We suddenly have babies 😳

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4x4filly

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Mar 26, 2021
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Hey there - first of all, hi! I'm Jen, and I'm new!

I need some help, I think.

At the beginning of quarantine, NY daughter decided she wanted fish. Ok, cool. Did the research, set up a tank. All has been good.

Her tank has had 1 Molly, 1 Pleco, 2 Goraumis, and an African dwarf frog for forever. (40 gal tank)

About 4 weeks ago, she brought home 2 platies, all went well.

Then, roughly last week, we had 5 babies in the tank! WHAT?😳

So now, please help. I need all the info PM how to take care of them properly, and WHERE DID THEY COME FROM?

Based on Google, both plates are female, but I *think* the molly is male. Can they even do that? Between species?!?

I've attached pics - the babies are shaped like the platy, but are yellow and black.

20210326_152033.jpg

20210326_151722.jpg
 
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dougall

...
Mar 29, 2005
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I want to say that platies can store packets of sperm for maybe 6 months, and use them to fertilize teirviwn eggs.

This is more likely than any hybridization with the molly.

As for taking care of them, It is likely uneeded, but you can put a sponge over your filter intake to stop any fry getting sucked in. To feed them they will maybe nibble at biofilm within the tank, or you can just crush regular flakes into a powder and feed them that.


And congratulations.!
 

FishAddict74

AC Members
Dec 8, 2020
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Hey there - first of all, hi! I'm Jen, and I'm new!

I need some help, I think.

At the beginning of quarantine, NY daughter decided she wanted fish. Ok, cool. Did the research, set up a tank. All has been good.

Her tank has had 1 Molly, 1 Pleco, 2 Goraumis, and an African dwarf frog for forever. (40 gal tank)

About 4 weeks ago, she brought home 2 platies, all went well.

Then, roughly last week, we had 5 babies in the tank! WHAT?😳

So now, please help. I need all the info PM how to take care of them properly, and WHERE DID THEY COME FROM?

Based on Google, both plates are female, but I *think* the molly is male. Can they even do that? Between species?!?

I've attached pics - the babies are shaped like the platy, but are yellow and black.

View attachment 229466

View attachment 229467
Hi, welcome!!
Your platies are live bearers so they were probably pregnant when you bought them. As for care, I’m not too experienced with platies, but if you want to raise them, I’d imagine you’re gonna want to separate them into a fry basket so they don’t get eaten and feed them a powdered fry food. But I thinkothers with platy experience would be able to help more
 
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dougall

...
Mar 29, 2005
3,141
772
120
I want to say that platies can store packets of sperm for maybe 6 months, and use them to fertilize their own eggs.

This is more likely than any hybridization with the molly.

As for taking care of them, It is likely uneeded, but you can put a sponge over your filter intake to stop any fry getting sucked in. To feed them they will maybe nibble at biofilm within the tank, or you can just crush regular flakes into a powder and feed them that.


And congratulations.!
 

jake72

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Jan 28, 2019
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THey don't need a lot of special care per sey as they will eat flakes HOWEVER the parents and other fishes will try to eat them so if you want them to make it to adulthood you need to either provide places for them to hide or isolate them. Many folks get these fry floating containers that they can put the fry in and float in their tank. If you do try to isolate them be sure to keep their new area very clean as frys are sensitive to decaying food and similar. To feed them just grind up a flake of food and put in the smallest amount - they don't eat very much and decaying uneaten food can kill the frys.
 
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Wyomingite

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Oct 16, 2008
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Ivan
Welcome to the site!

Platies do store sperm "packets" known as spermatozeugmata, and these packets can remain viable and be stored in the folds of the ovaries for as long as a year. Not all livebearers do this, but many do. This does occur with platies, swordtails, guppies and mollies. Batches of babies can even contain young from two or more different fathers. This is almost certainly why you now have babies.

Platies and mollies can't hybridize. They are too different genetically.

I've never had many problems with platies or mollies eating their young, as long as the adults are well fed. The gourami's and African dwarf frogs are a different matter. Both will voraciously eat small live foods, and platy fry count as small live food. If you want to save any number of the young, you'll need either a fry holding basket to hang in the tank or a second small tank to allow the babies to grow larger than bite-size. Without one or the other, you may have one or two grow to adulthood, and you may not. Most won't survive.

The fish in the top pic is a male and the fish in the lower pic is a female, just to confirm for you if you still had any questions. :)

Good luck!

WYite
 
Last edited:

4x4filly

AC Members
Mar 26, 2021
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You guys are awesome! I didn't *think* they could cross, but i really don't know much about fish yet :)

We have decided to take the approach of 'those who survive to adulthood will get names'😆

They are about as long as pinky nail is wide at this point.

I am glad to hear this isn't going to be a regular thing, even though they're kinda cute little guys.

Here's a couple pics - they are REALLY zoomed in.

20210326_172253.jpg

20210326_172247.jpg

20210326_172240.jpg
 
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4x4filly

AC Members
Mar 26, 2021
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6
3
45
Welcome to the site!

Platies do store sperm "packets" known as spermatozeugmata, and these packets can remain viable and be stored in the folds of the ovaries for as long as a year. Not all livebearers do this, but many do. This does occur with platies, swordtails, guppies and mollies. Batches of babies can even contain young from two or more different fathers. This is almost certainly why you now have babies.

Platies and mollies can't hybridize. They are too different genetically.

I've never had many problems with platies or mollies eating their young, as long as the adults are well fed. The gourami's and African dwarf frogs are a different matter. Both will voraciously eat small live foods, and platy fry count as small live food. If you want to save any number of the young, you'll need either a fry holding basket to hang in the tank or a second small tank to allow the babies to grow larger than bite-size. Without one or the other, you may have one or two grow to adulthood, and you may not. Most won't survive.

The fish in the top pic is a male and the fish in the lower pic is a female, just to confirm for you if you still had any questions. :)

Good luck!

WYite
Thank you! I've seen 8 of the babies (at the same time), but I think that's all we have. I hope they make it!

To confirm though- is my yellow guy a Molly and the orange girl a Platy? Lol
 

Wyomingite

Fish Wrangler
Oct 16, 2008
816
566
100
53
Wonderful Windy Wyoming
Real Name
Ivan
You guys are awesome! I didn't *think* they could cross, but i really don't know much about fish yet :)

We have decided to take the approach of 'those who survive to adulthood will get names'😆

They are about as long as pinky nail is wide at this point.

I am glad to hear this isn't going to be a regular thing, even though they're kinda cute little guys.

Here's a couple pics - they are REALLY zoomed in.

View attachment 229468

View attachment 229469

View attachment 229470
Cool. Now if they're as long as my pinky nail, they're out of danger from the frogs as well as the smaller species of gourami. I don't know how long your pinky nail is though, so don't go by that. :) You can still expect batches of young every four to six weeks until the females have been away from any males for a year or so.

WYite
 

Wyomingite

Fish Wrangler
Oct 16, 2008
816
566
100
53
Wonderful Windy Wyoming
Real Name
Ivan
Thank you! I've seen 8 of the babies (at the same time), but I think that's all we have. I hope they make it!

To confirm though- is my yellow guy a Molly and the orange girl a Platy? Lol
Yes to both. I can understand why you might think that the molly was the father because of the color of the babies. But you have no idea either what color any males were that the females had previously been in contact with nor how pure any of the males that they had contact with were genetically.

WYite
 
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