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Old 02-05-2005, 11:30 AM   #1
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What to Do with a Friendly Fish

I have two tanks, one 15 and one 10 gallon. Here's how they are distributed:

15 Gallon: 1 platy, 2 Mollies, 3 red-eye tetras, 1 bn
10 Gallon: 1 gold dusty Molly (small), 1 dwarf platy, 1 oto (soon to get another and 2 cories.

Here's my problem. One of the Mollies in the 15 gallon is the sweetest livebearer fish I have ever had (long fin sunburst molly). He doesn't have an aggressive fin in his body. He was constantly being harassed by the other fish in the 15 gallon. All the other livebearers I have are aggressive. Yesterday, I moved the Sunburst Molly to my 10 gallon and moved the Gold Dust Molly and the dwarf platy to the 15. The nice Molly was extremely happy and even shared the algae wafer with the cories. However, in my 15 gallon, the two new fish totally disrupted everything and started ganging up on the other fish, even the tetras. I waited 24 hours and decided to move the gold dust Molly back to the 10 gallon. Now he is chasing the sunburst Molly.

They say that Mollies and Platys are peaceful but I don't know if I have bad lot, but they don't seem very peaceful to me. The sunburst Molly gets so stressed out from all of the chasing I'm afraid he is going to get sick.

I can't stand all of this fighting, it's worse than my two kids! Any suggestions?
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Old 02-05-2005, 12:18 PM   #2
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i hope my tank doesnt have that problem

sorry i know its not advice
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Old 02-05-2005, 12:19 PM   #3
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Update: In the 15 gallon, the Molly and the Platy started fighting. It was pretty scarey. I put the Molly in a breeder net to calm him down as someone was going to get hurt.

In the 10 gallon, the gold dust Molly started chasing the nice Molly but he actually defended himself this time so things aren't too bad right now.

My daughter and I are so upset about this, I just don't know what to do. I think I made things worse. Please, I need someone's help.
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Old 02-05-2005, 12:25 PM   #4
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my guess.... try a seperator ya know? it MIGHT work im not saying that it WILL im just guessing
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Old 02-05-2005, 12:28 PM   #5
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or take some water out of the tank and fill up a bowl for the molly and see how they react with out the molly in either tank

and last night my dad told me that he and his dad(my grandpa) used to haved a tank and they had 2 mollys(male and female) and the walls were so scummed up with algae but the fish LOVED it absolutly LOVED it they were reproducing like crazy every morning he would wake up there were atleast 4 mollys on the floor dried up cause they had so many he said they jumped out of the tank like crazy

keep giving me updates on you tank tho
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Old 02-05-2005, 12:52 PM   #6
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In the 15 gallon, the dwarf platy is harrassing the tuxedo platy. This guy use to be in the 15 gallon a couple of months ago and I moved him to the 10 gallon for this reason. He gets along fine with the gold dust Molly. I can try one more move. Move the tuxedo platy to the 10 gallon and move the gold dust molly back to the 15 gallon. Maybe the platy will be nicer to the sunburst platy in the smaller tank. Or do I just put everyone back to where they were and hope for the best. If the Molly and Platy don't fight though, the sunburst Molly may die of stress.
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Old 02-05-2005, 01:13 PM   #7
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welcome to the wonderful world of finicky fish. Sometimes the temperment of the fish can change when it is by itself or if it just doesn't like its surrounds. Heck, a fish can grow up just being distempered. so what to do. well, there are some options. You can go the route of getting fish that are bigger then it to potentially scare and stop it OR you can get more of the same species of fish for the tank to help with agression control.
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Old 02-05-2005, 02:03 PM   #8
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I thought livebearers were extremely peaceful too.
When you move fish from one tank to another, you throw their whole pecking order out of whack, and it sometimes takes a few days for the fish to sort out a new one amongst themselves. Are there plenty of places for the fish to hide if they feel the need to?

Are all your livebearers male? That may explain some of the aggression. With most fish, having more females that males keeps the males' aggresion to a minimum.
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Old 02-05-2005, 02:12 PM   #9
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1. I really felt that I had to do something as the Sunburst Molly was so stressed from being chased by the other two.

2. Yes, all the livebearers are Male as I didn't want any babies.

I put the Molly back in the tank after being in the breeders net for awhile and the two fish started fighting again. I turned off the light and the fighting stopped. Meanwhile, the dwarf platy is harrassing the platy. This probably won't stop as he does it to everyone.
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Old 02-05-2005, 07:20 PM   #10
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I had the hardest time with aggression and swordtails awhile back. Unfortunately despite my best efforts, I ended up with a few losses and now just have two males left (that oddly enough are constantly swimming and feeding together in my 29 gal community tank and never fight). One of the two survivors had his forhead bit off (eww). I was certain he would die but I seperated him and eventually he was fine and it all grew back. That was about half a year ago.

I don't have any advice but I just wanted to let you know that sometime livebearers can be nasty and it's not just your bad luck.
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Old 02-05-2005, 08:02 PM   #11
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Most likely due to the 2 males. I had the same problem, found out a 10 gallon, even a 15 probably is too small for 2 males. I had to give away one of my mollies because it was scaring the other male so bad, he just hid under a rock all the time and never came out.
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Old 02-05-2005, 08:03 PM   #12
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Well, I'm not sure what I am going to do now. I separated the two that were fighting and put the platy in the 10 gallon with the nice Molly. And would you just know it, the Molly started attacking the Platy. My household is a complete disaster. Right now there is just a lot of chasing going on so I won't make anymore changes tonight. I am not happy with the way the tanks are distributed but I will see how things are in the morning. But my feeling is to probably go back to my original layout. The two little fish I had in my ten gallon really got along great when they were the only livebearers. They seem to tolerate each other well. My daughter is 8 years old and was very upset when she saw the fish fight.
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Old 02-05-2005, 08:16 PM   #13
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All I can say is what others said, having 2-3 females per male with any of the livebearers seems to be the best for the fish. The result is, you will have babies, but if your tank isn't too heavily planted then probably most of them won't survive.
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Old 02-06-2005, 10:48 AM   #14
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Last night I proposed the idea of returning a some of the males for females and the tears rolled down her face. Everyone survived last night but I am not happy with the arrangement. Another tank is out of the question as my husband already thinks I spend too much time with the fish anyway. I am hoping that I can convince him to get me another tank for mother's day/birthday in May. Meanwhile, I hope I can keep peace in the family until then.
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Old 02-07-2005, 02:06 AM   #15
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I would try Rudy's suggestion of using a tank divider. I know they make dividers for 10 and 15 gallon tanks (15 gallon long, I think). It's not the most aesthetically pleasing solution, but if you can't get another tank right now, it may be your best bet. It's not only the fish that are in distress, but your little girl too. I hope things work out!
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Old 02-07-2005, 06:31 AM   #16
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Right now, things are OK. However, I don't like the idea of having the large Molly and the Platy in the 10 gallon. It's a little crowded for them. If I try to move the fish back to their original tanks, should I do two fish at a time or one? The Dalmation Molly is the one who initiated the original fight in the 15 gallon. He wouldn't move. There has been no more fighting as the gold dust molly is not afraid of anyone and actually does a little chasing himself. I was thinking of moving the Gold Dust Molly and the dwarf platy out at the same time as I know they are buddies and would both harrass whoever I brought into the 15 gallon.

This is more complicated than a soap opera!

If the move doesn't work, then I will go back to this current setup as I know no one will get hurt.
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