molly pregnant?? acting very quiet 10 Gallon Tank 

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ShellsBells

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HI all! I'm pretty sure my dalmation molly is pregnant. I've had her for about 20 days and her belly is getting very big. She is in an new tank with one molly fry(momma died a day after birthing him) and 3 neon tetras that were added two days ago. My tank is in the cycling process, ammonia is around2ppm and I am doing daily 25% water changes. Temp is 80 degrees. She has gotten very quiet since last night, and is totally hanging around the top of the tank. The bb fry is also spending a fair amount up there, but will swim to the bottom as well. The tetras are fine, schooling about and not looking stressed whatsoever. I initially thought ammonia poisoning, but I would think the tetras and fry would show signs of distress if that was the problem.
She is also pooping alot. Could she be getting ready to birth, or is she getting ready to die? And how long will she act this way before she gives birth, if she is indeed pregnant. She does not have a visible black spot on her belly, but her belly has become squrarish. Also, is one water change a day enough, or should I do more ? Thanks!!
 

Kupcake

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Your ammonia is way too high for fish to be in it. You should do water changes until you get it down to .25ppm and then do 50% (atleast) waterchanges a day. Or you could do 2water changes a day at 30% (or so) each.

I would say that .5ppm ammonia in a tank with fish is the maximum I would be comfortable with.

What water conditioner are you using. For cycling with fish you should be using Prime or Amquel+ because it detoxifies ammonia and nitrites for 24 hours (giving you that long between water changes).
 

Akari_32

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its very common for livebearers to become very stationary before dropping their fry. I wouldnt worry too much unless to last more then a few days.

as for water changes, once a day of fine, but I think you may need a bit more then just 25%
 

ayelie

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Anything over 0 ammonia is harmful to your fish. When you do water changes you should be using prI'm or amquel+ that will make the water safe for 24 hours. What are your other readings

now about your molly. Is she setting on the bottom or hiding? Most mollies will hid or rub their bellies on the rocks just before they drop their fry. If she is feeling bad because of the ammonia, she is able to hold the fry until she feels the water is better.

Also a mollies belly will become square looking in the front before they drop.
 
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ShellsBells

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hmmmmm! Thanks for all the advice. She is a bit more lively today, perhaps she is stressed by the water and is going to hang on to her babies a bit longer. I would have never added more fish, but the pet store said it was ok Everyone else is doing well in there though, so I will continue with the daily if not more water changes.

Appreciate the replies!
 

jetajockey

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Step up on the water changes, you can stretch them out to every 48 hours if need be, Prime detoxifies ammonia for up to 48 hours. The important thing is that you are dosing it properly, if you are around 2ppm I would be dosing 2 capfuls of Prime to combat the high ammonia level. And like it was posted above, you need to get the level down below 1.0, preferably between 0 and .5.

As to why the molly is hovering, it may be that she is getting ready to drop, but it is hard to tell with the water parameters the way they are, so it could be one or the other, or both.

Take care!
 
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ShellsBells

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well thanks to everyone's advice, I increased my water changes and my molly, Spot (kid named) is back to her old self. She is all over the tank and seems fine. I guess it was the ammonia that was causing her behaviour, not labour pains! The little fry, Feisty, still hangs at the top quite a bit, but that may just be his thing. The tetras are all acting normal, albeit kinda shy. My ammonia was at .5 after my last last water change so I will do my best to keep it at that. Hopefully I will start to see some nitrates soon. My tank is a bit cloudy, so does that mean it's on it's way?
Thanks so much for the support...this place is great!!
 

Kunsthure

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Cloudy water is a bacterial bloom and once it starts to clear you know you're headed in the right direction. If you plan to keep these fish in this tank permanently, you might want to consider TetraSafe Start to get it cycled quickly. But if not, keep up the WCs like everyone said.

IME, not all livebearers get the gravid spot. It seems most common with guppies. I haven't seen it with my orange platy or my silver lyretail (may as well be white) Molly. You'd think if a fish would show it would be a white one but not mine.

ETA: regular mollies like dalmations need to be in at least a 20 gallon as their permanent homes since they get to be about 4". Balloon mollies could probably go in a 10 gallon, but don't hold me to that.

-Lisa
 

catsma_97504

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Welcome to Fishlore ShellsBells!

If you aren't already, I would suggest that you do 50% water changes daily with Prime. It will protect your fish against nitrogenous waste (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate). You stated that your ammonia is in the 1-2 PPM range. Do you know what your nitrite or nitrate levels are? As one capful of Prime is enough for a 50 gallon, you would need to dose 1/2 capful to have enough to detox the ammonia and have some left over for the nitrites that may be present. What test kit are you using? Prime can interfere with some which could give you a false reading. You'll need to test your water at least 24-hours after dosing with Prime.

I'm sorry to say it, but your 10 gallon tank is overcrowded with mollies and neon tetras. Mollies should be in nothing smaller than a 20 gallon and the Neons should be in groups of 6 or more. Your molly is most likely holding in the fry until she feels it is safe. However, unless you have a pristine environment, the fry will have a very low survival rate as they cannot handle waste in the water.

As your tank is cycling, I wouldn't be surprised if you lost some of your neons. They can be fragile fish and rarely survive a cycling tank. They do better in a tank that has been established for 3-6 months. Do you have access to a cycled tank? Getting some of the gravel or the filter pad/sponge could help to speed up the cycling process. You could purchase a product like TSS, but it does not always work and you would have to stop your water changes for 10 days which might have a negative impact to your surviving fish.

Do you have plans to upgrade your tank?
 
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ShellsBells

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Jeepers!!!!! This fish keeping is such a learning curve. I tried to do as much homework as I could (I'm an avid Googler!) and the fish that have ended up in my tank were on the direct recommendations of two different petstores. I bought the mollies first, on the advice of the pet store that they were good tank starters, and that a 10 g was appropriate for them. Then last week, it was a PetSmart employee who said that neons would be a great addition, and hardy. From what I've googled since, I see that they are not so hardy. Frustrating to get such conflicting information from the people who are supposed to be regarded as knowledgeable. I guess I better stick to you guys for my answers, as the real expertise is here!!
Yes, I am interested in upgrading my tank. I had no experience whatsoever in fishkeeping and so I figured 10 g would be a good starter(again on the advice of PetSmart). Being in Canada, I'm not sure I have access to the same products, but I did get a bottle of "Stress Zyme", made by API, a biological filtration booster. Says it contains dual action live bacteria and that it is a water conditioner. Anyone have any experience with that one?
always appreciative of your responses!!
 

jetajockey

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a 10 gallon is a good starter tank, it just depends on what you stock in it. As to pet store advice, well, they are in the business of selling things so everything they say is usually geared towards that.

I've used stress zyme with no positive effect, possibly with some negative but I cannot confirm since I didn't do a legitimate test with the product at the time. As of right now the only product I would recommend is TSS. There are a few others in question right now but I won't recommend anything without further testing (real testing not just testimonials)
 
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