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FAQs on the Swordtail Foods/Feeding/Nutrition

Related Articles: Swordtails & Poeciliids: Guppies, Platies, Swordtails, Mollies by Neale Monks, Livebearing Fishes by Bob Fenner,

Related FAQs: Swordtails 1, Swordtails 2, Swordtail Identification, Swordtail Behavior, Swordtail Compatibility, Swordtail Selection, Swordtail Systems, Swordtail Disease, Swordtail Reproduction, Livebearers, Guppies, Platies, Mollies,

Re: Suggested tankmates for swordtails... hlth. -- 03/20/11
Hi again, thanks for all your help WWM! After the death of my Swordtail, I've been keeping a really close eye on my tank. I've noticed that most of my Swordtails have white stringy poop. After doing a lot of research, it seems like it could be an indicator of a number of things (e.g., parasites, stress, lack of fiber). Because they all seem to be active and healthy, I'm not sure what to make of this. I'm feeding them Hikari wafers -- is this enough fiber? Also, there doesn't seem to be any information on the etiology of white stringy poop. Why is it a sign of something wrong?
<When the gut is irritated it produces extra mucous, and in the case of fish this results in faeces that are paler and stringier than before. Among cichlids it is one of the indicators of Hexamita infections, but by itself the white, stringy faeces don't prove anything. For example, Swordtails are herbivores in the wild, so yes, they do produce more faeces than carnivores such as tetras. Such faeces do tend to be more solid coloured though because they contain particles of plant material and algae, rather than off-white mucous. On the whole Swordtails are a hardy bunch, but they are stressed by excessively high temperatures and the slow, sluggish water conditions in the average community tank. Remember, they come from fast-flowing streams and need lots of water current, plenty of swimming space (lack of exercise promotes constipation), and relatively low temperatures, 22-24 C being optimal. Cheers, Neale.>

Pregnant swordtail not eating   2/22/06 Hello, <Hi there>     Could you tell me if it is normal for a pregnant marigold swordtail to not be eating? <Often do stop feeding...> She was eating voraciously and then 2 days ago she started hiding from the other fish. Today she is hovering near the top 1/4 of the 55 gallon and has not eaten today or yesterday. It appears her pregnancy is in the final stages, so I expect them to drop within the day. Is this behavior or normal in her current state?   Thank you! <Is not atypical. Not to worry. Bob Fenner> Judy Stout

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