Disney Fish Project


STUDENT PEN NAMES: Blue Tang, Nemo24, Mickeyfish, Dory, Mickeymouse17

ASPIRE MENTORS: Matt Gilbert, Rachelle Konschuh


Figure 1. Minnie is our female fish.

Many of our group members are interested in fish for a variety of reasons. We decided we would like to do a study having to do with Fish Behavoir.  Our first challenge was to determine what we needed to set up a fish tank for tropical fish.  Mrs. Konschuk came after school and offered to buy the supplies we needed.  She brought them to the school and our group got to work.  We  Mickeymouse17 and Dory have fish of their own. The fish that we are studying actually belong to Mickeymouse17. We have a male named Bob , a pregnant female, named Minnie and a young female fish, Mic Jr. , that is approximately a year old.

Bob is our male fish.

Figure 2. Bob is our male fish.

QUESTION: Does the gender or age of fish determine how aggressive the mickey mouse platy fish feeds?

HYPOTHESIS: Based on what we know about animal behaviour, males often are dominant.   Mickeymouse17 observed that in her “home tank”  the male was most aggressive and dominant.  We thought that the male fish would be most aggressive during feeding sessions. We thought the youngest fish would be least aggressive.            


Mic.Jr is our young female fish.

Figure 3. Mic. Jr. is our young female fish.

1. Feed the fish on the left front side of the tank

 2. Observe the fish :  how aggressive they are,  do they take food from other fish, which fish seems to eat the most.

3. Keep a journal.  Make general observations as well like : how eats most, how do fish take in/eat food comment on body/fin position.

Screen Shot 2016-04-08 at 11.44.20 AM

Figure 4. Sample Data Entry Sheet



The things we are going to try to keep constant in this study are: That we fed the fish at the same time everyday, we used the same species of fish, we used the same food, the same feeding place, and about the same amount of food.

Our manipulated variable or independent variable is that there is different age groups and genders. Also, Minnie became pregnant and gave birth during our experiment, so that may have done something to our experiment.
The responding variable or dependent variable who would eat the most, who was most aggressive and dominant, and who stole food from the other fish.


This is our completed collected data for our experiment on the Feeding Behaviour of Mickey Mouse Fish

Figure 5. This is our completed collected data for our experiment on the Feeding Behaviour of Mickey Mouse Fish


Figure 6. Aggressive Feeding Results

Figure 6. Aggressive Feeding Results

Figure 6.  Food Stealing Results

Figure 7. Food Eating Results

Figure 7.  Food Stealing Results

Figure 8. Food Stealing Results

RESULTS: Minnie, our female adult fish, was the most aggressive, ate the most, and stole food.

Graphs Showing Fish Behaviour Results

Aggressive BehaviourEats the Most FoodStealing Food Results
Most aggressiveEats moststealing
Figure 9. Minnie was most often the most aggressive feeder.Figure 10. Minnie most often ate the most food.Figure 11. Minnie was observed stealing food from other fish the most.

Figure 12. Here we are with our fish.


The purpose of our investigation was to determine  if gender or age of  a mickey mouse platy fish determine how aggressive it feeds. Based on what we knew about animal behaviour, we thought that the male would be most aggressive and dominant.  We thought that juvenile  fish would be the least aggressive because of its size and its rank and experience.

Our data partially supported our hypothesis.  The juvenile platy was definitely the least aggressive feeder.     From our observations she followed the female fish (Minnie) and never took food from another fish.  Our data did not support our prediction that the male platy would be the most aggressive. The most aggressive or dominate feeder was the female fish, Minnie. This may have been because she was pregnant and needed more nutrients for her developing fry.


We all decided that we will do our next experiment on baby mickey mouse fish.  It would be interesting to measure their growth and development.

We now realize that it would be better to have 2 females instead of 1 or to set up more / multiple fish tanks to collect more data on feeding behaviours of  a variety of Mickey mouse fish. This would allow our experiment to be more of a ” fair test ” of our hypothesis .


Female fish are usually pregnant from 2-4 weeks.

It’s best to have two females in one tank for every male if you want to have successful breading.

Putting female fish in a breeding tank can cause them a lot of stress, but you also want to separate the male from the female when she is close to giving birth.

You want a well planted tank so when you release the fry into the tank they can hide until there big enough to NOT be eaten, the other option is to remove the bigger fish or the fry to a different tank.


 April 18th, 2016 our fish group was notified that the mother, Minnie, had shrunk. We could not find any baby fish, most of us were disappointed. But today April 19th 2016, our group came in and was cleaning the tank when we found 6 baby fish!  They are about the same size as a stud earring, but they are really fast. That made it hard to catch them, but we prevailed! The usual litter is about 40-60 fry, but we have only found 6. We will keep looking, but the fry count is six, for now.

Figure 13. Baby FryFigure 14. Baby FryFigure 15. Baby FryFigure 16. Baby Fry

Something Fishy’s Going On!

Minnie recently gave birth (again!) to 13 baby fish, including the conjoined twins!!! They were joined on the back and belly, and they are having troubles swimming. We have faith in Jelly and Bean, (their names), but we would be surprised if they survived the night.


Conjoined twins were named Jelly and Bean.I looks like they are joined at the dorsal fin, or back. Enlarged picture of the conjoined twins.
Twins OneTwins 2Twins 3
Figure 17.Figure 18.Figure 19.