Mollies are small and docile fish that are popular in home tanks. They are relatively easy to care for and can live in a variety of different habitats.
However, one common question that beginner aquarists to fish keeping have is whether or not molly fish can live in a fishbowl.
Molly Fish can’t live in a fishbowl because they like company and are active swimmers who prefer plenty of swimming room when exploring their surroundings.
In this article, we’ll go through everything you need to know about keeping molly fish in a fishbowl, as well as how you may modify your setup to make it more suitable for your mollies.
Can Molly Fish Live in a Fishbowl?
Molly fish can’t live in a fishbowl since they need constant water tank flowing and filtration. Also, the fishbowl can not provide enough oxygen for them.
In addition, a fishbowl wouldn’t have enough room for a filter and a heater, which are two essential components for keeping your fish healthy.
Furthermore, a fishbowl is harmful to your molly fish since these foodies will generate more waste and the water in the fishbowl becomes dirtier much faster than you anticipate.
Can a Black Molly Fish Live in a fishbowl?
A fishbowl is not a suitable habitat for all molly species including black molly.
Since the basic fishbowl holds between half a gallon and three gallons of water. A molly fish require at least a 30-gallon tank so a bowl is not enough for any sort of fish, especially a black molly.
Black mollies require enough space to swim freely and explore their surroundings. However, It may be used as a short-term shelter for fish if you want to acclimate a new fish or quarantine an ill one.
Put in your mind that, a male Black shortfin Molly will grow to be about 3 inches long, while a female may reach as much as 3.5 (sometimes even 4 inches), which is larger than what a fishbowl can hold.
Can I Keep Molly Fry in a Bowl?
This is most certainly not a good idea, even 3 gallons isn’t enough room for your molly fry to grow in.
In such a little bowl, Molly fry will never be able to properly develop. They might even perish before reaching maturity.
Also, you can not add suitable hiding places or decorations in a fishbowl which is necessary for the fry to feel secure.
Besides, the water will need to be changed very often, at least once a week because molly fry are very delicate and need pristine water conditions to live and thrive.
Thus, the ammonia spikes resulting from the fish waste will quickly build up and poison your fry.
Why Shouldn’t You Keep Molly Fish in Fishbowl?
When molly fish live in a fishbowl they get exposed to some problems like gasping for air due to lack of oxygen and an overabundance of germs in their tiny area.
Here are some other reasons why you shouldn’t keep Molly fish in a fishbowl:
1. Lack of Enough Space
Mollies also require enough space to grow and develop properly. However, in such a small bowl, your molly will never be able to reach its full potential size.
Also, you won’t be able to provide your molly fish any hiding places or decorations, which they require to feel secure.
In addition, it is impossible to add any live plants to a fishbowl, which would help oxygenate the water.
2. Limited Access to Light
Fishbowls have low light levels, which isn’t good for molly fish since they need light to help them grow.
Poor lighting levels also restrict the plants and algae in the tank from getting natural sunlight, which is not good for their growth rate.
Also, since mollies require specific schedules of light and dark to rest when there isn’t enough access to light, your fish’s sleep can be negatively affected.
Thus, your molly fish will be left feeling exhausted all the time.
3. Limited Water Temperature Control
Mollies are tropical fish that can live in temperatures ranging from 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit.
However, keeping the water temperature constant in such a tiny fishbowl would be difficult.
As a result, your molly fish will be affected by the temperature fluctuations and their delicate skin might easily break or burst from pressure variances.
4. It Would Be Difficult to Control pH
Another major disadvantage of keeping Molly fish in a fishbowl is that it’s difficult to regulate the pH level.
This is because Molly fish demands a constant environment, and the water quality in fishbowls may never be good enough for them, and it is always too acidic or alkaline.
Too acidic or alkaline water can cause respiratory problems, scale loss, and gill damage in Molly fish.
5. The Tank Would Be Hard to Clean
Cleaning out and maintaining a regular water supply in an aquarium is a difficult task, but it’s even harder when the tank is only a few gallons.
You would need to do a partial water change every other day, and a full water change once a week, in order to keep the water quality high enough for your Molly fish.
The water may get dirty and foul as a result of all of the food you give your fish, and it will also start to smell unpleasant as bacteria accumulate over time.
These bacteria can cause serious diseases in your Molly fish such as:
- Popeye (Exophthalmia)
- Tail/Fin Rot
In addition, you will not be able to install a filter which means the water tank will not be circulated and your Molly fish will not have access to healthy high-quality water.
6. Lack of Oxygen
Molly fish require more oxygen than water-filled bowls can provide and they will be constantly gasping for air.
Why Are Fishbowls So Popular Then?
The popularity of the fishbowl is indisputable, given that it is handy, attractive, and convenient.
However, people who sell or keep fish in them (e.g., the county fair vendor) never informed customers that they are temporary homes for the fish.
One other secret behind their popularity is that you can treat it as a quarantine tank. When you get new fish, you can put them in the fishbowl for a few days to make sure they are not sick.
This is a good idea because it will stop the spread of disease to your other fish if the new fish happens to be sick. However, you should still not keep them in there for more than a week or two.
Can a Fishbowl Be Adjusted According to Molly’s Needs?
If you must buy a fishbowl, consider one that is suited to Molly Fish according to their demands.
This is due to the fact that Molly Fish is a very delicate fish, and it can’t live in a confined location for extended periods of time.
Here are some tips for modifying the fishbowl to meet Molly fish’s requirements:
- When purchasing the fishbowl, make sure it has an opening on top and that it is tall and wide enough. It will make it easier when maintaining the tank or doing water changes.
- Oxygenation is critical for Molly Fish, therefore the tank should have adequate breathing room for them.
- It’s also important to make sure the water level of your aquarium doesn’t go above two-thirds of its surface area, and that the water you’re using is clean.
- You can put sand on the bottom of the fishbowl to make it look more natural. However, do not add too much because it can hurt your mollies if they accidentally ingest it while grazing.
- Do not put sharp objects in your tanks, such as gravel and rocks, because it will harm their fins.
- One Molly Fish should be kept in a fishbowl, but if you want to keep more, make sure there is enough room.
- In a fishbowl, a suitable temperature (72-78 F) may be difficult to maintain because of heater restrictions. However, you may reach it by utilizing a method of continual heat like an aerator or a tiny blue light bulb.
Do Mollies Need Air Pump?
Mollies do need an air pump for a well-oxygenated tank. Pump-generated bubbles deliver oxygen to your mollies.
Also, the removal of undesirable organisms from the water tank is aided by the formation of bubbles.
How Do I Know If Molly Fish Is Sick?
The following are the common symptoms of a sick Molly fish:
- Loss of appetite
- Gasping for air at the surface of the water tank
- Floating upside down or laying at the bottom of the tank
- White spots on their body
What Does Molly Fish Eat?
Molly fish are omnivores, which means they eat both plants and animals. In the wild, they eat algae, small insects, and crustaceans.
In captivity, they can eat pellets, flakes, live food, and frozen food.
Molly fish are very delicate fish, and they need to be in a well-maintained aquarium. They cannot live in a fishbowl for extended periods of time.
However, if you want to keep them in a fishbowl, make sure it is tall and wide enough, has an opening on top, and that the water tank level doesn’t go above two-thirds of its surface area.
We hope this article was helpful and informative. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below.