Comprehensive DescriptionRead full entry
BiologyInhabits warm springs and their effluents, weedy ditches and canals (Ref. 5723). Found in various habitats, ranging from highly turbid water in ponds, canals and ditches at low elevations to pristine mountain streams at high elevations (Ref. 11225). Occurs in wide variety of habitats with low predation pressure, usually in very small streams and densely vegetated lakes and springs (Ref. 59043). Has a wide salinity range but requires fairly warm temperatures (23-24 °C) and quiet vegetated water for survival (Ref. 7248, 44894, 79840). Feeds on zooplankton, small insects and detritus. One of the most popular aquarium fishes with many standardized varieties. Used in genetics research. Female reaches 5 cm SL (Ref. 2847). Males mature at 2 months and females at 3 months of age (Ref. 1672). Aquarium keeping: in groups of 5 or more individuals; minimum aquarium size 60 cm (Ref. 51539). A very popular and widely available species in the aquarium trade. In Australia, wild populations were established prior to the 1970s, undoubtedly the result of thoughtless aquarists discarding unwanted pets (Ref. 44894). Maximum length for female taken from Ref. 43281.