Why I Keep Guppies

I'm often asked why I keep Guppies and truth be told it's not for any one reason.

I first became interested in breeding Guppies after stumbling across a poster depicting various breeds of Fancy Guppy during an amble in and out of the various aquariums along Tung Choi street in Kowloon, Hong Kongs "Goldfish Market" region. 

On that day I ventured into any number of stores and for the most part particular store owners focused on a specific breed of fish. It was amazing to see so many varieties and look at all the peripheral products associated with keeping fish.

Many stores had fish pre packed and hanging on racks made from rio type mesh within or out the front of the store. Just a fabulous experience for me in general.

Venturing upstairs through a single door on the street I found a very quiet store with what must of been 100 15 to 20 liter bare tanks. Each tank contained either male or female guppies of various strains. It was so tranquil away from the bustle of the main street and just the effervescent sounds of 100's of air driven sponge filters.

I'm sure it was at that point I fell in love with the notion of Guppies. The seemingly endless variety of colour, fin shapes and patterns.

Post that trip I started setting up my own aquarium with the notion that I was going to breed guppies, at that point in around 2007 it was near on impossible to find anyone that could supply me with a known strain of any fancy style Guppy.

Purchasing what I could get hold of from the local pet store I decided to just work a line. Long story short, through trial and error, endless frustration and in the end some luck I managed to produce a reasonable delta style Blue Moscow type Guppy Line.

So, why keep Guppies? They are reasonably tolerant and will happily live in a wide variety of water conditions. They breed like... well Guppies!... dropping live babies every 22 to 30 days so you can progress a line reasonably quickly with the next generation demonstrating their phenotype at around 4 to 6 weeks and mature enough to pair up in 10 weeks or so. A display tank with plenty of colorful males and females looks great and provides hours of enjoyment and the school "flutters" around the tank.

Generally they are easy to keep as they are not fussy eaters, survive the odd mishap such as a heater being unplugged and the water going to room temp and being a small fish allow you to keep smaller tanks for breeding and growing out the fry, providing you keep up a good water change practice and have good filtration of course.

The trick will be stopping at one line, I find you can effectively manage a line with about 6 tanks. At the height of my last venture into Guppies I was working about 8 lines and built a purposeful aquarium in my garage... yes it can get out of hand!

All in all here I am over 10 years later starting again and I already have 4 lines with a plan for 4 more. All of which I hope to make available as Trio's for sale once established.

During my last foray I learned so much and intend to share my knowledge across these pages and within the forum in the interest of Fancy Guppy Keeping here in Australia. It's fun, interesting and challenging; why not join me?

Cheers Shooter.