OK so what the heck killed my fish?????

lizzle

Member
About a month ago we lost our female black molly (our good breeding mama :'( ) after a water change. Figured it might have been shock or old age. Nothing visually wrong. Now the other day I discovered our male dalmatian molly deceased, but just look at the photo. What the heck is that????
 

Fishface

Member
tumors? Sorry, I know that doesn't help much, but this discussion needed to get started. That's very disturbing. :-\


Ashley
 

sirdarksol

Member
Impaction? I'm not sure what a molly should be eating, but if they're getting the wrong type of food, it can screw up their digestive tract and food can get caught. If you feed them pellets, that could be the round things in the pictures.
Not sure, just a theory.
 

andiuk

Member
firstly, sorry about your fishes!

secondly, eww.... but no, not sure... I want to say they look a bit like eggs!? if he had been a she, well, then id have suggested she died in the process of laying eggs - if mollies laid eggs...

the only other thing I can think (and a bit more worrying, sorry)... if that it was some sort of internal parasite that ate it's way out, and killed the fish, but maybe died too when the fish did!?

I really don't know!
 
  • Thread Starter

lizzle

Member
OK well perhaps we can narrow it down a bit if I give you some facts about this aquarium:

10g treated regularly with Cycle and kept at 78 degrees

Wardley basic tropical flake food

other inhabitants include one golden algae eater, three juvenile black mollies (as yet ungendered, about 3 months old) and one female african dwarf frog.

All plants are artificial.

Up till 3 weeks ago we also had one female black molly who has had 3 hatchings with us since she was brought home at Christmas. The first hatching was eaten pretty much right away. The second hatching at the very beginning of February produced 9 surviving offspring, 3 of whom are the juvvies mentioned above, the other 6 went to live at my son's school. The third hatching 5 weeks later produced 8 surviving offspring who live in a separate nursery tank. (most of these facts irrelevant) The female molly had 2 separate bouts of fungal infection (one was ick, the other was some sort of puffy cottony stuff) which we treated with Jungle brand broad spectrum fungal treatment, following the directions to the letter, and then 50% water changes and new filters. I suppose the fungal infections could have affected the dalmation molly also except with his coloration you couldn't tell. The last of these infections was cleared up almost 6 weeks ago.

I periodically add tap water treated with TopFin basic tap water treatment and then a dose of Cycle.

Two weeks ago we went out of town for 5 days and put 7-day feeders in each aquarium. When we got home I noticed the dalmation was a little fatter than usual, but I figured he'd just pigged out while we were gone since he was always such a good eater. Wonder now if this was fatness due to what was soon to be bursting from his underbelly? ???

I considered briefly doing an autopsy. But my DH pointed out it's kinda silly for a fish that cost less than 5 bucks, so I didn't.

I had thought about a parasite but figured if there was one, it would have killed the juvvies way before it killed the adult. And the frog has been with us just as long as the adult mollies have, so I doubt it could have laid eggs in the belly of my male. There's just the one, and even though it's female, I'm not sure what any gestation period would be in case she was impregnated prior to moving in with us. Suppose that might be a topic for another thread...

Anyway I'm still scratching my head. Any other thoughts?? :-\
 

sirdarksol

Member
lizzle said:
Two weeks ago we went out of town for 5 days and put 7-day feeders in each aquarium. When we got home I noticed the dalmation was a little fatter than usual, but I figured he'd just pigged out while we were gone since he was always such a good eater. Wonder now if this was fatness due to what was soon to be bursting from his underbelly? ???
I would bet money that this is the cause. Some of those feeder pyramids have pellets in them, and the pellets are pretty big (at least, the ones in the pyramids I got were. Thankfully, the pyramid I dropped in my tank barely eroded before I got home). I'm guessing that your poor little guy ate too much and got plugged up. What you saw when you got home was indeed that he had pigged out, and eventually something had to give.

I have personally decided that, if my wife and I are going to be gone for less than four days, I'm just letting the fish fast. The only ones that would die from a 3 day fast are the otos, and they can feed on the detritus and bits of algae that grow in the tank, anyway. If I'm going to be gone for more than that, I'll arrange for the fish to be fed every two or three days(and have premeasured food to avoid overfeeding). Fish can survive for several days without food and show no ill effects. In fact, a fast is actually good for some fish.

As a side note, I'm going to say (because if I don't say it, someone else will), that the algae eater is going to become a bigger problem than he's worth. As they grow older, algae eaters don't eat much algae. They also get belligerent, bullying other fish in the tank. It will probably end up eating any molly fry you have. They also like clinging to the sides of anything they can get ahold of, causing damage to skin and scales. It might end up hurting your frog. Lastly, it can get up to 11", which means that it, on its own, has a potential bioload bigger than your tank. Now all of this is just probable, and I'm not trying to lecture. I just know from personal experience that fish store employees don't tell people this about the algae eaters. "Oh, you want something that eats algae that can't grow to two feet long? Well, these cute little guys are great" is what I heard a dozen times in my search for a tiger-banded peckoltia.
 

bbfeckawitts

Member
Yes, that algae eater won't eat the algae at all! He will be more trouble then he is worth! As juveniles, they do eat algae, but when they do start to mature, they stop and only eat algae wafers. If you could trade him into your LFS (local fish store) that would be great. I have no clue what could have killed your mollie. It surely looks horrible though. Sorry for your loss.
 
  • Thread Starter

lizzle

Member
sirdarksol said:
As a side note, I'm going to say (because if I don't say it, someone else will), that the algae eater is going to become a bigger problem than he's worth. As they grow older, algae eaters don't eat much algae. They also get belligerent, bullying other fish in the tank. It will probably end up eating any molly fry you have. They also like clinging to the sides of anything they can get ahold of, causing damage to skin and scales. It might end up hurting your frog. Lastly, it can get up to 11", which means that it, on its own, has a potential bioload bigger than your tank. Now all of this is just probable, and I'm not trying to lecture. I just know from personal experience that fish store employees don't tell people this about the algae eaters. "Oh, you want something that eats algae that can't grow to two feet long? Well, these cute little guys are great" is what I heard a dozen times in my search for a tiger-banded peckoltia.
OK so since we're going OT, I will say that is an interesting thing about algae eaters. We bought two - one for the 10 gallon and one for the 5 gallon nursery tank, at the same time. At this very moment, the 10 gallon tank is spotless (although the algae eater does pick on the other fish occasionally and I've seen him trying to clean the frog) but the 5 gallon nursery tank is hideously speckled. The eater in the 5 gallon seems to be constantly eating, and his belly is always green, but can't figure why the tank is so dirty. I went in and bought him an assistant (a black snail) but it's just getting worse instead of better. I want to put a water additive in to kill the algae blooms but since the babies are still so young, I think I better hold off. But it's so bad I can't even scrub it off, which is weird.

So I guess this begs the question - what should I get to control the algae in the tank? If the algae eater isn't going to work, what should I get?
 

sirdarksol

Member
If you can afford another tank, you might want to set up a species-specific tank and keep the algae eaters together (though I don't know if they get territorial with each other as they grow). I would give the snail a chance on its own. It might be that the algae eater is knocking it off the walls. Or it might be that the algae eater is providing enough fertilizer for the algae that the algae is growing quicker than it can be eaten. Also, if you can, turn the light off in the tank for an hour in the middle of the day. This disrupts the algae's ability to grow, to some extent.
If neither of these things help, an oto might be able to do it (and it will leave the fry alone, which is more than can be said about the algae eater when it grows).
 

armadillo

Member
sirdarksol said:
lizzle said:
Two weeks ago we went out of town for 5 days and put 7-day feeders in each aquarium.  When we got home I noticed the dalmation was a little fatter than usual, but I figured he'd just pigged out while we were gone since he was always such a good eater.  Wonder now if this was fatness due to what was soon to be bursting from his underbelly? ???
I would bet money that this is the cause. Some of those feeder pyramids have pellets in them, and the pellets are pretty big (at least, the ones in the pyramids I got were. Thankfully, the pyramid I dropped in my tank barely eroded before I got home). I'm guessing that your poor little guy ate too much and got plugged up. What you saw when you got home was indeed that he had pigged out, and eventually something had to give.

I have personally decided that, if my wife and I are going to be gone for less than four days, I'm just letting the fish fast. The only ones that would die from a 3 day fast are the otos, and they can feed on the detritus and bits of algae that grow in the tank, anyway. If I'm going to be gone for more than that, I'll arrange for the fish to be fed every two or three days(and have premeasured food to avoid overfeeding). Fish can survive for several days without food and show no ill effects. In fact, a fast is actually good for some fish.

As a side note, I'm going to say (because if I don't say it, someone else will), that the algae eater is going to become a bigger problem than he's worth. As they grow older, algae eaters don't eat much algae. They also get belligerent, bullying other fish in the tank. It will probably end up eating any molly fry you have. They also like clinging to the sides of anything they can get ahold of, causing damage to skin and scales. It might end up hurting your frog. Lastly, it can get up to 11", which means that it, on its own, has a potential bioload bigger than your tank. Now all of this is just probable, and I'm not trying to lecture. I just know from personal experience that fish store employees don't tell people this about the algae eaters. "Oh, you want something that eats algae that can't grow to two feet long? Well, these cute little guys are great" is what I heard a dozen times in my search for a tiger-banded peckoltia.
We use automatic feeders when we're away. You can choose what type of food you put in the dispenser, and the quantity to dispense. It's up to 6 servings a day.

But that thing out of the dalmatian molly looks really weird. Overeating? Really?
 

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