by Bob Larsen, South Jersey Guppy Group


GENETICS vs. FEEDING vs. ENVIRONMENT by Bob Larsen Congratulations! You have acquired a trio or more of quality guppies from a very good source. You have done your research and love these new fish. My opinions do not necessarily just pertain to guppies. What I am about to say can pertain to any fish. The scenario I would like to present concerns what is more important, which is to breed and raise your new fish to the level or better than the original breeders. I would say the genetics of the acquired fish is on top of the list. Without a good genetic line, you are probably finished before you begin. That’s not to say with due diligence and your own selective breeding, you could not eventually come up with some good fish. This process could take years longer with no guarantee of success. Many times over the years, I received some quality fish and it still took a couple generations to get them back to what I originally received. This could and probably occurs due to a change of environment. My second reason for breeding and raising quality fish would be environment. Without keeping up with water changes, cleaning tanks, and once in a while filter cleaning; your chances for success are diminished. Your water chemistry might not be suitable for the fish you want to keep. If this is the case, water parameters can be changed or corrected. This could be a pivotal point as to keeping one species vs. another who tolerates your water more readily. The third reason for success is what foods you feed and how often you feed. My opinion is that Genetics and Environment amount to about 90% of success. Foods and feeding schedule is the other 10%. In summation, if you start with bad fish, could keep the environment perfectly, you could feed ten times a day and still wind up with sub-standard fish. On the other hand you could start your breeding program with top quality fish that cost a fortune. Bring them home and not keep up with their environment and feeding and never have young attain show quality. It is up to you. All three areas contribute to your success, as long as you are diligent.


Bob Larsen