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Old 01-09-2011, 09:32 AM   #1 
Dragonlady
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Myths about sexing bettas

Myths about sexing bettas
When you have a tank full of juvenile bettas, sexing them can be quite tricky as a new breeder. I thought it might be helpful to other breeders to share some of the things I have learned about this tedious task. There are 2 main myths I would like to clear up.

Myth# 1
If the betta fish has what appears to be an egg spot, the fish is female.

Fact: Although this can sometimes be true, there are exceptions.
I have seen young bettas that have what appear to be egg spots at a few months of age that turn out to be males. The "egg spot" mysteriously disappears as the fish grows longer fins. Things are not always as they appear.
This picture is a good example of a young male that seems to show an egg spot.


This is the same fish about a month later.



Myth #2
If the betta fish shows vertical bars, the fish is female.

Fact: Immature male bettas will often show vertical bars while in a group of bettas. Vertical stripes is how bettas show submission, and even an adult
male may show vertical stripes. When a male betta shows these stripes, it seems to communicate that he is submissive to the other fish. Perhaps
he is scared, stressed or wants to avoid a fight.

Here is a juvenile betta showing vertical bars that later developed into a male.


The only sure way to tell apart females from male bettas is to hold the fish up to a very bright light and look for ovaries. The body shape is often shorter and curvier on female bettas, but well fed juvenile fish can all look curvy. The anal fin and ventral fins of male bettas is usually more pointed
and longer. Female plakats may appear to be male if you go by fin shape. Unless you can see ovaries when held up to the light, the fish might not be female.
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Old 01-09-2011, 10:51 AM   #2 
dramaqueen
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Good info! Thanks for posting this.
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Old 01-09-2011, 11:33 AM   #3 
kpullen89
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This is kinda off topic but I didn't know a betta's colors change so dramatically as they grow. Great info though! I'm not a breeder but this stuff is so interesting to me.
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Old 01-09-2011, 11:39 AM   #4 
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Don't expect aggression to be a tell tale symptom either. I have a dominant female in my fry tank who flares all the time but she is most definitely a female (light bodied so the ovaries are clearly visible).
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Old 01-09-2011, 11:48 AM   #5 
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this should be a sticky great info!
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Old 01-09-2011, 12:49 PM   #6 
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Thanks for the information
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Old 01-09-2011, 01:05 PM   #7 
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Heh. Nice info! But where do you look for ovaries?
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Old 01-09-2011, 01:14 PM   #8 
Crazykat
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My boy has an egg spot. Super confusing when I first got him, because in every other way he is definitely male. I was worried there was some wierd hormonal thing going on. It's a relief to know that other males have an egg spot. I think this should be stickied too!
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Old 01-09-2011, 04:15 PM   #9 
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I vote to sticky this! Everything she posted is 100% true.
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Old 01-09-2011, 04:23 PM   #10 
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I'm not a breeder, but this is good for sexing if, say, testing if your sorority females are really female. Great info! And I agree it should be stickied!
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