Sailfin molly (Poecilia latipinna)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Cyprinodontiformes
Family: Poeciliidae
Genus: Poecilia
Bloch & Schneider, 1801

See text.

Poecilia is a genus of euryhaline brackish water fish in family Poeciliidae of order Cyprinodontiformes.[1] The type species is P. vivipara. Live-bearers, the Poecilia species are collectively known as mollies, with the exception of Endler's livebearer (P. wingei) and the famous guppy (P. reticulata). Members of this genus are members of the family Poecilidae, which includes the southern platyfish or "platy" (Xiphophorus maculatus), and the green swordtail (X. hellerii).



Along with their platy cousins, the mollies are part of a pivotal aquaculture group of livebearers, which can live in water from fresh to fully marine, and a wide range of other conditions. They feed on smaller insects, animals, and vegetation.

IUCN list two of the species, the sulphur molly, P. sulphuraria, and the broadspotted molly, P. latipunctata, as Critically Endangered.

The generic name Poecilia derives from the Greek ποικίλος (variegated), in reference to the fishes' coloration. Mollies need to live in water that is 25 to 28 °C (77 to 82 °F).

Mollies come in several different colors and spot patterns, such as black, white, black and white spots, orange, Orange and white spots.


FishBase lists 33 species.[2] Recently one new species was added,[3] bringing the total to 34 species:

  • Poecilia amazonica Garman, 1895.
  • Poecilia boesemani Poeser, 2003.
  • Pacific molly, Poecilia butleri Jordan, 1889.
  • Catemaco molly, Poecilia catemaconis Miller, 1975.
  • Cauca molly, Poecilia caucana (Steindachner, 1880).
  • Poecilia caudofasciata (Regan, 1913).
  • Dwarf molly, Poecilia chica Miller, 1975.
  • Poecilia dauli Meyer & Radda, 2000.
  • Elegant molly, Poecilia elegans (Trewavas, 1948).
  • Amazon molly, Poecilia formosa (Girard, 1859).
  • Poecilia gillii (Kner, 1863).
  • Hispaniola molly, Poecilia hispaniolana Rivas, 1978.
  • Poecilia koperi Poeser, 2003.
  • Poecilia kykesis Poeser, 2002.
  • Sailfin molly, Poecilia latipinna (Lesueur, 1821).
  • Broadspotted molly, Poecilia latipunctata Meek, 1904.
  • Poecilia marcellinoi Poeser, 1995.
  • Balsas molly, Poecilia maylandi Meyer, 1983.
  • Poecilia mechthildae Bork, Etzel & Meyer, 2002.
  • Shortfin molly, Poecilia mexicana Steindachner, 1863.
  • Poecilia nicholsi (Myers, 1931).
  • Mangrove molly, Poecilia orri Fowler, 1943.
  • Peten molly, Poecilia petenensis Günther, 1866.
  • Guppy, Poecilia reticulata Peters, 1859.
  • Poecilia rositae Meyer, Radda, Schartl, Schneider & Wilde, 2004.[3]
  • Poecilia salvatoris Regan, 1907.
  • Molly, black molly Poecilia sphenops Valenciennes, 1846.
  • Sulphur molly, Poecilia sulphuraria (Alvarez, 1948).
  • Mountain molly, Poecilia teresae Greenfield, 1990.
  • Poecilia vandepolli Van Lidth de Jeude, 1887.
  • Yucatan molly, Poecilia velifera (Regan, 1914).
  • Poecilia vivipara Bloch & Schneider, 1801.
  • Poecilia wandae Poeser, 2003.
  • Endler's livebearer, Poecilia wingei Isbrücker, Kempkes & Poeser, 2005.[4]


  1. ^ "Poecilia". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. http://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=165897. Retrieved June 8, 2006. 
  2. ^ Poecilia FishBase. Ed. Ranier Froese and Daniel Pauly. May 2006 version. N.p.: FishBase, 2006.
  3. ^ a b Manfred K. Meyer, Alfred C. Radda, Manfred Schartl, Klaus Schneider & Brigitta Wilde (November 2004). "A new species of Poecilia, subgenus Mollienesia, from upper río Cahabón system, Guatemala, with remarks on the Nomenclature of Mollienesia petenensis Günther, 1866 (Teleostei: Cyprinodontiformes: Poeciliidae)". Zoologische Abhandlungen 54: 145–154. ISSN 0375-5231. http://globiz.sachsen.de/snsd/publikationen/zool_abh_54_2004_145-154.pdf. 
  4. ^ Fred N. Poeser, Michael Kempkes, Isaac J. H. Isbrücker (2005). "Description of Poecilia (Acanthophacelus) wingei n. sp. from the Paria Peninsula, Venezuela, including notes on Acanthophacelus Eigenmann, 1907 and other subgenera of Poecilia Bloch and Schneider, 1801 (Teleostei, Cyprinodontiformes, Poecilidae)". Contributions to Zoology 74: 97–115. http://www.goodeids.com/docs/POESER_2005_WINGEI.pdf. 

External links

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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Poecilia latipinna — Poecilia latipinna …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Poecilia wingei — Poecilia wingei …   Wikipédia en Français

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