Updated on: December 6, 2022 by Praveen Ghoshal | Reading Time: 4 minutes
There are 300 types of guppy fish existing with a variety of tail shapes and color patterns.
So if you want to make your tank look amazing and colorful, keeping different guppies comes to mind. But is it really possible? Let’s explore!
Will Different Types Of Guppies School Together?
Different types of guppies are generally compatible with one another and can school together. Although different guppies’ body patterns and colors can vary, they all belong to the same species of fancy guppy, so they will remain together.
The schooling behavior in fish usually happens when the fish are from the same species and have a similar size.
That said, don’t expect guppies to swim in a tight group. They’re not going to school like a group of clown loaches.
Instead, different guppies will continue to do their own thing and swim in groups, demonstrating shoaling rather than schooling behavior. (This concept is further explained in one of the subsequent sections of this article.)
Guppies are typically peaceful community fish that do not exhibit much aggression toward one another. So, even if you have guppies of different species, they can usually coexist without causing major problems.
You can house as many guppies as you want in your tank as long as it is large enough. But there is a catch!
The catch is that the more guppies you have, the more likely you will quickly run out of tank space for them.
Guppies are well-known for their fast reproduction rate. To learn more, check our guide on how many babies guppies produce.
Please keep in mind that all types of guppies are capable of breeding with each other. Furthermore, cross-breeding is possible in guppies. So, whether you keep different types of guppies in a school or not, there is always the risk of overcrowding your tank with guppy fries.
How Many Guppies Should Be Kept Together?
Regarding compatibility, you can keep any guppies together because they are usually peaceful fish. There are two options for housing different types of guppies:
- Keeping all male guppies together. You will notice slight aggression but still it won’t be significant enough. It’s doable. (See related: Do male guppies need females?)
- Another option is to keep guppies in a ratio of 1 male with 2 female guppies. This ratio ensures less aggression and competition amongst male guppies to mate with female guppies. It also reduces harassment among female guppies related to mating.
So you can choose either option. Male guppies are generally more attractive due to their showy fins and colors. If you don’t mind aggression and prefer male guppies, you can keep 5-6 male guppies of different types in a tank.
If you want to keep male and female guppies, choose the types wisely based on the recommended ratio.
For example, suppose you want to keep tequila and turquoise guppies together. You’d also like to keep male and female guppies together.
In this case, you can keep one male and two female Tequila guppies, as well as one male and two female Turquoise guppies. So in a fish tank, you will have 6 guppies.
The general rule is that each guppy will require 2 gallons in terms of tank space. So you’ll need at least 12 gallons of tank space for 6 guppies.
However, if you’ve been keeping other fish as tank mates for your guppies, such as neon tetras (along with 6 guppies), a 20-30 gallon tank will be more appropriate depending on how many other fish you keep in the tank.
What Is The Best Type Of Guppies To House Together?
In terms of species, guppies are classified into three groups:
- Endler Guppies (Poecilia wingei)
- Swamp Guppies (Micropoecilia picta)
- Fancy Guppies (Poecilia reticulata)
The fancy guppies are what we usually call ‘common guppies.’ Fancy guppies are one of the most popular fish and are easily noticeable in pet stores.
Fancy guppies (or common guppies) are available in different breeds and are known for their color variety among aquarists.
Here’s a list of some of the most beautiful types of fancy guppies that you can house in your aquariums:
|Types Of Guppies||Specialty|
|Round Tail Guppies||Available in different colors and patterns. They have a beautiful circular tail fin that can please any aquarist.|
|Tuxedo Guppies||Possess a two-toned body. It can look well in a group with other colorful guppies like the cobra or lace guppies.|
|Leopard Guppies||They have awesome leopard-like markings on the tail fin, which sets it apart from other guppies.|
|Cobra Guppies||A spotted pattern exits in the body and tail. Come in a variety of colors and have vertical stripes on their body.|
|Lace Guppies||Have detailed markings on the body and tail. With the fan-shaped tail, these guppies look stylish.|
Watch this video to see some of the most beautiful guppies:
Are Guppies Shoaling Or Schooling Fish?
Note that guppies are mainly shoaling fish and don’t show much schooling behavior unless they feel threatened. So mostly, you’ll find your guppies swimming around in the tank in the form of loose groups.
Confused about shoaling and schooling? Let me explain:
Shoaling refers to the condition in which a group of fish stays together as a part of their social behavior. However, schooling is a closed group of fish. Usually, when a shoaling fish remains together and swims in a coordinated manner – it is termed schooling.
You can think of it like this: any group of fish that remains together for social reasons.
See, any social group of fish can represent a shoal. But not every shoal of fish represents schooling behavior.
And guppies show both shoaling and schooling behavior. However, their shoaling behavior gets expressed more in home aquariums.
You won’t find guppies moving together in a coordinated way a lot. Although they will stay together as a group, most will do their own stuff and explore the tank.
So don’t get disheartened if you keep different types of guppy fish together and don’t see much schooling behavior. It should be expected as a normal behavior.
As long as each guppy in your community tank remains peaceful and swims around doing its own stuff, it’s fine. The best benefit of keeping a variety of guppies together is you can enjoy the experience of housing a variety of beautiful guppies together in the same tank.
Will Different Guppies School With Other Fish?
Typically, Guppies won’t school with other fish in the tank. However, since they are usually peaceful community fish, they can get along with other compatible tank mates.
Here are some of the compatible tank mates you can keep with your guppies:
- Cory Catfish
- Gourami Fish
- Kuhli Loach
- Nerite Snails
- Red Cherry Shrimps
- Bristlenose Plecos
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