Bright and eye-catching pecilia are some of the most popular fish that aquarists around the world prefer to keep. And this is not surprising. After all, they are extremely unpretentious, and monitoring their behavior is a very interesting and fascinating occupation, allowing you to relax from everyday worries.
Aquarium pecilia, the contents and care of which are fairly simple, have a length of 3.5 to 5 cm. Some individuals can also reach 7 cm. Their life span is 5 years, and sexual maturity with sufficient nutrition is achieved three months after birth.
In nature, these fish look much less spectacular and colorful than their aquarium brethren, which appeared as a result of painstaking work of breeders. "Wild" pecilia, which is still called mollies, have a brownish-yellow color with two dark spots in front of the tail fin. All the derived varieties retained the unchanged shape of the body. Moreover, they have an extremely diverse color. Wild forms are slightly reminiscent of pecilia, but the body is more oblong and round.
In Europe, the spotted varieties of these fish that gave rise to new breeding species appeared only at the end of the 19th century, and in the post-war years a completely black pecilia appeared in the Old World, which aquarists from the United States withdrew.
Interestingly, over time, fish belonging to this genus change sex, thus regulating the ratio of females and males in an isolated pond or aquarium.
Aquarium fish. Pecilia: Species
The maintenance and leaving is carried out without special problems, without dependence from their kind. In general, there are 33 types of pecilia. In addition to "real" there is also a fish, which is mistakenly attributed to the genus Poecilia. It is called plytipecilia, but in fact it belongs to the Sword Bearers. Among the most popular species of these fish, we can note sailing Mollies, which does not belong to the obtained by selection and has retained its image in captivity the same as its "wild" brethren living on the Yucatan peninsula. There are also a lot of people who want to settle in their aquarium guppies - a freshwater fish of the genus Poecilia, which in nature is common in the islands of Barbados and Trinidad, in the north of Brazil, in Venezuela and Guiana.
Care, reproduction, feeding and breeding of these fish are the questions that most concern the aquarists. I must say that they are extremely accommodating and unpretentious. To keep them enough, an ordinary aquarium with a capacity of 40-50 liters, but the fish will be convenient if it is larger in size. Between themselves, the individuals of the pecilia do not show aggression. The ideal option is when the ratio of the number of females to the number of males 3: 1 is maintained in the aquarium.
Pecilia, the maintenance, reproduction and care of which does not require special knowledge, are found in nature in the lower reaches of freshwater rivers flowing through the territory of Guatemala and South Mexico and flowing into the Atlantic Ocean. This means that the water parameters for them are not too important. In particular, the "ordinary" water of medium hardness (15-30 dGH) and with acidity in the pH range of 7.0-8.3 will be quite acceptable for them. As for the temperature, it should be maintained at 22-25 degrees. It is important that the water is fresh and clean, so you should change up to 20% of the contents of the aquarium every week. Aeration and filtration are desirable, but not necessary, i.e. if the number of fish is small, then these procedures can be neglected. By the way, categorically it is not recommended to add salt to water, as it is proved that the pecilia, contained even in very weak salt solution, are more often ill due to lower immunity.
In nature, the pecilia, the maintenance and care of which is quite simple, feed on algae and insects. Once in the aquarium, they gladly absorb different types of plant and animal feed. Experts advise to include in the diet of these fish feed containing fiber, for example, cooked vegetables (cucumbers, spinach, zucchini) and cereal. In general, on the will of the pecilia often feed on algae, so plant food is necessary for them for the normal functioning of the gastrointestinal tract. Also these aquarium fish require animal feed such as Artemia, Bloodworm, Tuber and Corotra.
Female and male pecilia have pronounced sexual differences. In particular, female individuals are usually palpably larger, have a fuller and more rounded abdomen and are not as brightly colored as males. In addition, the males have a small pointed gonopodia, reminiscent of the anal fin, which is more widely present in the female of the pecilia. Fish (content, reproduction and care are described in detail in this article) of the genus Poecilia are viviparous. In order for the females to become pregnant, the owner of the aquarium does not need to create any special conditions.
If there are fish of both sexes in the aquarium, the pecilia give birth to well-formed fry every 28 days. Pregnancy of the female, which, depending on the species, lasts from ten days to two months, is determined by the dark spot that appears near the anal fin and the rounded abdomen. The genera of the females are uncomplicated, and in front of them it is enough to plant them and add the plants to the aquarium. During this period, fish-pecilia need not be bothered, and it is better to close the front glass with paper for a while.
Care for fry
If you live in an aquarium pecilia, the maintenance and care of it also includes the protection of newborns. The fact is that "mother" and "father" have a bad habit of eating their offspring. That is why before the birth of fry, it is necessary to provide a sufficient number of plants in the aquarium and as soon as possible to set off the offspring of the female. Feed the kids can be crushed egg yolk, dry food or special fry for fry.
Now you know that if you have fish in the aquarium, the content and care of them will not take much time and effort, and you know what to feed and how to breed them.