Guppy – the most common type of aquarium inhabitants. These colorful fish with large iridescent tail.
Often, talking about his hobby, experienced aquarists say that let them begin with her purchase. In addition, guppies are ideal test subjects for studying genetic mutations. Males of this species are much larger and more beautiful than females.
Their tails are much larger than those of females, and differ in their original, unusual coloring. The small size of the fish – from 1.5 to 3 cm allows you to make them the center of the aquarium world. Females are much larger – about 6 cm, but have not such a beautiful color.
Today, with the help of selection, beautiful individuals of females have been obtained, but their cost is much higher. You can see the possible fish options in the photo, which is full of internet.
The homeland of the guppy fish is Trinidad and Tobago, and in South America, in Venezuela, Guyana and Brazil. As a rule, they live in clean, running water, but also like brackish coastal waters, but not saline sea water.
They feed on worms, larvae, bloodworms and various small insects. Because of this peculiarity, they even began to be massively colonized in areas where there is a lot of anopic mosquito, as guppies eat its larvae. The males of guppies in nature are much brighter than the females, but still their coloring is far from aquarium breeding forms.
She must protect them from predators, as the fish is small and defenseless.
Fishes of this species were named after the priest and scientist Robert Guppy, a native of England. He was collecting plants and soil samples on the island of Trinidad, when he accidentally saw brightly colored small fish in one of the reservoirs.
Looking closely, he noted that they do not lay eggs, like most individuals, and immediately give birth to fry. In 1886, he returned home and spoke to the Royal Society with a report on the found tropical viviparous fishes.
However, they did not believe that such small fish could be viviparous, and as it turned out in vain, soon there were hundreds of guppies in the aquariums of the British Museum, which multiplied from the specimens brought by scientists.
Strangely enough, for the first time, guppies were brought to Europe much earlier, in 1859, ichthyologist from Germany, Wilhelm Peters, found an instance of guppy in one of the collections; In 1861, scientists from Spain Filippi found the same fish in the collection sent from Barbados.
For several decades, breeders have bred 13 species of guppies, which differ in size and shape of the tail fin. Also, 8 species of traditional guppy coloring were bred.
Based on 2 main features, there are about 100 combinations of background color and fish forms of this species in the world.
The aquarium fish, the guppy, has an elongated body, as well as mollies and petilia are members of the pecilii family, viviparous tooth-tooth – it is distinguished by the presence of teeth in both the lower and upper jaws. The females are larger, reaching 3-6 cm in length, and the males are only 1.5-3.5 cm.
Some unusual species of guppy bred in captivity may be slightly larger than their wild relatives.
In the wild, they live an average of about 2 years, and in an aquarium, if you take good care of them, can live up to 3 years. Content in warm water accelerates the metabolism of these fish and reduces their lifespan.
Male guppies are small and thin, they can be of different colors, and large and full females are usually lead-gray. Males, as a rule, have a larger and more colorful tail fin than females.
As they grow older, the average rays of the anal fin of the male are modified into a narrow aggregate organ called the gonopodium.
Guppy hybrids bred by breeding are found in a wide variety of imaginable colors and their combinations, such as snake skin, cobra, tux (combinations with black color). There are also 12 standard forms of tail fins, such as pintail, round tail, spear, double sword, veil and others.
The color of the guppy is determined by the color of the tail: so the fish with the red tail and yellow body is called the red guppy.
Of course, you can keep a few fish in a 3-liter jar, but they will be cramped and not comfortable there.
As a rule, an aquarium is selected taking into account the number of future residents: each fish should have at least 2-3 liters.
For example, if it is planned to settle no more than 15 individuals, then a 30-liter aquarium is enough.
Priming and decorative items can be selected such that they will like. It should not be forgotten about aquarium plants: they not only produce the necessary oxygen, but also serve as shelter for fry from adult fish.
Temperature water can vary from 18 to 30 degrees. However, 24 degrees is the best option for healthy development and reproduction.
To maintain this temperature, it is advisable to purchase a special heater in the pet store for an aquarium that has a water heating regulator.
Artificial lighting in the dark is optional. However, experienced guppy lovers still install additional lighting.
Thanks to him, algae grow better and the colors of the fish become much brighter and richer.
To maintain the aquarium in a tidy condition, it is enough to change one third of the water from the total volume once a month. Before that, it is desirable to defend it in an open container for several days.
Guppies love hard water (from 6 to 10 units), however, if we consider the quality of tap water, it is better to get rid of excess sediment. It should be remembered that inject water into the aquarium only at room temperature.
Otherwise, such abrupt changes in the aquatic environment can lead to disruption of the development of fish or even weakening of the immune system and the appearance of diseases.
If we are very lazy to care for the aquarium and do not change the water, it is advisable to install a compressor. He perfectly cope with the purification of water from the remnants of food and other dirt, thereby it will get rid of unnecessary trouble.
There is no point in setting an aerator for saturating water with air, except for beauty, you can hold special tubes at the bottom of the aquarium that allow bubbles. Guppies are undemanding to oxygen, so it is enough to plant some algae in the ground.
Plants absorb carbon dioxide and give the aquarium natural beauty.
These ornamental carp reach sexual maturity from about four months of age and are then ready for breeding.
An interesting feature: at an elevated temperature of the aquatic environment (+ 30 °), maturity begins with three months.
Reproduction can occur both in the general aquarium and in a special spawning ground. Even a three-liter jar is suitable for this, as ornamental fish are unpretentious, and the couple will be able to give offspring even in such Spartan conditions.
In principle, the type of tank is not so important, the main thing is to perform a number of activities to create optimal conditions for the reproduction of offspring: the appropriate temperature and the presence of green vegetation (Javanese moss, for example), in which future fry will find their shelter.
Most experts are unanimous on the question of how to provoke the reproduction of guppies: this is an increase in temperature in the aquarium by 3-4 degrees and the replacement of about 1/3 of the water in the spawning (or general) aquarium. Naturally, the water must be separated.
However, some professional aquarists insist that such provocation is needed only in a strictly defined case, when the guppy is difficult and premature.
When the male begins to chase the female, snuggle up to her from the side or bottom, mating begins. There is an important feature: if the fish are in the total volume, then you need to ensure that there are not too many males.
They can drive a female to a state of complete exhaustion, there have even been cases of death of females in such conditions.
Therefore, the ideal option – a couple of individuals.
The male fertilizes the female with the help of a special sexual organ, which has the scientific name of gonopodia. At its core, this is a modified section of the fin in the form of several tubules, which only adult males have.
Pregnancy in viviparous fish begins after mating. The female can keep the male’s milk for a long period of time, so if the fish was bought at the pet store, and the males swam in the same aquarium with the female, then most likely she would be pregnant.
The pregnancy duration is 21-40 days, the higher the temperature, the shorter the gestation period, but the size of the fry will be smaller, therefore the optimum temperature range is considered to be 24-26 ° C.
At first, the pregnancy of the female will not be visible, she will be cheerful and eat well, and her belly will grow.
To determine when to expect offspring, you can use the “generic spot”, which is located near the anus and anal fin. The larger and darker the birthmark, the closer the delivery.
Almost immediately after spawning, the female tiny cubs try to swim in search of any food. Experienced aquarists know that the most crucial moment after the appearance of juvenile guppies is the first 3–7 days.
It is worth a little to delay the feeding process or lead it wrong, and the appearance of healthy and beautiful individuals can hardly be expected.
They say that after spawning the female does not eat cubs. However, such cases are quite common, since the size of the fry in the first hours and days of their life does not exceed 3-4 mm.
That is why experts recommend that after the end of childbirth, it is recommended to remove the female.
And here the problem of optimal feeding of young fish comes to the fore.
Feed the fry often and quite a lot. Some aquarists for several days do not turn off the lights in the aquarium, where the young are, and organize dosed feeding every 3-4 hours.
There are two main approaches to the choice of food.
- Some guppy owners successfully grow their pets using natural food (protein and vegetable).
- But there are supporters of branded starter feed.
It is difficult to say which way is better, but it is important that the nutrition is balanced. Without overfeeding, of course.
Many owners of small ornamental fish are well mastered the technology of self-cooking a variety of foods for their decorative pets.
The most common such foods are egg yolk and milk.
Egg food. Remove the yolk from a hard-boiled egg, rub it on a fine grater in a glass of water.
The resulting mixture is thoroughly mixed to a uniform consistency. Then using an ordinary pipette, you can enter this solution into the aquarium.
Milk feed. Dry milk mixture is prepared as follows: a bowl of milk put on a pot of boiling water, where it is gradually evaporated.
The resulting powder is collected and given to fry.
Cooking live food. There is no problem and breeding at home a microworm, which the young enjoy to eat.
Microworms are almost pure protein, which is perfectly absorbed by the body of small guppies.
To dilute this live protein, you need to thoroughly mix part of the cornmeal with water (to the density and consistency of sour cream), and then add a little yeast (approximately ¼ part of a teaspoon).
In this mixture, you should run a microworm, which you can borrow from a friend-aquarist. If there is no such friend, then a live worm can be found on the street in a pile of wet fallen leaves (a tiny white worm) and brought home.
In 2–3 days, the microworm will become so large that it is enough for feeding small pets.
Vegetable food. In the diet of juvenile guppies must be present and food of plant origin.
It can be green algae – both natural and grown at home. In principle, in any aquarium water there is both zooplankton (living microorganisms) and phytoplankton (the smallest algae).
These algae are excellent food for tiny fry in the first days of their life, since the size of each grain of such a plant culture is from 0.02 to 1 mm.
Growing nutritious phytoplankton at home is a snap. It is only necessary to pour aquarium water into a glass jar and expose it to direct sunlight.
That is, we “turn on” the process of photosynthesis, which contributes to the rapid growth of vegetation.
When in 2-3 days this water turns green, it can be added in small portions to the tank with the fry. From the first days of their life, tiny fish will be happy to eat this vegetable food.
In winter, when there is very little sunlight, phytoplankton growth can be stimulated by lighting the water with an ordinary lamp. It is necessary to monitor, however, that the bank and its contents do not overheat.
If you are going to arrange an aquarium at home, you need to know which fish live with guppies. These fish are peace-loving, and get along well with other peaceful schooling fish: neons, petsiliyami, danios-renio, haratsinovye, swordtails.
Guppies do not interfere with those fish that live in the lower layers of water.
Guppies – perhaps the most favorite aquarists and popular fish. Therefore, the question of whether it is possible to keep barbs together with them is quite logical.
In fact, this neighborhood usually does not end well. Guppies, seated to the barbs, will most likely be driven to death.
In the same case, if the fish have grown together, with them, of course, nothing will happen. However, the owners of the aquarium will hardly be able to admire the beautiful guppy fins.
As mentioned above, barbs and neons, the compatibility of which is also in doubt, get along well if there are a lot of plants in the aquarium. The same goes for guppes.
Planted in the aquarium more vallisnerium, kambob, water ferns, etc., and they will be where to hide from annoying striped or green neighbors.
They are not so harmless. This is plystophorosis, fin rot, tuberculosis, scoliosis, red scab.
To understand that something is wrong with the fish, you need to know how a healthy fish should look like:
- have clear pupils not glued fins calm;
- not rapid breathing scales should be located smoothly movement energetic fish;
- without collapsing on the side or “hanging” in place;
If some of these signs do not work, then there is a reason to worry. Sometimes the cause of excitement is a torn tail.
Why does this happen to guppies? The most common cause is old, unchanged water for a long time, in which too much ammonia and nitrates have accumulated.
And for the prevention of this phenomenon, you need to feed the fish more balanced, be sure to include vitamins in the menu, and of course you need proper care for the aquarium.
Sticky tail – It may also indicate the poor quality of water, and the missing completely – the fact that the fish appeared enemies in the aquarium and we need to figure out who is to blame for this outrage and protect the weak. By the way, if the perpetrator is not found, the cause of the missing tail may be an infectious disease.
Another alarm – spine curve. If it is a non-congenital trait, and acquired, then we can talk about fish tuberculosis, then treatment will be needed, which does not always have a positive effect. Or maybe this is just the result of overpopulation of the aquarium or a sign of aging fish.
In any case, it is better to ask a specialist to draw the necessary conclusions.
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