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How to look after
Xiphophorus helleri
Swordtail
(Heckel, 1848)

Xiphophorus helleri - Swordtail - Swordtails come in different varieties - pictured is a male lyretail swordtail
Swordtails come in different varieties - pictured is a male lyretail swordtail
more images here

(Other members of the genus Xiphophorus)

ADULT SIZE: 11 cm

WATER CONDITIONS: Moderately hard and alkaline

TEMPERATURE RANGE: 22-28 C

FOOD: Feed Xiphophorus helleri live and dried foods. Not a fussy eater at all.

DISTRIBUTION: This species comes from Guatemala, Mexico

(20) Swordtail Juveniles - Tropical Fish - Assorted Types - Males & Females

Current price: $18.00
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Time left: 29d 5h 2m
10 Assorted Swordtails - Xiphophorus helleri - Live Aquarium Fish -

Current price: $25.00
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Time left: 23d 15h 29m

AQUARIUM CARE: One of the most popular aquarium fishes, and a great candidate for the beginners aquarium. The wild type swordtail, or green swordtail is very common, but it also comes in many other colour forms and shapes: typically with varying degrees of red, white, yellow and black.

This is a very tough species that can adapt to most water conditions, though preferring slightly harder water. Sexing is easy as the males have a 'sword' on their caudal fin; females are slightly larger and overall more rounded.

This is a great community species, although males can get somewhat aggressive at times, so provide ample hiding places for subdominant males females and fry.

BREEDING: A very easy livebearer that gives birth to large fry. Females can be seperated (breeding trap) when heavily pregnant to avoid unwanted male attention, and to avoid predation of the newly born fry. Even when bred in a well-stocked community tank, some fry will survive. Swordtails will interbreed with platies (Xiphophorus maculatus) if kept in the same aquarium.

Have you bred Xiphophorus helleri? Why not fill in a breeding questionaire?, or examine existing Xiphophorus helleri breeding reports








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Fishkeeping Facts and Tips

Give your fish a treat! Flaked fish foods are excellent nutritionally, but most fish really enjoy tucking into live, or frozen live foods. Insect larvae such as bloodworms can be collected in summertime from your water barrel, but it is also very worthwhile to attempt to culture Daphnia or white worms for a free food source absolutely relished by aquarium fish. Frozen bloodworm are almost as good and are widely available, though freeze dried live foods tend not to go down as well. See more on feeding fish


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