Territorial Female Guppies Question

Discussion in 'Guppy' started by MelloKitty711, Jul 19, 2019.

  1. MelloKitty711

    MelloKitty711New MemberMember

    I have 5 guppy fry who are about 2 months old. I believe 3 of the more colored ones to be Male and the two lighter colored ones female. The two that I believe to be female have chosen two spots where the filter flows the most through the tank, and they wait for detritus worms and anything extra they can snack on or pick at to flow through. They stay in the same spot unless they spot something edible or a Male guppy tries to come into their "space". Then they will chase the Male guppies away and nip at them until they leave. Is this normal behavior? They just started doing this. I feed them once or twice a day and the water parameters are good. It's a 20 gallon tank and their only mates are 3 corydoras and 2 nerite snails who stay out of the way.
  2. Imthatpeep100

    Imthatpeep100Valued MemberMember

    With my guppies over the 9 or so years, I have viewed some to be more dominant/territorial than others. I have had females nip other males' tails to shreds and another aggressively nip at anything that would try to ruin her #1 spot in the pecking order. It is not common but also not unheard of to have aggressive/territorial females especially if food is involved. I am even more inclined to believe this if they are guarding a spot where good food is at. Just seems they wanna stay at the top of their pecking order. As long as they aren't tearing the male fins (aggressive nipping) and rather just chase them off (pecking nipping), it's okay. I would have a 1m:2f ratio though to prevent excessive breeding on either genders' end.
  3. OP

    MelloKitty711New MemberMember

    Oh okay, it seems that they are guarding food like you said lol. It's kind of cute. I actually dont want anymore fry at all right now so I'm kind of at a loss on what to do, because I'm attached to all 5 but I also dont have an extra tank to separate them in. I was thinking about just keeping the males.
  4. Imthatpeep100

    Imthatpeep100Valued MemberMember

    If you want all males, just be aware they can get stressed and exhibit irregular breeding females. Livebearers breed 24/7 as it's how they learned to survive. I find it less stressful on them to have proper breeding ratios. If you want all one gender, females generally are easier than males to keep, but eitherway you go, there's no guarantee you'll have 0 stress. I experimented on and off with 1 gender tanks and it seems that the gender ratio I gave allows males to stay busy without bullying others and vice versa. They generally are peaceful, but overtime stress becomes more apparent especially if the guppies weren't sexually mature at first.

    Before I recommend how you should set up for a one gender tank, I'll say that you can get money back when raising fry. You can trade them to most LFS for in-store credit (real payment is usually illegal) or independently sale on your own. I used to breed for specific morphs, but for the past three or so years, any overabundance of fry I get are sold as feeders. I sell mine for $0.15USD per guppy. Each month I make anywhere around $5-20.00USD depending on how many I have/can sale. Granted, I have a 75g which allows for a lot of fry to be born. Anything 30g or smaller you shouldn't really get more than 10-30 fry per female (but of course I've had special ones give birth up to 78ish in 10g breeding set-up's in the past).

    For one gender tanks, you'll probably want to overstock as I had better luck with these than fewer. Similar to the cicihlid principle (more fish means aggression is more dispersed, but this doesn't apply to all fish btw). Also have plenty of coverage. 3/5 plant density seems to work. Ensure you do this at the top as these are top dwelling fish. I recommend an odd number to help prevent bullying from pairing up as well as aesthetics (odd numbers seem more natural looking). Keep in mind of aggressive nipping and pecking nipping:
    Aggressive nipping: Taking chunks of tails, beating a fish up
    Pecking nipping: chasing away from food, establishing pecking order, no physical harm

    Of course, every set up is different. Most tanks I have seen failed after a few months (when the fish would sexually mature). There was little coverage for fish to hide, not many individuals which allowed aggressive nipping/bullying. They are tiny fish, but I find breeding a part of their needs. When people don't wanna do it, it's gonna take more work to ensure they don't get stressed from it.

    Hopefully I said everything I needed to about one gender tanks. Otherwise, lemme know if you ever have questions or concerns :D
  5. FeederGuppies

    FeederGuppiesWell Known MemberMember

    Is it possible for you to get a divider? I would recommend keeping the males, since the females are probably pregnant again and will have more fry.

    I have experienced the opposite. I keep my males and females separate because I don't want to deal with all the excess fry. My males do great together and only start nipping at each other if I've missed a water change and they're stressed about it.
    I also keep adolescents in with my males. Occasionally a female will have fry before I notice she's mature. Interestingly, most of the males don't even notice the small, but mature females at all, so I would disagree that their life is all about mating.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 22, 2019
  6. OP

    MelloKitty711New MemberMember

    Oh okay, I dunno maybe guppies arent for me then... I'm kinda attached to them now, though. They are still fry themselves so I'm trying to figure out what to do before I have more fry on my hands. I originally had two guppies given to me and it spiraled out of control.. their parents ate most of the fry and there were 5 of them left. I guess maybe I can just give them to a fish store and try another kind of fish.

    Yeah I could do that, I have a 20 gallon tank.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 22, 2019
  7. Somthingfishy01

    Somthingfishy01Valued MemberMember

    My female guppy does THE EXACT same thing, very territorial and bitchy towards others. Don't worry about it, its very normal behavior.
    I sometimes add a tiny bit of aquarium salt to my tank and sometimes that one female guppy acts a little less aggressive afterwards.
    As long as the other fish dont have any torn fins or anything like that then I wouldn't worry about it much
  8. Imthatpeep100

    Imthatpeep100Valued MemberMember

    Well, if you're unsure about guppies, I highly recommend going for paradise fish. Underrated fish that don't suffer from overbreeding (like some guppies do) as well as being coldwater. Pretty colorful and fun fish! Plan on using them for apart of a pond stock outside :D

    Otherwise, @FeederGuppies that's good to hear they didn't fight much with you. Your tank might have been overstocked? That usually helps as well. I had some successful ones, but I usually prefer gender ratios so I usually recommend that lol. I'll still give my take on setting up for one gender tanks though: overstock, 3/5 plant density and watch during feedings. Otherwise, knowing your whole set up would interest me for future notice. It's nice to hear other's experiences
  9. FeederGuppies

    FeederGuppiesWell Known MemberMember

    I usually have around 7-10 adults (endler hybrids and guppies) and several adolescents and fry in a 20 gallon. Yeah, it's probably overstocked.
    I did have one male that was a jerk to all my others and had to be separated. If you just have one or two long-tails with a lot of short-tails you might see some problems. I currently have long-tailed guppies and short-tailed endler hybrids. They get along really well.