My Petco Has Female Endlers! But Are They Really?

  • #1
After visiting my local petco, they changed tanks and stock...again. This time, however, they had "female endlers" for $5.99 each. If I get female endlers, are they just hybrids, mosquito fish, or actual pure female endlers?

Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures, but here's a general description of them:
•100% grey coloration. No black under the eyes like in most mosquitofish, and no colored tails like in most female guppies.
•They had that sort of "checkered" scale pattern.
•I believe they had sort of a greenish tint to them. Mosquitofish have a sort of blue tint.
•Their caudal (tail) fins were clear in color, where in most mosquitofish they're spotted.
•They had short fins like all three species, but a bit too short to be a female guppie's maybe.
•Some had gravid spots, some didn't. But that's normal for all three species.
•They were kind of small, 1" long, but not smaller than typical young guppies.
•They kind of "schooled" which I see endlers and mosquitofish do, but not female guppies.
•They were $5.99 each. In my area, mosquitofish range from 13¢ to $2.99, female guppies $2.99 to $4.99, and endlers (male or female) $5.99 to $9.99 depending on location. I'd assume with their higher price range they'd be endlers, but I'd hate to spend $6.48 each with tax on a misidentification.

Anyhow, do these sound like female endlers to you, and if so, do they sound pure (or mostly?) I'd think female endler hybrids would have colored tails like female guppies, but I'm not that experienced with these fish so I don't know.

Thanks for the input in advance!
  • #2
Hmm interesting conundrum you have here...

Mosquito fish females as you said, have spot patterning on their tails. In addition, they also seem to have more pointed mouths for catching mosquito larvae; so they're most likely not Mosquito fish.

For the most part, endler guppy females have clear fins without any color or pattern compared to guppies which unless are the wild variety-will have some sort of color in their tails due to them being mutts from a variety of other strains.

In endler females, their size and gravid spots are also much smaller compared to guppies-which also is what you described they looked like.

Based on your description, I would identify them as endler females, although I can't be certain without a picture so take this with a grain of salt.

Hope this was some help friend! :)
  • #3
Mosquitofish are not guppies or Endlers.

As for telling a female guppy from a female Endler. Get two pictures and pick the plainest looking one. Now you have a 50/50 chance. The biggest differentiation is going to be what males you put a (presumably) virgin female in with.
  • #4
Phenotypically, you won't be able to tell an endler female from a wildtype female guppy. But there's only the difference in DNA.
We had a rule in the beginning that the fin rays in the dorsal would differ between those two species. But it turned out that both species could have the same number of dorsal fin rays.
In male endlers and wildtype guppies, once the gonopodium has fully developed, there's a difference in the number of hooks. But they are still compatible with another when it comes to mating.

As BPSabelhaus has already stated, mosquito fish are not guppies nor endlers. The vertical bar on the eyes is not always present in mosquito fish. It differs per individual specimen.
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
Thanks SterSter, BPSabelhaus, & emeraldking for your replies!

SterSter, your reply is very helpful! The "female endlers" I saw had no coloration on their tails, making me think they were probably black bar variety but I don't know for sure. Just a guess!

BPSabelhaus/emeraldking: I know mosquitofish aren't guppies or endlers (I differentiated enough I hope.) Guppies, mollies, & endlers are poecilia. Mosquitofish are gambusia. Although not alike, not even closely related, mosquitofish look a lot like wild guppies/endlers thanks to convergent evolution. I also said "No black under the eyes like in most mosquitofish." Key word: most.

I've kept guppies, endlers, and mosquitofish for over 11 years. However, I haven't had F endlers, which is why I want to make sure the gals were really female endlers, and not just overpriced $6 female guppies I could get for $2
  • #6
Hopefully for $6 they’re at least guaranteed to have never met a male, whatever they be ;)
  • #7
I saw had no coloration on their tails
In general, fins in female wild guppy, wildtype guppy and endler guppy won't show any markings or coloration in their fins. But there are females of these three that do show some coloration of markings in their fins if they have the same dominant genes as the males of their own specific strain. This can (so, doesn't have to) also be seen on the saddle of those females.

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