Endler’s Livebearers, Poecilia wingei, have charged ahead in a way I never would have predicted. At first glance, they seem very reminiscent of the wild-type “feeder guppies” I used to pick through as a kid, looking for something special or unique. However, with the advent of nano aquariums gaining in popularity, small and “micro” fish have found a spotlight. Endlers are very small (males generally 0.75″), energetic and extremely vibrant in coloration, and they come in so many variations, both pure and guppy hybrids.
The Yellow Top Sword Endler is simply a captive-produced true-breeding strain of Endler’s Livebearer. Females are generally unmarked ,simply being olive gray. As with all livebearer strains, there is some variability in coloration from fish to fish. Looking at various strain photos online, these may in fact be of the “Mint Top Yellow Sword” strain, produced by Andrian Hernandez.
Arguably no one has done more to market and build the following of the Endler than Adrian Hernandez of Swamp River Aquatics; if you are looking to start up conservation minded breeding programs with Endlers, I would point you to him first and foremost for your broodstock. Why?
Well, for example, while the Yellow Top Sword Endlers I offer appear to be true to type, they are not sold to me as “N-Class” nor can I trace them back to the source to establish beyond any doubt that they are 100% pure. And there is the notice above that “Yellow Top Sword” may not in fact be the full and appropriate name for this strain as mentioned above – perhaps these are actually “Mint Top Yellow Swords”? This scenario illustrates one of the shortfalls of hobbyist-breeding; information isn’t always 100% preserved, and information lost cannot generally be reapplied.
While in all likelyhood this line of YTS Endlers are pure Endlers (I have no reason to believe they are not), knowing the concerns over the preservation of this species in the wild (it is thought it may actually be gone), I consider these Yellow Top Sword Endlers suitable for general hobbyist keeping, but again, not for a conservation-minded breeding program. They’re best viewed as an aquarium strain. These regionally produced Endlers are vigorous and healthy, and that’s why I make them available! Yes, I am probably being more than overly cautious, but I always hope for the same care and conservation consideration with projects like my Lightning Maroon Clownfish!