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Aquarium Fish Species: Swordtail

swordtail
Swordtail is a type of freshwater aquarium fish which is considered one of the hardiest and easy to care for. It is a live bearer meaning that the fry is born as free swimmer and the fish is easily identifiable from its tail fin which extends like a sword and ends with a sharp point. However, this characteristic is only present in the male but not the female, which only has a round fin and also a thicker body. The average size of the fish is only about 2-3 inches long minus the tail fin while some can even grow up to 4 inches length.

The fish can be found in different colors ranging from yellow, orange, red and even black. Perhaps one of the most beautiful variants of the Swordtail is the bright-red colored species having a fierce look. This type is the most aggressive of all, as it will usually fight with each other especially during mating and competition for the females. There is also an albino variant with red colored eye, which is considered one of the rarest. Swordtail is generally not a preferred choice for a community tank due to its aggressive nature especially if there’s presence of other smaller fishes such as neon fish and guppies.

Swordtails are very tolerant to changes in water parameters and basically they can withstand and adapt easily to new aquarium environment with much better chances of survival. Wild Swordtails can be found in rivers from Central America but today it is also bred in colder climate areas and the temperature can be a low as 18degC compared to its cousin in the wild surviving in temperature as high as 28degC. It is also a good idea to get a large aquarium size due to its active nature and one of reason is also because it breeds easily and soon you will find that the whole aquarium will be overrun by this fish.

Comparing between swordtail and platy fish
Although swordtail and platy are closely related to each other and can easily interbreed, you can still tell the differences apart if you happen to come across one in a pet shop. Platy generally has a rounder and shorter body regardless of whether the fish is male or female. On the other hand, when you compare that to a swordtail, the fish seems to have an elongated body and overall, compared to platy, it looks narrower.

Between a male swordtail and a male platy, it can be straightforward to tell them apart as male swordtail has the sword-like tail fin while for the male platy, there is none. For females, since the swordtail also has round tail fin, you just have to rely on the body shape to make out the difference. This can be tricky because even experienced fish keeper can make mistakes. This is due to the extensive hybridization process taking place to produce desired traits for the pet fish.

Other aquarium fish species: Goldfish, Clown Loach, Catfish



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About Me

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My fascination and interest towards aquarium fish has led me to devote my time towards caring and learning about this wonderful pet.

Aquarium fish keeping is a very challenging and exciting hobby. When I first started, I never knew much or have the necessary guidance back then because none of my family members were actually a keen hobbyist. And because of that, I’ve encountered numerous failures and the worst part is having to deal with dead fish every time when you started to grow fond and getting attached to my pets. However, I persevered and took steps to find out and search for information from other hobbyist, apart from the knowledge gained and learned from my own experience and research. The blog that I’ve created here is meant to share useful information and tips about aquarium fish keeping so that new hobbyist will not make the same mistakes that I’ve made in the past."

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