Sometime after I am done with grad school and in my own place, I want to try breeding. I really love the look of plakats. HMs are gorgeous, but the way that the colours seem to POP on plakats just really attracts me. Plus, I have heard they tend to be more active (which means more fun to watch!). I think I like the asymmetrical better than the symmetrical.
Are plakats harder, easier, or about the same to breed as long finned bettas? Are there special considerations to consider with them?
Do they do well in shows (assuming they are good quality, of course).
Do they sell well? (Not looking to necessarily make a profit, but being backed up with tons of leftover fry is something to consider if they are hard to sell).
Are there any problems with colour, or does colour breed just as true (or not true) in plakats? I know that sometimes [many times, actually] genes can be linked. Also, I am aware that physiology can affect how colour appears on an animal or plant. In rabbits, for example, longer hair dilutes the colour since the same amount of melanins have to be stretched out over a longer strand. Perhaps the same phenomenon is why the plakats seem to have more vivid colour?
Basically, I want to figure out what I like best and start learning about their care and breeding now, well before I am even close to thinking about actually breeding. In the mean time, I can have my pet betta(s) in order to get a good handle on their care. I believe in the slow approach, getting all of the information before hand.
I missed the editing time frame, but as far as colours go, I love butterflies. I'm not sure what type of butterfly they are, but the ones with red and black or red and blue. I think that has to do with it being a melano carrier?
I'm not a big fan of the paler colours, dalmations, or marbles. I love the bright, vibrant colours! Irid colours and reds are my favourites.
I've only bred once and shown once, so i can only tell you my limited experience.
My one show was last weekend. I was in new breeder class and one of my plakat boys took Reserve best of show for new breeders. In the regular breeders a plakat took the outright best of show.
I bred a red male to a female who was mostly black w/red fins and some irid. blue on her back. Around 50% were the red color of their father (with some of them showing hints of the irid. blue wash, and most of the females came out with a much lighter orange body), then 25% were pretty much the same color as the mother, and the last 25% were kind of a mix that came out like a dark cherry color (i now wish i had saved some of those)
I had no trouble selling fish, but i was blessed with extremely good form. The fish i had shipped to the show i place all the fish into the auction (kind of wished i hadn't) and pretty much all of them went for above what the average betta was going for, with a few of them involved in bidding wars.
I did however once offer some to a lfs and he wasn't the least bit interested in anything short-finned. Plakats are not going to sell good outside of the betta community.
I agree that in general it's easier to sell long fins, specially to shops. But PKs are easier to care for compared to long fins.
Breeding Pks is the same as breeding any other betta (breeding and raising). But it is easier to maintain their fins whether it be water quality related or exercise.
Some rather rare colors are easy to sell - say a super black (not melano nor any other kind of black). A clean totally thick black betta without any irid nor red. And their forms tend to be "average". Somehow getting perfect form on them is very difficult.
Working to create a blue dragon - white body with blue fins is more work. The mutation hasn't been perfected yet so you will have to "create" your own.
Do not work on too common multi colors such as blue-red, unless they have special patterns. These colors are too common that they're harder to sell.
I am not a big fan of the multicolours, anyway, to be honest. I like solids and butterflies the best. I love solid irid masks. I am not sure if red mask is the correct term for a solid red fish, or if "super red" is the correct term. The solid reds are simply gorgeous, though! The ones I have seen labeled as "super red" make me drool.
The problem with super reds is that "red" tends to fade after a few generations thus you would have to breed out again. Further, as far as I know they will produce other colors - red cambodian, orange, or yellow.... in short, more work on your part. This is one reason I don't work with reds. But they are gorgeous and I do work with white and yellow on occasions.
Clean or not depends on what they were out crossed to along their line. If they were crossed to blacks (most carry irid), you will have some with irid colors. But if they were kept away from any irid, then you will have clean colors. The problem is often the intensity of each color.
I have never seriously worked with them (I'm always distracted by dark/irid colors) so I'm not sure how to enhance their color. The white and yellow I've worked with were mainly metallics and dragons.