Guppy Information & Care
|Back to Freshwater Aquarium Fish Species|
|Fish Family||Guppies & Mollies|
|Scientific Name||Poecilia reticulata|
The guppy, alternatively guppie (Poecilia reticulata) is one of the most popular freshwater aquarium fish species in the world. It is a small member of the Poecilidae family (females 3 centimetres long, males 2 centimetres long) and is therefore live-bearing. It prefers a hard water aquarium and can withstand a surprising degree of salinity. Its most famous characteristic is its propensity for breeding.
The female guppy is a drab brown in colour. The much smaller male naturally has a colourful caudal fin (tailfin), which has been considerably enhanced in shape and colour by selective breeding.
Rev. JL Guppy discovered this tiny fish in Trinidad in 1866, although the fish was known to German aquarists prior to that time. The guppy escaped from captivity and lives in a feral condition in much of the warmer regions of the world. It has been introduced to some areas to keep down the mosquito population and fight malaria. The guppy can be found in its native habitat in small streams and ponds of virtually any size.