There are multiple reasons why platies hide. Any change in their environment, like pH and oxygen levels, may cause them to hide. Hiding may also be due to stress or a health issue.
Hiding away isn’t always a reason for concern when it comes to your platies. It’s mostly a result of stress or any kind of change. That’s as long as it’s not excessive and doesn’t go on for long. In this case, you may need to consult a vet.
Since there are various reasons behind your platy hiding, you need to be able to differentiate between them. Here’s everything you need to know.
Why Do Platies Hide?
If you’re new to raising platies, you might be surprised or worried about the amount of time your little fish spends hiding.
While it’s not always a reason to be concerned, it’s better to know if your platy needs help or if it’s just living its life.
You’ll find your platy hiding because of one of the following reasons.
- Change in environment
- New fish addition
- Fights with other fish
- Not enough hiding spaces in the tank
- Health issues
Multiple factors can result in stressful platies—usually related to changes in the surrounding environment, such as water temperature or overcrowding of the tank. It can also be a sign of it having internal parasites.
Usually, when your platy is stressed, you’ll notice it hiding more and not eating as much. So to help it get better, you need to recognize what’s causing the stress first before trying to solve it.
Once everything is fixed, your platy should be out and about again.
Change In Environment
Changes in the platies’ surroundings will cause them stress and thus, make them hide more.
These changes are usually related to oxygen and pH levels, water temperature, and nitrate and ammonia levels.
You need to test the water and see if the parameters are correct or not. If not, then try to adjust the water to the recommended levels.
- Water Temperature: around 72° to 80°Fahrenheit
- pH level: between 6 and 7 ppm
- Ammonia: 0 ppm
- Nitrite: 0 up to 0.75 ppm
- Nitrate: from 0 up to 40 ppm
New Fish Addition
Platies are friendly fish and can peacefully coexist with their tank mates. However, this is not always the case. Adding a new fish to the tank may lead your platies to hideaway.
That’s especially if the new addition is a larger breed. However, with time, your platies should get used to the new presence and come out of their hiding place.
You may notice your female platy hiding away when pregnant. There are two reasons why this might happen.
The male platy may keep chasing after her, which puts her in a stressful situation. And in this case, hiding is her way to have some peace away from him.
Or two, she’s decided that this particular place will be her nest where she’ll probably deliver her fry later on.
This may mean that she wants somewhere safe away from the other fish before her delivery. So it might relieve her stress if you put her in another tank alone for this period.
Fights With Other Fish
As we’ve mentioned above, platies are friendly species, and they mostly live their life without trouble around their tank. This is as long as you follow the proper way to care for them.
But this, unfortunately, isn’t always the case. There are some situations where you’ll find your platies fighting each other or an entirely different species fighting with your platy.
When platies fight each other, it’s usually a fight for dominance—more common among male platies, but it can occur between females too.
There’s a chance that one platy breed is more aggressive and assertive than another. This will lead to the stronger one fighting the weaker one.
Other than fighting, it can also steal away the weaker platy’s food, which will leave it hungry and even more stressed.
When this happens, the weaker platy will begin to withdraw and hide away, losing interest in food and interaction with her other tank mates.
How To Help Your Platy
At this point, it’ll be hard to help your platy to feel better. But you can still attempt to assist it by adding in new food to try out.
The new meals may convince the platy to eat again, even if just a few bites. Another thing you need to do is to separate the aggressive one and add it to another tank.
Getting rid of the threat will help lessen your victim platy’s burden, and slowly it may start to feel better. Try your best not to ignore the problem, or it may cause the weaker platy to end up dying.
Not Enough Hiding Space In The Tank
Just like humans, platies need a place where they can just sit back and relax without being bothered.
This is why it’s important to have many spaces where your platies can hide. The more options they have, the less time they’ll actually spend hiding.
It’s just important for them to know that there are many locations for them to stay if they ever felt scared or threatened.
The last reason for your platy to hide all the time is if it’s sick.
This will be accompanied by multiple symptoms, such as disinterest in food, looking sickly with a dull color, and lastly, it may start scratching itself on hard surfaces like the decorative rocks.
This might be a sign of your platy having internal parasites, and you’ll need to take it to the marine vet to know what’s the right medicine to give.
In conclusion, if you notice your platy hiding away all the time, it’s important that you find out why to help your platy feel better.
And after we’ve discussed the many reasons why your platy might be acting that way, you now hopefully have the answer you need to help your platy swim around with its friends again!