Tag Archives: Mollys

Starve mollies to get rid of hair algae

8 Mar

I’ve got hair algae in some tanks.  It’s hard to get rid of. I had heard that Mollies will eat it, if they are hungry enough.


So, I gave it a try. A pair of  Black Mollies in a planted tank. No food. After a few days I saw the Mollies eating algae. I got my hopes up. I saw piles of green poo at the bottom of the tank. But, after a few weeks the algae was looking as strong as ever. I started feeding the Mollies just out of sympathy. I fed them a small quantity  and only once a day.


See the green squiggly stuff below the fish?

I pulled the algae out by hand. The aquatic plants (Ludwegia and Rotala) began to take over and now the plants dominate. The algae is still there, but not much.


Much better!

My conclusion is that the Mollies won’t solve a hair algae problem, but they can help, in combination with hand removal and other live plants that use up the nutrients.

Mollies and Salt

3 Jan

Another reminder about Mollies. They do well with salt added to their water. It would be best to make their tank a brackish water tank, maybe one-fourth as salty as a marine aquarium but that can cause other difficulties. Plants don’t do as well in brackish water and you are also very limited to other fish that like brackish water.

To make it simple I keep my Mollies, both Silver and Black, in a tank full of Hornwort and Java Moss (and Duckweed and Water Lettuce on the surface).
I add a LITTLE salt.
How much?
I don’t know. Not much.
How much is that?
Umm…maybe a tablespoon per ten gallons.

Over time the tank will get less salty because of water changes. I occasionally add more salt.
How much?
I don’t know. Not…
Don’t start that again!

A little salt and the plants are fine, the Mollies are incredibly active and disease-free. They live with some Endlers Livebearers (OK, Guppies!). Other good tankmates are the Platies and Swordtails.
Don’t use table salt. Use salt made for marine aquariums or the salt labeled Aquarium Salt. Don’t keep your mollies in soft water, they prefer hard water with a relatively high pH, like the African Cichlids.