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One of my Black Mollies gave birth over night.  Yesterday she was huge and I noticed a whitish blotch on her left side.  This morning she was much thinner and I've found 27 fry so far.  Her side is still white and from above I can see her scales are slightly lifted in that area.  She's still active, and has an appetite.  The male has been on her a lot the last week.  Attached is a photo from last night before she gave birth with a decent view of the concerning spot and another from today. Her gills are white, but so are the other female's and I think they have been since I got them. The spot doesn't seem any larger today.  I understand that raised scales is often a sign of dropsy, but I'm not clear on what it means when it's an isolated spot.

The tank is a 40B with a built in AIO sump.  Total water volume is probably about 30 gallons.  Params are

  • pH: 7.8
  • GH: 14
  • KH: 6
  • Nitrate: 8
  • Ammonia: 0
  • Nitrite: 0
  • Water Temperature: 78

Thr nitrogen params and pH are pretty stable.  Hardness isn't perfectly stable yet but doesn't swing dramatically.  Temperature is controlled by an adjustment heater plugged into a temp controller, so is also very stable.

Population is 2 female BM, 1 male BM, 4 juvenile female platies and 2 male platies. There are ramshorn snails and it's medium heavily planted.  Tank is a few months old.

I'm hoping you'll say the spot is an injury or a symptom of having been so pregnant, but I'm afraid you'll say it's dropsy and already too late.


I appreciate any advice you may have.



Pregnant last night:



No longer pregnant today:




Edit: updated number of fry from 23 to 27.

Edited by ejgdi
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I am hoping, like you it isn't, I had a fish with dropsy, in fact the one I use for my profile, my betta Kimono, no idea how he got it and though he got a little better with treatment he didn't make it. He was swollen on both sides but one more than the other and you could see (just barely) that all the scales on the main part of his body where "pineconing" meaning raised. 

Take a look at the fish from the top and see if it's just that side. My HOPE for you is that it's just an after effect of breeding/having babies and maybe in a day or three it'll be gone or less swollen at least. If there's no change it's a possibility. Hope for the best and prepare for the worst. Come up with a plan for treatment now just in case you have to.

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I have been doing alot of reading on Columnaris recently, and I think that could be a possibility here. Dull, white patch, and swelling/raised scales just in that spot. Also, it seems livebearers are quite susceptible to the disease.

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Thanks for the pointers, everyone.  I've kept a close eye on her over the last few days.  The swelling has gone down and her scales are laying flat again.  The white area seems to be healing as well.  I'm going to keep an eye on her for a while in case it's columnaris, but given that it seems to be healing, I'm hopeful that I won't have to treat.

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