Angry Mates?

Yugana Penrozu

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Hello! I have two dalmation mollies, one female and one male. I know they are different genders because the female gave birth to 30 two days ago. But today, I went to feed them, and noticed that they were nipping each other's mouths, almost like kissing or something. But they were doing it really aggressively and were also nipping at the other's sides. This doesn't look like the usual 'male chasing female mating process.' I had to break them up by putting in a net. I couldn't take pictures, for they were moving too fast and all over the place. Are they disputing parents, or should I seperate them before one of them gets chewed to death??
 

fluttermoth

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They might not be different sexes; female livebearers can store packets of sperm for around six months.

Livebearers are easy to sex; the females have a normal, fan shaped anal fin, while males have their's modified into a rod like structure called a gonopodium.

How big is your tank, how long have you had the fish and are there any other fish in the tank?
 
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Yugana Penrozu

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Yes, they are different sexes. Before hand when I first had them, I did see the male raise a fin to her anal area. I told the lady at the PetStore to give me one female and one male, and she even identified both when we asked her how she knew. The only other fish is a plecostomus and a female Platy (which is on its way out). My tank is 20 gallons, and I have many decorations for them to hide from each other, but they were fighting in the open like two hawks fighting to the death. I have had them for maybe 2 weeks?
 

fluttermoth

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The most likely reason for the aggression you're seeing is that the male wants to mate more times than the female does.

The easiest solution is to get another couple of females so the male's 'urges' can be spread around between more females.

I know this isn't what you've asked about, but;

why is the platy 'on it's way out'? Having fish die in a tank is always a concern, and you should definitely try to find the reason why in case it's something that can be treated or cured, or something that could affect your other fish.

do you know what species your plec is? Many of them grow far too large for a tank of your size; some of them can get to over two feet long!
 
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Yugana Penrozu

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No, no, it's just really old! That Platy was the last of the ones that I've bred years ago, and it's reaching the end of it's life span.
I have no idea what species my pleco is, but it has a wide head, super ugly, it's a dark brown, and has octopus tentacles on it's face. It hides almost all the time, but it sometimes comes out when I put in Algea Wafers. It isn't aggressive towards the other fish either. In fact, it's super friendly!
And thank you for the tip! The fish were just pretty expensive, and the maximum was two. But they do breed within their line, don't they? As weird as it sounds, I might just have to wait for the fries to grow up because we shouldn't spend so much on another one.
 

fluttermoth

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Oh well, even fish die of old age in the end.

It sounds like your plec is a male bristlenose; they don't grow too big, so that's good :)

I would really try and get at least one more female if you can, or you might have to separate them.
 
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Yugana Penrozu

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Indeed.
And I was thinking for the longest time that it was a Bristlenose, but I was debunking that because they said that they were aggressive. But, he's probably just different!~ And I know this isn't part of the thread, but do you identify pleco genders the same as Guppies/Platys/etc? With the fin shape and all that? I'd like to know so that maybe sometime I could try breeding a fish that isn't a live bearer (sounds fun!).
Thank you for your replies, you've helped me a great deal!
 

fluttermoth

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I don't know who told you that bristlenoses were aggressive, but they were wrong! Bristlenoses are very peaceful, although two adult males might fight.

I'm afraid plecs are, in general, much harder to sex than livebearers. Most of the time you can't tell.

However, bristlenoses are easy; only the males have lots of bristles; females have only a few, very small bristles, or none at all. They're easy to breed too; the male bristlenose looks after the eggs and babies in a cave :)

The only problem you might have is getting a female, as neither of the sexes has bristles when they're babies, so what looks like a female might be a male that hasn't grown up yet.
 
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Yugana Penrozu

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I'm glad that they are peaceful because I would hate for them to kill my beautiful Mollies!!
And the fact they protect their babies is actually pretty cool! I have this little tiny cave inside of a castle decoration that my pleco always stays inside usually 24/7.
And I totally agree, my pleco didn't start growing bristles until it was 2 inches long!
Again, thank you for your help! I'll remember the female:male ratio next time I try to breed fish :fish:
 

fluttermoth

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No problem, good luck. Do post again if you need anything :)
 
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