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Tropical Fish Index

Swordtail - Xiphophorus hellerii

swordtail fish

Origin Central America
Maximum Size: 4 inches (including tail)
Care: A simple fish in many ways similar to platies with whome they are sometimes crossed they prefer slightly alkaline water but will tolerate most water parameters.
Feeding: Be sure to provide a variety of foods, preferably live ones, because a nutritious, complete diet will enhance their colors and ensure good health. Keep in mind that they will eat their young if they are small enough.
Breeding: Simple fish to breed, with there being 60-80 fry in some of the larger swords, the younger mothers broods will be smaller usually around 20 or 30. Breeding livebearers article.
Sexing: Only male Swordtails have the "sword", while females have a rounder body.Comments: Very cool fish, the sword will grow on young swordtail males when they are about three quarters grown. Simple to keep and like mollies can tolerate slightly brackish conditions but whether they need them is debatable as all swordtails in shops will have been reared for generations in freshwater tanks.

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