The neon blue guppy, a variation of Poecilia reticulata, is native to Asia, Central America and Brazil. Because of its extravagant coloring and docile temperament, this guppy has become a favorite for aquarium enthusiasts around the world. As a hardy, quick-maturing fish, it's often a top choice for beginners.
In the wild, Poecilia reticulata lives in warm waters, typically warm springs, canals and even weed-filled ditches. In lower elevations, these fish occur in the murky waters of ponds and ditches; at higher elevations they thrive in pure mountain streams. Despite the varying habitats, they prefer warmer waters with a temperature between 73 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
Neon blues are opportunistic omnivores feeding on a variety of plants and animals. In the wild, they thrive on water-dwelling larvae such as damselflies. Plankton is also a favorite meal of these small fish. Their feeding behavior has also been implicated in the destruction of native species once they've been released into non-native waters, such as those in the United States. These guppies routinely feed on the eggs of several native species, making them invasive species to several waters. In the aquarium, you should feed your neon blue guppies a mixture of algae-based flakes and meats such as frozen bloodworms and brine shrimp to keep them healthy and provide them all of their nutritional requirements.
Description and Sexing
Neon blue guppies top out at a maximum length of 2 1/2 inches, although they're typically available for purchase when they're immature and approximately 1 1/4 to 1 3/4 inches long. Neon blue guppies are typically neon blue, as the name suggests, with a brightly colored tail fin and the neon blue coloring running down the body. This is not the only color you can find them in, however, as they may also appear in clears, reds and yellows. Males are smaller than females and more brightly colored. The male also has a pointed anal fin, whereas the female's is rounded.
As social fish, you should always keep your neon blue guppies in schools of at least five. They require a minimum tank size of 20 gallons with several hardy plants such as java fern and java moss. Since breeding will more than likely occur, you should incorporate cover for the fry. For diversity in your tank, you can add other peaceful fish species.
With a professional background in gardening, landscapes, pests and natural ecosystems, Jasey Kelly has been sharing her knowledge through writing since 2009 and has served as an expert writer in these fields. Kelly's background also includes childcare, and animal rescue and care.