Are Glofish Hard To Keep Alive

The Glofish have natural characteristics that make them glow. They are not injected with anything, as some tend to think. The Glofish is a freshwater aquarium fish that are found in many brilliant colors; blue, purple, pink, red, and more. 

The colors actually have their own specific, branded name such as Starfire Red and Electric Green. Glofish glow because of bioluminescence, the same thing that makes fireflies glow. The care and upkeep for a Glofish are no different than any other species of freshwater fish.

To Keep Alive Glofish they must be kept in groups of five or more. Feed them high-quality fish food, two to three times a day, perform a 25% to 50% water change once a month, check water chemistry once a week, and make sure you have a good quality filtration system.

Just because a Glofish ‘glows’ doesn’t mean they need any sort of special treatment or care. You take care of them and their habitat just like you would any other species of freshwater fish. I will provide you with the necessary and essential information that you need to keep and care for Glofish. You will see, it is no different than any other freshwater fish. 

Little Glofish History Background

Zebrafish were the first to be classified as a Glofish. This is because a zebrafish’s embryo was injected with the green fluorescent protein from a jellyfish. The zebrafish was then found to be bright fluorescent when under natural white light and ultraviolet light.

After two years of in-depth research, York Technologies introduced the Glofish in the United States. This occurred in 2003. Shortly after they were introduced, they became a very popular aquarium fish, especially among parents with children. The Glofish is approximately 10% of the annual freshwater fish sales every year. 

4 Most Popular Glofish

Glofish Care Considerations

The care of a Glofish is no different than the care for any other freshwater fish. They are schooling fish that prefer to be kept in groups of five or more. They are all on the smaller side and are also mild-mannered fish.

Before you buy your Glofish

  • Buy all of the needed and essential equipment. Tank, filter system, heater, thermometer, and decorations
  • Let everything run for about two weeks before you add your Glofish to the aquarium. This gives you the optimum amount of time to ‘cycle’. 
  • Cycling your tank is the process used to build colonies of beneficial bacteria. The beneficial bacteria aids in maintaining the ideal tank conditions. 

You want to check your water chemistry and tank temperature before you add the Glofish, and then on a daily basis. This is where the thermometer comes in handy. The Glofish like their habitat to be between 72 and 80 degrees.

Check your water level, once a week, and replace what was lost to evaporation. When you do your monthly water changes and maintenance, you want to make sure you are using dechlorinated water. You will also need to clean and maintain your filtration system during your water changes.

Decorating Your Glofish Tank

Zebrafish, Danio, and Barbs have always been good beginner fish even before they were Glofish. Decorating is no different, with Glofish, than with any other species. But, there are some tricks that will aid in bringing their colors to life and giving them a unique appearance. 

You want to start with a natural theme. This will complement their daytime appearance. Live (or artificial) plants, sand, and rock decorations will make your tank come to life and give the fish places to hide and ‘rest’. Use a broad-spectrum lighting component.

This will illuminate the tank during the day and provide nutrients and energy to the live plants. The coolest part; add an LED light fixture that is equipped with blue light for nighttime. If you really want to maximize the Glofish appearance, look at the Glofish Cycle Light.

Feeding your Glofish

Glofish are omnivores who will live up to three years with the proper care and nutrition. You want to make sure they have a well-balanced diet that includes; flakes, pellets, frozen, and freeze-dried foods. Include foods that are high in carotene. This will help them to maintain their brilliant colors. 

Only feed them what they can consume in two minutes. Once or twice a day is perfect. Make sure you thaw the frozen food first and rotate their diet so they are not eating the exact same thing each time you are feeding them.

Glofish Health Concerns & Signs

There are signs of a healthy fish and there are also signs to watch out for that will give you a heads up that your fish may be sick. If your fish are perfectly healthy they will have clear eyes, a healthy appetite, and bright coloring. As long as you follow everything that has been mentioned above, the chances of them being ill are very low. But, here is a list of warning signs that something could be going wrong:

  • loss of appetite
  • labored respiration
  • cloudy eyes
  • weight loss
  • bloating
  • frayed fins

Some common health issues that all freshwater fish can potentially come in contact with; Fin rot, Fungus, Bacterial infections, and Ich. I also want to give you a shortlist of things that you will also need for your aquarium and fish care that were not mentioned above.

  1. Water conditioner
  2. Fishnet
  3. Airline tubing
  4. Airstone
  5. Air pump

All of these items are needed for your tank set-up or maintenance. As the pet store associate for some advice or what their best selling products are. They are there to help you get everything you need for your aquarium.


Glofish are just normal fish that have been genetically altered. They produce brilliant, vibrant colors under fluorescent and blue lights. But, they are not different to care for than any other freshwater aquarium fish. They still need to be fed a well-balanced diet to receive all of the minerals and nutrients to keep them healthy.

You still need to do water changes and maintenance routinely. As long as you do those things, and have a good quality filtration system and heater, then you will have healthy, active Glofish for up to three years. 

Glofish are beautiful to look at, whether they are under regular fluorescent lights or blue light. If you have children, they will absolutely love to watch the Glofish at night. Get a 10-gallon tank, add a school of Glofish, install the blue-light and they will have the ultimate night-light for their bedroom.

They will be excited to show everyone that comes over. Glofish are extremely easy to take care of and are one of the many beginner aquarists’ choices. The maintenance is simple, their care is simple and they are mild-mannered fish. As long as they are in a school you should not have many worries. 


I'm passionate about fish pets and love sharing everything I learn about them.

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