Colors, patterns and shape of both body and fins are taken into consideration for classifying ornamental fancy guppies.Guppies are live-bearers and belong to the family Poeciliidae.
Guppies types are grouped into four categories namely, wild guppies, common or feeder guppies, Endler's guppies and fancy guppies. A detailed discussion on the first three types is given in the other posts of this site.
Herein we will discuss the classification of the fancy ones.
By selective and sophisticated methods of breeding may unique breed strains have come into existence.
Innumerable combinations of body colors, tail colors, tail patterns and body patterns are existing.
Adding to these are varied shapes of tail and dorsal fins.
In some unique breeds the place of origin of the fancy tail like 'German', 'American' or 'Russian' are added.
Color and patterns in the classification of guppies typesIrrespective of the body colour, tail color denotes the first name of strains. For example guppies with black body (any color for that matter) with red tails will be named as red types of guppies.
Patterns on the tail and body then come into reckoning for the sub group name types.
The anterior (towards head) body color pattern types:These are classified as gray, golden, white, tiger, metallic, albino, RREA (real red eye albino) and many other color variants.
Grey: This is the most common anterior body color and it is believed to be due to dominant genes as it is produced more often.
Metallic: Metallic color is seen in these types. The color may appear on the anterior region or on the entire body.
Platinum: In these strains the anterior body sparkle with platinum color.
White: In these fancy breeds the anterior body is white in color.
Tiger: In this fancy breed the scales have blackish coloration in the edge of the individual scales.
Gold (blond): These strains have yellowish gold coloration on the anterior side of the body.
Albino: This appears due to lack of color pigments.
RREA: Real red eye albino has pinkish eyes.
Red eye: In this fancy breed the eyes are deep red in color and the body may have different pigments.
The posterior (towards tail) body color pattern types:The posterior body pattern types include tuxedo (half black), cobra and snakeskin.
Tuxedo: In these types the posterior (towards tail) half of the body is black in color. AS if wearing tuxedo suits. These types are also called half blacks. Some fancy breeds have been developed to have colors like green and red in the posterior half.
Cobra: These strains have rosette pattern and also vertical bars, similar to snakeskin, but with bolder pattern.
Snakeskin: These fancy ones have a rosette pattern of small dots with chain like streaks giving the appearance of snakeskin.
The types of tail colors and patterns:Most commonly recognised patterns for tails are solid, Mosaic, Grass and leopard.
Solid color: In these fancy tails the color of the tail fin is total without any blemishes of other colors or patterns.
Grass: This pattern appears as small spots on the tail.
Mosaic: Unlike grass in these types the spots are bigger and inter-connected.
Leopard: These fancy breeds are similar to grass, but the spots are much bigger.
Fins in the classification of guppies typesThe shape of caudal fin, appearance of caudal fin and size of the tail fin is also considered for naming the ornamental fancy guppies.
Bottom sword, top sword, double sword, pin, spade, lyre, delta and fan tails are fin classifications.