Care Level: Easy
Live Plant Safe: Yes
General Description: The Red Velvet Swordtail is a selectively bred ornamental strain from the wild-type Green Swordtail (Xiphophorus hellerii) that comes from Mexico, Guatemala, Belize and Honduras. One of the most adaptable fish in the aquarium trade, swordtails are peaceful fish with males exhibiting a clear gonopodium, or modified point, behind their anal fin that aids in reproduction. Males also have a “sword” that is an extension off of the caudal fin. Females will not have this trait. Red velvet swordtails have an overall vibrant red colored body. Swordtails are livebearers, meaning that females will produce live fry (i.e., offspring) in abundance. It is best to keep multiple females per a single male, as male swordtails tend to frequently harass females. These fish are very prolific without intervention, and sperm from males can be stored in females for several months. If you want to avoid your tank filling up with swordtails, we advise to stick to purchasing one sex. Adult Red velvet swordtails can reach a size of approximately 4″, with females averaging on the larger side.
Diet Requirements: Swordtails are one of the unfussiest aquarium fishes. A diet made up of various high quality vegetable based and protein based flake foods, sinking micro pellet foods and bug bites are ideal, in addition to offering frozen foods such as bloodworms, brine shrimp and daphnia. Variety is the spice of life in order to maintain color, immune function and longevity of your fish.
Care Requirements: An established minimum 20 to 30 gallon aquarium is ideal for a group of Red velvet swordtails, or swordtails in general. Sizing up may be needed if you intend to have a large group for breeding purposes. While Red velvet swordtails are relatively hardy and easy to care for, they would do best introduced into a biologically mature aquarium. The aquarium does not need to be aquascaped with anything in particular, but swordtails do appreciate live plants and floating plant material. Red velvet swordtails can be kept with a wide variety of community type fishes that thrive in similar water parameters. Different ornamental strains of swordtails can be mixed with no issue, but be aware that the “quality” of their offspring and subsequent generations will be decreased from mixing two, or more, very different gene pools. Serious swordtail breeders often stick to a single color strain to ensure that the genetic integrity of that type is maintained. Recommended water conditions, 72-82° F, KH 12-30, pH 7.0-8.0.
Purchase Size: Medium: 1-1/2” to 2”
Note: Your item may not look identical to the image provided due to variation within species. Purchase sizes are approximate.