10 Gallon Tank New Tank Mates! HELP! Kids love these fish!

  • #1
OK. we are brand new, I have studied this whole process, I homeschool my kids, so they are aware of Cycling Process and I have treated our fish as my own kids these past few weeks.!

We bought a 10 gallon tank 30 days ago. Added 2 (supposedly male) platys on October 1st. (One sunset fire wag and one sunset platy) Our beloved Treasure, died 3 days later. She seemed to be the spunky one (we called her a she, even though we were told she was a HE, but this was my daughters pick) on Saturday morning, she had white around her mouth, just pale like lipstick white lips, which she did not have before. She was acting strange, she was just hanging out on the bottom on the rocks by a plastic plant.
At this time the stress levels was high, (we werent told that the chances of these original fish surviving was not good) anyways, I went out and bought an air stone, (no one told me at Petco that fish needed air supply) bought Aquarium Salt, she stopped eating and was dead by the late afternoon.
Our other fish, Pharoah, who was the timid, smaller one, seemed to be happy as a pig in mud. So it was weird. Jump to 4 weeks later and our Pharoah is lonely looking and (we being a bunch of babies think he is missing Treasure)
So, we decide to get 2 new fish since our tank is registering at 0 for nitrate and nitrite! Yeah US!!! we did a partial water change of 25% and vacuumed gravel added fresh gravel and had the fish sit for 15 mins in the water before sending them into the tank with Pharoah.

Pharoah, who never bothered Treasure for a second!!! immediately rammed this new fish and gave the other the evil eye. He is larger than the others, and picked on the smaller Mickey Mouse Platy the most.
He kinda rams him, he just uses his body to kinda "check" him into the glass and follows him around everywhere. He really pesters the bright orange smaller one, 70% of the time and 30% of the time, he is pestering our other platy, a twin something platy. We believe the are all male. (we can NOT have babies, the kids would freak and I am not a fish person, so I want to take things slow and simple.) We rearranged the tank to throw Pharoah off the warpath in hopes he wouldnt feel so territorial, but it didnt help that much, he still swims around like he is the real Pharoah.

So, is he just establishing this male dominance thing?
Is this stressful? I don't see him nipping at anyone, just the body checks or ramming, I notice. Our one platy tries to help the smaller platy who gets bullied by getting in between them and then Pharoah just chases him for awhile. Is this going to stop? He was all alone for 4 weeks is this just him adusting or what? (we did give him about a 5 min time out in a 5 gal bucket. but didnt want to stress him out too much more either)

Here is the weird thing, This mickey mouse platy (spongebob) seems to be bothered by him and I have seen him try to give back what he is getting but rarely, anyways, he seems to want to HANG with the bully? He seems to follow him and be like a puppy with him even though he rams him and stuff.
He doesn't hide from him, and so does the other platy, what is wrong with them why don't they go hide from him instead of be in his face?
is this stupid? or is there some kind of fish psychology in this whole meeting process? He has been paired with the 2 new fish on the block for about 7 hours now and he is chasing "spongebob" as we speak still.
WHAT DO I DO??????????? he is being naughtY!!!
I am anxious to learn the answer.
Thanks !

  • #2
sounds like a territorial war. the time out and the rearranging should help. I don't have platys tho, so i'm not sure if it will work it self out. I had major territorial issues with my angel fish, they all faught like crazy. then all of a sudden they started getting along, then all of a sudden 3 of 4 died and I just have one now, whos lonely. there's other fish, but she's the only angel for a while. i'm afraid if I put in a friend for her, territory war again.

  • #3
  • #4
Are you sure that they are both male?? the bottom fin will be shaped like a stick...on a female this same fin ( just before the tail) is shaped like a fan. Body checking almost sounds like mating to me...lol The male will swim by the female and quickly dart in and "poke " her with his bottom fin..it is all very fast..Good luck
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
I don't know!! I have this sinking feeling that one of these fish is a female, but the other fish who could be a male, isn't bothering that female if she is one.
They all look the same but I don't know. He doesn't seem to be hurting anyone just chasing them all around... !!Wouldnt it be funny if they were both females!!
What an Idiot I would be. Brand new petco....I told them I wanted 2 males, one girl said, I didnt know you could tell them apart! Then the other girl said, I am sure we have separate tanks for them.... (so in the end, no one knew but me, not even mngr) I don't know!! I am going to look at some more pics and let you know.

Also, ammonia is at 0 and nitrites at 0.... sorry, I'm sure there are nitrates....
tank has been at 0 for about 1 week now.

  • #6
So what did you conclude?? Are they all male...all female..or a combo??

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