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                  Livebearers are a fantastic species of fish that are very hardy and are easy to breed.  Livebearers are very colorful and playful. 

 1. Platies 

             Platies are very hardy and make great starter fish. Platies come in many different varieties. Platies are livebearers, so they do not lay eggs. This makes platies easy to breed.  To breed platies get at least one male and one female. Do not get more males then females! Then the males would fight for the females. Platies don't need any special breeding conditions, so all you have to do is wait. Once the platy is pregnant, either put it in a 2-5 gallon breeding tank with lots of plants, or put it in a breeding trap a few days before you think it will have babies.  The babies will eat whatever their parents eat, just smaller. Some kinds of platies are red wagtail, sunburst, twinbar, and mickey mouse.  For pictures, go to the "Good Community Fish" page


2. Guppies

                  Guppies are one of the most colorfull fish avaliable and are also hardy and a fantastic beginning fish.  Guppies can not be kept with fin nippers, such as barbs and tetras, or any semi agressive fish.  Guppies have the same breeding technique as platies. If you have one male and one female, but notice the male is constantly trying to mate with the female, get another female so the females can get a rest. 



3. Swordtails

              Swordtails are a beautiful and fantastic fish for the beggining aquarist.  These fish are very hardy and come in many different colors.   Male swordtails have a sword-like fin coming out of the bottom of their dorsal fin.  Females have no sword.  Swordtails breed the same as guppies and platies and are livebarers.  Swordtails are oftenly interbreeded with platies to make new species.

  4. Mollies

               Mollies are another popular species of livebears, and are a good addition to any community tanks.  The traditional molly is the black molly, but th silver and orange types are also avalible.  Some mollies are a beautiful high-fin type, with a tremendous dorsal fin.  Also, there are balloon mollies.  Mollies will like a little salt in their tank, but can live without it.


+ Basic Livebearer Facts

                        Unlike most fish, livebearers do not lay eggs . Thier babies come right out of them and are fully cabable of swimming and eating has soon has they are born. You can put a refrigerated hard boiled egg yolk(crumpled up) into the babies tank.  The protein will transfer from the egg to their fins and make them more colorful. They grow quite fast and can be ready to put in the tank in 2-3 months.You can sex livebearers by looking at thier annal fin (which is near the lower part of the body) if there is a rod- like structure, it is a male, if it is not, it is a female.

 Adventures in breeding


Adventures in breeding:  This is the story of how new platies were given birth to.  On 12/7/09, both female sunset coral dwarf platies were put in a double breeding trap.  At aproximetly 11:00 P.M., 1 sunset coral dwarf platy began giving birth.  There were about 5 eggs, 1 deformed, 3 dead, and 9 fully living baby platies.  After the female was removed, some of the babies started swimming into the other pregnant platy's compartment.  For the babies saftey, the other pregnant platy was removed, and the babies were free to swim anywhere once the dividers were removed.  The babies were about 1/2 a centimeter when born.  Sadly, the platy that gave birth died the next day. The next day, the babies got fed for the first time.  They first got fed crunched up flake food and crunched up freeze dried tubiflex worms.  They began to realize that it was food and they could eat it about 5 hours later.  Now the only thing was that there were a bunch of circular thingys and dead babies at the bottom.  An extra peice of airline tubing was used to act like a mini siphon.  We had to be very carefull doing this so we wouldn't siphon out any babies.

                 On the other hand, there was still another pregnant platy in the tank.  That afternoon, at the pet store, 2 things were bought.  They were: a net breeder and food called "first bites" for the babies.  The baby food was fed to the babies, and they ate it.  The net breeder was to be used for the other pregnant platy.  Being that there was no protection for  the babies from the female,  plastic plants were put in so the babies could hide.  At about 8:00 P.M.,  the platy began giving birth.  No babies seemed to be eaten by the mother There were no eggs, possibly 1 deformed, no dead, and about 13 fully living babies.  The mother was removed at 11 o'clock,  2 hours to give birth, and 1 hour of isolation.  We beleive that the other platy died because it was released too early, and needed time to relax.  This time, the platy that gave birth was living fine the next day.  These babies were fed the baby food, and started eating a few hours later. All the babies are currently doing fine, and will hopefully be raised to full grow size.                                                               

      Now the question was , why did the second platy have so much more sucsess?  Both platies were at the stomach size when they gave birth.  Our theroy is that the first platy had been in a breeding trap before, and it remembered that once it gave birth, it was released.  Also, the breeding trap was enclosed, small, and had no cover.  The platy was definitly not happy!  On the other hand, the net breeder was large, had the plants for cover, and there was more swim room.  To tell the truth, the platy actully seemed a little happy there!  These reasons may have afected the life ratings for the fish.  Overall, I highley recomend the net breeder over the breeding trap, as long as there are plants to hide in. 

The guppy story...

On 12\19 a male and a female guppy where bought for one of are 20 gallon tanks. The female was a half black which we thought was a little pregment. The males species is unknown. They appeared to be doing well when they first entered the tank.But the next morning[dec 20th] we noticed a few guppy fry swimming near the castle.I then thought, o no the guppy had babys!.It was true the female  had given birth in the middle of the night.Unfortunatly the female later died and the fry where eaten.We think this happend because we think at the store the guppy started to give birth but stopped because something tryed to eat the babys.The male is doing fine.1/18- the male is dead.

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