Balloon Molly Fish – Care, Breeding, Feeding & Details!

Balloon Molly fish is one of the most beautiful aquarium fishes. It was brought out artificially, in the process of a careful selection of representatives of sailfin mollies. Her physique is very unusual and resembles a ball that is filled with air.

The body is a little shortened, which can affect the work of internal organs, so these pets need to be closely monitored. Despite this, the fish remains very popular among many aquarists.

Fish Characterization

Balloon Molly fish has a small shortened trunk and a rounded large abdomen. Due to the structural features of the body, the species is very susceptible to various diseases of the internal organs. They have a strongly curved ridge, and a large abdomen cannot save organs from contraction.

Usually, these mollies are colored in silver or gray-yellow. However, breeders managed to bring out individuals and other color forms, such as :

  • orange;
  • spotted;
  • blacks;

Throughout the body of the fish, with the exception of the abdomen, there are spots of a darker shade.

In nature, the species lives mainly in Latin America, mainly in salty waters. In a natural environment, the size of an individual can reach sixteen centimeters. However, at home, its size is much smaller.

Life expectancy in captivity is approximately 3-5 years. The size of the female balloon molly fish exceeds the size of the male.

In addition, they can be distinguished by a rounded anal fin, and in males, it has a conical shape. These aquarium inhabitants are viviparous.

Balloon Molly Aquarium Maintainance

From the breeding of mollies to maintenance and care will not be difficult. The size of the fish can vary and depends mainly on how large the aquarium is.

When individuals are kept in a small aquarium (for example, an aquarium with a capacity of ten liters is taken for a couple of individuals), then the size of the fish can be approximately three centimeters.

According to some reports, when the home of these fish is spacious, their size can reach even ten centimeters. But it is better to know the measure in everything and choose something in between. Taking a ten-liter aquarium for a pair of adult mollies is not worth it.

Like many other aquarium fish, These mollies love when there is a large amount of vegetation in the aquarium, but also there should be enough space in it so that you can swim freely. Therefore, the equipment of the aquarium should be carefully thought out.

It is better to close the back wall by planting a large number of algae on it, and in the foreground, you can leave more space so that pets can freely swim and play.

You can keep these plants in the aquarium:

  • elodea;
  • Javanese moss;
  • cryptocoryne;
  • Vallisneria;
  • echinodorus.

For soil, you can use medium-sized gravel. Dark pebbles look great. As for the temperature of the water, it is best that it is in the range from 22 to 25 degrees.

If the water temperature is higher, then the fish may lose their ability to reproduce. Hardness should normally be 15–25 degrees and pH should be 7–8.5.

Balloon Molly Tank Mates

The best tank mates for balloon mollies are:

  1. Guppy Fish
  2. Swordtail Fish
  3. Gourami Fish
  4. Female Betta Fish
  5. Endlers Guppies
  6. Minnows
  7. Tetras
  8. Snails
  9. Shrimps
  10. Other Molly Fishes

Feeding Balloon Molly Fish

This type of fish is omnivorous, but their body requires more food from plant species. The daily diet may include algae or other underwater plants.

They are not too demanding on insects and crustaceans. During feeding, you can add spinach or slices of cucumber to the food. It is most likely that the fish will feed on algae and plants in the aquarium.

Sometimes mollies do not mind eating a bloodworm, but they will not last long on protein foods alone. In order for the fish to be healthy, it needs to be given bloodworms occasionally, as well as make the diet as diverse as possible, focusing on plant foods.

Balloon Molly Breeding

In order to engage in the reproduction of balloon mollies, you should know certain information. Many lovers who tried to breed offspring on their own failed.

There may be two reasons:

1- If the temperature is too high, then this can lead to the infertility of the fish. Most likely, this is due to the location of the internal organs.

2- Second reason can be called the fact that balloon mollies are a hybrid species of fish. When it turns out to breed the offspring of this species, it can be noted that it is very non-viable.

Only about 20% of the fry have characteristic external features of the fish – a shortened body and a rounded tummy.

According to some information, the characteristic features of balloon mollies can be obtained by crossing females of balloon mollies and males of sailfin mollies.

Molly is a live-bearing fish. The female is capable of producing up to 100 fry. In order to start breeding, you should put the female and male into a separate aquarium. Puberty in fry occurs quite quickly.

Structural features of the organism in viviparous fish allow giving birth to fry, even if the male will be deposited from the aquarium after some time. A similar property in a female can last up to six months and is due to the fact that after the bulk of the “babies” have already been born, she continues to bear the rest of the fry.


The fry that was born is completely independent and ready for underwater life, they are characterized by rapid growth. However, they are very sensitive to water parameters.

It is better to place them in a separate aquarium, and if this is not possible, you can transplant them into a five-liter bottle filled with water.

The period of gestation of this species of fish usually lasts for a month. At this time, the female can clearly see a rounded shape and a darkened tummy.

Experts do not recommend breeding mollies in common aquariums, where other species of fish are present, especially those that are able to eat hatched offspring.

If it is impossible to keep fry, then fish should be placed in the dwelling more floating plants in which the fry can hide. Javanese moss is ideal for these purposes. Suitable for food are ciliates or other finely grated food.

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