Most likely origin of fry?

Loica

Two (or maybe more) fry just appeared in my small tank. I'd be quick to blame the current resident, a small female molly in quarantine, except for three things that don't seem to match:

1) She is quite small still, about half the size of my adult mollies (maybe around 3 centimeters?) and came from a tank with only similarly-small mollies. 2) She never looked anything other than slim and streamlined, with no gravid spot that I recall. 3) The fry look a little different from the molly fry I briefly saw in my larger tank a few days ago before they all got eaten. The ratio of eye to tail seems much smaller, the shape is more streamlined, and they are less pigmented.

On the other hand, I can't think where else they could have come from. The tank hasn't had any previous female residents, and I'd be surprised if any eggs or fry somehow came all the way through the acclimation process without me noticing.

Many threads on here say mollies can breed as young as 3 months of age. How large are young mollies at 4 months of age? And do small mollies drop their fry at a different developmental stage because of their relative size ratios? (That would explain the difference in how the fry are shaped, but I don't know if that makes sense.)

Well... we shall see if one small molly is enough to eat all these fry or not.
 

PeterFishKeepin

well if you want it to survive put in a spare tank or in breeder box, a photo of the fry will help determine its species.
 

Loica

Thank you for your replies. I tried to get a photo of the fry, but they were too small and fast for my camera so all my photos are pretty blurry. I figured I'd try again in a few days if they survived. One managed to survive well over 24 hours, but I'm pretty sure they are both gone now. For whatever reason, I had managed to get a better photo of the other molly fry that were definitely molly fry, and comparing photos I realized the impression of a huge eye in those had probably mostly come from pigmentation, so I think they were more similar than I realized at first and were probably all molly fry. It's still hard to imagine how they fit inside that tiny little molly, though. They are so big relative to her abdomen!
 

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SparkyJones

Most fish sold at petstores are between 3 and 6 months of age regardless of their size unless they are old large and are surrenders, a betta fish male (older), born there in their tanks (young), or wild caught and rarely seen (possibly young). then they might be younger. that 3-6 month window is where most fish are hearty enough to most likely live through the shipping and transitions to their home, and young enough to still look small to people and room to grow. With most livebearers, that window falls right around their maturity and they have shorter lifespans being livebearers usually around 2-3 years. so they mature and reproduce fast.

Can't really spend a year on a guppy for slow growers at a guppy farm, by the time it gets to the end owner, it would have a couple months left on it and be old already.
 

emeraldking

Thank you for your replies. I tried to get a photo of the fry, but they were too small and fast for my camera so all my photos are pretty blurry. I figured I'd try again in a few days if they survived. One managed to survive well over 24 hours, but I'm pretty sure they are both gone now. For whatever reason, I had managed to get a better photo of the other molly fry that were definitely molly fry, and comparing photos I realized the impression of a huge eye in those had probably mostly come from pigmentation, so I think they were more similar than I realized at first and were probably all molly fry. It's still hard to imagine how they fit inside that tiny little molly, though. They are so big relative to her abdomen!
From the build, I'd say: Molly fry.
 

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