The scientific name of the guppy fish is Poecilia reticulata and its popularity as freshwater aquarium fish is well-known across the world. This fish is considered as one of the ideal choices for beginners and is especially, recommended for children. You may come across several variations of this fish which can be bred and kept in captivity, with ease. There are although, no special requirements of this fish, proper care and attention ensure better health and longevity. The guppy fish is known to be prone to many diseases and this is where you have to watch out for taking its proper care.
How to Take Care of a Guppy Fish
Guppies are social fish and prefer living in groups, rather than being solitary. You can put more than 10 - 15 guppies in a fish tank that can hold about 40 liters of water. The temperature preferred by the fish ranges from 23 - 24 °C to 19.0 - 29.0 °C. The water, if vegetated, then there is nothing like it. Get a submerged aquatic plant such as a Vallisneria Spiralis. This plant grows all the way from the bottom and reaches up to the surface, thus, providing your fish with a good place to hide, play, etc. These fish tend to be annoying to other species of fish when kept together in the same tank. Some fish may bite the guppies and some may take them as their meal. So, be careful about the breed of fish you are going to keep along with your guppies.
Food for this fish consists of a wide variety of choices. These include bloodworms, micro worms, fruit flies, brine shrimp, earthworms, mosquito larvae, flakes, lettuce and freeze dried foods. Feed your guppy three times a day and in small amounts. They have small stomachs and are not capable of consuming large amounts of food at one feeding. Take care not to overfeed your guppy fish. After having provided them with food, wait for a few minutes and observe if all the food has been consumed. If not, then you are probably giving too much food than required. A flake food diet suits well for these fish, however, more nourishing, is a live-food diet. So maintain a balanced diet, by supplementing flake food with live food, from time to time.
For breeding. all you have to do is to put the males and females together and let nature run its course. To attract a female, a male often displays a courtship dance by spreading its fins and curving its body. You can identify a pregnant guppy fish by observing its physical characteristics. It will be plump and often bear a black spot on its belly. Note that adult guppy fish are known to eat their own young ones. In order to prevent this, you can move the fries to another aquarium. However, always use water from the old aquarium. This is because a change in the water parameter may affect the survival of the fries.
Perhaps the most vital aspect to be kept in mind is about the diseases the guppy fish is susceptible to. Preventing diseases comprise maintaining the quality of the aquarium water. The water must be free of ammonia and must have a pH of 7. The hardness and carbonate hardness of the water has to be maintained and so should be the temperature.
The above description may not give you a vivid picture of what is the guppy fish is like. But I am certain that once you have a look at any of the variations of this swimmer, you would have the sheer feeling of bringing each one of them home.