Why Are My Female Platies Fighting?

There are a few reasons why female platies might fight. They may be fighting for dominance, food, or there’s a problem with their surrounding environment. Pregnancy can also be one of the reasons. 

Despite platies being known as a friendly species, this is not always the case. For first-time owners, seeing them fight might be concerning.

That’s especially if it’s female platies fighting and not males as you’d expect. So here, we’ve compiled all the reasons why your female platies are fighting.

Why Are My Female Platies Fighting?

It’s not common for two or more female platies to fight, but it’s not rare either. And there’s usually a reason behind this aggressive behavior, so here’s a few of them.

  • Fighting over food
  • Asserting dominance
  • Overcrowding
  • Pregnancy
  • Water conditions
  • New platies
  • Personality Issues

Two Wagtail Platies

Fighting Over Food

Platies are notorious for their large appetite. So if you’re not careful enough, you might end up overfeeding them. But at the same time, you might be accidentally underfeeding them.

When they’re not being fed enough for all of them, you’ll start to notice them becoming aggressive little by little. This will end up with your female platies fighting each other for the food.

It’s essential to check the correct amount to feed your platies to prevent this situation from occurring.

As a rule of thumb, platies should have enough food to eat in three to five minutes max. And depending on their age, you can feed older platies up to two times a day, while young fry will need to be fed at least three times a day.

If you notice a few pieces of food left after feeding, make sure to scoop them up and reduce the amount of food given the next time.

Asserting Dominance

You might think that this is only related to the male platies, but female platies are also prone to fighting to assert dominance.

This is especially if the platies involved are of different types. For example, some platy species are naturally more docile than others, like the Marigold platies.

Known to be more friendly and laid back, they can end up being victims of fights like this. They usually have a hard time fighting back, and this will cause them to become stressed.

So if the fights persisted, try to separate the other platy in a separate tank to avoid the weaker platy from being hurt.

If you notice both platies fighting with the same strength, it’s still better to separate them. Try not to keep them locked in the same tank.


Overcrowding frustrates and stresses out a lot of fish species. And female platies are no exception!

Platies are calm for the most part, but they also like their wide space to swim around comfortably. And having too many platies in one tank can cause them to fight each other.

For this reason, it’s best to keep only one platy for every two gallons of water. So, for example, if you have two female platies, keep them in a four-gallon tank.

If you have three, keep them in a six-gallon one. And so on. The fighting should end as long as you give them a comfortable living space.


Another common reason for female platies to fight is that one is pregnant. In these situations, the pregnant platy is usually the one attacking the other platies.

The reason behind this is she’s trying to protect her fry from any possible dangers. And she’s also protecting herself.

It’s better to separate the pregnant platy into a different tank to avoid her being too stressed out. This will also help prevent her from injuring herself or her tank mates from all the fights.

Water Conditions

If your platies are usually calm and you notice them suddenly acting violent and hostile towards each other, then the issue might be with the water conditions.

Sudden change in their surrounding environment will cause stress and thus increase aggressive behavior.

You need to make sure that their water is calm and all the parameter levels are correct. If you notice anything out of the ordinary, then adjusting the parameter should fix the problem.

Make sure to always keep watch on your water to avoid ammonia and nitrate levels from rising.

Other than being toxic, they will cause your platies to stress and lead to them fighting more.

Adding a New Platy To the Tank

If your female platies were all friendly with each other, this might change if you added new platies to the tank.

You might notice your old platies grouping together and fighting the new ones. They might even be shielded by the dominant one of the group.

This is normal because they’re still getting used to these new additions to their home. Taking out the dominant platy, fixing the tank around a little, then adding her back in should fix this attitude problem.

Coming From Different Tanks

If you’ve just gotten your platies, they might start fighting if they’ve all been taken from different tanks before coming back home with you.

Here, they’re mostly just getting used to their new home and figuring out each other’s territory. Their hostility should die down after a few days.

If it persists, take out the one causing the trouble for a little time-out and return her once she calms down.

Personality issue

After checking for all the previous signs, you may notice that none of them fit the bill. In this case, we’ll have to think that it’s a personality issue.

This means that nothing is causing your platy any problem. It’s just being mean for the sake of it!

If this personality of hers persists, it’s better to separate her into a different tank to prevent her from hurting the other fish.


As uncharacteristically as it may seem, there are multiple reasons why your female platies might be fighting.

And reading all the ones we’ve discussed in this article, from pregnancy, overcrowding, and asserting dominance, we hope that you’ve found a solution to help your platies live a peaceful life together again!