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Golden Sailfin Molly

(Poecilia latipinna)

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 Quick Care Facts

• Care Level: Moderate   • Temperament: Peaceful   • Maximum Size: 4"
• Minimum Tank Size: 20 gallons   • Water Conditions: 70-82° F, KH 10-25, pH 7.5-8.5
• Diet: Omnivore   • Origin: North America   • Family: Poeciliidae
• Species: Mollies   • Aquarium Type: Community

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Species Information

Golden Sailfin Molly native habitat, distribution, behavior & aquarium compatibility.

The Golden Sailfin Molly is a peaceful and flexible fish species that originates from coastal areas of North America. They are generally found in brackish environments including coastal marshes, streams, swamps and ponds. Golden Sailfin Mollies are somewhat unique in their ability to live in both freshwater and saltwater if acclimated slowly over time. Their coastal brackish home waters have very hard water, so they should be provided with a teaspoon of salt per gallon added to their freshwater environment to provide them optimal conditions.

Golden Sailfin Mollies are known for both their brilliant orange coloration and their prolific breeding habits that have mated pairs spawning roughly every 45 to 60 days. Overall a great fish for beginning hobbyists and more advanced hobbyists who are looking for an active swimming fish with a striking orange coloration.

Aquarium Care

How to successfully keep Golden Sailfin Molly in the home aquarium.

Golden Sailfin Mollies should be kept in a tropical community aquarium setup with warm water temperatures (78 to 82) and plenty of live plants. While they are a very hardy species that can adapt to a range of environments, Golden Sailfin Mollies prefer hard water with lots of vegetation. A teaspoon of salt per gallon is recommended for community aquariums housing Mollies and is beneficial to other community species as it helps to prevent ich and some other common diseases.

Overall Golden Sailfin Mollyies are very peaceful and can easily coexist with just about any freshwater community species. To prevent unwanted babies many aquarists keep either males or females in their aquarium. Male Mollies can be distinguished by their larger top fins and more narrow elongated anal fins, while the females have finnage which is more rounded and blunt.

However, if a mix of females and males are kept together in a community aquarium environment most of the babies will be eaten by the Molly parents and other tankmates which will keep their numbers in check.

Feeding & Nutrition

How to properly feed Golden Sailfin Molly and provide a healthy diet.

The Golden Sailfin Molly is very easy to feed, as it will readily accept a wide variety of meaty and plant based foods. It is best to provide them with both vegetable matter, algae and meaty items. Despite being an omnivore, the Mollies diet should consist of more plant material than meaty foods. This will more closely replicate their natural diet and allow for a longer lifespan.

A varied diet will help maintain both the immune system and the overall health of the fish. Golden Sailfin Mollies will accept flake, freeze dried and frozen foods along with live foods and small pellets and wafers.

Breeding Information

How to successfully breed Golden Sailfin Molly in the aquarium environment.

In the case of the Golden Sailfin Molly, it is not about what conditions are needed for breeding or how to get them to breed as it how to get them to stop. Mollies in general (with the Golden Sailfin Molly being no exception) are very prolific breeders that if a male and female are present will breed in time. Distinguishing between male and female specimens is straight forward and can be done by sight. The males have genitalia in front of their anal fin and have a distinctly larger dorsal fin. Once breeding, a male/female pair of Golden Sailfin Mollies will birth young every 2 months or so.

The babies should be promptly removed from the aquarium or provided a baby trap, as the parents will eat the young if they are left unprotected. Should the hobbyist aspire to breeding Mollies, and ideal breeding conditions for Mollies include a 30 gallon or larger aquarium, live plants including floating plants and an established algae growth.

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