After watching my small HM with huge fins struggling so hard to drag them around and even biting them off to get relief from the weight, I am honestly put off owning any more long-finned bettas.
There's nothing prettier than a healthy long-finned male, but when I see fish with massive rose- and feather- tails, and dumbos who can hardly swim at all, it does make me a bit sad for the species.
I also believe breeding for prettier colour/finnage over hardiness is making them weaker on the whole. The original fighters were bred to be hardy and tough on top of the species' natural toughness, a reputation that still carries over regarding froufy-finned weaklings which are generally very far from 'hardy' and tend to drop dead if you look at them sideways.
I'd --love-- to see some of the Thai fighter-breeder's standards of fish health be applied to the long finned bettas. Hard scales, clear eyes, high aggression/energy and great health are IMO way more important than developing froufier, purpler fins on a fish that can't even swim..
Last edited by Aus; 07-08-2012 at 05:43 AM.