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Mollies and barbs

Discussion in 'Livebearers' started by Sgustavs, Jun 18, 2019.

  1. Sgustavs

    Sgustavs New Member

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    i have 2 tanks. One tank had 2 male mollies and one female along with some tetras and guppies. I now know that wasn’t the best. One male long fin mollie was nipping at the other male mollie really bad. His fins are split and we didn’t think he was going to make it. We decided it might be best to get the dominant male out of there, so we moved him to our 20 gallon tank. That tank has 1 good size neon rosey barb, 1 tiger barb, and 1 albino tiger barb. The barbs are nipping at the mollie. Not terrible, but quite often. Do you think I can make this 20 gallon arrangement work if I add a couple female mollies?
     
  2. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    Hi and welcome to the forum :)
    Short answer to barbs and mollies is NO. They do not get along well and require different water chemistry. The barbs also need to be in large groups otherwise they nip.

    Livebearers like guppies, platies and swordtails need a pH above 7.0 and a GH above 200ppm. Mollies need a pH above 7.0 and a GH above 250ppm.

    Tiger barbs and rosy barbs occur in soft water with a pH around 7.0 and a GH below 200ppm, and generally below 150ppm.

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    It is preferable to keep livebearers in single sex tanks (either male or female but not both sexes together). If you want a group of males and females then have 1 male and at least 6 females (preferably 10 or more females per male).

    All barbs do best in groups of at least 6 (preferably 10 or more) of their own kind.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. Byron

    Byron Member

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    I agree completely with Colin here. And yoou need to separate these fish immediately. The "nipping" you see is actually far worse on the fish than just the physical aspect.
     
  4. Sgustavs

    Sgustavs New Member

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    Thanks so much. The mollie in the 20 gallon seems to be staying away from the barbs, so I think I’m going to have to leave him there. I’m not sure
    What else to do with him. He will surely kill the other male if I try to put him back. So, at this point is it best for me to get a couple more female mollies to put in the tank with the male and female mollies?
     
  5. Sgustavs

    Sgustavs New Member

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    My problem is that I just have the 2 tanks. The one I moved was literally eating the other male mollie while he laid upside down. Since I moved the one, I have been treating the tank with melafix to hopefully repair his fins. He is looking much better and swimming around. I just can’t put the other male back in there. He’ll kill him. I’m not sure
    What else I can do. He seems to be staying away from the barbs so far.
     
  6. Byron

    Byron Member

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    I think Colin and I have answered you as best as we can. Sometimes there is no option except doing what is best for the fish.

    The GH and pH have not been given yet, and this could be an issue for the mollies. If the water is not moderately hard or harder, it will seriously impact their physiology and aggression is often one result so we could be looking at that. Or the one fish is just aggressive (and if so, it will not change).
     
  7. Sgustavs

    Sgustavs New Member

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    Thanks for your help. I will get the water tested and see if I need to make changes based on your recommendations.
     
  8. Byron

    Byron Member

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    You might be able to ascertain the GH, KH and pH of your source (tap) water from the municipal water authority if you are on city water. Check their website. Either way (the city or tests by a store presumably) make certain you write down the number and the unit of measure they use for the GH and KH; there are several and we can't tell without knowing the unit.
     

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