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Guppies, Mollies, Platies, & Swordtails
Guppies, Mollies, Platies, and Swordtails—all members of the same family—are, collectively, the most popular freshwater aquarium fishes of all time. As a group, they are referred to as Livebearers, meaning that they give birth to live young. All of these species originated in the Americas (mostly from México) but have been selectively bred all over the world to achieve extreme variability. Their brilliant coloration and ease of maintenance make them worthy of respect of all hobbyists from beginner to advanced. In reproduction, after the male has successfully fertilized the female’s internal eggs with the use of a modified fin called a “gonopodium”, there is a 28-day gestation period before the female discharges the young, who go swimming away! If a female is placed in a well-planted nursery environment when she becomes “fat”, then there is a good chance of survival for the young. If she has her babies in a community tank, it is likely that they will be gobbled up as soon as they are released.
With regular aquarium cleaning and maintenance as well as a very basic understanding of fishkeeping, Livebearers should remain healthy. Most are captive bred and will immediately, almost without exception, accept flake foods, small pelleted diets, and brine shrimp. Several small feedings each day are recommended over one large feeding each day. Our Instant Baby Brine Shrimp product is especially recommended for smaller Guppies.