What goes well with Mollies?

Marc

Member
Well, after seeing my tank my mom decided to get a 33gal long for my living room - there is a perfect spot where it fits just right. She likes the Balloonbelly Mollies and I'm covering everything for cycling/decorating/setting it up, but she needs an algae eater and something to clean. She thinks plecos are ugly and doesn't really like Corydoras. I can't find any Otos locally (if she say them she'd like them) and I really need some help. She doesn't like fish for their personality but as a decoration. The mollies have very vibrant colors (ivory silver, black, orange - all high contrast) and the tank is going to have natural colored gravel, plants, and maybe some driftwood and red slate.

Basically, I'm looking to see what would help clean the tank. We will NOT be putting salt in. Also, any suggestions for decorations would be nice

Oh, and it's got just over 1 WPG, so it can support medium-low light plants, right?
 

atmmachine816

Member
no medium plants and mollies won't be happy without salt you do know that right so maybe you could get some other pretty fish would make it easier to help you since your mollies won't like it without salt
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
They don't need the salt. They're kept just fine at this pet store in plain fresh water.

What WPG is needed for medium-low light plants?
 

atmmachine816

Member
well you can try it but I guess it depends on peoples opionios but 1wpg is low light and under that is really low and around 2wpg is medium and around 3 is high I think but at 1 you can get a lot of plants such as crypts anubias some swords java moss java fern hornwort and so far my val is doing good at .666 wpg you can try mediium plants and do a trial and error method which is what I do

are you going to get all mollies

how about siasmese alage eaters and corys for the bottom though they would perfer sand
 
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Marc

Member
She likes the prettier Corys (Adolfoi) but I'm still looking for suggestions. She wants small stuff.
 

atmmachine816

Member
tetras rasboras

I am going to my lfs AGAIN yaa tomorow I can look at some SMALL fish for some suggestions
 
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Marc

Member
If I'm not mistaken tetras and rasboras don't clean the tank..

Possibly a CUTE Pleco which will stay at about 2 inches? I've never seen one, is there one..?
 

atmmachine816

Member
yup there are
 

vin

Member
I would try some JulI Corys...Show them to Mom - they're pretty cool, have little speckles on them and stay small PLUS they look as if they're winking at you!.....Not sure where you are, but Otos can be found at Petco in Hamden, CT.......Just saw some there last week.

If you want color, you can also go with Neon Blue Dwarf Gouramis or Flame Red Dwarf Gouramis....They're peaceful and very colorful...Especially the males. Just be sure that if you get a pair that you get one of each sex and get them at the same time so they will bond quicker and easier.

You can also go with Fancy Guppies, but watch out if you get any sort of barbs as they will nip at the tails of the guppies and the Gouramis.

Decorate it with rocks and driftwood that you can find at a local fish store. Make sure you have some caves for cover and places for your bottom dwellers to hide. Floating plants for the gouramis will help them to feel safer.

Anubias Nana is a nice foreground plant that uses low light. As for something that will get a bigger, look into some varieties of swords. Or you can always mix some artificial with real and build it up slowly.
 

atmmachine816

Member
the plecos are pitbull 2" and bulldog 3-4" that's what I know of
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
Yes, she really liked the anubias when I showed her, and she LOVED an Amazon Sword we saw at PetLand. I'm going to see what they have at Purr-Fect before I buy any plants though, they had a nice selection there. I was hoping to find some Watersprite and see how it did in the tank because it looks pretty nice.

She really doesn't want fish that will be out and about as much as the mollies, unless it's a lot smaller than them. Just talked to her about this and I've showed her a few Corys that she really liked, now I just have to find them (gonna be a pain, never seen them stocked). Have you seen anyone selling Araguaiaensis? I can probably order AdolfoI or Trilineatus.

I may see if she'll take a trip to that PetCO then to see if she likes the Otos, since she says doesn't like the pictures that much. I showed her some JuliI at Turnpike Pet Ctr. and she thought they were too big.
 

vin

Member
Marc -

Choice Pet down here in Monroe (rte 111) has some JulI Corys in stock - $3.99 ea. I think....They've got some pretty decent fish and the guy that runs the fish dept. is studying marine biology......

Good Luck, Dog....

For a 33 gallon, I'm not sure how small she wants to go..... ??? If she goes too small they're going to get lost in that big "lake"! LOL!!

The Corys won't get much bigger than 2 1/2".........And they hide much of the time under cover....You won't find them that stay any smaller than that.....

I suggested some Endlers Livebearers to someone else. They've got great color and max out at 1"......

Check them out......
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
Well, my mom doesn't always explain herself fully. Hard to get a straight answer on what she wants

She wants the Mollies to be the main focus of the tank. No other fish except for cleaners. She doesn't want many more fish, and I've managed to convince her to at least get the Corydoras for cleaning. She likes the smaller ones - I've got a list of ones she likes that stay under 2 inches. That isn't going to be a problem (I hope)

There were some different sized JuliI at Turnpike and she just doesn't like the pattern and wouldn't like them once they got bigger. Hopefully she'll like Otos once she sees the real thing because she doesn't like Plecos (showed her like 80 pleco pictures and she doesn't like any except Emperor - but those get too big). If we see some Bulldog Pleco she may/may not like them.

She's VERY picky and some fish she won't like unless she sees the real thing. I may get a SAE and once it gets too big I'll put it in my tank.

I'm getting Endlers the next time I see them in stock at Pet Land. They had 1 female last time I went, so I got more Corydoras instead (can't get enough)
 

vin

Member
Can you give me the list of corys that stay under 2" because I've never seen or heard of any that do...... ???
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
Panda, Adolfoi, and of course the pygmys, to name a few.
 

vin

Member
Hmmm.....Are you sure about that? Everything I've read on the species you've listed indicate they can get as big as
2-1/2"....with the exception of the pygmy Cory....I've just had a hard time finding any of these 3 locally....I like all 3 of them but I wouldn't be surprised to see a Panda or an AdolfoI get larger than 2".....
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
Well, I've looked at a few different sites and they all say that Pandas are under 1.5 inches. I haven't looked too thoroughly at AdolfoI but it says about the same.
 

vin

Member
Cool! Now all you have to do is find them.......If and when you do please let me know where since we live close to each other.

thx.
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
I'm going to Turnpike Pet Ctr. this Sunday with a list of about 25 fish to see if they can order

I'll let you know. They do have Pandas there - the ones I got were hardly hardy and 3 died. They had a tank with some Habrosus labeled as Pygmy Cory - they're a pygmy, but ya know what I mean
 

vin

Member
That's the thing about corys. Sometimes they are tough to adapt to water conditions....Maybe next time allow them to acclimate to the water in the bag a little longer. You did use the mix method I would assume.....
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
I slowly mixed in water in a bucket. Waited an hour before putting them in the tank, but they had been in the bag for about an hour (my mom spent forever talking with the person there about the tank, she doesn't trust me)
 

atmmachine816

Member
what a good idea to do is to let the bag float in the tank for an hour or two longer the better and every 15min. add a little cup of water to the bag

have you got the mollies yet
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
I do that normally but this is better because it's less stressful on the fish (IMHO) because they don't feel as trapped and can swim around.
 

atmmachine816

Member
did you add the mollies yet???
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
Don't even have the tank yet.
 

atmmachine816

Member
ok good
 

Jason

Member
Go 4 the Corydorus SterbaI if you don't like the juli's. Dats wat I got pretty good looking.
 

atmmachine816

Member
Marc I want you to read this. This is from the other forum I am in and there was a debate on can mollies live in Freshwater when I asked a ? about platys and this is what they said

QUOTE(blitztidus @ Feb 28 2006, 05:39 PM)

That is a common misconception on mollies as they can strive in BRACKISH or FRESHWATER, I have mollies in my 100% no-salt tank.



That's the common misconception, actually. Mollies don't do so well in freshwater. Sure, they can live in it, just like you could probably live in a closet your whole life, but it wouldn't be the best for you, or make you the healthiest. If you are going to keep Mollies in freshwater, it needs to be hard and alkaline. That's the kind they prefer. If it's soft and acidic, that's when you really need to add salt. Wild type Sailfins and Black Mollies are the ones that just need it, however, almost all Mollies are hybridised so it's virtually impossible to look at them and say "You need salt!". It's best to keep all of them in a bit of salt, to make them the healthiest and happiest they can be. In pure freshwater, they are much more susceptible to disease, especially shimmies, and they don't tend to live as long. Salt is the way to go with these guys. BY: Anastasia

Mollies might just cope without salt if you have very hard alkaline water, but I have very sad memories of trying to keep them in soft, acid water- just one round of ich after another. Platies seem a lot more adaptable. By: Dwarf Gourami

It's even more complex than this.

There are a number of species of molly (as opposed to varieties), some of which are exclusively freshwater, while others usually brackish, and a few species inhabit either. Poecilia salvatoris, known as the liberty molly in the hobby, is purely a freshwater species. Poecilia orri, the mangrove molly, on the other hand, is much more a brackish water species. Poecilia formosa, the Amazon molly, is found in both brackish and fresh water.

The complication comes from the fact that none of the mollies traded commercially are pure species. While we (hobbyists) use names like Poecilia sphenops and Poecilia velifera all the time, the sad fact is these species have all been hybridised for decades by breeders to produce all the artificial forms. So for any one variety, like a black molly or orange sailfin molly, you have absolutely no idea what the genetic heritage of the fish is, and it wil include genes from many different molly species, some familiar, others not so.

The result is that fish you buy might have mostly brackish fish genes, or freshwater genes, or a mixture of both. Some people are lucky with them in freshwater, and I use the word 'lucky' deliberately, because they get fish that mostly have freshwater genes and so work out in freshwater aquaria.

The majority of specimens seem to have at least some brackish genes, so on balance, as Annastasia says, keeping mollies in brackish water makes sense. The freshwater species aren't harmed by salt at all, and the brackish water species need it, so if you keep artifical varieties of molly with some freshwater genes and some brackish water ones, adding salt works out as a safe choice.

Regardless of the salinity, what hasn't been mentioned is pH and hardness. All mollies need hard, alkaline water, which is exactly what common aquarium fish like neons and dwarf gouramis don't want (or tolerate). Adding marine salt mix to the water raises both pH and hardness very effectively, and hence does double duty, creating both the right salinity and the right water chemistry.

It should be added that most livebearers, if not quite all, will thrive in slightly brackish water. While platies and swords don't need salt, they will do fine at specific gravities below 1.005, and guppies can be adapted to anything up to marine conditions (though you need to do this carefully). In the wild most livebearers inhabit brackish water in some part of their range, and this is one reason that they quickly become pest species when introduced into other parts of the world: unlike most other freshwater fish, they tolerate brackish and marine water, and so can distribute themselves along coastlines very effectively.

Cheers,

Neale


Commercial molly breeders raise them in brackish water, period. So the idea they're "used to freshwater" isn't really tenable. As Annastasia says, while they will do well in freshwater, they do better in brackish. Black mollies in particular do astonishingly well in fully marine conditions, and they are often used to run-in new marine tanks because of this.

If your mollies are fine in freshwater, it's almost certainly because you have hard, alkaline water. When the pH is 7.5 or more, then mollies tend to do okay in freshwater. As soon as you try to keep them in neutral, or God forbid, acid water conditions, that's when they "get the shimmies". And fin rot. And fungus. By: neale again

If you are going to keep Mollies in freshwater, it needs to be hard and alkaline. That's the kind they prefer. If it's soft and acidic, that's when you really need to add salt as otherwise, they are so much more susceptible to disease, especially shimmies.


Blitzdus - As I said before, it's possible for them to live in freshwater, just like you can live in a closet. You certainly wouldn't be your happiest or healthiest though, would you? As Neale said, your water must be hard and alkaline, otherwise you'd be seeing a lot more disease with them. Anyway, I'm not trying to argue, but I feel this needs to be said as Mollies are just regarded as Freshwater or Brackish, depending on who you talk to, with no regards to water conditions. by: annastasiia

Annastasia, I'd perhaps add a third thing to this debate, swimming space. In my experience, and from what others tell me, mollies are more sensitive to overcrowding that any of the other common livebearers. Sailfin mollies in particular really need at least a 60 cm, 20 gallon, tank, and if you're going to keep a trio, then surely a 90 cm, 30 gallon, tank is the minimum?

I've been told that male baby mollies will only develop their sail fins if given plenty of space. The more crowded they are, the more stunted they get. Certainly, I'm of the opinion that while cranking out mediocre mollies is easy, producing good quality fish is not easy, and of all the livebearers, mollies are the ones that demand the most from their keepers.

Having said that, I love mollies. I wrote a piece for PFK a few months back with "5 almost perfect fish" as the theme. The black molly was number 1. For me, the wonderful dark colour really stands out in a planted tank, and few fish seem to have such sweet personalities and lively dispositions. Mollies are excellent aquarium fish, it's a shame we tend not to treat them all that well.

Cheers,

Neale


Mollies can live in freshwater, as mentioned, if it's hard and alkaline, but then the Cories won't work as they prefer soft, acidic to neutral. by: annastisia

tell me now what you think of having mollies and corys together and tell me what you are going to do with your tank now that you have read this

p.s. the people who wrote this gave me there permission to do this and they want you to stop by if you have any ? Marc and if you do PM me and I will give you the link to that forum
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
Well, my tap water has a fairly high alkalinity and the plant supplements should raise the hardness

Either way, they've been kept in perfectly fresh water for a few weeks and have been perfectly fine and look totally normal at the LFS.
 

atmmachine816

Member
but cories like soft acidic water not hard alkalinity water
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
I have 9 corydoras in hard alkaline water and they're doing great.
 

atmmachine816

Member
ok its your tank so you can do what you want just thought I would post that
 

fish_r_friend

Member
marc acording to ur sig u have 12
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
Haven't updated it in a while :
 

EmpPleco

Member
Well - good luck to you and your mom, Marc
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
More like good luck to me - I have to take care of it and do all of the specifics. She's just paying for it. :'(
 

EmpPleco

Member
nO SAD FACES!!! that is the fun part
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
Not when I'm gonna have to be maintaining 3 tanks, one of which needs crystal clear water (my mom doesn't want the water to have ANY coloring to it)

;D
 
  • Thread Starter

Marc

Member
After all of this she's decided on MalawI cichlids instead.... sheesh! :
 

vin

Member
LOL!!
 

atmmachine816

Member
well have fun
 

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