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Breeding Guppies
Using Mr. Dayes' Methods
Click here to go back to the previous page in this discussion about Breeding Guppies.

Click here now to buy Fancy Guppies.


Customer Comments

Guppy Fry, also called Guppies Babies, just three days old.
I was able to take some really great pictures of my guppy fry. In these pictures they are just three days old! I just thought I would share them with you since your site doesn't have any pictures of guppy fry yet.
Feel free to do what ever you want with it,
Christy R.
Reply. Hello Christy and thank you for the wonderful pictures of your baby guppies.

Customer Comments

Hello My name is Jill ... I have just joined your site and I love it ... I have recently bought 5 pregnant guppies could you please tell me the best way to tell when they are getting close so I can put them in the birthing net.
thank you so much have a great day
Reply. Hello Jill.

We get asked this question a lot, and elsewhere on this website you will read comments that say something like this, "I can look at a pregnant female guppy from the back and slightly below, and a day or two before she releases her babies, her belly gets a corner at the lower left and lower right, so her belly is not quite as round as it usually is."

We've also gotten lots of comments that say something like, "I can tell when one of my female livebearers (like a female guppy) will release babies very soon, because she will start to look for places to hide or places to hide her babies."

But I think you will have to observe your female guppies closely for a few weeks, before you will be able to predict that one of them will release her babies soon.

I wish I had a better answer for you, but I think you will have to patiently watch your female guppies.

As explained below Mr. Frank Dayes did not put his female guppies in a contraption to protect their babies. Mr. Dayes had a more natural method, as explained below on this page.

Next is an email from Michael E. asking for more information about breeding Guppies and our reply, that includes my memories of Mr. Frank Dayes and his methods of breeding Guppies and raising lots Guppies.

Customer Comments

At your website there is no info. on breeding guppies or what to feed the babies so can you tell me.
I have a 10-gallon tank in my cellar (my sister's old one) and should I just put the mother guppy in there and when she has the babies take her out and put her back in the 2 and 1/2 gallon tank?
Also what should I feed the babies and when do I know when she is going to have the babies? I would be very greatful if you could send me all this info. a.s.a.p.
Thanks again!!
Michael E.
When I began to write this website, I planned to write a few things about a few fish. I thought it would be best, if I wrote about things that I had actually done.

Long ago when my brother and I were getting started with fish, we were confused and impeded by advice about fish that we got from folks who told us how to do things, that we found out later, they had never done.

On the other hand we were greatly helped by being with other people who were kind enough to show us what they were doing. One person that really helped us was Mr. Frank Dayes.

I think Mr. Dayes moved here to San Diego from Chicago or somewhere in the Midwest in the late 1950s. We met him in the "Blue Pacific Fish Store", which was the closest place to our home that sold Tropical Fish.

Mr. Dayes' home was just a few blocks from our house, and he invited us to come to his house and see his aquariums and fish.

We did, and he showed us his garage, where he had about 25-aquariums full of Fancy Guppies. The aquariums were probably 10 or 15-gallon aquariums.

Each aquarium had an aquarium heater adjusted to about 80-degrees, a sponge filter, and a big bunch of live Java Ferns about 6" to 7" in diameter and 7" to 8" tall.

Some of the aquariums had 15 to 25 beautiful Fancy Guppy Males, other aquariums had 20 to 40 large Female Guppies, and some aquariums were packed with baby Guppies.

Mr. Dayes explained to us that Male Guppies have brilliant colors on their bodies and their fins, and that Female Guppies are gray or tan with much bigger abdomens that are filled with baby Guppies.

We also saw the dark spot, called the gravid spot, at the rear end of the female's abdomen. This dark spot is caused by the baby Guppies showing through their mother's skin.

Female Guppies do not normally lay eggs like most female fish, instead Female Guppies release small live babies. Usually they release a group with about 12 to 30-babies over a period of a few hours, and they do this again every 3 or 4-weeks.

In fact, once a Female Guppy is fertilized by a Male Guppy, that female can continue to release baby Guppies for many months without a Male Guppy in the aquarium.

After they are released by their mother, baby Guppies float to the bottom of the aquarium and often swim in a hurky-jurky way for a few hours.

They're probably learning how to control their fins. But soon they are swimming well and find their way into the big clump of Java Ferns, where they look for tiny bits of food.

A little later the baby Guppies swarm around the sponge filter, and pick bits of food off the sponge.

I think it was Mr. Dayes, who showed us how to put flake fish food inside a plastic bag, and crush it into a fine powder to feed to the baby fish.

I remember seeing him put a tiny pinch of powdered food on the surface of the water then stir the surface of the water with his other hand, so the bits of powdered food would fly about inside the aquarium, and we could see the baby Guppies swimming to catch a bit of food.

Within a few minutes all the baby Guppies had round stomachs full of the powdered fish food.

Mr. Dayes said he fed his baby Guppies at least six times a day.

Click here to read more about making powdered food for baby fish.

Mr. Dayes had more than 20-years of experience with breeding Guppies, when we met him.

He could look at a Female Guppy and instantly tell if she was going to have babies in the next couple of days.

If she was going to have babies soon, he would very gently move her to her own aquarium with just an aquarium heater, a sponge filter and a big bunch of Java Ferns.

I never saw any gravel or ornaments in any of the aquariums that Mr. Dayes used for breeding his Guppies.

My brother and I have never bred Guppies. What I have written here in these few paragraphs about breeding Guppies is just an account of what I remember seeing many years ago.

I hope it helps you. If you have a comment, suggestion, or question about what I have written, please send me an email.


Customer Comments

Hi - Thank you for all of the information about guppies. Those couple paragraphs explained a lot of what I needed to know and I think it was very interesting. I enjoyed learning how many babies the mothers have and my female also has a little black spot at the end of her abdomen.
... Mr. Dayes never put any gravel in his tanks, but how did the plants stay in then? I think the essay about Mr. Dayes and your experiance with him was very well written and interesting and I hope to bring my 10-gallon tank up today and set it up for the babie guppies.
Michael E.
Reply. Hello Michael, That's a good question about the Java Ferns. One of the nice things about this plant is that it has dark, thick, heavy stem-like roots, that are heavier than water, sink to the bottom of the aquarium, and sit on the glass.

But the Java Ferns' leaves are buoyant, so the top of the Java Ferns stand up kind of straight and look really good, even without any gravel in the aquarium.

You might be able to use another kind of plant, even a plant that floats, but the Java Ferns seems to do very well without getting much light, and Mr. Dayes did not have a light above each aquarium.

In fact he didn't have any aquarium covers or anything above his aquariums. He just had aquariums with heaters, sponge filters, a big bunch of Java Ferns, and lots of Guppies!


Customer Comments

hello my guppie just had babies. the mom is trying to eat them. and i dont think she is done haveing babies. i cant put her in my other tank she might have babies in there. the other fish will eat them. what do i do.
Queen Creek AZ 85242
Reply. Hello Max. Stuff a bunch of live plants or plastic plants in with the female guppy, so she will have trouble finding the babies.

If you read the information about Mr. Dayes' method of breeding guppies, you will learn that he kept a big Java Fern plant in each aquarium with his female Guppies.

The Java Ferns are an excellent place for baby Guppies to hide and avoid being eaten by adult female Guppies.

Incidentally for about 48-hours after a female Guppy releases babies, she usually will not eat baby fish or any other food, because her internal organs release a hormone that greatly reduces her appetite.

Click here to go on to another page in this website and read about Michael's success in breeding his Guppies!
Click here to go on to another page in this website and read about Michael's success in breeding his Guppies!
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