Poecilia sp. endler
Livebearer, Endler's Poecilia.
extract from the article Three Unusual Livebearers by Howard Norfolk. Original publication :
Vancouver Aquatic Hobbyist Club Newsletter.
Livebearers are small guppy-like fish. They were first collected in 1937,
and then re-discovered in 1975 by Professor John Endler. He took the fish
to The New York Aquarium, from where they were taken to Germany. German
aquarists bred them, sometimes mixing them with guppies of various breeds,
and in the 1980's they found their way back to America, and to Japan and
Endler says that the "Endler's livebearer" is its own species,
since although it will interbreed with the guppy (many livebearers will
interbreed), it will only produce F1 hybrids. It should be kept apart from
guppies unless hybrids are desired.
were found in a small lake called Laguna de Patos, near Cumana, in the hot
dry coastal desert area of north-eastern Venezuela, and were rumoured to
be in another lake nearby. The Laguna is a warm (81°C) marsh, with hard
brackish water, and is green with unicellular algae. It is only two miles
from the city dump, and Dr. Endler speculated in 1995 that the fish may be
extinct in the wild by now. I have also been told that a resort has
recently been built in the area and that the lake has been filled in.
female is larger and looks like a female guppy, but the male is a very
unusual looking little jewel of a fish, with iridescent metallic green,
orange, gold and black blocks of colour, a white dorsal fin and a red
forked tail. The markings are unusually laid out: if there is such a thing
as an "Art-Deco" fish, this is it! The water in which they were
found was so green with algae that it is supposed that the bright
colouration evolved as the only way a female could see a prospective mate!
As with many other fish, the most dominant males are the brightest
coloured, which is believed due to hormones in alpha males. The intensity
of the colour patches also varies according to the conditions this fish
finds himself in, and what is more, even in the wild, there were further
variations in colour between individuals (e.g. 10% of males had black
are active fish that swim at all levels and eat and breed readily, and
should be happy wherever you might otherwise keep guppies.