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Owning and Breeding Fancy Tail Guppies

Updated on January 7, 2012
The bright colors of the fancy guppy make it the most popular live-bearing fish in the hobby today.
The bright colors of the fancy guppy make it the most popular live-bearing fish in the hobby today.

There are a lot of fish breeds out there which makes it very hard to decide which one to keep in your aquarium, but for a first time aquarium owner a great starter fish is a fancy guppy. These living-bearing fish are very easy to breed, get along peacefully in a group, look fantastic and are hardy. They are the most popular of the live-bearing fish and one of the most popular of all freshwater aquarium fish. If you compare them to the other popular platy and black molly breeds you can see the various differences between them which makes guppies the more popular choice.

Guppy Coloration

Male guppies are very colorful, and can be found in a wide range of bright colors. It is their bright colors that make them so popular among fish keepers. Female guppies do not get the same bright colors as the males.

Fancy guppies can be placed into a tank with other fish, but some males may nip at other fish fins, especially those that have large fins. The same can be said for platys and black mollies, but by keeping a higher female to male ratio you can have an impact on helping to control this aggression. I good ratio is to have a minimum of 3 females for every male guppy.

Breeding Fancy Guppies

Platys, black mollies and fancy guppies are all live-bearing fish. This means that they do not lay eggs. Instead, the females carry the fertilized eggs inside them until the fry are able to swim and then they release the fry into the aquarium. Even if you keep your guppies well fed, female guppies are notorious for eating their fry shortly after they are born. The best option is to either provide plenty of hiding places in your aquarium or use a commercial breeder to separate the fry from the mother at birth. The fry can them be moved to a grow out tank to be protected from the mother that may think they look like a tasty meal.

When you are determining how many fish you want to have in your tank, remember that when keeping male and female fish together your population will rise. Guppies are very easy to breed, and gestation takes about 21-30 days. After birth, a female guppy is able to get pregnant again in just a few hours. This can mean that your tank can become overpopulated causing it to become dirty quickly resulting in fish disease and death. If you are going to be breeding guppies you should have plenty of space in your tank for the fry or have additional tanks for them.

Great Starter Fish

Fancy guppies are great starter fish as they are beautiful and thrive well in groups. Be sure that you are not keeping a larger number of males as they may become aggressive to each other by nipping at fins. Also, remember that these little fish breed very easily making overpopulation a possibility in your tank.

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    • Web Gazelle profile image

      Web Gazelle 6 years ago from USA

      Fancy Guppies are definitely fun to keep in an aquarium. I have kept Mollies, Platys and Guppies. I enjoyed breeding them too. Thanks for the comments.

    • John Sarkis profile image

      John Sarkis 6 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      I remember when I was a little boy and female guppies in my aquarium would have babies. It's easy to know, because their stomach look like they are about to explode.

      Great hub


    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 6 years ago from America

      We use to have fancy guppies and swordtails. It was always a thrill when babies were born.

      Enjoy your hub.