Balloon molly has wobbly swimming and is flashing?

Discussion in 'Molly' started by Magsley, Jan 12, 2013.

  1. Magsley

    MagsleyNew MemberMember


    I started a 10 gallon tank on January 4th and added 3 male balloon mollies on January 6th. I've noticed the biggest molly is having issues lately (noticed it last night and today)... he is wobbling and a bit twitchy while swimming, doesn't seem very stable (he is really fat). My other two mollies swim normally and can hover without wobbling. He is also flashing/rubbing against the decorations a lot too. I've googled this and its apparently a sign of disease, but I've been looking closely and cannot find any evidence of ich or anything else visibly. The other 2 fish do not display these symptoms.

    Additionally, the other 2 mollies will come up to eat while the one with the problems stays hidden and generally waits for food to be sent down by the waterfall of my filter. Other than hiding when I walk too close or make fast movements, he is generally active.

    The only thing all 3 do is 'gobble' at the surface, like they are drinking the air.

    The tank IS in the middle of cycling, I did the first water change since I got them today, a 10% change. I made sure to dechlorinate the water and added Topfin bacteria supplement (though I am going to use Tetra SafeStart to cycle my tank after getting that advice here). The ammonia level today is at 1.0 ppm, and the pH is 7.4

    Any suggestions? Is he sick? Reacting to the ammonia? The other fish should be acting similar I should think... I want to help him :( I have a feeling it might be flukes, but how can I be 100% sure?

    On a side note, I had only sand as my substrate and I am wondering the best way to clean it without sucking up the actual sand... that is if I need to clean it at all? The ghost shrimp I have eat up all the uneaten food but I think I see what might be little poops from my snail and/or shrimp.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2013
  2. jdhef

    jdhefModeratorModerator Member

    They are probably suffering from ammonia posioning. I would recommend two back to back 50% water changes to get that ammonia level down.

    I may have mentioned this in another thread of yours, so sorry if I am repeating, but Mollies should be in a 20 gallon minimum. They are pretty active so they need the room, plus they are huge ammonia producers.