By: the Editors of Publications International, Ltd.

Guppy -- poecilia reticulata
© iStock

Scientific name: Poecilia reticulata

One of the most popular aquarium fish, the guppy is a live-bearer, meaning it does not lay eggs but produces live offspring. Although the wild form is occasionally seen in stores, most are selectively bred forms chosen for their color pattern or finnage. Males of the bred species can reach 1.5 inches, and females typically grow to about 2.5 inches.


Aquarium Fish Image Gallery

Unlike the hardy wild specimens, aquarium strains are sensitive to water quality. Aquarium conditions should include a water temperature between 72º and 82º Fahrenheit, with a pH of 7.0 to 8.5 and water that is moderately to relatively hard. All flake and freeze-dried foods are eaten by guppies, but live brine shrimp should also be offered regularly.

To learn more about freshwater aquariums, see: