Be sure that the fish store is willing to buy them. If their fish are low quality, they likely buy them in large numbers from an importer or mass breeder, so you may not be able to get very good prices.
This Q&A article on BettaTalk explains exactly the things you should be prepared for when you consider breeding. The text is hard to read, so I'll post up a good chunk of it.
First of all, before setting up a spawn and deciding to breed bettas, each one of us should carefully examine the questions below and answer them honestly. If you cannot answer YES to these questions (all of them) then you should NOT spawn bettas.
do I have live fry food ready so to feed the hatchling? Alas too many people set up a spawn, not expecting for it to work and end up (beginner's luck helping) with eggs! Betta eggs hatch very fast, so before you know it (48 hrs or so) you have tiny little bettas darting around the tank, looking for something to chow on - and finding NOTHING cause you, the God who created them, omitted to think that they need food to survive. DUH! So now you are running around like a chicken with its head cut off (which in your case, might be a favor to bettas LOL) trying to locate fry food. No fish store I know carry microworm cultures so then you run to me and order one, failing to understand that it will take 4 to 7 days to be delivered, 1 day to set up and another 10 days to produce food! DUH X 2. So meanwhile what happens to the 300 fry? They drop dead, one at a time, from starvation. Way to go Mr. God! In short you should NEVER attempt a spawn unless you already have your microworm culture ready AND PRODUCING.
do I have a proper spawning set-up? Too many people don't want to spend the money or plain don't have the financial resources to purchase a 10 gal tank, water conditioners, filters, meds etc... All of which most positively NECESSARY to spawn. I have seen people spawn bettas in plastic coke bottles (don't ask), in 1 gal bowls, in Tupperwares... Most of the time the male ends up killing the female (not enough hidden places and space to insure her safety) and even if the pair doesn't kill each other, the fry cannot survive in such small amount of water and will all die. Or if you try to then move them to bigger quarters, most of them will not make it. :(... Or sometimes you have the 10 gal tank but do not have a filter and the water quality promptly goes south while the fry go UP (as in up into the big betta heaven - where you will not be invited).
do I have the time to care for the fry? They will need to be fed, cleaned, watched, medicated - oftentimes- then soon sexed, put in jars - which means more cleaning for you... If you run out of time and neglect them what do you think the outcome will be? THEY WILL DIE. And once again, you the betta hobbyist trying to play GOD, have killed them (booo).
do I have the proper knowledge to spawn bettas? You can't just set-up a pair if you do not know what you are doing. It is OK to be a beginner - heck we all were one once upon a time hehe - but be a well informed beginner. Do your homework first and no fry shall die needlessly. Because one little ignorant mistake on your part and the bettas DIE. Luckily for you, you have bettatalk.com , so you are pretty much all set-up on that end of things :). So never spawn unless you have read at least the betta care, betta health, breeding bettas, raising the fry sections of my website back to back (and memorized them, too LOL).
can I find homes for all the bettas I am going to bring to this world? That is, of all above, the MOST IMPORTANT question. If you did everything right and ended up with bettas that are now grown and in jars, what will you do with them? Can you keep 40 to 100 jars and care for them adequately? If not, can you find other people (friends, neighbors, in- laws - what the heck you are desperate LOL) that will provide a good home to each betta you produced? This is a very tough one. If you are about to shrug it off cause you think you can easily sell your fish, think again. Do a little homework and you will find that it is not that easy to sell fish now a day (unless you already have a very strong reputation and track record out there - which takes years and years of hard work). And if you sell them for nothing, they are likely to end up in the hands of people who are trying to cut corners financially and do not have the funds it take to really care properly for their fish. Ever looked at the price of fish meds at your local fish store? Do you want your babies in the hand of someone who cannot afford to buy them tetracycline when they get sick? Or who will put them in a plastic cup because they cannot afford to buy them the 2 gallon tank set-up? So as you see, a bad compromise can mean a demise (that of your bettas, regrettably).
On it, it has a no-culling method of reducing the number of fry. Only thing I worry about is that if this is your first spawn, you may end up with little-to-no-spawn anyways, and using that method will decrease your chances further.
Edit: I have never bred bettas before, but I've been reading about 15 articles a day, along with browsing FishForum. I'm in no way an expert.
Last edited by radiobath; 11-16-2008 at 06:25 AM.
Betta breeding is no get-rich-quick plan. Many breeders out there who have dedicated fish rooms, multiple spawn tanks, and reputation in Aquabid and IBC barely break even. The market is so heavily saturated, and Thailand breeders are always a few steps ahead of us with their breeding/spawning/raising techniques. Odds are, unless you are well-known in the betta culture, you won't be able to sell fish for more than a few dollars. And there is always the chance that you can't part with them, something that effects a lot of breeders--fish, mammal, or reptile. My sister bred angelfish and discus, and ended up keeping all of them (over $1,000 in tanks alone).
Pet stores usually get their bettas for wholesale en masse. 100 bettas for $50, or something along those lines. If you want to sell your spare males or females, you'll probably only be able to sell them for $1 each or 20/$10. If you want higher prices, they'll have to be gorgeous and hardy fish. And then the question of morality comes in: you know how pet stores treat bettas. You know how people treat bettas. Would you really be okay with selling your children to them?
If you're still unphased and want to continue, but don't know how to sell or keep 20+ bettas, there is always the option of culling. There are a few methods explained on BettaSplendens, but in the end, you have to understand that you'd be taking their lives away. If your morals don't get in the way with that, then another option is opened up.
But all in all, if you're planning on breeding LPS bettas, you'll probably have to just give them away. They're not worth much at all, and most pet stores would rather fork over money for high quality bettas instead of the same old shipment they get.
Even baby brine shrimp are too large for very young fry. The microworms or vinegar eels are definitely your best option. Also, is the food you're talking about Hikari Betta Bio-Gold? For some reason the package says "baby pellet" on it, but they're definitely just a standard sized betta pellet. There are powdered and liquid fry foods available, but generally it's difficult to get young fry to eat these foods so live is really the best option.
It's quite easy to make your own INFUSORIA...you will need at least a clean 2 liter bottle(bigger bottle/jar would result in more food), fill it up half way with tap water. Get a cabbage, rip a good piece off, big enough to cover the bottom of the bottle and boil it until its cooked. Once you have boiled it, put the cabbage inside the bottle/jar and fill up the rest of the bottle/jar with TANK WATER, this is to allow bacteria to start making infusoria. Leave bottle/jar somewhere that gets plenty of sunlight for about a week, look inside and you will see dusty looking particles moving around. That is infusoria, and most of the fries will live if you feed them infusoria. After about 2 to 3 weeks, you can start to feed them microworms or vinegar eels and so on as they grow.