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Old 06-23-2011, 10:00 PM   #1 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Southeast La
current experienced breeders

what I mean by the title, is I'm looking for answers from breeders that have been breeding ongoing for the last year or more..

I'm kind of at a fork in the road. I do enjoy breeding - but I have lots of other commitments right now (kids, other pets, housework, my fiber business). Still only on my first spawn, I'm conditioning 2 pairs right now. But now I'm questioning if I want to continue - it's the time commitment that I'm worried about. So far, time has been pretty minimal. But I will need to start jarring soon, which will up the time used caring for the bettas.

I'm not really sure what I'm asking for ... when you have multiple spawns (fry) that you are rearing, how much time and effort are you expending into it? Why are you breeding? For enjoyment, profit (ha), showing? I don't ever plan to show. Do you enjoy every aspect of it, is the end result worth it to you (whatever you end result is, raising fry from egg to adult; showing, etc)

I know no one can really tell me what to do here. I'm just looking I guess for how much this hobby takes over your personal life, does it interfere much with your other commitments?

I don't ever plan to show, but I really enjoy breeding. I look at it as a way to make a profit enough to buy the fish I would really like to own to add to my 'collection'. And in turn I can provide quality bettas to others, instead of the mutts you find in pet stores. So right now I'm questioning if I want to continue or not.

Just looking for overall experience I suppose?
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Old 06-23-2011, 11:49 PM   #2 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Central Texas
If you enjoy breeding but don't have a lot of time you could just do 2 or 3 spawns a year.If you were doing it ongoing then it would be a problem. I know that 1fish2fish has had to deal with raising fry and keeping up with school and work. Hopefully, she'll share her opinion and experience with you.
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Old 06-24-2011, 12:12 AM   #3 
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Jakarta, Indonesia
I breed (fish or bird) because I love watching nothing grow into something beautiful and produce more little beauties. I have never sold anything ... yet ... I always give them away to friends or vendors. In turn vendors often either sell me their better quality cheap or even let me have it for free, knowing that I will give them more.

This hobby can really take a lot of your time.... then again all of my hobbies take up a lot of my time, specially during the "learning" period. I could literally watch them for 24 hours to learn their specific body language. And until this day I still stare at the tiny fry .... friends say I seriously need to see a shrink - to stare at beautiful women is normal but staring at dots in the water ... ???

But it all depends on your overall set ups. If you keep 1g or less solitaries, it will take up a lot of your time. There was a time when I had to do WC until 2 AM because I left home before sun rise and returned almost midnight. But if you can figure out a way to keep them in sororities in cycled tanks, it won't take too much of your time. You only need to feed daily while wc are greatly reduced.
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Old 06-24-2011, 12:16 AM   #4 
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: MA and MO
It can be stressful that's for sure. I'm a college student and the program I'm in requires that I keep above a 3.3 at all times (have to get As, only some Bs allowed, if I get a C I'm out D: ), couple that with a real job and a art commissions job, friends and a few "special needs" pets and sometimes the fish bring me near that breaking point... BUT I can't stop keeping and breeding them. Not only is it addicting but it's so rewarding. It's not about the money or showing for me, I just enjoy raising them and making lines/strains to improve on. Maybe one day I'll compete them but that's not on my list of priorities.

Once jarred, each 30 fry takes about an hour to clean and feed per day. The goal is to keep them in grow outs as long as possible :P I'm often doing water changes at 1 or 2 am. Totally worth it.

Last edited by DarkMoon17; 06-24-2011 at 12:19 AM.
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Old 06-24-2011, 12:33 AM   #5 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Southeast La
That's what I'm struggling with - I wonder if i should keep going, yet I don't think I can really just not do it! I really enjoy something from nothing aspect as pp said. Heck it's 12:30 and I'm about to do some water changes lol.

There's no way I can build a barrack system - hubby said if it doesn't cost alot upfront then I can continue. So that's out, along with my outdoor idea.

I'm very much an all or nothing person, I don't know that I can *just* do 2 or 3 spawns a year, I want something growing out at all times lol

I just have SO.MANY.HOBBIES lol! I love to knit, and spin yarn. I dye and sell yarn and fiber, then there is of course the fish. I also sew and machine embroider, and love photography. And then I have my 4 and 6 year old to care for, and of course my home. I think things will be alot easier on my come August - my 4 year old will be attending school, so I'll have 8 hours to complete what I need to complete.
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Old 06-24-2011, 12:49 AM   #6 
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Jakarta, Indonesia
I can understand the SO MANY HOBBIES thing coz I was like that once. IMO 8 hours is enough if you keep most of them in sororities. Like DM17 said, it takes about an hour to clean and feed 30 solitaries..... so it should take much less time to care for .... say 10 solitaries. Just keep it small to medium - like do 1 - 3 spawn at a time until fry are ready to go - then do some more..... so you will be breeding every 2 months or so.
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Old 06-24-2011, 10:24 AM   #7 
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Savannah, GA
You have to be fully dedicated to it like any other hobby you have to MAKE time for it even if it means 11pm water changes after the kitchen's cleaned and the kiddos have gone off to bed.

Right now I'm working just under 40 hours a week and I just finished a 5 week semester today. It's extremely hard and some nights I just have to tell myself that fish come second and make myself go to bed.

I go through periods of self doubt. Some days I just have to sit down and watch my fish and remember WHY I love them so much and why I want to keep up with them. Right now I'm in one of these periods. I'm wondering if I have lost my reason to keep these fish and if I'm doing more harm then good by having so many. I just remind myself that just because I'm going through a rough spot right now does not mean it'll always be this way and I will regret giving them up if I made that decision.

Micro time management really helps. If I take the time to sit down and plan out my week and days, down to the hour, I feel less stressed... it's times when I forgo planning that things become chaotic.

Other things that help me are keeping buckets full of water ready to go. Water changes are much easier that way. Right now I have three 5 gallon buckets with lids for clean water and one bucket for dirty water. I'm always on the lookout for unused buckets (the deli department at a grocery store is a GREAT place to get free pickle buckets).

You can't let it become stressful, when it becomes stressful that is when you need to take a step back, maybe get rid of a few fish (there is NOTHING wrong with admitting you're over your head.. we've all been there).

Like Indjo, I've given up trying to have multiple spawns. One (perhaps two) spawns at a time and staggering spawns so that when the old are about ready to go have another.

As previously said... I can't give it up, it's become a part of me just like my dog and playing piano. I breed these fish for the love of them, seeing them grow and trying to make them the best they can possibly be. I do want to show but not for prestige, just because it's so much fun.

Just do as much as you can do and nothing more. There's no shame in cutting back or putting spawns off until you have time. It's better to breed in a low stress fun way than in a high stress "second job" way.

Last edited by 1fish2fish; 06-24-2011 at 10:28 AM.
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