The gestation period for this species is about three to four weeks, depending upon temperature, and a single female may give birth on multiple occasions throughout the year. These small, oblong fish are generally gray with rows of spots that almost blend to look like stripes. Otherwise, hybrids can be bred among themselves, or with a higher rate of success with their parent species. [citation needed]. Sailfin mollies are most commonly observed in the shallow surface waters along the edges of marshes, lowland streams, ponds, swamps, estuaries and even ephemeral water bodies such as roadside ditches. Depending upon environmental conditions, sailfin mollies may become reproductive in less than a year. Sailfin Molly in Assorted Colors - Aquatic Arts, Excellent for medium and larger planted aquariums. Due to genomic recombination, F1 hybrids often display novel and bizarre fin shapes. Males exhibit large and colorful dorsal fins in addition to a colorful caudal fin and these conspicuous secondary sexual features play a role in female mate choice. The sailfin molly is a tolerant species, as it can exploit the thin film of oxygen-rich surface water with its upturned mouth, so is able to survive oxygen-depleted habitats. The sailfin molly was originally described in 1821 as Mollienesia latipinna by the naturalist Charles Alexandre Lesueur, oft noted as one of a number of persons instrumental in the founding of a well known experimental settlement at New Harmony, Indiana during the 1820’s. Specific examples include: giant water bugs (Belostomatidae), largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides), American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana), snowy egret (Egretta thula), and raccoon (Procyon lotor). However, Lesueur described other collections of the sailfin molly as Mollienesia multilineata in 1821, the same year in which he described M. latipinna. It is this conspicuous and attractive feature that lends the species its prevailing common name. Reproduction The body of the sailfin molly is essentially oblong. [citation needed] The maximum recorded size for this species is 150 mm (5.9 in) TL.[6]. A euryhaline species, the sailfin molly may be found in a variety of saline environments, tolerating salinities as high as 87 ppt and breeding in brackish waters. A euryhaline species, the sailfin molly may be found in a variety of saline environments and will breed in brackish waters. The greater the population, the smaller the average size of males. The body of the sailfin molly is essentially oblong. The sailfin molly, in its many color varieties is of considerable interest and value to aquarists and many artificially selected varieties are produced and sold in pet shops. In mature males, the dorsal fin is greatly enlarged (it is this feature that gives the species its common name) and the caudal fin is similarly colourful; these conspicuous secondary sexual features play a role in female mate choices. Sailfin mollies feed primarily upon algae and other plant materials, although they will consume a number of aquatic invertebrates including the larvae of mosquitos. Aquarists have developed many color variations in this species, and indeed much variation occurs naturally in the wild, with melanistic and speckled forms known. (Trematoda: Haploporidae), International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), 10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-2.RLTS.T191748A58335451.en, "Arizona State Aquatic Nuisance Species Management Plan", "Status of the Desert Pupfish, Cypronidon macularius (Baird and Girard), in California",, Freshwater fish of the Southeastern United States, Articles with dead external links from May 2018, Articles with permanently dead external links, Articles with unsourced statements from November 2014, Articles with unsourced statements from August 2014, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 30 October 2020, at 08:57. At one year of age males typically range in size from 15-51 mm SL while mature females are likely to be approximately 19-53 mm SL. The greater the population, the smaller the average size of males. The sailfin molly is found in freshwater habitats from North Carolina to Texas and the Yucatán Peninsula of Mexico. There is no parental care exhibited by this species. Masks are required at all times. Females tend to be larger and more plainly colored, a different characteristic to the Poeciliidae. Learn what else we are doing to keep you safe. Lesueur based his description of the sailfin molly upon specimens from freshwater ponds in the vicinity of New Orleans, Louisiana. and the Description of Lecithobotrys sprenti n. sp. This species is listed as "Least Concern" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).[1]. Often, these spots blend together, forming stripes. Sailfin mollies produce broods of 10-140 live young, depending on maturity and size, and females may store sperm long after the demise of their relatively short-lived mates. In a landmark definitive work on poeciliid fishes, Donn Rosen and Reeve Bailey (1959) noted the priority of Poecilia by Marcus Elieser Bloch and Johann Gottlob Schneider (1801) with regards to Mollienesia by Lesueur (1821), thereby relegating Mollienesia to the synonymy of Poecilia. Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. Their upturned faces help them draw from the upper layer of oxygen-rich water, allowing them to thrive in poor quality water. (2006). The Sailfin Molly is an excellent fish for beginners as well as experts!

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