally black in color. The majority are completely black, although some have orange patches on their bodies.

Newborn fish are pale, and as they mature, they become darker.

Their eyes are the most distinctive feature of their body. They get bigger as they age and appear to ‘pop' out of their heads. Telescopic Goldfish is the name given to them because of their huge lenses.

They have big eyes, yet their sight is poor, even with such big eyes.

Their spherical, egg-shaped bodies are another distinguishing characteristic. This is a common feature of many fancy Goldfish varieties, but it causes them to be sluggish swimmers.

The Black Moor Goldfish's fins are incredibly beautiful with unique eyes, which is probably why many individuals choose this species. Their large dorsal and pectoral fins, though, are complemented with elongated anal and tail fins that move freely.

It may be difficult to sex individuals, which might be an issue when attempting to breed them. Males are somewhat smaller than females, yet it's difficult to spot the difference.

The easiest approach to breeding them is to wait for the spawning season, which lasts from April through August. The breeding tubercles are tiny white bumps that appear on males' pectoral fins throughout this period.

They may reach 6-8 inches in length, but if properly cared for, they might grow larger.

Black Moor - Varieties

Because the Black Moor is a type of fancy goldfish, it owes many characteristics to its more colorful relatives.

The Black Moor, being a fancy goldfish, is no different. It has several varieties that are available to choose from.

Some of the most common varieties of the Black Moor are:

Based on Color:

In Black moor goldfish, the only feasible color is black. They may, however, have a reddish gold sheen on their scales or on the bottom.

Pearlscale Black Moor: Pearlscale is one of the most popular Black Moor varieties. They get their name from their resemblance to pearls. They have a rounded body covered in raised scales.

Based on Tail Shape:

  • Veiltail: Veiltails are beautiful fish with long trailing fins that resemble a bride's wedding veil. To compensate for their lengthy tails, their bodies are shorter and rounder.
  • Fringetail: Fringetails have thinner bodies with shorter V-shaped tails.

Collectors like to categorize fish by the shape of their eyes. Some fish's eyes protrude in a smooth cone-like manner. A careful inspection may reveal a less telescoping form with concentric ridges-like rings. The other eye form is somewhat more balloon-like and may even have a tiny inflated sac near the cheek.

The fish's "ocular characteristics" develop over time. The original Black Moors had a fantail, but subsequent variations have long flowing fins. Today, Black Moors may be purchased at your local pet store with wide tails, butterfly tails, and ribbon-like tails.

It was assumed that the black coloration was linked to telescoping eye characteristics. However, sometimes Black Moors produce black colored offspring with normal eyes.

The latest breeding efforts have resulted in a slew of black fancy goldfish, including Black Oranda Goldfish, Black Lionhead Goldfish, Black Ranchu Goldfish, Black Ryukin Goldfish, and even Black Bubble Eye Goldfish.

Black Moor Goldfish

Color Development in Black Moor Goldfish 

When Black Moors are young (under a month old), they have a brownish bronze color. The young Black Moor fish has a typical egg-shaped body, but it lacks telescoping eyes. As a result, immature Black Moors are not particularly appealing to the eye. They will also gain the characteristic velvety black color and protruding eyes as they mature over the next six to eight weeks. During this time their eyes will also bulge outwards.

According to experts, warm water will decrease the formation of the black pigment, turning the fish bronze instead. Some aquarists believe that mature Black Moors can be forced to lose their black coloration in a warm aquarium or pond water.

The loss of black color in fish is also influenced by genetics and age. Some Black Moors remain black their entire lives, while others gradually lose some color as they get older.

Habitat and Tank Conditions & Setup 

The Black Moor is a cold-water fish. Since they are hardy fish, they require minimal care and habitat conditions. They are typically kept in outdoor ponds, but they may also be kept inside aquariums with the proper equipment.

To ensure optimal health, the Black Moor should be kept in an aquarium or pond with clean and well-filtered water. For small tanks, it is recommended to use a high-quality filtration system and frequent water changes.

If you're creating an aquarium or pond for your Black Moor, there are a few things you should know. Here are some guidelines for habitat and tank conditions to keep your Black Moor healthy and happy:

Tank/Aquarium Size

Aim for a tank that is at least 10 gallons, but if you have many Black Moors, a 20-gallon or greater tank might be a better investment. They can be kept in tanks as tiny as 10 gallons with excellent water quality and safe, healthy surroundings.

Water Temperature & pH

Black moor does not require a tank heater and can survive in water temperatures ranging from 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. They can survive in cold water by going into an inactive state during the winter. Warm water, especially after a period of cold water, is frequently responsible for the onset of breeding. Black moor Goldfish require a slightly acidic to neutral pH and should be maintained between 6.5 and 7.5.


Black Moor goldfish do not require Substrate. If you wish to use a substrate, be sure it does not have sharp edges that might harm their fins or eyes.

Sand or gravel can be used as a substrate, but keep in mind that gravel may need to be replaced more frequently than sand.


Black Moors will grow comfortably with any aquatic plants that flourish in a cold-water atmosphere. However, they can be harmful to plants and will uproot or consume almost anything you place in the tank. The following plants are unlikely to be consumed: water fairy, water wisteria, Java fern, and hornwort.


Outside of simulating a natural day/night cycle, there are no special lighting needs for Black Moors. Some of them seem to like low-moderate lighting, while others prefer bright light tanks. To figure out whether fish like the light, you must observe their actions.


The heavy bioload of the Black Moors necessitates adequate filtration for the tank they are in. The more goldfish in a tank, the more stringent the filtration requirements must be. Because black moors are poor swimmers, a baffle that restricts some of the current produced by water entering the tank may be required.

In addition to filtration, regular partial water changes are essential in keeping Black Moor goldfish healthy. Aim for 20-30% every week or two.


Because Black Moor goldfish have telescopic eyes, it's critical that their environment be safe for them and restrict the ways they can harm their eyes or fins. Ornaments, driftwood, and rocks with sharp or rough edges should be avoided. Instead, opt for smooth decor that will not harm your fish.

In addition to these habitat and tank conditions, be sure to provide plenty of space for swimming in your Black Moor tank or pond!

Decorating the Black Moor Goldfish Tank

Some goldfish breeds require a special substrate, but black moors aren't picky. They are not bottom dwellers. So you can use sand, pebbles, or decorative marbles without difficulty.

You may also decorate the tank with pebbles and driftwoods, but make sure that its edges aren't sharp. Despite the fact that these natural things appear to be beautiful, the risk of fish being injured is higher. Sharp edges may harm their dragon eyes.

Adding live plants to your aquarium is always a smart idea if you have goldfish.

They provide hiding places and help with waste removal. Black moor goldfish are omnivores, and they may consume some of them, although they won't destroy them.

Some of the best plants for Black moor goldfish are;

  • Java fern
  • Marimo moss balls.
  • Anubias
  • Hornwort
  • Crinum calamistratum
  • Bolbitis fern
Black Moor Goldfish Tank Mates

Black Moor Goldfish Tank Mates

Because Black Moors are peaceful, delicate, and sluggish swimmers, any tankmates should have comparable characteristics - this will prevent your Goldfish from being harassed.

You should keep in mind that your Black Moor Goldfish has difficulties seeing, so overcrowding or overstocking your fish tank is not a good idea.

Other medium-sized peaceful fish are the greatest tank companions. Orandas, Telescopes, Fringetails, and Shubunkins are all examples of Fancy Goldfish that are peaceful. So they can generally be grouped together.

Outside of Goldfish, small shoaling fish are excellent companions. Mollies, Neon Tetras, Cherry Barbs, and Zebra Danios are some of the most popular shoaling species in the aquarium trade. Plecos are popular algae cleaners in Goldfish tanks.

The bristly-nosed Pleco is ideal for smaller aquariums, while a Common Pleco will fit in a larger tank. The Weather Loach is a fantastic bottom dweller that can be kept in a chilly water tank.

Larger Apple Snails and Mystery Snails are the safest choices when it comes to invertebrates. Any smaller species, on the other hand, should be avoided.

The Angelfish and Dwarf Gourami are two prominent examples of large goldfish that may be kept in a tank with Black moor goldfish.

Many fish may be used in the tank's lower levels, such as Bristlenose Plecos, Kuhli Loaches, and Otocinclus.

Keeping Black Moor Goldfish Together

You can house a school of Goldfish in groups without them displaying signs of aggression, as this kind of goldfish are quite docile.

Incompatible Species

Black moor goldfish aren't the most sociable of fish, so they don't do well with fast, aggressive, or territorial tankmates.

Shrimp and snails are likely to become supper in the aquarium. Amano Shrimp, Ghost Shrimp, Mystery Snails, and Nerite Snails are a few examples.

Maintain a peaceful aquarium by avoiding aggressive or territorial species. This is the issue with most Cichlids, such as Oscars. Avoid any fish that may not endure temperatures below the mid-70°F if you live in a tropical environment.

Single-tailed Goldfish are too energetic to be kept with this more docile variety, and some fancy breeds are acceptable. Avoid species with a nipping fin tendency, for the same reason that Black Moor has long, flowing fins. Barbs and guppies, for example, will be unable to resist picking at your Moor's long fins. For the same reason, White Cloud Mountain Minnows are not good tankmates for Black moor.


Goldfish are omnivores, which means they eat both meats and plants.

They would consume anything they could fit into their mouths. Small insects, tadpoles, larvae, and tiny pieces of broken vegetation are all examples of what they might eat..

There are several options for foods to buy. The most popular foods include flakes and pellets, which are dried. These are inexpensive and intended to contain a wide range of nutrients.

The digestive system of your Black Moors will handle high quality nutritious meals with less effort. Frozen and live foods are excellent examples of moist foods.

Live, frozen, or pre-packaged Daphnia, bloodworms, and brine shrimp may be used as supplementary foods. These should be viewed as secondary sources of nutrition in addition to their primary diet.

Green vegetables may be added to the diet to aid digestion. They are high in fiber, which helps to prevent constipation. Raw veggies such as lettuce, spinach, and broccoli are great. You may also attempt to produce your own fish food at home.

Feed your Black Moor Goldfish twice a day. Keep the amount of food to a minimum, as they can eat it in a matter of minutes.

It's easier for their digestive system to manage small amounts of food on a regular basis than one large meal.

What Food Can They Eat?

  • Fish flakes and pellets
  • Lettuce
  • Daphnia
  • Bloodworms
  • Ghost Shrimp
  • Plants
  • Algae flakes
  • Gel foods
  • Snails
  • Tubifex Worms
  • Grass Shrimp
  • Cucumbers
  • Brine Shrimp
  • Insects
  • Zucchini
  • Peas


Your Black Moor Goldfish should not give you too much trouble, but they are quite delicate and may need more attention than other types.

Their telescope eyes are a distinct disadvantage. Because their eyes are so big but their sight is so poor, they may easily swim into dangerous objects that might inflict damage.

They have a hard round body with delicate eyes. They may also be harmed when caught in a net. As a result, you should make careful to contain them in a tank with smooth surfaces and handle them gently.

Because they have such a tiny body, all of their organs are squashed, resulting in an increased risk of illness.

The majority of fish have swim bladders, which can become blocked. The symptoms of this are immediately apparent: the fish will float on the surface or sit at the bottom of the tank since they are unable to balance their buoyancy. Begin by fasting for 24 hours, then offer fibrous meals like asparagus and other vegetables.

Parasites or germs are to blame for most skin diseases, such as velvet disease, affecting fancy Goldfish. Spots or color changes are typical symptoms of the illness.

To cure skin diseases, veterinarians may prescribe medications. To prevent disease, you should only provide the filtration that is necessary for a small tank. Clean and replace filters or other equipment as needed to keep them free of germs and diseases. Regularly vacuum the gravel and remove any uneaten food.

If you detect sick fish, isolate them in a quarantine tank to limit the damage if possible. When transferring them, be careful with their eyes.

Problems will be minimal if the tank is kept clean. Weekly water changes are one of the easiest ways to keep your aquarium clean.

Black Moor Goldfish Care

Black Moor Goldfish Breeding

The Goldfish is an excellent choice for a beginner because it is readily bred at home with a little know-how.

They lay eggs, just like those of other Goldfish. Seasonal breeding is triggered by weather conditions in your aquarium, so your tank's temperature and water conditions must be comparable to spring water for spawning to begin.

The most significant change that occurs as spring begins is the temperature. The secret to setting up your tank for spawning is to gradually raise the temperature. Increase it by 3°F every day. Keep an eye on the temperature and make sure it stays inside the proper limits - 75°F is ideal.

A male will begin courting by circling a female for a few days before fertilizing her eggs. Up to 10,000 eggs can be produced and deposited on surfaces around the tank after spawning. Usually, Black moors lay their eggs on flat surfaces. A bare-bottom tank or broken terra cotta pots may be used to provide this.

It might take several hours for spawning. Once you see them finish, transfer the parents out of the tank; otherwise, they'll eat the eggs. The Black Moor Goldfish fry hatch in about a week.

They are able to swim right away and are incredibly hungry. You can feed the fry tiny meals containing a lot of iron and protein until they are big enough to consume an adult's diet (at around two months old). At this age, the parents may be re-introduced.


What Size Aquarium Do They Need?

A 20-gallon aquarium is required for a single Black Moor Goldfish. For each Black Moor you keep, you'll need 10 gallons more.

They aren't that big of a species, but their graceful and flowing fins may consume more room than you may imagine.

Don't use a glass bowl, as you've probably seen on TV. Goldfish require a suitable tank with adequate filtration.

Can Black Moor Goldfish Live in a Pond?

Yes, they can be maintained in a pond. Just keep in mind that your garden pond should have a neutral pH, moderate current, and a temperature of 60-75°F. During the winter season, a heater will be required.

How to Identify Male or Female Black Moor Goldfish?

You won't be able to tell the males from the females just by looking at the outside of the spawning season. The two fish are very hard to tell apart. Males are somewhat smaller, but if you have a mix of ages in your aquarium? It may not help you.

During the spawning season (April to August), males acquire breeding tubercles. These are tiny white markings that appear along with the pectoral fins. However, there is a drawback: they are only produced by mature males. They aren't produced by youngsters.

Then there's a second drawback: some females also acquire breeding tubercles! There won't be as many of them, and they won't be as noticeable, though.

The easiest method to tell is to look at the fish's body. Female fish will grow plump with eggs inside them. Look at her from above for your confirmation.

Why Is My Black Moor Goldfish Turning Gold?

If the colors of your fish have reverted to their original gold, don't be alarmed. This is a common occurrence among Black Moors as they get older. The final color of the ventral side will be deep crimson gold, while the dorsal side will remain jet black.

Are Black Moor Goldfish Suitable for Your Aquarium?

Black Moor Goldfish may be cared for by anyone from novices to experts. They are fish that even inexperienced owners can easily handle.

Digestive difficulties can be prevented by eating a healthy diet. They will also need some calm tank mates in a community aquarium since they are quite delicate. Beyond that, you have to keep the tank clean.

They are one of the most popular companion fish. They are beautiful, vibrant, and fun to watch in your tank at home.

How Long Do Black Moor Goldfish Live?

Black moors will live just as long as any other type of goldfish, with the likelihood of reaching 10-15 years and 20 with exceptional water quality and tank maintenance.

How Much Do Black Moor Goldfish Cost? 

You may purchase Black Moors for $5-10 at pet shop chains, as they are readily bred and available. For excellent Black Moors, look for breeders and privately owned sellers that produce from good breeding stock and nurturing conditions. A Black Moor can cost anywhere from $5 to $30 depending on where you get them. You may spend $35 or more on shipping if you buy from an online merchant, which varies based on the seller.

Final Thoughts

Black moor goldfish are very simple to keep if you have previous goldfish experience; they don't need as much space as other types of goldfish and rarely grow to be enormous. However, like other goldfish, a black moor produces the same amount of waste.

This means that your filtration system must be strong enough to handle the bio-load. Black Moors will live for as long as other goldfish, and it is easy to identify if you have males or females unless during breeding season.

Black moors are great fish to keep as a pet, but you need to make sure that you take the time to care for them properly in order to ensure their longevity.

Thank you for reading this guide! We hope that it has provided you with all of the information that you need to keep and care for your Black Moors. Good luck, and happy fish keeping!

Sarah Robertson

I am a passionate blogger who also happens to be a fish keeping enthusiast. Writing about my hobby is something that I absolutely love to do, and it's no secret that my chosen topic is always centered around fish keeping.

Sarah Robertson

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