overviewThe Scarlet Livebearer, also called the Painted Guppy or Swamp Guppy, is a highly-sought-after specimen. Lack of availability in the aquarium trade and dramatic coloration make the Scarlet Livebearer highly-desirable among livebearer aficionados and hobbyists alike. While the resemblance to Poecilia reticulata is evident, this guppy relative exhibits an alluring "wild quality" not found in the selectively bred and refined Fancy Guppies. A striking red coloration is accentuated by bold, black markings to dramatic effect. The Scarlet Livebearer makes an excellent candidate for a biotope or colony aquarium setup that truly highlights the unique beauty of this unusual livebearer.
The Scarlet Livebearer originates from mildly brackish waters in canals and drainage ditches at the edges of swamps. As such, the Scarlet Livebearer prefers hard, alkaline water conditions and may not thrive in aquariums with acidic or soft water. In the home aquarium, a minimum of a teaspoon of aquarium salt per gallon is recommended for optimum health. The Scarlet Livebearer requires an aquarium of at least 20 gallons with algae and plenty of room to swim. Aquascape generously with live plants that do well in hard water conditions to help create a natural environment. Also, the brighter light used to support plant growth will help "bring out" the rich iridescent colors of the Scarlet Livebearer.
Similar to other livebearer in the Family Poeciliidae, the male Scarlet Livebearer is more slender, brightly colored and has a gonopodium. In contrast, the female Scarlet Livebearer is more rounded in shape and develops a pregnancy spot.
Though less prolific, the Scarlet Livebearer share similar breeding habits and preferences to Fancy Guppies. The ideal breeding environment should have a covering of floating ferns and a breeding box to protect the fry. Adults may eat the fry if left to fend for themselves without the breeding box. The fry should be fed brine shrimp, micro food and pulverized flakes.
The Scarlet Livebearer is an omnivore that requires both meaty foods as well as algae. Provide the Scarlet Livebearer an algae-based flake food, as well as freeze-dried bloodworms, tubifex, and brine shrimp.
Approximate Purchase Size: 3/4" to 1"