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Old 02-09-2012, 12:44 PM   #1
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Mollies swimming vertical

It seems there are a couple different threads/posts about this phenomenon recently. In the past when this starts happening to my Mollies, they end up expiring within a couple days. It bothers me that I cannot figure out what is going on! Now, I have five and in the last two days, 3 of them have started drifting into a vertical position before righting themselves. I have sequestured two of the worst ones into their own little "rooms" in my tank, which keeps the others from picking on them.

Here is my specs:

20 gallon tank, artificial plants, rock substrate:
(4) Balloon Mollies
(1) Creamsicle Molly
(9-10) Neon Tetras
(1) Sunset Platy

(This tank is a 12 year established tank)

This past Monday, I did some reading on Mollies and in particular, this info at this link: www(dot)wetwebmedia(dot)com/fwsubwebindex/mollies.htm - replace (dot) with a real one to see article.

I read that using Marine Salt has some benefits over regular aquarium salt, so decided to substitute marine salt (1 tsp/gal) with my water 25% change on Monday. It was Tuesday that I noticed several of my mollies swimming vertical.

So, today, I did another change, this time 40% and did NOT use the marine salt but went back to my aquarium salt at 1 tsp/gal.

Now, let me add that the reason I was online reading up was because I have been battling two water issues in particular; low alkalinity & low ph. I have watched these two numbers decline over the last 6 months, despite weekly water changes, etc. All other readings have pretty much stayed the same.

So, in Sept 2011, these were my water results:

Nitrate:0
Nitrite: 0
Hardness: 250
Alkalinity: 180
PH: 7.2
Amonia: 0

As of today:

Nitrate:0-10 (not ever as "pink" as 20 but has slight color change)
Nitrite: 0
Hardness: 250 (sometimes comes in at 120)
Alkalinity: 80 (but has been ranging between 0-80 for weeks now)
PH: 6.4
Amonia: 0

I have read that Mollies prefer harder water so I don't think this could be causing the crazy swimming. PH has been consistantly low for months now. The Alkalinity/Buffering does worry me as it is often 0!

So, any thoughts from anybody here on this? I am concerned that I may be loosing 3-4 of my mollies if I cannot correct this. My tetras seem to be fine...they have grown quite a bit since I added them many months ago. The platy seems quite the happy little camper as well.

Oh, and I do feed my fish an assortment of food; algea wafers, froz brine shrimp, flakes and pellets. Just not all in one day! I sort of change it up and alternate foods.

Thanks in advance for any advice!

Dawn
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Old 02-09-2012, 06:03 PM   #2
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Hi and welcome to the site.
Another member 'ocminpin' has been experiencing the same issues. She experienced a mass die off of all but 6 (?) of her 80+ Molly fry. Starting with shimmying and resulting in death. Maybe try Private messaging her. We never did find the exact cause of the deaths.
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Old 02-09-2012, 11:46 PM   #3
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FOUND YA!!

I still to this day haven't figured out what happened with the tank. Yes, 6 have survived at this point.. I lost around 80... I had my 2 adult platies in that tank and they were unaffected. Out of the 6 that are left 4 are pregnant and growing...
I purchased marine salt but never used it because I noticed a difference in their behavior since addition of aquarium salt. I worked my way up to 1 tbsp per 5 gal. I haven't seen any shimmies since! The remaining 6 eat vigorously and rush to greet me..: however they a few of them do lie on the gravel very still at times but it hasn't seemed to affect them. I'm guessing it's because they're still recovering inside..
Check out my thread: "Mollies Dying?"
If I can help you please let me know!
Good luck with your little guys...
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Old 02-10-2012, 04:49 PM   #4
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Thanks so much for seeking me out and finding me, ocminpin! As of this afternoon, they are all still with me. Loosing what you did is huge in comparison to mine. That's awful. I will go and read the thread.

The four that had the problems are still having them. One does seem to be a bit better. I am going to do yet another 30-40% water change tomorrow and hope everything continues to improve. For the life of me, I cannot figure out what could have caused this. I know the marine salt was new but sure seems like that would not have caused this kind of response. We'll see. My dd has 3 of these same balloon mollies in a small 6 gal tank. Same water conditions, salt and all - yet her fish are perfectly fine and extremely healthy. So who knows! I'll go and check out the thread when I have some "me" time later on this evening. Gotta get dinner started for my fam. THanks again!!!! ~ Dawn
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Old 02-10-2012, 07:22 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coramdayo
Thanks so much for seeking me out and finding me, ocminpin! THanks again!!!! ~ Dawn
I ran across your thread when I was looking at posts! And then happened to see Mumma's comment..
I'm sorry you're going thru it but I'm glad you're not having a mass die off like I did... My fry/Juvie's were all 3-4 mths old... how old are yours? Full grown?
Good luck! Let me know if you need anything.
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Old 02-13-2012, 04:32 PM   #6
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Well, I did lose my calico balloon molly...one of my favs. Gosh, I hate that. Two out of the remaining three effected seem to be a bit better...not as much quivering or vertical swimming. The other one is still doing it but not any worse than he was 2 - 3 days ago. Time will tell I guess.
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