Questions on Mollies

Kamdavid

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Hello everyone, had some questions on my Mollies...

Started a tank about a month ago now. Currently I have one male and two female mollies. I had one other male, which ended up not making it. I did see him a couple times try to breed with one of the females. But like I said he passed on.. The current male mollie I have , ive never seen him try to breed with the females. And Im not sure why.

I have one white and yelllow female Mollie, which I noticed eats Hornwort Plant CONSTANTLY!! The other female mollie I have is an orange Mollie. All she does is swim in circles, haha! The male mollie is an orange one, and he usually keeps to himself. Doesn't seem to bug the females. The white female mollie seems to get aggressive during feeding time, chases the other mollies away. How common is this?

We were hoping to get some mollie fry but by the looks of it , isn't going to happen?
 

Byron

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Your ratio is better than it was with the loss of one male. Two (or more females) to one male is advisable if you do want fry. Males can be very rough on females once it starts. Assuming you do have a male and two females.

Some fry will get eaten, but floating plants will protect many of them. In time you will likely be overrun with fry.
 
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Kamdavid

Kamdavid

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Your ratio is better than it was with the loss of one male. Two (or more females) to one male is advisable if you do want fry. Males can be very rough on females once it starts. Assuming you do have a male and two females.

Some fry will get eaten, but floating plants will protect many of them. In time you will likely be overrun with fry.
Yes, there are many Hornwort plants that will provide coverage for the fry. But ive never seen the male(and I have 4,5,6 times checked to make sure its a male) go after the females. So maybe he plays for the other team lol IDK.
 

CassCats

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Well good news for you... female livebearers with the exception of a few special cases, store sperm, so many times if theyve been with males at all even at the store, theyre nearly always pregnant.

And even without a male, will often keep having babies after each pregnancy because of this ability to store sperm even from one mating.
 

Byron

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I came across your other thread. This is a 20g tank, which is going to really push the mollies as they grow. Males should attain 3 inches, femnales 5 (some sources report 6) inches, and being largely herbivorous they eat more and produce more waste. The fry will need grow-out tanks.

What is the GH and pH of your source water? This wasn't mentioned in the other thread, and you do have Fluval stratum substrate, so this is important.
 

Colin_T

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Check the GH of your tank water. Mollies need a GH above 250ppm.

Post a video of the fish swimming in circles. You can upload the video to YouTube and copy & paste the link here.

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In the wild, female livebearers hang out in large groups consisting of between 20 & 50 (but sometimes up to 100 or more) females. These groups have a pecking order with the biggest most dominant female ruling the group and she has a group of girlfriends who back her up. All the other females live in the group but are lower down the pecking order.

The groups of females move around rivers and waterways looking for food and places to hang out. As the groups move around a few males follow the group and try to breed with any females. The groups of males have a pecking order too and the biggest male will bully his smaller mates.

In the confines of an aquarium, the males will constantly harass the females and try to breed with them. This puts undue stress on the females and if there are too many males constantly pestering the females, the females can get sick and die.

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).

Female livebearers can carry up to 6 sperm packets from breeding with males and they use 1 sperm packet to fertilise each batch of eggs. The gestation period (from the time she fertilises the eggs to when she gives birth to free swimming babies) is about 1 month. After which she will fertilise another batch of eggs using another sperm packet. This allows female livebearers to produce young about once a month for up to 6 months without any males being present.

If you want to breed livebearers for specific colours, then have a tank with females and let them give birth and use up all the sperm packets they are carrying in their body. Give them a few months without being pregnant and then add a male to the tank for a week before moving him out, or move the female/s into a tank with a male for a week and let them breed. Then move the females back into their own tank.

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It is preferable not to move pregnant fish because you can stress them and even damage the unborn fry. If you have to move pregnant females, carefully catch them in a net and then use a plastic container to scoop the female and net up in some tank water. Move her (in the net in the bucket of water) to a new tank and then carefully pour her into the new tank.

If you move a female to a smaller aquarium that would stress her.

If you used completely new water in the new tank it would stress her. If you set up a new tank for her you should fill the new tank with water from her current tank, so the water is exactly the same.

If the new tank does not have any plants in it will stress her. Put some plants in with her. Water Sprite (Ceratopteris thalictroides/ cornuta) is the best plant for livebearers. It normally grows on the surface but can also be grown in the substrate where it grows into a lovely light green shrub.

If you don't have any live plants then add a heap of artificial plants to provide her with shelter when she goes into labour, and to give the fry somewhere to hide when they are born.

Make sure the new tank has an established filter in it so the water stays clean.

Do not put a female into a tank with males until at least 1 week after she has given birth otherwise the male/s will stress her out.

Try not to move a female for at least 1 week after she has given birth so she can heal up. If you have to move the female after she has given birth, use the method above for moving pregnant females.

Most female mollies do not eat their young if the female is well fed and there are plants in the tank, but will eat them when they are confined to a small breeding trap.
 
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Kamdavid

Kamdavid

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We don't plan on moving the mollie if shes pregnant. We are going to allow them to have the fry in the tank.

GH? What is this...

And yes 20 g tank. Will be upgraded eventually.
 

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Good luck with your Mollies, When I had them I quickly ran out of room. I had about 1/3 survive to adulthood but even with that it didn't take long to overcrowd my 20 gallon tank. I ended up giving away as many as I could and took at least 30 young adults to the LFS. They really do breed like rabbits.
 

Byron

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We don't plan on moving the mollie if shes pregnant. We are going to allow them to have the fry in the tank.

GH? What is this...

And yes 20 g tank. Will be upgraded eventually.

GH is general hardness, which is the level of dissolved calcium and magnesium in the water. You should be able to ascertain this for your tap water if you are on city water, check the website of the water authority. We need the number and their unit of measurement.

KH is carbonate hardness, related to the GH, but of less significance here. And pH is also related. Mollies as Colin mentioned must have harder water with a basic (above 7) pH.
 
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Kamdavid

Kamdavid

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GH is general hardness, which is the level of dissolved calcium and magnesium in the water. You should be able to ascertain this for your tap water if you are on city water, check the website of the water authority. We need the number and their unit of measurement.

KH is carbonate hardness, related to the GH, but of less significance here. And pH is also related. Mollies as Colin mentioned must have harder water with a basic (above 7) pH.
Im on trying to find information about our water quality, but cannot find anything other than it saying to contact them...
 

Colin_T

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Telephone your water company and ask them what the GH, KH and pH of the water is. Also ask them what the results are measured in (eg: ppm, dGH or something else).
 

Essjay

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3-7 grains, moderately hard is what its showing
This is why we always ask for numbers.

3 to 7 grains per gallon converts to 2.9 to 6.7 dH and 52 to 120 ppm. Your water is soft not slightly hard (my water company does the same thing, calling my hardness slightly hard at 5 dH). if those figures are accurate, your water is too soft for mollies; you will need to add something like Rift Lake salts to make it harder.
 
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