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Old 10-04-2012, 12:48 AM   #1 
babystarz
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Wild Species Bettas

Due to popular demand, I am creating a Wild Species thread so as not to keep clogging up Setsuna's thread in the Breeding forum :)

Who owns or has an interest in wild species? Do you have pics? Baby wild types for sale to others? Looking for breeding stock? Have questions about care? Are you simply looking for more information on these many species?

Resources

Link to IBC Species Management Program page and species index:
http://www.ibcbettas.org/smp/species/index.html

Seriously Fish species profiles (scroll down to the bottom of the page I've linked to see a full list of current species profiles for wild bettas):http://www.seriouslyfish.com/species/betta-imbellis/


FAQ

Q: Do wild bettas need the same care as betta splendens?
A: Not necessarily. Many wild betta species prefer slightly cooler temperatures compared to bettas. Actual wild-caught pairs are the hardest to care for, and it's not necessarily ethical to buy them, seeing as over 56 species are identified by the IBC as in need of preservation. Wild bettas who were born and raised in hobbyist aquariums tend to be much easier to care for. Please be SURE to thoroughly research the species you are interested in before you acquire a pair.

Q: Do male wild bettas need to be separated from other fish like betta splendens?
A: Probably not. Many, if not most, wild betta species can be kept in pairs or communities. The general recommendation for most species is a heavily planted 10 gallon tank for a pair and a 30 gallon tank for a community, but this is not a hard and fast rule and breeders have successfully raised fry in smaller settings.

Q: Can wild betta species interbreed with betta splendens?
A: Some can. That is actually how metallic copper genes were introduced to betta splendens. However, because of the vast global spread of betta splendens and the shrinking natural habitat of many wild betta species, interbreeding is not seen as a responsible thing to do. There may come a day soon when the only populations of wild species exist in the hands of aquarists, and maintaining a pure gene pool is needed right now to boost numbers.

Q: Do wild betta species breed the same way as betta splendens?
A: Some of the more closely related species like betta imbellis are bubble nesters just like betta splendens, although the parents don't need to be separate from their fry. Other species are mouthbrooders (the males carry the fertilized eggs in their mouths until the fry hatch).

Q: Aren't wild bettas dull and uninteresting?
A: Not at all! Of course the aesthetic in wild betta species is their natural beauty, which is different from what many betta keepers may be used to. Betta splendens are the yin (artificially selected for exaggerated traits and bright colors) to the wild betta species yang (naturally evolved beauty). This isn't to say there are only muddy colors going on here. This is just a sampling of different species:


Source: IBC species index


Source: IBC species index



Source: IBC species index


And some Youtube videos:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XSV3n...eature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A5yg8Spbiw0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyEHk-A0F7M
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:06 AM   #2 
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Yay wild bettas! I have a stack load of photos but I'm not sure if everyone wants to see reposts. Let me know if that's okay and I will go nuts haha

I have kept channoides, strohi and albimarginata, and am currently keeping rutilans, brownorum, burdigala, 'palangkarensis', persephone, tussyae, livida, unimaculata and ideii. As you can see I am more a fan of the coccina complex bettas than anything else, and really only have unimaculata because my mother loves them and wanted me to get a breeding pair. My ideii may be finding a new home with member Aus here on the forum.

Wild bettas can be challenging, but they will reward you with lots of fry if you get their environment right. I am growing out some persephone fry as well as some newborn unimaculata fry, and am hoping since my brownorum and rutilans have been successfully treated for velvet I can get some more fry out of them.

I am currently getting out of splendens and devoting myself entirely to breeding wild bettas, killifish and a couple of species of gourami. So you could definitely say I am obsessed.

These are my lovely persephone fry who survived a very nasty ich infection when they were quite young with zero casualties.







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Old 10-04-2012, 02:24 AM   #3 
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photos!!!!!
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:52 PM   #4 
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I certainly don't mind reposted pics :) I can't get enough of these guys! I would really like to get into a mouthbrooder species soon myself.
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Old 10-04-2012, 06:20 PM   #5 
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Here are most of the shots from my photobucket account. Had some velvet go through my wild betta tanks so they have been getting treated. Will try and get some updated shots of them tonight.


Channoides male (since sold)


Channoides female (since sold)


Livida male


Livida male stress-striped


Tussyae and livida male facing off


Tussyae male




Shots of my brownorum when they were new, tiny and chewed up


Tussyae spawning. Sadly lost the female and ended up with one juvenile


Tussyae spawning


Rutilans sub-adults. They got velvet very badly and I lost two of them as it was very hard to eradicate.


Rutilans (mum is on top in this photo)


Rutilans tank. Moving original pair into their own tank as their latest lots of fry were getting eaten by the smaller juveniles.


Ideii pair. Male sadly jumped to his death. They are big, almost as large as macrostoma.


Persephone female (deceased parents of my fry)


Persephone male and female (deceased parents of my fry)


Strohi juvies before they went to live with Aus


Strohi juvies again




Tussyae juvies. I accidentally knocked their lid slightly off, and all but one had jumped out by the time I arrived home.





Betta unimaculata. They have given me 20 odd fry recently.


Newest persephone pair in which male jumped out through God knows where to his death within 48 hours of me owning him. Just peeled his female off the carpet this morning alive thankfully. Don't know how they get out through my fortress of clingwrap.

That's it for now. All I can say if you are going to own and breed wilds. Make sure your fry have the tightest fitting lid you can find over their grow-out as they will jump out if they get spooked and it is devastating. And make sure your adults have lids also with absolutely no gaps as they will also jump out and it is equally as devastating. Particularly, if you have a very rare species in your possession.
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Old 10-04-2012, 08:09 PM   #6 
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Ah! The persephones! Silly bettas. :(

I lost my five beloved strohi juvies that I got from Littlebettafish right after moving house - and I don't know what happened. They just.. died. No sign of disease at all, they were a little stressed and pale on arrival to the temporary tank, but they are toughies and not likely to drop dead of that. I hate to think ill of folks but I had to wonder if my horrid ex housemate did something to them during the move...

Anyways. I am still a wilds enthusiast. I should have a tank ready for the ideii female in November, and I am hoping to maybe get her a new husband.


As for the ethics of wild-caught pairs.. the other side to that is that many of the wild betta's natural pockets of habitat are vanishing, and the bettas with them. Captive breeding may be the only hope of survival for some of these species, so I find it hard to see that as detrimental.

If more betta enthusiasts got into wilds, and bought their fish from a variety of captive sources, they'd at least have a good chance of continuing on via hobbyists, and possibly being re-introduced to the wild, once it gets through to people that wholesale land development and water drainage isn't a good idea for the environment. As unlikely as that is..

Here's some pics of the strohi while they were at my place. There was one male, and probably four females (they were still juvies, but some were maturing faster than others, I am pretty sure there was only one male though). I miss them horribly.










The boy is the blue one. He got so dark at times as to look jet black. The last pic above is the girls, arguing over territory. They were very territorial and the girls flared at each other more the male, I think, but they didn't get more violent than a swift nip here and there -- mostly, it was the display which sorted arguments out before they came to blows.

One of my favourite things about them was the fantastic, prolonged 'dance' the dominant female and her male did before spawning. This could go on for a couple of days, and was really something to watch.

I very closely heed all Littlebettafish's posts on wilds here (I'm not stalking you, LBF, honest!! No, really!) as she has a lot of experience with them as is obvious from her post above. I am already planning on finding a source for custom cut perspex lids for any tanks for the larger species, and thinking up designs for these that will discourage them being knocked off by overenthusiastic jumpers.

Wilds are challenging, for sure -- but omg, so worth it. If you like observing fish behaviour, get wilds. They are massively entertaining, and full of surprises.
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Old 10-04-2012, 09:22 PM   #7 
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Thanks for the confidence booster Aus! I wouldn't say I was by any means an expert on wild species of betta. I have only been involved with them for two years, but I in that two years I have learned a lot and I am always willing to share my experiences with others who are interested.

I did make this PDF on coccina complex bettas. Unfortunately, my images came out in awful quality and my writing went really big and bold in the uploading process. However, if you care to look past that, it contains info on diet, breeding and housing, based mainly on my experiences with these fish.

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B24...EYzcUczd0loT0k

Let me know if you can't access the PDF. I made it shareable I believe but this is my first time using google docs.
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Old 10-05-2012, 11:00 AM   #8 
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Thank you both for the pictures and information! I really appreciate hearing from people who have experience with wild species, and I'm sure having this all together will be really nice for others who may want to get into keeping wild species.
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Old 10-05-2012, 02:44 PM   #9 
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My guitar smaragdina are here . They're so cute, especially the female. They were really nervous in the bags, any movement from me freaked them out. They've chilled out a bit now that they're in the tank. I dropped in a few skeeter larva which they're busy stalking and happily nomming on. Here is a pic of the tank. It's a divided 6.6 gallon. I wanted to keep them separate so I can control their baby making. The tank isn't quite finished yet. I've got some cholla wood coming to add to it. I was able to snap a photo of the girl when she got close to my table lamp.
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Old 10-05-2012, 03:02 PM   #10 
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My fish are here too :D Just put them in their tanks. My smaragdina are super shy and terrified right now. I think putting them in the glass bottom tank was a bad choice, I'll have them in a tank with substrate soon. They do have a ton of moss and frogbit. They wouldn't even leave their bag until I took it out and made them. Now they're huddled together in the corner looking at me like I'm going to make sushi out them..The imbellis are little clowns haha! They swim right up to me and stare. I will have pics soon.
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