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Old June 14th, 2005, 05:32 PM
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Jackie467 Jackie467 is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 887
Here is what I could find for swordtails (wagtails). The min tank you can have is a 10 gal. I highlighted what is really important.

Scientific Name: Xiphophorus helleri
Family: Poeciliidae
Origin: Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras
Adult Size: 2 inches (5 cm)
Social: Peaceful, suitable for community tank
Lifespan: 4 years
Tank Level: Top, Mid dweller
Minimum Tank Size: 10 gallon
Diet: Omnivore, eats most foods
Breeding: Livebearer
Care: Easy to intermediate
pH: 7.0 - 8.2
Hardness: 15-30 dGH
Temperature: 64-77 F (18-25 C)


Description: Wagtail swords first appeared in the 1940's, as the result of a cross between a gold platy and a wild Xiphophorus maculatus. The distinctive mark of wagtails are the black rays in all fins coupled with very little coloration between the rays. Also notable is the presence of black on the upper and lower lip. Marigold Wag swordtails display an intense color contrast, having coal black fins and a red-gold body.

Habitat/Care: In their native habitat this species lives in very clear, oxygen rich, alkaline waters. Strong filtration is advised to maintain high oxygen levels. Water should be moderately hard, in the range of 15-30 dGH.
Optimum temperature for wagtail swords is lower than for many tropical fish. That should be taken into account when considering them for community aquariums. 74 degrees F (23 C) is the ideal temperature for swords, with lower temps being more readily tolerated than elevated temps.

Beyond the water requirements, wagtails are undemanding in terms of the physical aquarium setup. If breeding is planned, the tank should be densely planted to allow sufficient cover for the fry. Either real or artificial plants are suitable

Diet: Wagtail swords will readily accept a wide variety of foods. Live foods such as mosquito larvae, tubifex, and daphnia. These live foods provide some vitamins that often are lost in dry foods during storage. Freeze dried foods are also readily accepted, and are good alternatives to live foods. The advantage of FD foods is the reduced risk of disease that may be transmitted via live foods.

Because wagtails possess an intestinal tract that is longer than carnivores, they benefit from the roughage found in vegetables. In addition to flake foods containing vegetable matter, cooked peas, lettuce, or spinach may be used as supplemental foods.
Wagtail swords are primarily top feeders, as is evidenced by their upturned mouth. Foods that fall to the bottom, or that are not eaten within five minutes should be removed promptly to avoid fouling the water.
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Jackie and her little babies.

Candi- Italian Greyhound
Cash- Italian Greyhound
Jasmine- Tabby cat

Last edited by Jackie467; June 14th, 2005 at 05:40 PM.
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