Platy Breeding Help

  1. ErinM Member Member

    Back in the spring I bought three blue platy's from petsmart (never shopping there again fyi; they are pretty much useless in the knowledge depertment). Anyhoo, the girl didn't tell me (probably didn't even know) that it was two females and one male. Me, not knowing about platy's and not thinking one would be male (as petsmart usually has a "we only sell one sex" rule so things like this don't happen...) said, "oh those are cool!"
    So I took them home, put them in my 50 gl tank, and a couple of months later, i realized that two of them were getting really big! Not to mention the other one wasn't leaving their side, constantly right behind them. Well eventually I realized that they were pregnant, (when I saw a couple of baby platy's swimming around, which are SO cute!) At first I was excited. I even saw a couple of them being born. I decided not to separate them, and let nature take its course, figuring there are a lot of hiding places in my tank anyways. So soon I realized that the babys just kept coming, and coming, and coming...eventually ending up with approx 60 baby platys! With almost no causualties that I noticed (I think in part due to the babies being almost the same colour as my gravel, even I couldn't see them very well).
    Once they fully grew, I sold a few to a LFS, about 30. I thought (until this weekend) that they were all female babies (even though I thought, what are the odds?) because there were no spotted ones, and the males are spotted, darker blue, longer and thinner than the females. So I figured I was in the clear as far as babies go. But this weekend, I noticed a couple larger fish being closely followed, in the same manner as previous! I'm not sure if maybe the males just aren't fully developed, so they don't have spots yet? Or what...But I guess im going to get ready for more babies. Which is kind of frusterating for me because I literally just got my tank back up tp cleanliness standards (as you can probably imagine, my tank got quite disgusting and cloudy with 70 fish in it.) I was doing weekly water changes of about 30%, changing my filter out every week, and constantly vacuuming the gravel. That basically made it just livable. And not to mention I wasn't planning on becoming my own fish hatchery ;D
    So what I'm wondering, from all of you fish experts, is there a better way that I can clean my tank (I have two filter systems on there now) once more babies come? I am currently in the process of setting up a new tank too...but I just started last night so it will take a while to go through its cycle, and it's only a 10 gl.
    Also, is there an easy way to get the babies out of the tank to move them? I have an approx 12 inch pleco, and he HATES it when I try to scoop other fish out, so I try to be as gentle as possible, but it makes it very difficult to get fish out.
    Thanks so much!
    PS - sorry for the long post :-\ but it needed a background story!
     
  2. platy ben Well Known Member Member

    Hmm :) nice long story lol.

    Have you considered getting something that will cut down more of the babies? This may seem horrible but as you seem to be getting so many and only have another small tank this may be the answer :)
    I would say get a few corys but they will hoover pretty much every baby
     

  3. Meenu Fishlore VIP Member

    Welcome to FL, Erin!

    Seems like you have your hands full with the babies! How cute!

    Have you considered not changing your filter media? The beneficial bacteria colony (see nitrogen cycle) lives on the media, and changing it can destroy your cycle. You could rinse the dirty filter in tank water you've removed and put into a bucket. Then you put the same media back into the filter, and the bacteria should survive.

    As far as the babies, if you want to let the platies have the fry but don't want to raise them, you could add the cories, and some fake or real plants as hiding places. A few will survive, most will be eaten. It sounds mean, but livebearers are used as feeder fish, and a good protein source.
     

  4. ErinM Member Member

    hmm good suggestions. I actually have two corys in my other tank right now. I just took another look at the tank and saw at least 7 different fish being courted by the males!
     

  5. platy ben Well Known Member Member

    I think adding some corys and maximising your hiding spots in the tank will work :)
    It seems horrible but that is why platys have so many babies, because in nature many would be eaten, its just natural :)
     
  6. ErinM Member Member

    On a side funny note: some of the babies are slightly orange...orange fins and a blue body. I spose the are slowly going to go back to their roots! Because I don't think blue platys are very common. That I have seen anyways
     
  7. Meenu Fishlore VIP Member

    blue platys sound lovely
     
  8. kuba1992 Member Member

    ncie story! how long did it take for the fish to pop? a month?