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Tara asked in PetsFish · 8 months ago

Is my baby fish okay?

I recently got two baby fish, one dalmatian molly and one lyretail guppy, both in a 3.5 gallon tank. I just did a tank clean out and put both fish back into the tank. The guppy is acting perfectly normal, but my molly headed straight for the bottom of the tank and shoved his face into the gravel. He will not leave the bottom of the tank, is swimming with his tail in the air and face down in the gravel, and is gasping. Does anyone know what's going on and how to help him? I'm really worried....

3 Answers

  • 8 months ago
    Favourite answer

    I'm assuming you are new to keeping fish and it's perfectly understandable to make mistakes in the beginning of starting as tank. I hope these are some helpful tips. 

    1. Guppies need minimum a 10 gallon tank and mollys need a minimum a 20 gallon tank (your tank is way to small) 

    2. Guppies are schooling fish you need at least 6 guppies in order to ensure a happy and healthy life for this fish. Molly's should be kept in school as well. 

    3. They are tropical fish and therefore require a heater

    4. Guppies are fresh water and Molly's are brackish water (meaning the water has to be slightly salty) 

    When you upgrade you tank and get all the nessicary assecories needed to make sure these animals can live a happy life when you change the water that will be once a month. Only change half the water but make sure you use a syphon so you can get all the ammonia out if the gravel. When putting new water in make sure its filtered water or you use special aquarium chemicals to instantly remove the chlorine. Sadly for the two fish you have right now, I dont think your molly will make it. If he does he may have in and off behavior of looking healthy and then looking I'll again which means he is sadly dying, but I do hope that's not the case for you and he does get better. 

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  • 8 months ago

    You should never remove the fish from the tank to clean the tank. It is very stressful to remove them, you risk tearing fins and scales, it can cause shock and it removes slime coating any time you handle a fish . Baby fish are even more sensitive then adults. It sounds like your fish is in shock.

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  • Raven
    Lv 5
    8 months ago

    What do you mean by clean out? Did you strip away all the beneficial bacteria, and now your tank needs to cycle again? Try buying a bottle of beneficial bacteria at the pet store to get cycling going again. I'm assuming you dechlorinated the water... if you could get some gravel or plants from an established tank to put in yours that would help too since the bacteria live mostly on objects and not in the water column.

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