There are a number of interesting variations in color and tail shape that determine how a certain platy is named. Selective breeding has created some very unique looking combinations, which I will mention later on in this article.
Gold Red Platy Fish:
While most platys will get their orange color from carotene (which comes from eating things like brine shrimp and algae) or by having two red parents, the Gold Red Platy has a genetic predisposition to be that color. While the Gold Platy is quite rare in stores, it is one of the easiest variations to breed on your own. They are not developed through selective breeding like other platys, but rather they are born that way (genetic mutation), which is why you will rarely see this type of platy in the store.
Neon Blue Wagtail Platy Fish:
The Neon Blue Wagtail Platy was developed by breeders selectively pairing Wagtails and Blue Platys and then allowing them to breed. The Neon Fish variety also has a genetic predisposition for its neon blue color, so it is fairly easy to produce in your fish tank if you have the proper environment. This type of platy is rare in most stores, so you may be able to find one by looking online or at a local fish store.
Mickey Mouse Platy Fish:
While I cannot find any scientific background on this variation of platties, there are some interesting theories about how they come about. One theory states that when two different variations of platys (like a Mickey and another variety) are bred together, the offspring will sometimes take after only one parent and receive certain physical traits from that parent. In the case of mickey mouse platys, some say that since they seem to inherit a split-tail from one parent and the body color and facial features (like big eyes and button nose) from the other, this combination might produce Mickey Mouse Platy Fish.
Parrot Platy Fish:
Parrots were selectively bred with Wagtails to create Parrot Platys . Similar to how we can selectively breed dogs or cats to produce certain physical traits in those animals, such as dalmatians for their spots or Siamese Cats for darker points on their ears and noses, we can do the same thing with fish by selectively breeding them together. This type of platy also rare in stores , but like the neon blue and gold red varieties, you may be able to find one by looking online or in a local fish store.
Hifin Tuxedo Yellow Platy Fish:
The Hifin Tuxedo Platy gets its name from its split-tail (similar to that of a zebra) and it’s coloration, which looks like the black and white tuxedo pattern on some men . This type of platy is fairly easy to breed once you have some experience with doing so. They are more costly than other types of platys , because they are not as common in stores .
Pintail Rainbow Platy Fish:
Pintails were bred with Moonsnails to create Pintail Platys , which is why they have the split-tail. The fish’s tailfin divides into two parts, giving it a “double tail” appearance . This type of platy is not readily available in stores , but rather you will probably find them online or at a local fish store if they can be located.
Tuxedo Platy Fish:
The Tuxedo Platy takes its name from its coloration resembling that of a tuxedo and from the fact that their tails are split like most other types of platys (such as Wagtails). These types of platys were bred using selective breeding to create the long split fin on their tails and come in a variety of different colors. You will find more types of tuxedo platys than Gold Red, Parrot or Mickey Mouse Platy Fish, but like the other unusual varieties, they are not readily available in stores.
Panda Platy Fish:
The Panda Platy is similar to Hifin Tuxedo platties because it takes its name from its coloration (white and black panda pattern) and also has a split tail like most other varieties of platys (such as Wagtails). This type of platy is more pricey than others , because it is less common in stores .
Black Hamburg Platy Fish:
Black Hamburgs were bred with Hifin Tuxedo fish to get the same long fin on the end of their tails like Hifin Tuxedo fish. You can produce your own Black Hamburgs by selectively breed Wagtails (which will give them the split-tail) with Hifin Tuxedos (which will get you black and white coloration). These types of platys are difficult to find in stores , but like other unusual varieties, they may be available online or at a local fish store if they can be found.
Gold Twinbar Platy:
Platys that have two small gold bars down each side of their body are called Gold Twinbars . This type of platties is more common in stores than some others , because it is not as costly to produce in large quantities for sale. This type of platy is interesting to breed yourself, because you can get more than one bar on each side of the fish’s body if they are bred using selective breeding techniques.
Rainbow Platy Fish:
Platys that have all the color variations (red , blue , green , gold and lots of others) running vertically down their bodies are called Rainbow Platies . You will find this type of Platties in stores at times, but like most other types, they are not readily available for purchase . However, some unusual varieties (like Mickey Mouse) may be available by looking online or in a local fish store if they can be found.
Red Gold Wagtail Platy Fish:
Red Wagtails are platys that have red coloration down each side of their bodies and are bred using selective breeding with Gold Wagtails to produce Red Gold Wagtail Platies . It is more challenging to breed this type of platties on your own, but if you can find a Red Wagtail , you can selectively breed it with a Gold Wagtail until you get Red Gold varieties. This type of platy is not readily available in stores , but rather you will probably find them online or at a local fish store if they can be located.
Pintail Red Wagtail Platy Fish:
The Pintail Wagtail plati takes its name from the long split-fin on it’s tail (similar to that of Hifin Tuxedo Platys) and from the fact that it is red with a few black spots on its body. These types of platys are more expensive than most other types because they are harder to breed in large quantities for sale . You will probably find this type of platties at local fish stores or online , but not readily available in large numbers.
Red Hifin Balloon Platy Fish:
Hifin Balloon platys are named after their long split tail fin (similar to Wagtails) and are bred using selective breeding with Hifin Tuxedos, which get you black & white coloration. This type of platy is not found readily in stores , but you will likely find them online or at a local fish store if they can be located.
Sunset Platy Fish:
Sunset platys are similar to the other unusual varieties of platties because you produce them by selectively breeding different colors and patterns together . You will find this type of plati in stores occasionally, but like most other types, it is not readily available for purchase . However, some unusual varieties (like Mickey Mouse) may be available by looking online or in a local fish store if they can be found. If you want to breed them yourself , you need to find those particular color & pattern combinations so you can selectively breed your own .
Blue Hifin Mickey Mouse Platy Fish:
The Blue Hifin Mickey Mouse Platy fish is not a real type of platy, just a specific coloration that has been created using selective breeding . To get this coloration , breed Mickey Mouse with Hifin Balloons to get your black & white colors and then selectively breed those fish together until you have the blue coloration. These types of platys are not found readily in stores , but you will likely find them online or at a local fish store if they can be located.
Platies are very interesting specimens because the male and female develop different colorations as adults, making it easier to determine their sex without having to look inside their bodies or use other complicated methods . Males also become much more colorful as they age , where females remain mostly grayish colored throughout adulthood . There are many other interesting aspects of Platys, but the most important thing to know is that they are easy to breed and fun to watch as you selectively try different colorations together until you find one you like.