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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2013, 09:43 AM Thread Starter
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Post happen often or?

Just wondering when taking the male out after the fry are free swimming is there a high or low chance he'll become so depressed/stressed from being taken from his fry, he'll die?
read a few things here and there where the male betta dies after being removed just kinda wondering why..
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2013, 10:52 AM
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I just pulled my male.. wishing now I kept him in longer.. he didn't like it, still swimming around on the bottom like he's searching to get back. But it does happen.. stress and exhaustion can happen easily.

Breeder so I have too many to count and too many named to list here!

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2013, 01:10 PM
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The boy I just spawned was super depressed after I removed him. Built up an old nest and kept looking for fry in his home tank. I felt horrible, but he overworked himself so badly in the spawn tank that he started to lose a lot of color. I had to move him out so he could relax.

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2013, 01:18 PM
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Yeah they go through the "really bummed out" stage but my fry are more at risk with him in the tank imo (depends on the male) so for the good of the spawn I remove him but Im not worried that the boy will die of broken heart cuz I have not seen that myself.

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2013, 01:24 PM
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I'm not sure if it's a species thing, but my males seem to forget their fry as soon as they become free-swimming and leave the nest. If I remove the fry before they have completely left the nest the dad does search around for them for a few minutes and kind of has a baffled expression on his face.

Never had any of my males become extremely depressed or sick because their fry are gone.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2013, 02:04 PM
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Males will get depressed and lethargic after being separate from their babies.. Just keep them isolated a while in warm, clean water and feed them a little extra. :) Mine love frozen foods, so I give my newly pulled males lots and lots of frozen foods to try to pick them up.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2013, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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was a bit worried if I spawn my red male for the first time heh.. don't want to lose him. I can say one thing about him he does love to eat lol.. feed my betta frozen bloodworms/BS/pellets they all big out!! mix it up every feeding or so.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2013, 05:05 AM
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When I first started breeding bettas, I always pulled the male as soon as the fry became free swimming. Almost every single time, the male became "mopey" or depressed. After reading an article somewhere by OFL, I decided to give it a try to leave the male in with the fry as long as possible.

I have lost count of how many spawns I have had over the years. I have yet to have the male eat ALL the fry. I have found if they are in a small container, or if I feed too sparingly, some of the fry will disappear, but never all. I have since learned to give a plenty big enough tank and feeding things that will live in the tank for a while lends itself better to genously feeding without the worry of spoiling the water. Lots of leafy plants (wisteria is my favorite) allows the fry to swim away from the nest, without Dad getting too anxious and over worked trying to collect them all. After a few days, you can start to feed the fry a little further and further away from the nest, and Dad will give up the nest. Once he has given up the nest, you will wittness him "calling" the fry when you feed. It makes it easier to switch to non-live foods, and bring more variety to their diets. Dad will let them know what if meant to be eaten. At some point, Dad will stop surveying the tank continuously, and start to stay in one small area. That is when I pull the Dad. He pretty much has left them to their own, and is sort of fed up with their shenanigans.lol Also, when they have first left the nest, Dad will still continuously swim the tank. As he passes by the ry, they will swim after him. Of course, they cannot keep up, but they get way more exercise and are much stronger with Dad's presence.

All that being said, you do have to watch to make sure Dad does eat, and does rest. Plants make that easier for him as well. I usually have them bundled, then when the fry are first free swimming, I take them out of the bundles and spread them through the tank, making sure some are just a few inches below the nest for Dad to rest on.

Deciding to try leaving the Dad with the fry was one of the best things I decided to do with breeding bettas. It is so fascinating to watch the interaction and behaviors. I encourage every one to give it a try. Don't jump to the conclusion that he is eating them when you see him grab one up. Watch him for as long as it takes to see him open his mouth again. Several times over the years, I saw a Dad grab one and swim to another part of the tank and release it. I always wonder what I missed. Was their a sibling rivalry getting ready to break out? Was he reminding them who is in charge? What was the purpose of that? lol Guess I will never know unless I learn to speak bubble. lol

If you do pull Dad, and he is depressed, show him a lady for just a few minutes, especially if he has a favorite. or maybe even give him just a few fry to look after. One more tip, if you do leave Dad with fry, don't let them see a female for they may decide they would rather spawn again. I don't know if this is true or not, for I always keep all other bettas out of sight of the spawn tanks. Oh how I love these fish!
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2013, 02:30 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply guys :)
Not sure what I might do just yet still haven't even bred my first pair heh..
I'm soo curious though! I wanna see a male "calling" his fry to his side! anyone have a video of that?
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2013, 04:00 PM
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I don't know of any video of it, but have that on my "to do" list. That is if I ever stop spending money on my fish (I breed more than just bettas) and buy a video camera. I don't even have a camera.lol Other than on my phone.

Just another thing I wanted to tell you about that I find interesting. The first day that the fry become free swimming, they go all over the tank. That first day, Dad is soo busy gathering them up. Yet the next day, the fry never leave the tank unless it is to feed, then they go back to the nest. Sure there are some that have a mind of their own and don't follow suit, but for the most part, they all return. Every single spawn that I have left Dad with the fry this has happened. I find that so fascinating. Somehow he tells them to stay with the nest, and they do. That is what I meant by feed them further and further from the nest. Eventually, usually around day four, give or take, they give up the nest. At which point I will remove the styrofoam cup that I use for them to make a nest under, and help disperse some of the bubbles, not all, just some, as some of the fry will still be hanging out there. I just want to encourage the late bloomers to get out there with the rest. This also helps Dad forget about it as well.
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