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Old 06-20-2017, 07:29 PM   #1
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Newbie here: what to do with my pregnant guppies?

Hi everyone!

I am new to this forum as a member, and I am also pretty new to keeping aquariums, so I could use some advice!

Little intro:
A couple of months ago my boyfriend and I decided we wanted to get shrimps, so we bought 14. In the first 2/3 weeks almost every shrimp died off, and after a few weeks we had only 2 left. In hindsight I realise this was probably due to high nitrite (NO2) levels in the aquarium, as I didn't let it ripe for 2/3 weeks. As the aquarium got quite empty, we decided to try again, but this time with guppies. We changed the water more often, kept a better eye on the temperature, added more plants and everything was going pretty good! Even the shrimps came back to a number of 8 adult shrimps now and many shrimplets in the tank!

We got ourselves 3 female guppies and 2 males (I know the perfect ratio is 1 male-3 females), but tried anyway. The ladies got knocked up in 1 or 2 days and were slowly growing bigger and bigger. When they reached the 21 days, we noticed that the males were really bothering the females a lot and we felt quite bad for them, so we transfered the 3 ladies in a breeding net, but as most people experience: they felt a little stressed, so that wouldn't help them with the pregnancy either. We decided we had to split the males and females up, and moved my Giant African snails from their waterless aquarium back to their old ugly plastic box, and we turned the aquarium into a second home for the females.

When we moved the females, we immediatly got rewarded the same evening (day 28) with atleast 6 guppy fry. As the ladies were trying to eat the fry (they got 1! maybe more) I catched them with a cup and put them into the breeding tank with some plants so they would be safe from the hungry mamas and they seem to be doing pretty well like that.

But, then the horror began: of course I didn't have time to ripe this aquarium, so ammonia levels reached 2,0 mg/l the day after. I immediatly changed 50% twice, and the level dropped below 0,5 mg/l. The next day it spiked again to 1,0 mg/l so I changed water again, and today the ammonia was ok, but nitrite spiked to 5 mg/l, so I couldn't keep the mamas and the babies in there so I moved them back with the shrimps and the males.

The fry are fine in their breeding tanks, but the males are again bothering the females, and even though there are hiding spots, they will find them and they will harrass them. I already turned the light off to give the females a bigger chance to hide, but they are so big! They really need some rest to drop the rest of their fry and they're not getting the chance.

Soooo, my question is: how do I fix this? I don't have a second tank for atleast the next 2 weeks as it needs to ripe. The breeding tank is amazing for fry, but not for pregnant guppies. Is it an idea to put 3 extra females in to get the ratio right? Is there anything else I could do?

Info on the tank they're all in now:
Tanksize: 30 litre (7,9 gallons)
Habitants: 8 adult fireshrimp +shrimplets, some pondsnails, 3 female guppies, 2 male and 5 fry

Water stats (as I know y'all are always asking!)
-Temperature: 27 degrees celsius (80,6 fahrenheit)
-pH: 7,5
-gH: 10 dh
-Ammonia (NH3/NH4): <0,5 mg/l
-Nitrate (NO3): 15 mg/l
-Nitrite (NO2): 0,5 mg/l
-Phosphate (PO4): 0,5 mg/l

Thanks for reading this long *** post and thanks in advance for the answers!
Lots of love, Pytroc
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Old 06-22-2017, 10:27 PM   #2
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I'd honestly take back the females and only have males in that size tank. If you want to keep the females, let them have fry in the main tank and see if any make it, then be ready to rehome the fry asap or give/trade to local store.

They will keep having babies every 30 days or so, and you will be over run if you don't have a backup plan. I bought a whole new fish just to keep mine in check and that's barely working lol
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