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Pregnant Platy Burst


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Can a pregnant platy really burst? Sadly, Yes.

Well for several weeks we’ve known our twin bar platy “Mrs. Fish” was pregnant. We had moved hte other fish to leave her alone in the 5 gallon thinking that after the birth she could move out and her fry could inhabit the 5 gallon until we replace it. The last week or so she’s of course gotten bigger and the last dya or two I thought it really could be any day. You hear people saying their platy is getting so big they think it could burst but you rarely see anyone saying that they really did burst. Well, this morning looking int he tank I see a bunch of eggs hanging out the side of Mrs. Fish and she is struggling to stay alive. Her lower abdomen has given way. I don’t see any fry alive at the moment. I don’t think there is anything I could have done. (I tried a water change two nights ago to see if I could induce birth, but if they’re still eggs that wouldn’t make a difference.) Very sad.


At this point in time it really looks like they’re all eggs, I don’t see any little fry in the belly area. I have read about euthanizing a fish that is in pain/suffering. However, I’m torn between putting Mrs. Fish out of her pain and seeing if she can survive long enough for some fry to survive. The eggs seem very large so I’m thinking they were very close to hatching (maybe some started hatching and are somewhere inside the belly still?)

By the way, this is the fish that was most recently dealing with a swim bladder problem around 3 weeks or so ago. I’m wondering if that has had any affect on the pregnancy. It would have been her first pregnancy that I’m aware of. (She was a bit smaller fish when we first got her. So I think we got her fairly young.)

Updates to come. At the moment though I’m thinking that there may not be any survivors.

Update 1:36pm

Sadly she has passed. I have removed her from the tank and inspected to see if there might be any hope for fry. It doesn’t appear so. I see mostly eggs still (yellowish-green colored). They are good size and about the size of a fry head if not a shade bigger. I’ve found about 5 eggs scattered around the tank but don’t expect them to make it.

I have already acclimated Billie (another pregnant female) into the tank as a nursery/fry tank and will see how she does. It’s really shocking to wake up and see that your platy has literally split open . Really it was fairly gruesome.

Update – 2/11/11

I’m carefully watching Bille who is now in that same tank. I have seen some discussion of a worm that I’m not familiar with that could have caused a whole in the side of a fish, but I’m still thinking that it was the strain of the growing eggs. I have heard of such things happening with Guppies. I’m keeping an eye for symptoms just in case.

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February 5, 2011 - 10:46 AM
2 comments »
  • bella

    September 8, 2011 | 5:36 PM

    thats really sad about your fish i think platy is pregnant so thats what lead me to this page while doing resurch my platy has well, a kind of gravid spot like it is like a light black and can you help!? me she’s a sunburst platy and i think she’s been pregnant for 1-2 weeks and i plan to keep her in a breeder till she gives birth to her babys if this is incorectt please tell me so please can you give me some information on this oh and im a beginner

  • admin

    September 8, 2011 | 9:37 PM

    I think keeping her in a breeder for the 1-2 weeks until she gives
    birth may stress her out and cause her to lose the batch of fry.
    Really, the gestation period is 4 weeks, judging exactly when she
    drops will be challenging. Especially if this is the first drop. Is
    there plenty of plant cover for potential fry? That will help
    immensely. If you can wait until just a couple days before the
    expected drop. If a breeder is not possible then maybe a smaller
    quarantine tank?

    Oh… in the last couple days before they give birth they will be so
    large that they look almost squarish… as if they swallowed a giant
    sugar cube…

    Good luck.

    Once they get started they will have drops of fry on a regular basis.
    The mother fish that we have had for about a year now has given birth
    to more drops of fry than I can remember now. Unfortunately many have
    been snacked upon in spite of good plant cover. I saved the MOST fry
    once by moving mom to another tank just after the birth.

    I’ve been surprised that even with fairly dense plant cover we’ve had
    fairly low survival rates. We haven’t exactly been trying to keep
    lot’s of the fry from being eaten, but I almost expected to be
    over-run with heavy plant cover. That much said we have about 5 fry
    at various stages (now all too big to be eaten by a platy.) The
    oldest is probably mature enough to be a mother herself!

    Again – good luck. The burst platy that we had is not typical.

    Thanks,

    Avery

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