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Old 06-20-2012, 11:31 AM   #1 
Anitax3x
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Plans to breed Next summer (2013)

So , With a change of plans, I will be going to grad school next fall, which allows me to stay at home ( YAY FOR FREE RENT! LOL ).

Any ways, I am planning on trying out my first spawn. Now I have done research on the matter. Here are my final questions:

I want to spawn halfmoons, however being in south florida the water is EXTREMELY HARD here. What should I do about that? Will IAL help with that?

I plan on buying a drop master test kit. I found this based on a map and I currently have a HM male who has been thriving, but he also has driftwood in his tank ( that softens the water correct? ) and tons of live plants. So that might be why he is so happy.

I plan on buying a 10 gal spawning tank, however I read that you may want to buy bigger so that you do not have to move the fry. Which would be the better option?

So far I plan on buying two sibling pairs from a reputable breeder. I have been studying good HM form, and I have been stalking the threads in the breeding section on who has "good form" and why some aren't as good. I feel like I would be able to make a good choice however with more study, I'll make the best choice I can.

I plan on purchasing BBS cultures however would FROZEN be okay?
I read how to culture infusoria and have done that for the molly fry I'm currently raising. And I'm kind of scared of using micro worms with the missing ventrals and such, so I'm going to try and do BBS, infusoria, and cooked egg yolk. Any other suggestions?

I am also going to purchase IAL for the tanks and should I have any meds on hand? I don't like to use harsh medication I prefer clean water good food and TLC lol! but if it will better my fish's recovery I will buy some just in case.

I also will plan on buying about 100 jars for the boys and I will plan on just keeping the girls in a sorority type environment.

My breeding goal is to create a line of turqoise halfmoons with possibly some DBT in the line later on. I really love the greens and blues together. And I want to only pass on good genetics. This first spawn is to going to test my ability to raise a spawn, so if I don't come out with tons of babies at least the ones I come out with should be of great quality.

Which brings me to my next question. Culling methods, Which methods do you breeders prefer? and as far as culling goes, which deformities do you look for? I found someone who said leaving the male in with the fish allows him to do the culling for you.


I don't think I missed anything, Let me know if I did!
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:18 PM   #2 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anitax3x View Post
So , With a change of plans, I will be going to grad school next fall, which allows me to stay at home ( YAY FOR FREE RENT! LOL ).

Any ways, I am planning on trying out my first spawn. Now I have done research on the matter. Here are my final questions:

I want to spawn halfmoons, however being in south florida the water is EXTREMELY HARD here. What should I do about that? Will IAL help with that?

IAL will lower the PH, but do nothing for hardness...

I plan on buying a drop master test kit. I found this based on a map and I currently have a HM male who has been thriving, but he also has driftwood in his tank ( that softens the water correct? ) and tons of live plants. So that might be why he is so happy.

Water Hardness has to do with the amount of dissolved minerals in the water, perhaps you are confusing this with PH? Placing driftwood in the water would not remove dissolved minerals. It may however lower PH. The only thing that I know of that will "soften" water is a water softener which uses resin beads to attach dissolved minerals and then is back-washed with salt to remove/clean the beads.

I plan on buying a 10 gal spawning tank, however I read that you may want to buy bigger so that you do not have to move the fry. Which would be the better option?

So far I plan on buying two sibling pairs from a reputable breeder. I have been studying good HM form, and I have been stalking the threads in the breeding section on who has "good form" and why some aren't as good. I feel like I would be able to make a good choice however with more study, I'll make the best choice I can.

I plan on purchasing BBS cultures however would FROZEN be okay?
I read how to culture infusoria and have done that for the molly fry I'm currently raising. And I'm kind of scared of using micro worms with the missing ventrals and such, so I'm going to try and do BBS, infusoria, and cooked egg yolk. Any other suggestions?

I know of no BBS cultures for sale. Usually we hatch them from eggs which is fairly easy. I would not worry about infusoria, BBS and MW are all you really need for newly hatched fry.

I am also going to purchase IAL for the tanks and should I have any meds on hand? I don't like to use harsh medication I prefer clean water good food and TLC lol! but if it will better my fish's recovery I will buy some just in case.

If you closely monitor your water with the master kit, you should not have any problems with disease. Most medicine has a shelf life, so just wait until/if you need.

I also will plan on buying about 100 jars for the boys and I will plan on just keeping the girls in a sorority type environment.

My breeding goal is to create a line of turqoise halfmoons with possibly some DBT in the line later on. I really love the greens and blues together. And I want to only pass on good genetics. This first spawn is to going to test my ability to raise a spawn, so if I don't come out with tons of babies at least the ones I come out with should be of great quality.

Which brings me to my next question. Culling methods, Which methods do you breeders prefer? and as far as culling goes, which deformities do you look for? I found someone who said leaving the male in with the fish allows him to do the culling for you.

Letting the Male eat a share of the fry? First he will not choose the bad ones, and second he will be learning to eat fry. Neither is a good idea in my opinion. The humane method I believe uses clove oil which is also a pain killer. Some tell about putting them into the freezer, but I'm not sure that is painless..

If you just want to limit the number of fry, then either remove the female when you see they have enough eggs, or just remove some of the eggs after spawning and drop them into ice water.



I don't think I missed anything, Let me know if I did!
I would suggest starting with one male and two females. Siblings are best, unless you like to experiment. I have a 29 gal as my #1 spawn tank and it is getting a bit crowded... expect from 100 to 300 fry from a spawn if all goes correctly.

Jeff.

Last edited by jeffegg2; 06-20-2012 at 12:21 PM.
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:29 PM   #3 
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You can add RO water (don't know composition) or use IAL and other natural "softeners". Usually (not always) fry will adapt to the condition it was raised in. So as long as it is stable, it should be OK. Water pram Fluctuation is worse than less ideal but stable conditions.

In mid spring, age 3 5g buckets with dried leaves as substrates, and aquatic plants out side to culture micro critters. Add a cup of pond/river/or what ever natural water. You could also put in something dead/decaying organic like left over vegies. Use 1/3 of the top water for your breeding tank, you could add more when fry are free swimming.

Though I don't like chemical meds, I keep them around just in case. I prefer to medicate with natural meds like IAL, salt, or garlic. But if they don't work, I use chemicals.

I'd rather do the culling. Then again I don't think the male will cull that many. If he does, I won't let him care for fry (I often keep male with fry until they're about 1 month). Depending on what I expect, I may cull a whole batch by feeding them to bigger fish.
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:32 PM   #4 
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Hmm, I can help you with a few of these questions (I live in Tampa)

First: I use R/O water reconstituted with equilibrium from Seachem, the waste water that comes out is milky white (Shows how much mineral is in the water ) When I do use IAL with this water I use less than normal because my pH after being filtered is about 6.5 and I don't need it any lower or softer.

I'm not sure about the BBS, I hatched mine and used Premium quality from Brine Shrimp Direct which was wonderful. Also, I used a mix of Microworms, Banana Worms and Walter worms which all have different nutritional values for my fry when they were younger. I think the best thing you can do to prevent missing ventral's is to clean the bottom of the tank thoroughly but do give the fry a varied diet.

About medications, I place about five drops of Maroxy in the grow-out tank as a fungus preventative along with salt. You don't have to do the Maroxy I just like it as an extra preventative.

Now, as to how I culled the fry, any fry who exhibited bent spines, I had one who had SBD and a few that just seemed to be very weak all were culled. I used the Cold Shock Method (Freezing cold water, as cold as you can get it. I put mine in the freezer until it started to frost over and then took as little water as I could from their original tank and poured them in the bucket. The difference in water temperatures is so great it puts them to sleep instantly.) because I do not have an oscar or any predatory fish. I hate talking about this but it has to be done

That's all the advice I can offer for now, good luck with your spawn!

-Sincerely
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:33 PM   #5 
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I have very hard water, it doesn't hurt my HM's, they're used to it.
Oscars are my way to cull, they're FAST! Also, I don't cull unless there are health problems like curved spine.
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:44 PM   #6 
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+1 To reduce Hardness without a softener:

Add either RO (Reverse Osmosis filtered water) or Distilled.

I would not use pure RO or Distilled as it has zero hardness, and therefore lacks buffering (KH Calcium hardness) from wild swings in PH, mostly due to when nitrate is produced, it also creates nitric acid. It also tends to be harmful to living tissue as the natural osmosis of cell membranes will cause too high of cellular pressure. The natural fish slime coat will protect from some of this, but I like to keep everything pretty ideal. If all you have to use is RO, you can add hardness KH by adding Sodium Bicarbonate (baking soda). Salt either sodium chloride, or Magnesium chloride also will increase hardness, but not improve buffering.

Jeff.

Last edited by jeffegg2; 06-20-2012 at 12:46 PM.
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Old 06-20-2012, 01:43 PM   #7 
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WOW thanks guys! I like the idea of aging water for the spawn. Thanks so much for the information. I really do appreciate it. This spawn is still far away and I'm glad because I am learning alot.

The reason I was going to get two pairs is as I was reading some have a hard time spawning so that raises my chances of getting a pair to spawn successfully. I guess everyone really does have their own way of doing it.

Anyone who has anymore input on the subject matter or random advice I will take it gladly! I want to be as fully prepared as I can before going through this endeavor. Although I know books don't prepare you for life totally, it helps
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Old 06-21-2012, 10:18 AM   #8 
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I will also be going to R/O. Most breeders I know are having problems with regular tap and have switched to R/O.

R/O does require buffers to make the water suitable for them but generally those are included in the system. Add some AQ salt and IAL. You will have to pre treat the water in tubs and it takes a good amount of time for them to fill a tub depending on your flow rate on the system itself (more GPD the more expensive with average being $150).
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Old 06-21-2012, 12:22 PM   #9 
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Okay so say I wanted to stick with tap water, would it be detrimental to the fis
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Old 06-21-2012, 12:49 PM   #10 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anitax3x View Post
Okay so say I wanted to stick with tap water, would it be detrimental to the fis
Take a sample of fresh tap water and take it to a local pet shop for testing. It is usually free.

The local water is municipal or well water?

If municipal, then you really can't trust what the current chlorine/cloramine levels would be as it will fluctuate with what bacteria levels that they find at the time.

Also have you been keeping aquarium(s) currently? How have the fish been doing as far a health? If your fish are pretty healthy and live long then perhaps your water is ok. Although fry are a bit more sensitive to poor water than adults....

If you have not ever kept fish other than a Betta in a bowl, then I don't think you are prepared to become a breeder...


Jeff.

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