Guppy Fish Care Guide

Guppies have long been a favorite among fish keepers.  These fish, which originated in tropical pools in South America and the Caribbean Islands, are now available in a wide range of colors thanks to selective breeding in fish farms. Many guppy keepers begin with one or two fish, but because they are live-bearers with long-term sperm storage, you may soon have a full tank.

Guppy Fish Origin and Distribution

The guppy is originally from South America but has been domesticated for more than 100 years. They were discovered in 1866 on the island of Trinidad, where Robert John Lechmere Guppy named them after himself.

They are indigenous to freshwater streams in Venezuela, Surinam, Guyana, and other northern South American countries, as well as Barbados, Trinidad, and Tobago in the Caribbean. These days, they are present in many warm streams around the world and have been imported to all continents except Antarctica.

Colors and Markings

Guppies come in many color variations. In addition to having longer caudal and dorsal fins than females, males also have more vivid colors. Some guppies have short, rounded tails, some have “V”-shaped tails, and some might have elongated tails that are half as long as their bodies, depending on the type. The tail fins may be marbled or striped, or the fish may be entirely one or two colors. It’s likely that there is an ideal guppy for you in any color combination you can imagine.

Many websites and pet retailers will offer “special” or “unique” kinds that are not available anywhere else. These strains frequently emerge from severe inbreeding and give rise to fish with weakened immune systems and shorter lifespans. Stick to popular types with well-established ancestors. You could be amazed by how the color variations blend if you end up breeding two separate strains.

Can you keep guppy fish with other species

Guppies get along well with a variety of other non-aggressive fish species since they are calm, easygoing community fish. They might be best kept with other comparable live-bearing fish like platys or mollies. Small fish like zebra fish or neon tetras make excellent tank companions. Being in a tank with smaller fish will help more fry survive, but keep in mind that any fry produced by an active guppy mother could become supper for other fish.

It’s common for guppy keepers to choose an aquarium with no other fish. You are allowed to mix different guppy species in the same tank.

Guppy Habitat and Care

Guppies are excellent fish for beginners. They require little care and are tolerant of certain beginner errors. Guppies are very active fish, so a larger tank size is advised. They flourish in an aquarium with vegetation and nice decor.

To keep your population from ballooning, segregate males and females in separate tanks. That will aid in limiting population growth. Once a female has been with a male, she may produce multiple batches of offspring because guppy females can store sperm for multiple spawns even after being separated from men.

Tank dividers are acceptable as a short-term fix, but the majority of these weak, plastic barriers are typically insufficient to keep fish apart. Unwanted spawning will be kept to a minimum in two different tanks.

Guppy Diet and Feeding

Guppies are omnivores and can adapt to a range of commercial foods. Despite their small size, micropellets, or pelleted meals, are the best option for guppies since they retain their nutrition longer than flakes. You may include supplements, like frozen fish foods, but not more frequently than once or twice each week. Most pet fish species benefit from a comprehensive pellet diet.

Feed your fish once or twice a day, depending on the temperature of your aquarium and the other tank residents. Always begin with a small amount of food and add more when it has been finished. Repeat for a while, taking this opportunity to examine each of your fish. It’s a good idea to check your fish for strange behavior or illness when they are being fed.

Gender Differences


To keep your male and female populations separate, you’ll need to establish a few gender variances. Males are often smaller and have more vivid coloring. The color and size of females are often browner, bigger, and rounder.

The male fish’s anal fin is long, slender, and tapers to a tip on the underside. The anal fin on such a female guppy is bigger and shaped like a triangle fan. As the male guppies mature, their bodies take on a color that does not exist in females.

Guppies reach maturity in around 2-3 months, and if you want to separate the genders, you should be able to tell the difference by the month of age. Guppies who are female begin bearing children between the ages of 10 and 20 weeks, and they continue to do so between the ages of 20 and 34 months.

Breeding the Guppy

Many new hobbyists start out with just one female guppy before having a sudden swarm. It just takes one male insemination to produce a few spawns since female guppies can store seed. It’s preferable to keep male and female guppies separate in order to keep your aquarium from filling to the brim.

Guppies are live-bearers, therefore each spawning will result in the female giving birth to 10–50 wriggling fry. If you wish to save any fish, store them in a separate tank or breeding box because the newly born fry are frequently devoured by other fish in the aquarium. Aquariums with dense plant life will provide locations for the newborns to hide and thrive.

You might see a rise in the number of fish with congenital defects, such as crooked spines or short lifespans, after mating together many generations of the same population. In isolated fish populations, inbreeding is a frequent problem with an easy fix: increase diversity! After the fish have passed quarantine, you can buy fresh fish to add to your aquarium or, like many enthusiasts, trade fish with another guppy keeper.


What kinds of guppy tails are there?

Guppies have many distinct tail forms and color combinations. You may find a variety of tails in pet stores, some of which are listed below:

  • Fantail: A flowing tail that resembles an unfurled fan.
  • Veiltail:Compared to the fantail guppy, the veiltail guppy has a longer, more flowing tail.
  • Delta: This tail is somewhat larger and more rounded than the fantail.
  • Flagtail: Compared to the fantail guppy, the flagtail guppy has a somewhat shorter, narrower tail.
  • Double Swordtail: This remarkable tail has two sword-like protrusions, one above and one below.
  • Top Swordtail:These guppies only have one “sword,” which is located on top.
  • Bottom Swordtail: As you might have guessed, the lower portion of the tail of these guppies is shaped like a sword.
  • Lyretail:While the swordtail of these guppies has an upper and lower protrusion, the lyretail is considerably more rounded and flowing.

How long do guppies live?

Guppies typically live between two and three years, with females typically surviving longer than males, though you may extend your guppy’s life by giving it healthy food, keeping an eye out for illness, and maintaining balanced aquarium water.

Do I need a heater in my guppy’s tank?

You require a heater to maintain the health of your guppies. They require water temperatures in the 70s, which few homes can achieve without the use of an immersible heater in the tank. To keep your fish comfortable and healthy, check the water temperature every day and adjust the heater as necessary.

Does a guppy tank require a filter?

A filter is absolutely necessary for your aquarium in order to eliminate contaminants and dangerous compounds from the tank water. Without a filter, aquarium water quickly becomes contaminated with waste from fish and uneaten food, which puts your fish at risk of illness or even death. If you are unsure which filter is best for your tank, consult a fish expert at your neighborhood aquarium shop or pet store as there are many different types of aquarium filters available to fit any budget.

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