Tuesday, April 20, 2010

More animal tales (tails)

OK, so last fall (October, I think), Shannon brought home two fish from school. A platy and a guppie. We went out, brought a 6 gallon tank and all the necessary accessories. Then we put in a couple more fish. And the original platy died along with one of the new platys. We now have one platy and one guppy. Always the one guppie. Then in February, as we're leaving for school, the girls start screaming about babies. I assumed they meant baby bunnies outside. Well, you know what happens when you assume.

We had a tank full of baby guppies, which I found quite confusing since there one only one guppy this whole time. What is the gestation period for guppies? Anyway, I grabbed a large measuring cup and a net and scooped out the platy and adult guppy, gave them some food, stuck a plant in the measuring cup and went to work. While I was there, I did some checking and found out that I need something called a floating grassmat for them to hide in so they won't get eaten. Now the adults can go back in the tank. But I still don't understand how it is she gave birth.

One of my friends came to the rescue and explained that guppies only need to do the big nasty once, and then can store sperm and impregnate themselves later. Repeatedly apparently, because the original group of babies numbered 8, of which 6 survived, and now we have 15. And there is a major difference in their size.

Now I'm left with the choice of finding homes for these guppies or getting a bigger tank. Or both if she keeps giving birth.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Weird. I never had a fish live over a week so finally gave up. Then a guy asked me to babysit the big angel fish he had had for years. I told him my luck but he insisted all would be well. That sucker died within two days because the guy didn't bring the lamp to keep the water warm. I did everything but give that fish mouth to mouth resuscitation. I felt like a murderer...