Treatment and Care

Keeping and breeding guppies at home for beginners

Guppies are one of the easiest fish for beginners. Keeping and breeding guppies is relatively easy. Like any living creature, they must eat on time and be in acceptable condition.

The fish are native to the waters of Central and South America. They became available worldwide in the 19th century thanks to the priest and scientist Robert Guppy, who stunned all his contemporaries by discovering fish that gave birth to fry rather than spawning the usual eggs.

Keeping guppies in a large and small aquarium

The guppy fish loves fresh, frequently replaced water, and thanks to its small size, it adapts to life in both large and small jars. However, it is entirely different from its wild counterparts. In nature, guppies are less brightly colored, although they live longer—up to 3-4 years.

Keeping and breeding guppies at home | 7petdays
Aquarium fish

Guppechs can live in an aquarium of 20 and 50 liters, but always in groups. Being a loner, the fish will quickly wither away. Therefore, always buy a flock of 5-6 individuals.

How do you distinguish a male guppy from a female? In the world of aquarium keeping, there has never been a more straightforward task:

  • Male. The body is 3-4 cm long and slender, with a magnificent tail (although there are exceptions depending on the species).
  • Female. Body length 5-6 cm, instead inexpressively colored, with a modest tail.
Guppy fish

Keeping and caring for guppy fish in an aquarium involves creating acceptable but easily achievable conditions:

  1. The water temperature should be 22-25 degrees. Fish can self-sterilize at temperatures raised to 30 degrees, and at colder temperatures, they can live longer, but they will also get sick more.
  2. Hardness – dH 10-25, pH 7. Fish tolerate hard water well and do not mind salty water, either. And you can constantly keep adult fish in seawater.
  3. Guppies love bodies of water with flow, so you can install a sprinkler filter to create the necessary water flow.
  4. Plants should not be stiff; otherwise, you will not see beautiful tails.
  5. Guppies are omnivores and can be fed dry and frozen food. However, it is better to alternate food so the fish receives all the necessary nutrients.

Reproduction of guppies in an aquarium

The fish mature quickly, and by three months, they are ready to give birth without requiring outside intervention. But to get them to spawn, you need to change the water more often and raise the temperature a couple of degrees. One male is enough for three to six females.

Photos of guppy fish

It is straightforward to understand that a female is pregnant: by the darkening spot around the anus and by the gradually plumping abdomen. Pregnancy lasts up to 41 days, and with the onset of labor, the female must be placed separately and, after childbirth, removed from the fry. Adults are open to feasting on their brood. If you do not aim to preserve offspring, the process will be carried out perfectly in a standard aqua, but only those fry that hid well will survive.

Important: uncontrolled inbreeding leads to defects in the offspring.

Male guppy

If you want to save the fry, the careless mother must be placed back in the typical aquarium immediately after the birth. As practice shows, it can be challenging for inexperienced aquarists to notice the moment of birth. Therefore, there are often cases when the female in the spawning area is no longer pregnant, and there is no fry.

After the first fertilization, the female can reproduce offspring for several months. Therefore, for selection, females are raised separately from males.

Female guppy

How do you care for baby guppies? Very simple. When they first hatch, the body is too rigid to distinguish; only the eyes are visible. You can feed this misunderstanding in the first days with ordinary mashed chicken yolk. Remember that the fry will not eat the entire portion, and leftovers that are not removed in time will begin to spoil the water, threatening the death of the fry. To make your life easier, you can buy specialized food for fry. The main thing is that it fits into their mouth. However, you can still monitor the purity of the water.

Photo of guppy fish in an aquarium

Baby guppies proliferate – like leaps and bounds. They can be transplanted into an ordinary jar when they reach a size that adult inhabitants cannot handle.

Guppy fry

You must control the birth rate if you do not intend to breed guppies. Otherwise, as mentioned above, after several generations, as a result of inbreeding, incomprehensible fish with an utterly unattractive appearance will swim in the aqua.

Compatibility of guppies with other fish

Any fish that is more or less capable of standing up for itself can offend a guppy. Therefore, it is necessary to keep guppies only with 100% peaceful animals living in similar conditions. However, in nature, nothing happens 100%, and there are cases where guppies coexisted quite peacefully with predators, but at the same time, friction arose in the company of their kind.

Fish that are suitable for keeping with guppies:

  • Mollies
  • Swordtails
  • Neons
  • Pecilia
  • Danio
  • Ternetia
  • Small tetras

Well, what about the bottom inhabitants, who are unlikely to intersect with your pets:

  • Small catfish
  • Shrimps

Guppies are compatible with Labeo, gouramis, barbs, and knife fish. Most likely, the fish will be safe among them if this whole crowd grows together.

What plants do you need in a guppy aquarium?

Your wards cannot boast of size, so plants for guppies are also needed with small leaves. The best option is Indian fern. It has finely dissected leaves. He needs approximately the same conditions as the guppies.

Indian fern aquarium plant

Also, a suitable plant – Nitella. Its thin string-like leaves are a place where fry can land and a natural filter on which some suspended matter is retained. This makes the water in the aquarium clear, which is very important for guppies.

Nitella aquarium plant

The fry loves to drift in floating riccia. Like fish, the plant does not tolerate insufficient light and does not like cold water.

Aquarium plant floating riccia

Looks lovely, Cabomba Carolina. Its delicate, weightless appearance is so suitable for a sophisticated guppy.

Carolina Cabomba aquarium plant

In principle, you can plant any plants for guppies in an aquarium that require the same microclimate as the fish; the only thing undesirable is stiff leaves, on which the fish can break off their magnificent tail.

Types of guppies with photos and names

Nature has not deprived guppies of this, but species. Both successful and unsuccessful morphs have a right to exist. But I will show you the most beautiful views of these fantastic creatures.

Common guppy (where would we be without it)

Poecilia reticulata

Endler’s guppy

Poecilia winger






Watch a video about keeping and breeding guppies

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