Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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sailfin molly 03-20-2010 12:50 AM

Wondering about pregnant molly behavior.
Hello. :)

I am relatively new to fish breeding, though not so new to fry-raising. I have had several mollies (black, dalmatian, and silver) give birth in the past when I did not even know they were pregnant, though I managed to raise quite a few of their babies successfully. However, I've never seen them display odd behavior..Most of the time I would come home from work/school and suddenly see fry in the tank. The mommies were sneaky!

My question is this: I purchased a pair of female gold mollies this evening, and specifically bought one that looked rather fat compared to her tankmates, because I was hoping to raise some fry again. She now seems to like hiding in a little nook in the gravel, and she kind of sits there, although her fins are not clamped and she is alert, not swimming oddly. I've heard that this can be signs of pregnancy, or even imminent pregnancy. I'd just like a little confirmation, as the woman in the store confirmed she was pregnant, but rushed off to help the large line of fish-customers before I could really ask her what behavior the molly might display before she has her fry.

Thanks everyone!

Edit: I'm going to try and get a picture of her up if I can.

1077 03-20-2010 01:38 AM

She could be trying to acclimate to the new enviornment and water chemistry that is hopefully better than the water at fish store. Is why we need to take our time when acclimating new fish to our tanks. Mollies appreciate hard alkaline water with ph 7.5 to 8.0 and temps around 80 degrees would suit them. Sometimes the stress of moving pregnant fish can cause them to give birth prematurely but if water conditions are good ,and places are available for the young to hide,many will survive . You can feed the young babies crushed up flake foods that contain vegetable matter and or spirulina. I like Omega One veggie flakes for livebearer's along with occasional meaty food's (not to much) freeze dried shrimp and bloodworms.
If fishes are brand new to my aqauriums,I leave the light's off for the first 24 hours to reduce stress and help them settle in .Hope some of this helps.

sailfin molly 03-20-2010 02:18 AM

Thanks very much. :) I actually have my tank at 79 degrees right now, and many places for fry to hide if she is in fact pregnant. I have never tried veggie flakes for the babies before, as my other fry grew up fine on a diet of crushed tropical flakes and bits of blood worms, but I will definitely try those veggie flakes next time I'm in the store. I did turn off the light a little while ago to help them relax, but not before snapping a picture or two.

Here's the molly that I believe is pregnant:

Here's the other female from the same tank in the store:

It's hard to tell from the pictures because the spotted molly loves to hide, but the molly without the spots is visibly much fatter around the middle than her "sister", though she doesn't seem as pregnant as some fish I've seen. She might not be that far along yet?

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