I recently had a similar experience. I left the mama in the 55 gallon and when it looked time for her to spit I built a 'fry pile' out of small river rocks (based on suggestions from this forum) and she spit into it right away. So far, 3 have managed to survive in the pile. Good luck!
You can pick up a 2nd hand 8-10gal tank complete with light, filter and heater for around Â£25-30.
Grow the fry and sell them on to get your money back in a few months.
It's what I did with a Fluval Uno 500 and my lab and demasoni fry.
Do fish instinctively "know" to spit fry into a fry pile? I have a holding yellow lab as well, and although I have lots of rock work, I'd like to try to salvage some fry. Anyone have more input on fry piles??