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Old 02-28-2019, 01:54 AM   #1
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Unhappy Aggressive Female Dalmatian Molly- Advice?

So, I know it's too late for my fancy male guppy, but he recently was bullied to death by my female dalmatian molly. He actually died just this morning

I'm making this post for advice on what I could've done in order to prevent it, if there is anything, and what I should do now and for the future overall.

Long story short: My male fancy cobra guppy was the first fish I introduced to the tank. About a month later I added some more male guppies making a total of 4 male guppies ( 1 fancy cobra guppy, 1 Endler's guppy, and 2 elephant ear guppies ). All was well until I added my female dalmatian molly..

I was told by the pet store to get a female dalmatian molly as they are less aggressive than the males, and that the male mollies would pick on my male guppies which could lead to fin tearing. I did not want that at all, so I went for the female dalmatian molly.

From the moment I added her to my tank, she made it her mission to pick on my fancy cobra guppy ( I'll call him Leo so I don't have to type it out over and over lol ). I knew Leo was getting stressed from her harassing him, so I looked up what to do. Many things I read mentioned how original fish of the tank usually bully new fish, but in my case, it was the opposite. My new fish was bullying my original one! There were also things that mentioned how it could be that "The male molly is trying to mate with the female guppy", but again, it was the opposite. My female molly was harassing my male cobra guppy, and Leo wasn't doing anything to fight back.

I also saw that if there was fin tearing, to remove the aggressor immediately. So, every day I would check his fins, along with the other guppies just in case, but none of them had harm on them. My molly would just chase Leo around and push him, but she'd never nip him. She was also aggressive during feeding, so I'd have to use a syringe pipe (the ones for cooking) to push the food in the middle so he'd have a chance to eat. I saw the people at the tropical fish store I got him from do that.

One thing to note, Leo was a very picky eater from the start. He'd barely eat flakes and would usually spit them out, but when I'd bring brine shrimp he'd love it. But I read online you should'nt let fish be picky, so just feed them the flakes and when they get a hunger strike, they'll eat. Which he did, sometimes, but again he'd spit it out while all the other fish loved it. The flakes were also given to me by the store I got Leo from so?? Idk..I still fed him brine shrimp every other day or so because I was worried he'd starve and grow week.

Anyways, I wasn't sure what to do, so I decided to wait and see if things would die down, especially since mollies and guppies are apparently good tank mates. Obviously, things didn't die down which led to Leo dying from stress. He showed signs of it, but I kind of was stuck.

My plan was to save up for another tank and move my molly in there with other mollies, in hopes of relieving Leo of stress, but alas I don't have much money on hand so, one thing led to another.

Also, after Leo's death I saw the Nitrite levels of my water had suddenly risen to 1.0, so I believe the stress from the water and the stress Leo already had from the bullying led to him dying? I do water changes every Sunday, and Sunday did show the Nitrite being at caution. I planned to get something to lower the Nitrites but I guess I should've acted sooner.

Who knows. I know fish dying for beginners, and even some experienced people, happen, but I'm still really bummed.

Any thoughts?
Again, should I get another tank and move her in there eventually? I want to get another fancy guppy or two, but I'm afraid she'll bully them too. She doesn't bully the other guppies at all, not even now Leo's gone, but still.

If you read my profile bio, it has all my tank stuff and my plans for the new tank I want to do.

Thank you if you read all this btw <3

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Old 03-05-2019, 08:10 PM   #2
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Welcome to the community.

Sometimes the aggression can be the tipping point for an already barely hanging on fish. It is very possible the nitrite level did him in.

It sounds like you are in the middle of a fish-in cycle meaning you have fish while your tank is cycling. You can read up on some good info from the link in my signature for an article here on getting started.

Before higher nitrite, is ammonia. Which is dangerous for fish too. When the parameters are out of the safe zone frequently it can cause agitation. If Leo was already not entirely well, he may have been a target for the Molly.

It is possible Leo had internal parasites, which made him not wanting to eat. Hard to guess and be sure now after the fact.

Enough to know unsafe water was probable tipping point.

You will need to get the tank cycled before adding any more fish. The links will help you know what options there are for your tank.

Do water changes.

Dollar per gallon sale is on right now at petco.

Mainly though you want to not over feed, and test and do plenty of water changes to keep the water quality at a safe level.

I just learned about cycling but I already have fish. What now?! - Aquarium Advice

Fish-in Cycling: Step over into the dark side - Aquarium Advice
New to FW fish? First tank in a long time or EVER??? Need some info on keeping fish?

Start here - Aquarium Advice Article

FW Favorites right now Clown Loaches, any shrimp - SW Vase Red Mangroves
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