freshwater community4


Sailfin Molly

sailfin molly

Click image to enlarge

Scientific Name:   Poecilia latipinna      
Min. Tank Size:   60 gallons      
Personality:   Peaceful/Some male to male aggression     
Temperature:   68-82°F      
pH:   7.0-8.5/15-30°dGH      
Size:   6"      
Diet:   Omnivore      
Breeding:   Livebearer      


Can be kept with other peaceful species like Tetras, Corydoras, Swordtails and other Livebearers.

Sailfin Molly

The Sailfin Molly is one of the most easily-identified species of Molly. There are several color morphs that have been selectively bred for the aquarium trade, including black, harlequin, and dalmation. The most distinctive feature of this species - the feature for which it is named - is the enlarged dorsal fin that exhibits a sail-like shape. Sailfin Mollies are native to parts of southern North America and Mexico. They can usually be found in coastal waters, particularly in brackish environments such as swamps and estuaries.

Tank Set-up

In the home aquarium, these fish can be kept in either freshwater or brackish tanks. If kept in a freshwater tank, the water should not be soft or acidic. Ideal pH and hardness should be in the range of 7.5 to 8.5 and 10 to 30 dGH respectively. Though these fish tend to inhabit densely-vegetated areas in the wild, a planted tank may not be the best setup for them (or for you if you really love your plants!) because they are likely to consume any live plants in the tank. One option to minimize damage is to simply keep the Sailfin Molly well fed.


In addition to feeding on plants, the Sailfin Molly also feeds on algae in the wild and would benefit from a diet including both fresh vegetables and algae wafers or flakes. Bloodworms and Daphnia can also be included as part of their diet, but this should be considered more of an occasional treat (once or twice a week) not their staple diet.  


Breeding Sailfin Mollies is easily accomplished, especially when a ratio of two females per male is maintained. This species has a particularly long gestation period, often lasting two months, following which approximately 50 fry will be born. In order to save as many fry as possible, remove the pregnant female from the community tank when she develops a gravid spot until she gives birth.

blog comments powered by Disqus