I have a 120l community tank which is being overrun with platy fry...I think they're surviving as it's heavily planted, but I'd rather not get rid of the plants unless it's the only option. If I don't sort it out I'm going to be seriously overcrowded soon though! Is there a fish that will ruthlessly hunt fry but live peaceably? I also have a small shoal of 5 neons, a gourami (thought he would munch them but he's useless) and a male betta (I know they're not ideal in a community tank but he was a rescue - long story - and he's happy enough). I particularly don't want anything to upset the betta. I was thinking of an angelfish - I know they can go after tetras, but as I understand it if I get a juvenile it won't see the tetras as prey? Any other ideas?
When I used to keep fish, I'm afraid I used to cull the platy fry myself. That was the usual advice given at the time. Net them out while they're still tiny and finish them quickly. I found the business distasteful, but necessary. If I had any pretty ones, my local pet shop would sometimes take them, as they did with catfish when they grew too big for my tank. Worth an ask.
I would love a little tank just for the betta, but I'm not planning on having more after he goes and it's a bit extravagant in that case...plus DH would not be happy!
I know I can cull them myself, I just hate the idea of it. Happy to put ailing fish out of their misery with clove oil but can't bring myself to kill babies. I know this makes me a complete hypocrite as I want a fish to do my dirty work!
The betta is about 2 and a half, I think. He came from a friend who was basically keeping him in a tiny vase with no filteration, gravel, plants etc - literally just a little vase with nothing else in it - because the fish shop told her this would be OK. I saw him on her dining table and more or less grabbed him straight away and ran him straight home to my tank. Sure, bettas might be able to survive in such conditions but that doesn't mean you should So I know my tank isn't ideal for him but he's better than he was in his vase. He is very lovely - red and blue - and seems happy enough prowling about near the filter. Other than him and the millions! of platies, I just have the neons, one gourami (he's a dwarf gourami and quite shy) and a couple of corys. There's nothing I can risk putting in there then to mop up some fry?
Bit tricky with the neons because they are small- plenty of people have found that angels make a meal of neons too which is not what you want. Some slightly bigger tetras or barbs are probably your best bet but I'd wait until the betta has passed on as they can be nippy. Is there no chance of setting something up for him temporarily?
I don't think so...we don't have room for another tank, and I can't really justify the expense when I'm not planning on keeping another betta after he dies, lovely though he is. I like my one community tank, keeps things simple although I have dreams of a massive tank full of oscars one day.
I have found one person who will have a few fry from me, but I'm still going to have this problem I guess. What about a red-tailed black shark? I know they're territorial, but is my tank big enough for one to have its own space and not to bully the betta? A lot of the plants where the fry hide are growing out of a piece of bogwood, and it would be a natural thing for a shark to adopt as its own. Still too risky with the betta?
No, they are buggers and will go for the smaller fish. I know people that have lost a whole shoal of neons to a RTBS. It's going to be tricky finding something that is big enough to eat the fry but not big enough to eat the neons- there are barbs and tetras that will fit the bill but not with the betta.
Are there many plants in the tank? Maybe removing a few of the hiding places will mean that the parents will polish off a few of the fry.
It is heavily planted and I'm sure that's why so many babies are surviving - I guess I'll have to take a few out. A shame, as I've only just got the knack of not killing aquatic plants and they're doing quite nicely!!
A pleco? We had a pair of platys and I'm sure they were reproducing as the female kept getting fat and then slim again. Unfortunately we got a Betta who was fierce and hounded the male platty to death! Plecos are quite docile, the only issue is that after a few years they may get too large for your tank.We have had no problem with our one in a community tank.
Depends on the plec. I wouldn't recommend buying a common/sailfin plec. They get to 18" long and even if you do have the good fortune to rehome it it's better not to encourage the trade of these fish since so many of them end up getting dumped in the local river or flushed once the owners realise how big they get.
There are loads of smaller plecs that stay around 5-6 inches that might be an option.
I have 2 tanks with livebearers in, one of my tanks has a good survival rate for fry (just mollys and guppies in there) the other doesn't (have only had one fry survive), in that tank i have Danios, corys and a female betta, i susspect the betta or the danios (maybe both) eat them up .
I cant kill fry, i have some defformed guppy fry which i realy need to get rid of but i cant do it , i could probably fish them out and feed them to my male betta?
Update to the thread - my betta died this morning . He was fairly old though I think. I'm not going to get another betta, so any more recommendations for a fry-eating fish? Just the tetras and gourami to worry about now!
It's 120l, and there are loads of platies, a gourami, a shoal of neons and a couple of corys in there. I would love an angel but I would worry about the neons...although I've read a baby angel who grows up with the neons wouldn't regard them as food when he got big enough to eat them? Too risky?
I've heard the 'baby angel' theory before, sounds like a load of bollocks to me- they are predatory by nature and in the wild they would grow up amongst their dinner, no reason why it should be any different in the aquarium. I would never trust any fish with something small enough to be eaten.
Not sure how many platies as there are always new fry appearing - about ten adults at a guess. Two cory, five neons, one gourami. I would feel awful if any neons got munched so the angels are out then!
Right, thinking about it I would say that you are fully stocked already so I wouldn't get any more new fish. If you were to get any other fish then I'd go for more corys because they should really be in a shoal of 6+
If the adult platys are finishing off enough of the fry then maybe reduce the hiding places or rehome all the platys and stick with egglayers.
Hi, curious to see where you're at with this now since a few months have gone by. What did you do in the end?
I made the mistake of getting 4 female and 2 male platties (because that's what's always advised, I haven't seen any sites saying it's ok to keep all female or all male, like you can with guppies).
Within 4 weeks we have 2 fry about 1cm long and my daughter just found a new load of tiny ones swimming about, so wondering what to do before we get over-run!
I have a male betta, but had to move him to his own tank after he attacked and fatally wounded my neon and nipped that tails of the platties.
Got 2 new hatchetfish too and a bristlenose catfish so need to take them into account.
My tank is 100 litres so don't want to have to get a whole shoal of something new or I'll be overstocked. Was wondering whether I could introduce just one new fish that would help control numbers. Lots of people on other forums suggest gouramis but it doesn't sound like you've had much luck with yours helping out.
Hey there my platy just had her young there and i could only rescue 9 of them...i have 2 honey gourami's, 2 black phantom tetra's and a silver tip tetra aswell as a leopard pleco and long fin cory. the tetras and gourami's devour the fry ezpec the silver tip tetra it chases and really gets the problem solved i havent hade to feed them now for 3 days now i think the fry are all gone the fish are pretty chubby too so i know they have been gobbling them up!! but i did keep 9 of them so i now have to get a new tank to keep them or give them away to some1
Penguin tetra love my platy fry and eat them about second after they are born. I think most tetra love a yummy baby. Obviously most fish eat their own fry anyway so stop feeding for a couple of days perhaps.