Jump to content

Breeding Tangerine Painted Lyretail Mollys

Fish Folk

Recommended Posts

Here's our complete BAP Spawning Report. Earned "Advanced Breeder" level with this submission!

Spawning Report: Poecilia Sphenops (Mollys)








16 March 2021




Scientific name: Poecilia Sphenops

Hobby name: Tangerine Painted Lyretail Molly




Method of Reproduction: Live Bearer

Number and Gender Distribution of Parents: Four Adults, Two Males / Two Females

Origin of Parents: Bought from LFS

Approximate number of fry: 21

Date of Birth: Free-swimming on 01-31-2021

Approx. Number of Fry at 30 Days: 21




pH — Tap water is about 7.8, but pH dives down to as low as 6.0

Ammonia - 0.25 ppm

Nitrite - 0 ppm

Nitrate: 30-80 ppm (it gets pretty high . . . we only water change 1x every 2 weeks)

GH - 9 drops (API)

KH - 1 drop (API)

Temperature: 75-78—degrees Fahrenheit


Aquarium Size: 10 Gal.

Water Source: town / city water

Water Changes: 50% every two weeks

Filtration System: 1 small HOB, 1 Box filter




Live Plants: Java fern, Anacharis, Pothos (grown in filter), Ludwigia Repens, Anubias Nana Petite, Duckweed

Caves or Similar Hiding Places: Dense plant growth, One small log-shaped structure

Substrate: Common tan pea gravel

Lighting Type and Timing: Cheap, small LED originally for under-counter applications




Food Fed to Parents and How Often: 2x / day. Parents fed live baby brine shrimp, finely crushed flake food, and anything else from frozen to life blackworms


Food Fed to Fry and How Often: 2x / day. Sera Micron, and after 1x weeks live baby brine shrimp (Artemia) and crushed flake food




It took awhile for these Mollys to get down to business. Once the females were pregnant, we decided to just let them go on their own and wee how the fry did. Only 6 fry survived. Some were jett black, and others were tangerine / painted.


With the second batch, we pulled the larger female and let her drop her fry in a small floating fry container. This seemed to wor well. We added a bubbler in the container along with some floating anacharis to keep fry calm and sheltered.


After 3 weeks, we let the fry go into the tank with the parents and older siblings. All is well, and everyone seems to get along beautifully. The female is ready to pop again, but we’ve decided to just let her be and see if any fry survive. In a tight-spaced colony like this, eventually the fry won’t survive the older siblings. By about four months, they’ll be large enough to sell to our LFS or bring in to auction at PVAS Fish Club.


One interesting thing is that the final pH reading was exceptionally low (6.0). This is a situation we are finding repeated in a few tanks. IT is _possible_ that our API pH test fluid is off. If not, seems that our soft water loses its buffer over time, and certain things seem to hasten that quickly. Water flow and aeration may play a part in accellerating buffer decay in our water. Molly’s (and other livebearers) are usually unhappy in pH that low. Provided this reading is accurate, in order to maintain health, crushed coral ought to be added to the substrate.

  • Like 8
Link to comment
Share on other sites

34 minutes ago, Mitch Norton said:

What is BAP? I haven't checked out your channel yet, but what led to this project? How did you become interested?

BAP stands for "Breeders Award Program." Most established Aquarium Clubs have a program. We belong to Potomac Valley Aquarium Society near D. C. Breeding fish and raising at least 10x fry past the 30 day mark earns various points depending on difficulty. A detailed spawning report with photos or videos must be made. Over the last few years we've bred the following, all of which are documented on our YouTube Channel:

———————- [2019]———————

10 (5) - Xiphophorus Maculatis (Platy) (+ additional 5 pts. for detailed video report)

20 (5) - Mikrogeophagus Ramirezi (Ram) (+ additional 5 pts. for detailed video report)

15 (5) - Melanochromis Auratus (Golden Mbuna) (+ additional 5 pts. for detailed report)

15 (5) - Pelvicachromis Pulcher (Kribensis) (+ additional 5 pts. for detailed report)

———————- [2020]———————

30 (5) - Ancistrus (Bristlenose Pleco) (+ additional 5 pts. for detailed report; BNPs may get downgraded in BAP points in the future)

20 (5) - Thorichthys Meeki (Firemouth Cichlids) (+ additional 5 pts. for detailed vid. report)

20 (5) - Amatitlania Nigrofasciata (Pink / Gold Convict Cichlids) (+ 5 pts. for det. vid. rep.)

10 (5) - Poecilia reticulata (Guppy) (+ additional 5 pts for detailed video report)

20 (5) - Andinoacara Pulcher (Electric Blue Acara) (+ 5 pts. for detailed spawning report)

30 (5) - Rasbora einthovenii (Brilliant Rasbora) (+5 pts. for detailed spawning report)

20 (5) - Pterophyllum scalare (Angelfish) (+5 pts. for videos)

20 (5) - Corydoras Aeneus (Bronze Cory) (+5 pts. for detailed spawning report)

———————- [2021]———————

10 (5) - Poecilia Sphenops (Mollys) (+5 pts. for detailed spawning report)


Edited by Fish Folk
  • Like 1
  • Love 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 8 months later...

Great videos, and what a good experience for your son. 

I have male creamsicle mollies and recently brought home a black molly female because I wanted to make some more mollies. I assume she is pregnant from the LFS, and no idea what color the father might be, but if/when she is bred with one of my creamsicles, I hope they will turn out as pretty as your orange and black ones.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@PineSong I do hope you get to see some fry from this pair! You may find that one or the other is dominant trait. You kind of have to play around with Punnett Squares (H.S. Biology) to figure out what to expect. Here's one way to looking at this...


Please pardon my low-tech explanation. I am not a Biologist! For each major "trait," the Father and Mother have pairs of genetic markers. Between various traits, some markers are dominant and some are recessive. So, consider color: Your male has a light coloration. Your female has a dark coloration. Now, if the Creamsicle coloration is a subdominant trait, the genetic markers are either "b-b." But if the Dark coloration in your female is a dominant trait, it may be "B-b" or "B-B." You'll not necessarily know the difference.

For example, in this very short 30-second video below, _all of_ these female mollys are biological sisters...

But unless you knew their genetic lineage, you'd have no way of knowing that they carry different dominant and recessive traits.

So, for each major trait, the fry will break down according to the genetic markers of the parents. If both creamsicle genetic markers are subdominant, and both dark genetic markers are dominant -- for example -- all of the fry will be dark. But their color genetics will be heterozygous, allowing for creamsicle to show up if they are crossed in the following scheme:

First generation: Creamsicle Father / Black Mother = All black heterozygous fry

Second generation: Black (Het.) Male / Black (Het.) Female = 75% Black / 25% Creamsicle

-- 25% will be homozygous dark; 50% will be like their parents, heterozygous dark

IF this makes no sense . . . just breed your mollys and keep track of what shows up. You'll see patterns if you stick with it for a few generations.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh, yes, I'm familiar with Punnett Squares, I'm just not familiar with what is dominant in mollies or what colors combine to make what colors 🙂 I think I read lyretail is the dominant allele and both my males and the female have this, so if any of them are Bb for it, then some bb fry could have normal tails.

I really like the more spicy orange color of your tangerine mollies and Aquahuna's (theoretical as they are chronically sold out) copper mollies much better than the pale orange of my creamsicles. So one of the questions I'll be thinking of with any fry I have is whether the creamsicle may result from Orange + Silver or some other combination of alleles and and therefore some fry could just carry the orange allele and I could end up with some orange or orange and black instead of creamsicle or creamsicle and black....it'll be fun to see what happens!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Create New...