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Re: Live bearers vs. egglayers

> Isn't the real question how much output you can get from a given size
>  culture, regardless of how many fry the individual females produce at
>  a time? A large population of live-bearers provides a stable source of
>  feeders. I think this is preferable to the erratic output of egg-layers.
>  Eggs have to be protected. Fry have to grow to a free-swimming stage;
>  during this period they're absorbing their yolk-sacs, so there's some
>  wastage there. But hey, whatever works for you!
There is some validity to that.  With enough females, you can match the output
of an egg-laying pair.  But the sheer volume of water needed to maintain
enough guppies to match one pair of convicts, which produce 200 fry as regular
as rain, every ten days, that's a lot of guppies and a lot of tank space.

But like you say, whatever works for you.  I have kept guppies.  Nice ones,
fancy ones.  And I hated culling, but my angels, jewels, and oscars loved it.
But I personally think it 
is easier to get large numbers of fry regularly from a happy pair of convicts.
A ten-gallon tank for spawning, and two or three for hatching and raising the
fry.  By the time one batch of fry is gone, the next batch is ready.  I can
use the whole batch while they are real small, in addition to the other stuff
I feed to the killies and dwarf cichlids, although my female Apistos sometimes
"adopt" their dinner instead of eating it.

On the other hand, platy or guppy fry will grow a little quicker.  But if I
want smaller fry for smaller fish, the cichlids still have an edge.