A lot of hobbyists started their fishkeeping adventure with just a tiny guppy tank. And as they moved on, they progressed into species that are a lot harder to breed. Over time, it became clear that guppies are usually very fun, attractive, and exciting to foster, even if you have fully learned what it takes to breed fishes.
According to research, guppies are one of the neatest fish found in the aquarium trade. This is evident from the look of it. Aside from the fact that the fish is physically beautiful, it also offers the most brilliant colors, hardiness, and ease of breeding.
When you decide to provide your guppies with other peaceful species of tank mates, the outcome can be just perfect! Guppies are sold at reasonable prices at pet stores, and this allows almost any fishkeeper, either young or old, to become part of the world of guppies.
There are other reasons why guppies have become very popular over the years. One of them is because of the peaceful nature of the fish. Guppies, unlike other species of fishes, are very friendly. They make perfect community fish and are hardy enough to withstand potential mistakes committed by the novice hobbyist. Not only that, guppies are usually found most times swimming in the open areas of the tank. This unique feature that they possess makes them very popular among children, most especially. Infant, we can say that the entire fishkeeping hobby owes its popularity to the guppy fish.
Guppies have a long history that can be traced to the earliest times. Study shows that the fish have been bred in the States for almost a century. Yet, they remain one of the least expensive and most plentiful of all tropical fishes.
Guppy breeding Setup
Guppy Breeding is a straightforward task, even for beginners. Before you start the process, some measures must be put in place to ensure that the guppies live long and grow properly. Some of these measures include:
(I) You must provide the right water conditions for your guppies.
(III) You must have a natural-looking environment with unique decors.
When all these measures are put in place, the outcome will most certainly reward the hobbyist with years of enjoyable fishkeeping and spawning activity. The most exciting part is that even when guppies are left on their own, they tend to breed very rapidly. Therefore, you must consider the tank’s size and provide adequate filtration to keep your guppies healthy.
Note: it is advisable to use large tanks as this will give enough room even for future guppy generations.
Did you know that the rapid maturity rate is another reason why guppies are among the most popular tropical fish for breeding? Yes! According to research, guppies are ovoviviparous, and they fertilize internally. The fry is born fully formed and can fend for themselves at birth, and the parents do not need to contribute to their needs afterward. This lack of parental rearing seems not to affect the fry as they feed on their own to overgrow maturity.
For a female guppy, the average brood is between the range of 20 to 40 fry. The content depends on the size of the female guppy. This is to say, the larger the female guppy, the larger the size of her brood. According to experts’ research, the world’s record for fry born in a single line is held by a guppy at the Chicago Shedd Aquarium, who produced 244 fries in one litter, of which about 238 survived.
One exciting feature among the female guppies is their ability to produce several broods consecutively without male insemination occurring each time. You may be wondering how this is possible. The report shows that this is a result of the unique folds in the female genital area that allows it to store sperm until it is needed for fertilization.
How many guppies should be together
To know how many guppies should be together in a single tank, the hobbyist needs to choose several guppies with the same or almost the same characteristics that they believe can be intensified so they can produce true-breeding strains. The features to look out for can include the following:
(I) Long fins.
(II). Unique patterns.
(III) Unusual coloration.
It is essential to purchasing a female of the same strain as the male you choose. This is to strengthen the line and save valuable time, which can be better used in the pursuit of a new variation. Female guppies tend to carry the genes for the male traits’ expression as they do not show any visible characteristics on the male.
Generally, the rule for stocking your aquarium with guppy fish is by calculating 1 gallon of water for 1 inch of fish. This means that you could add up to 9-10 guppies to a 10-gallon aquarium. But if you are using a filterless guppy aquarium, this rule might not be applicable. You should add less than the available amount for a guppy fish tank without a filter.
I recommend starting with a smaller batch of fish first to see how you can maintain their water conditions. As you become more experienced over time, you can add more guppies.
Note: Overstocking the aquarium can lead to all sorts of trouble, from increased toxin levels to depleted oxygen levels, all of which can cause illness and, worse, death.
How long does guppy live?
Guppies tend to live for about two years. It is essential to note that the life span of guppies dramatically depends on the tank conditions and the water temperature. This is to say that the higher the water temperature in the tank, the shorter the guppies’ lifespan. However, the report has shown that some guppies live up to 3 years.
How long do guppies live without a filter?
When setting a guppy fish tank, one of the things you must consider is whether to set it up with a filter or without a filter.
Already we know that filters play an instrumental role in maintaining water cleanliness and clarity. But then can your guppies survive without a filter, or perhaps do they need one in their tank?
A lot of people have asked this question, most especially beginners. Whenever I am asked about this type of problem, my answer sure stays the same. Which is: it is better to get a filter to make things easier.
By this, I do that means that your guppies cannot survive without a filter. No. In the hands of an experienced aquarist, guppies can survive without a filter if the right water conditions are maintained.
How then can your guppies survive without a filter? And how can you set up a guppy fish tank without a filter?
I am setting up a guppy fish tank without a filter.
When you want to set up a guppy fish tank without a filter, there are a few things that must be handled with care.
1. Cycle your aquarium without fish
One of the essential things you can do to create a balanced ecosystem for your guppies is to carry out your aquarium’s nitrogen cycle. Now you may wonder why this is important. The nitrogen cycle helps fill the aquarium with good bacterias that feed on toxins and transform them into less harmful components. Although it is important to note that the nitrogen cycle is not enough to maintain a balanced ecosystem, it is an important part that must be played to keep your aquarium as this will help make sure that the water temperature is leveled.
2. Use lots of live plants
Aside from the fact that live plants make your aquarium look attractive, offer them cover, serve as a food source for guppy fish and fry, they also do as an all-natural filter system.
Live plants also feed on the toxins released by waste products and then drive oxygen into the water in return. They also help to limit the algae in the aquarium. They do this by competing with them for resources.
Another significant benefit of live plants is that they help speed up the nitrogen cycle when added in the early stage of the aquarium setup.
Aside from the fact that they drive oxygen into the water, they also push oxygen into the substrate, thereby preventing aquarium substrate gases that form in anaerobic environments.
Therefore, to achieve the best possible result, you need to put many live plants in your aquarium. The number of live plants you put dramatically depends on your aquarium’s size and how many fish you are housing.
Below are some examples of live aquarium plants you might want to consider:
(I) Amazon sword
(II) Pygmy chain sword
(III) Java moss
(IV) Micro sword
(VI) Anubis nana
(VII) Crypt wendtii. Et cetera.
Note that some live plant requires fertilizer, and this can destroy the water chemistry. Therefore, I strictly advise that you choose a plant by yourself, select plants that require low maintenance procedure and do not need fertilizer.
3. Regular aquarium maintenance
Aquarium maintenance is essential whether you have your filter installed or not. When there is no filter, regular aquarium maintenance is even more critical. For any freshwater aquarium, weekly water changes plus thorough aquarium cleaning are part of the ways to maintain your aquarium. If you do not have a filter, you may need to change the water frequently, as weekly changes may not be enough to keep the guppies healthy. This is why you need an aquarium filter.
When you want to change the water, it is essential to use a water conditioner (using tap water) to neutralize chlorine. This is so because chlorine and other tap water disinfectant agents can quickly eliminate the good bacterias in the aquarium and irritate the fish.
4. Choose the right substrate
When you set up a guppy aquarium without a filter, the substrate becomes another vital aspect you must pay close attention to. It would help if you had a substrate with a good nutrient holding capacity since you will have live plants in the aquarium. Make sure that it must be a substrate that is easy to clean. Do not use sand as:
(I) it has no nutrient holding capacity and
(II) it is much more challenging to clean compared to other substrates.
I do not advise that you go for gravel either, as it is not much better at holding nutrients. Therefore, I recommend using an all in one aquarium substrate like ADA Aqua Soil, which comes preloaded with nutrients and can sustain plant life.
5. Choose the right aquarium size
The best aquarium size is large, most especially for a no filter aquarium. A small aquarium is very difficult to maintain even with a filter. The bigger the aquarium, the higher their chances of survival. In a small aquarium, water chemistry can be easily disturbed, and it is most times tough to restore.
Small aquarium leads to an increase in water waste, thereby resulting in ammonia.
From all indications, we have seen that it is impossible to set up a filterless guppy fish tank, but it is not something I would recommend for a beginner as you can see it requires some expertise.
If you are inexperienced, you can easily misjudge things and harm your fish in the process.
There is a reason why almost all aquarium guides advise you to use an aquarium filter. Although guppies can live without a filter, it is best to have one installed in your tank.