Molly Surprise! - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 15 Old 03-21-2009, 11:09 AM Thread Starter
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Red face Molly Surprise!

So i went to the pet store last night and got 2 black mollies and 2 xray tetras and i woke this morning and SURPRISE my mollies had 3 babies lol. im completely new to fish and a little worried that they will die. i have them in a 20 gal tank with my crowntail betta and 2 tetras the betta chases the mollies around but can never catch them. What should i know/do about haveing these babies i want to keep them becuz i love black mollies they look awesome and the more the merrier. Also how can u tell the difference in the sex of the mollies

Last edited by Greener; 03-21-2009 at 11:13 AM.
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post #2 of 15 Old 03-21-2009, 12:31 PM
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To tell the gender of your mollies you have to look at the anal fin if it is triangle shaped it is a female but if it is pointy and kind of like a small rod it is a male and as for keeping the babies I would say that if you have a breeding couple of mollies I would just leave the babies and let the strong survive because a breeding couple of mollies are worse than jack rabbits. I have well over 50 babies right now because of my mollies and I dont know what to do with them all yet.
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post #3 of 15 Old 03-21-2009, 12:36 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for that i do have one male and one female (Bonnie and Clyde) How long does giving birth take? The female hides in a small gap between my filter and wall im guessing that means shes trying to plop out another one lol. im up to about 5 now but read that they can have up to 40 fry.
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post #4 of 15 Old 03-21-2009, 01:01 PM
Your betta will probably eat the fry if he can catch them.
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post #5 of 15 Old 03-21-2009, 01:13 PM
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I have heard that mollies can actually have up to 100 fry but all of mine have onle had about 15-20 every batch. that is good if the betta eats some of them it is a good form of crowd control. As for how long the birth takes place I am not sure I still have never caught any of mine giving birth I just walk into my room and bam there are a ton of babies. I belive that a mollie mother stays pregnate for about a month but I have also heard that now that yours is giving birth you can take the male out and she will still give birth every month for the next few months with out him.
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post #6 of 15 Old 03-21-2009, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks. I went and bought a breeding net and so far have 6 fry in there. They are really fast lol it was so hard to catch them. I dont think there is anymore just have to wait and see im also assuming that my mollies arent eating becase they might have eaten the fry too. im just going to have to wait and see how things play out i crushed up some food and put it in the breeding net they ate a bit. how long does it take for the fry to grow? When can i put the in the main tank again?
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post #7 of 15 Old 03-22-2009, 02:16 AM
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In about 2 weeks the fry should be fast enough to live in the tank with others and after about 3 months the fry will become mature and start reproducing them selves
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post #8 of 15 Old 03-22-2009, 04:40 PM
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The molly will have her fry drop over a period of a few hours in most cases. Mine drops between 30 and 40 each time at 6 week intervals. A female can carry sperm packets for about 6 months and continue to give birth over that time without a male present. That does make it a bit hard to tell who the parent is if you are trying to breed them with a purpose.
The fry would probably be safe with the female and maybe even the male from the first week. As said, they should be able to escape the typical betta in 2 weeks. I am not familiar with the speed and feeding habits of your tetras so they may be the deciding factor on when you can safely put the fry into the main part of the tank.
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post #9 of 15 Old 03-22-2009, 05:58 PM
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I've got either 4 of 5 surviving molly fry. The culprit of the others' death is a couple of clown loaches. When I first noticed the fry, they were very very small -- maybe 4 millimeters. I saw a loach gobble one up so I moved what was left to my other tank. I can't keep track of all of them at the same time because of how small they are. In a little over a week, though, they've added maybe 2-3 more millimeters. They've discovered that the java moss is really good for hiding, but at this size, I still won't introduce them to the loaches even though they are about 1.5-2 inches "small."

I have a plan for these fry, but otherwise, I don't mind them being eaten.
Just keep an eye on their numbers. If it doesn't deminish, I would get another fish that would eat them.

3 Platies, 1 molly mut, 1 Siamese algae eater, 2 Neolamprologus Facicula cichlids
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post #10 of 15 Old 04-13-2009, 06:29 PM Thread Starter
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So its been a while now and my fry and still in the net. I wouldnt they have have reached half an inch yet but i have 2 blue rams and 3 tiger barbs in the tank now and im a little worries they will get attacked should i leave them in the net a little longer? I appriciate your help
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