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Question about Guppies


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 I only have two male guppies currently (one red, one blue), but the tank is cycled now so I plan on buying females next.

My question is, if I just bought a bunch of different guppies that I thought looked pretty and threw them in the 29 gallon, how many generations until all the guppies are brown?

My only friend in the hobby is breeding shrimp and was warning me if I don't pick a 'line' and cull constantly I'd end up with wild-looking and plain brown fish.

Also, if anyone could recommend an beginner's level book on guppies I'd read it.  I didn't get genetics in school, so I could use a good book.

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Your guppies are super unlikely to go brown any more than if you let free range chihuahuas breed for 20 generations that they would revert to wolves. What ever the results of your breeding program it will be both fascinating and colorful.

There are books on guppy genetics but I have never owned one so I cannot vouch for this one.

Genetics for Guppies by Bryan Chin.

The guppy genetics would follow the same basic rules as the white cloud genetics being discussed in this thread:

@WhitecloudDynasty might know some good resources.

Edited by Daniel
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Mutt guppies are great fun and produce good colorful fish that are heartier and live longer than line bred fish. They can produce very pretty and unexpected results which is how new lines are developed. 

I've had tanks that ran for years and I never had all the guppies end up plain brown. Just remove any offspring that have defects and occasionally add cool new male or female guppies you come across. 

Your friend is describing a very "shrimp only" issue that doesn't really apply to guppies. On the flip side of that, if you were line breeding and you were not diligently culling and maintaining your line, over time it would look less and less like the original line.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Guppies are great hearty fish that are easy. You will get mutt guppies but they are very cool. Mutt guppies in my experience have been heartier and easier to breed. You will have multiple color variations and you tank will look more skittleish rather than brown. If you are looking for lots of babies, make sure there are plenty of hiding places for the fry. Plants and drift wood with moss on it work great. Try to start with 2 females to every male. Just a fair warning, it’s very easy to over populate your tank within a year, so just make sure you can drop off the ones you don’t want at your local fish store. Or if you think you have enough, remove some of the hiding areas for the fry as there is no maternal instinct with these fish and they will eat their own fry. Guppies are great fun.  Good luck and enjoy. 

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