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Old 01-10-2013, 11:37 AM   #61 
Myates
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Just have to say.. love the discussion now :) Not much for me to say right now, I'm 100% on Little's page here, she says it all!
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:22 PM   #62 
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Yes, these kinds of discussion are always interesting and often may result in something new.

CD: Sorry, I don't keep that many colors at one time. I don't really like light colors, specially cambodian and pale/cellophane - though I sometimes need their genes. Currently I mainly have dark colors - black and turquoise/blue dragons. I concluded the above from my years of betta keeping. TBH, I started betta keeping for fighting (early 1970's). Out of all the colors, wild colors followed by turquoise tend to show more mentality. Blue, red, and light colors often will never really flare again once they're stressed or lost a fight. OR they need longer time in isolation to regain their mentality. While black and turquoise will usually flare after a day in isolation prior to losing a fight. None will fight that long once they've lost a fight - low mentality.

BTW; I differentiate "aggressive" - "vicious" - and "mentality". The first is immediately flaring as soon as they see a rival, other fish (different species), a stick, etc. Aggressive is not necessarily vicious and sometimes can be housed in sororities. Vicious is not necessarily aggressive and connot be housed in a sorority. A "chicken" who will not fight against other males may beat the life out of females - vicious. Mentality is something that makes them flare/fight longer - not easily stressed. Usually bettas grown in sororities (never isolated) will have low mentality and won't fight for long (NOT ALWAYS - the alfa's usually show higher mentality).

In the previous post I was talking about mentality related to color, not aggressiveness nor viciousness. But I haven't fought bettas in a very long time (I was only a dumb kid back then), so I don't know if color still determines their mentality. All I know is that today's fighters come in wild/natural colors. And I still believe that light colors such as white or cellophane have low mentality compared to their dark cousins.
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:25 PM   #63 
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Well the stupid site delete my whole massive post when I accidentally clicked something (wish this site would save your posts so you can go back and continue writing them) so I shall have to start over.


To me, having kept and spawned wild species, aggression is just such a big part of these fish, and a perfectly natural behaviour.

Most of my fish live as pairs, which is what most people want to be able to do with their ornamental splendens. However, my males still chase, intimidate, and inflict injury on their female, and vice versa. I wouldn't say they were cohabitating peacefully 100% of the time, because outside of spawning, males and females don't have a lot of use for each other.

Sometimes I think some people (not saying anyone on this thread) get into a utopian style fantasy where their splendens are able to live side-by-side in male/female pairs. Unless you created a line of completely non-aggressive fish, there is still always going to be some tension from time to time. You just decrease the risk of serious injury or death.

I did notice that by selecting for the more docile and 'domesticated' fox, a lot of undesirable traits started to come through (well for me anyway as they were breeding foxes and not dogs). Also I believe aggression is a part of the breed standard, and a lack of it is considered a serious fault. I got this from an Australian site and it was listed as being the IBC standard so I apologise if I am mistaken.

Quote:
1. Constant full display (Betta splendens), but exhibits only aggressive (not violent) response to intruder (slight fault).

2. Fins erect, but gills only occasionally flared, and exhibits only motion toward intruder (minor fault).

3. Fins occasionally erect, gills rarely flared, and not very responsive to intruder (major fault).

4. No display and unresponsive to intruder (severe fault).
Also, there seemed to be a lot of emphasis placed on the general health of the fish. Which seems at odds with much of what people are against in showing.

Quote:
DISQUALIFYING FAULTS ALL CLASSES

2. Swimming difficulty (due to excess finnage or swim bladder disorder).

6. Malformed body (especially in double tails).

7. Missing external anatomical part, such as an eye, gill cover, or fin.

8. Any sign of disease or illness.

9. Blindness (especially in Opaques and Albinos).

10. Egg bound (severely distended abdomen).

11. Shy or fearful behavior does not rise from bowl bottom.
So I don't think it is conductive to many breeders, especially if breeding for show, to produce fish that are unhealthy or mentally unfit (can't really think of better phrasing) as going by the standard these are not going to show well at all.

Personally I think that spawning fish based only on their temperament is not the way to go. Breeders should be trying to strike a balance between the health, form and mental fitness of the fish they produce.

According to the breed standard, a non-aggressive betta is as faulty as a betta with a hunch back or extremely poor scaling. So should we be encouraging the breeding of fish that don't meet the breed standard? I think if I wanted to start a line of hunch back DTs I would not have a lot of supporters here or elsewhere.

I think the problem is when breeders try to flog off faulty fish as something special. Fish with scaling covering their eyes, fish with topline or body deformities and fish displaying obvious x-factor characteristics are just some of the offerings I have seen on AB. Sometimes I wonder if these breeders simply offer up their culls because they think some 'dumb' foreigner is going to buy their fish because it is expensive, exotic and has the prestigious title of being imported from Thailand, Indonesia etc.

That to me is not only bad business practice, but is detrimental to the species. Fish that exhibit serious and debilitating faults should be culled before they even reach maturity. Not be stuck up on AB for big $$$.

Not all show breeders are evil. Basement Bettas and Martinismommy are just two breeders I have seen on this forum who seem to produce healthy, show quality fish on a consistent basis.

I think that sometimes the bemoaning of the wreck and ruin of the splendens species is more exaggerated than the actual reality. Generally the only time I had issues with my splendens was when it was a problem I created. I also think the problem lies mostly with the big wholesale farms who just pump out fish with only dollars in mind, rather than the smaller scale breeders.

Some of those big farms that sell to stores and wholesalers are like the puppymills of the fish world. And we all know how great puppymills are for the betterment of dogs.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:02 PM   #64 
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The betta has naturally aggressive behavior, but at what point is there too much aggression? I have had fish that were perfectly capable of motion, had good water quality and food, yet STILL attacked their own fins.

As to the aggression of fighting to the death... Ive never had any urge to put two bettas together, besides spawning and the sorority tank. The undesirable traits in the foxes were considered to be from a lack of adrenaline. But in bettas it seems to be completely unrelated to the color or form that breeders have now achieved, especially if fighter fish are more closer to the natural color. Although I cant imaging breeding fighting fish with long flowing tails... It seems counter productive.

So by the standards above for show, the aggression is a requirement, but what about in spawning? They will naturally flair and show off and nibble a bit, but the male and female arent supposed to fight to the death (In terms of having properly conditioned the pair for mating).

I dont think bettas that do not meet the standard should be bred, if a betta has a hunched back or is sickly or lack luster, this isnt something that should be passed on.

Unfortunately, a lot of people cant stand the thought of culling. They think it is unfair, or cruel. I usually just look at it as a lunch opportunity for my Oscars, circle of life.

Do you think there should be regulations on breeding? Kind of a "Pedigree Program" for Bettas? It would be very difficult for that to work, considering on how many fish can be spawned and raised within a year.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:15 PM   #65 
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No. This would mean (in America) the wiping out of veil tails, and many colour forms (such as black orchid). I for one love the wild colors on some fish that would simply not be acceptable in shows.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:29 PM   #66 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Olympia View Post
No. This would mean (in America) the wiping out of veil tails, and many colour forms (such as black orchid). I for one love the wild colors on some fish that would simply not be acceptable in shows.
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Some countries HAVE VT in shows though... and I NEVER understood why Black Orchid is not a coloration in shows. It should have its own standards. I have always wanted to breed black orchids....

(I dont particularly like the pedigree standards. Like for dogs, it makes it nearly impossible to register your own breed, and show a dog that FITS the standard, but wasnt born from parents with a pedigree...)
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:29 PM   #67 
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How many of those babies from those spawns SHOULD be bred though? I could see pedigrees being handy with show fish, but with your average "run of the mill" fish that aren't up to code, no. It's unnecessary.

EX: I know show rabbit breeders. They keep pedigrees for the over 200 rabbits that they produce in a year (I know that doesn't compare to 200 babies in a betta "litter", but bear with me), with exception to their "culls". Some go to freezer camp, some are sold as pets (which is what 90% of what my rabbits are).

I also know meat rabbit breeders. They don't keep pedigrees except for what they intend to sell to other breeders. But if the purchaser is only breeding for meat, they don't often buy a pedigree.

People tend to baby everything, and a lot of the ones that wouldn't make it in the wild, tend to live and because "fluffy deserves to have children", or "I can't take away it's reproductive rights", these "defective" animals are being bred.

IF I were to breed my pair, I would be culling heavily. I do it with the guppies, and it ensures that I only get what I want out of the pairings and in my tanks. As much as I may not LIKE doing it, it is the natural cycle of life. And it also keeps me from being swamped with a bunch of fish that I don't enjoy. Sometimes, if a color cull survives being a feeder until almost adulthood, I keep them, because "survival of the fittest". lol
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:31 PM   #68 
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Chibreney, the American Dairy Goat association does a "Native on Appearance" registration. If your goat looks like a Nubian, it can be registered as a Nubian, grade, but Nubian nonetheless. It goes for every breed that they sanction.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:36 PM   #69 
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Originally Posted by Skyewillow View Post
How many of those babies from those spawns SHOULD be bred though? I could see pedigrees being handy with show fish, but with your average "run of the mill" fish that aren't up to code, no. It's unnecessary.

EX: I know show rabbit breeders. They keep pedigrees for the over 200 rabbits that they produce in a year (I know that doesn't compare to 200 babies in a betta "litter", but bear with me), with exception to their "culls". Some go to freezer camp, some are sold as pets (which is what 90% of what my rabbits are).

I also know meat rabbit breeders. They don't keep pedigrees except for what they intend to sell to other breeders. But if the purchaser is only breeding for meat, they don't often buy a pedigree.

People tend to baby everything, and a lot of the ones that wouldn't make it in the wild, tend to live and because "fluffy deserves to have children", or "I can't take away it's reproductive rights", these "defective" animals are being bred.

IF I were to breed my pair, I would be culling heavily. I do it with the guppies, and it ensures that I only get what I want out of the pairings and in my tanks. As much as I may not LIKE doing it, it is the natural cycle of life. And it also keeps me from being swamped with a bunch of fish that I don't enjoy. Sometimes, if a color cull survives being a feeder until almost adulthood, I keep them, because "survival of the fittest". lol
Wow, you quoted my mind processes. Its how I feel about humanity sometimes. Breeding deformed ANYTHING is horrible for the genepool. Yet...it is still a human judgment...considering that we are breeding traits that we find symmetrical and pleasing to our eye. Some species of fish or other critters are MEANT to look ugly... some are not...

Makes me wonder... how did a perssian cat come about? Or the Sphynx? Or a pug? Some of these features arent practical, or natural... And it is also how I feel about people trying to breed "tritails" on fish or extreme feathertails.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:37 PM   #70 
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The reason for a pedigree is so you know that the grandparents of your dog were a Labrador, not just a random yellow dog that looks like it could possibly be a Labrador.

Same with how every fluffy cat in a shelter suddenly becomes a Maine Coon, or one that meows a lot must be part Siamese.

I have never had to cull any of my fry. Oddly enough those that aren't culled naturally early on seem to grow up free of deformities. I had a couple of bent spines in a recent batch of fry I thought I would have to cull and now I can't even pick them out of the bunch.

Wonder if because a lot of my fry are in with their parents for a week or so before I take them out, the weaker ones die off because I don't supplementary feed and so they can't compete with their stronger siblings.
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