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Identifying & Naming Different Platy Types

There are different variants or types of platy fish each characterized by its own unique color combination. Even though a quick glance will tell you that each individual colored fish are not similar but generally all of them are still categorized under the common group with the same scientific classification (Xiphophorus maculatus). Platy being a simple, hardy and highly productive fish, can multiple fast enough extending up to 3 generations in just a year, and this makes the task of selective breeding becomes easier as it allows aqua fish breeders to choose and target the desired strain with the right color combination and more important with the specific traits or features that they want.

Nowadays the most common colors of platy sold in pet shops can be different, ranging from pure solid white, blue, orange, green, black, red or even yellow while for some, it can be mixture of either one of these colors. There are also other unique breeds of platy like for instance the long trailing high-fin type or the pointy pintail fin. Let’s us compare and understand some of the exciting names given to describe the fish using the accompanying picture attached below as a guide.

platy types colors

Bumblebee Platy
Bumblebee is probably one of the latest platy types to be introduced to the market. They are unique in the sense that their alternate yellow and black shades resemble to that of a bumblebee. Some of the fish has black marking covering just the head and gill area while there are others with the black spot appearing at the tail end.

Koi Platy
Koi platy is probably one of the most beautiful and exciting variant due to its color pattern bearing close resemblance as seen on a koi fish. Some can appear with just orange and white shades while there are others having extra black speckles distributed randomly on its body. Most of the koi platy that you see sold in pet shops have red colored eyes. The color pattern is often compared to that of Kohaku koi.

Mickey Mouse” Platy
The fish is named after the popular Disney character due to the presence of the three significant black color spots appearing specifically on the tail fin. While two of the darker spots are smaller, the other appears slightly bigger and the way the markings are arranged resembles very much like a Mickey Mouse. Platy in this category can appear in orange, yellow or red but the most commonly seen is the yellow-colored type.

Wag-Tail Platy
What makes this variant different from the other common platy fish is mainly because of the tail fin which appears to be completely black. If you compare a normal fully red or fully yellow on the whole body (including the tail) with the Wag-tail platy, the only different you can spot is obviously just on the end part. The rest are just similar.

Sunset (Marigold) Platy
This type of platy is highly popular due to its yellow and red sunset shade which forms a beautiful color tone. Normally one half of its body is yellow orangery while the other half towards the end will slowly becomes red. If you get the chance to see one of these pet fish, then just get one as they are simply amazing especially when you see them filled up the whole aquarium.

Panda Platy
Panda platy is noted for its simplicity with the color combination of black and white shades that appear just like a panda bear. Normally the fish will have white covering the front part of the body extending almost until the caudal peduncle while the rest until tail fin are just black. Highly recommended and suggested for those enthusiasts who are looking for plain-looking and simple pet fish.

Tuxedo Platy
All Tuxedo platy have one similar characteristic that is having shades of black appearing on the middle of its body close to the caudal peduncle. Usually the black color will combine with either red (in this case it is Red Tuxedo), orange (Orange Tuxedo) or blue (Blue Tuxedo). Refer to the example depicted in the attached picture for better clarification.

Pintail Platy
If you are one of the hobbyist who prefer something different compared to the average normal platy, then you ought to consider the pintail. The most common mistake people made when comparing between a pintail platy and a swordtail is that they thought both fish are actually the same but they are not. Platy fish having rounder and shorter body will have the sharp pointy extended tail appears at the middle of the tail fin while for swordtail, which overall has elongated body will have the extended fin appearing either at the top or bottom region of the fin.

High-Fin Platy
High-Fin platy can exist in any type of color whether single or combined with different shades of color. The only requisite for this fish to qualify for the special name is the extended dorsal fin which grows longer as the fish grows older. Certain high-fins experienced difficulty when swimming due to the extra weight exerted by the trailing fin.

Comet Platy
Comets can be easily identified based on its black border/sideline appearing on the tail fin. Comets can appear in different colors ranging from red, orange or even blue (although in blue the border becomes less visible). A recommended variant of platy fish you should have for your home aquarium stock.

If you would like to read up more about this fish, read up on platy care and breeding.



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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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