Could be Ich but I'm not sure. Need some help.
So I'll start off with the basics: water parameters are ammonia: 0, nitrite: 0, nitrates: 20, pH: 7.6, high range pH: 7.4. It's 45 gallons, and I keep it around 75 degrees, it cools off a little, maybe down to 70 at night, and on hot days it can get up to almost 80. I do a weekly 10% water exchange and the fish seemed happy and healthy. There are 4 platies, and 4 mollies as it finally balanced out not long ago and I'm working on getting it where I want it to be.
Saturday I noticed my Dalmatian molly's top and bottom fins were clamped. She was swimming normally, eating normally, but has clamped fins. Then she started getting more aggressive towards the silver lyre-tail. Chasing her around for apparently no reason especially at meal times, or when she just gets too close. I thought I had seen her "flash" against the heater, but it could have been a result of trying to chase the lyre-tail like she has been.
Then today I noticed one of my platies rubbing herself against one of the marbles in the bottom of the tank, and her gills look red and a little inflamed. Her fins are not clamped, she's eating normally, swimming normally and she isn't aggressive at all to any of the other fish. Her body is getting bigger but I'm assuming she's pregnant as I recently purchased her from the pet store and there's always a greater chance the platy will be pregnant than not, but now I'm not so sure.
The weird behavior with the molly started shortly after I started feeding them the Jungle Anti-Parasitic fish food that I always use whenever I get new fish as a precaution. I do not have a quarantine tank, nor do I have the funds to get one so I try to take every precaution available. I thought she was just unhappy with the change of diet and that after the three day period of the medicated food she would calm down. It's day three, I've already fed them the medicine, and the behavior is getting much worse.
I also, literally, just noticed my Sunburst platy acting strangely. She's hovering in one spot, her fins clamped and she's swaying her body back and forth very strangely but not really going anywhere. Then she'll swim around for a few seconds, and repeat the behavior. All of these behaviors have popped up over night and I have no idea what to do. Any advice would be helpful and greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time.
do several small water changes and see whether they are getting better as clamped fins arent always caused by ich
I agree with the above advice. I recently (about a month or so ago) went through some strange behavior noticed in fish. Not acting on it quickly and assuming it was ich almost all my fish died. It may or may not be ich, but to prevent it getting worse water changes would be good and to test your water every day. I find that adding some aquarium salt has really helped my fish as well. Mollies are also recommended to be housed with platies but they actually tend to do better in brackish water conditions and are very sensitive to changes.
Recent nitrite troubles, and ten degree temp fluctuations between daytime and evening could be contributing to problems.
Mollie's and platy's should do well with pH you posted for they enjoy hard alkaline waters with 12 to 15 dGH. But that is where the shared conditions end.
Mollie's and guppies prefer much warmer water, 80 to 82 degrees F would suit the mollie's and guppies ,while platy's and swordtails prefer cooler waters with temps between 74 and 76 dgerees F.
If these fish were in the tank during nitrite "relapse' you mentioned in another thread,, It may have had greater negative effect than you would like.
Would focus on changing more than ten percent of water each week,would use dechlorinator such as PRIME or AMQUEL+. Would not use any other chemicals or powders in the tank that adjust pH nor would I use water from water softener, which will remove the minerals Calcium,magnesium,that fish need and that also help keep water buffered,stable.
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