The more I monitor, and look at my HMPK "King" betta, the more I wonder if these fish are hybrids. Their eyes, face, and even body are different than the regular splendens, and mine is so docile. It also seems like people have some issues breeding these fish (haven't looked very deep into it just but from my short research it seems like they're tricky, lack of eggs, lack of fertilization, difficulty getting the mating embrace correct). The other thing I notice is that these fish almost seem to have indeterminant growth compared to regular bettas. I feed my king 6 pellets a DAY and he doesn't produce a ton of waste, and never shows the overly full belly. He has grown quite a bit since I picked him up so maybe he was just young but still, he's taking in close to 12x the food of my regular males and they show that they're full. Has anyone here housed one of the king males in say a 20 gallon to see if their growth self limits?
I have a HMPK "King" (he's in my icon) and he is definitely not docile. I have also noticed that he never gets an overly full belly, despite being fed 12 New Life Spectrum pellets daily. My Halfmoon Doubletail Plakat gets only 6 of the same brand of pellets and he is full with a nicely rounded stomach.
I'm not sure if they are hybrids and Petco refuses to shed any light on their genetics.
That's kind of what I'm thinking, the giants display the splenden characteristics and these "King" bettas we get are the less than ideal breed stock. I have heard it both ways, one that they're just selectively bred to be the size they are and there's a gigantism gene, the other that they're a hybrid of splendens and another strain of betta. Has anyone here successfully spawned a batch of "Kings" yet? I see you can get the giants in breeding pairs but with all hybrids the rarer ones are fertile, the majority have issues reproducing.
BTW it is of note that when I got home from work today my King Betta has blown a massive bubble nest on the oak leaf I have floating in his cage, but he still refuses to flare or dance when I put him across from the females, or the males.
Giant bettas have been selectively bred just through the use of larger fish until spawns produced consistently larger fish. This took many years, there are articles about it online. King bettas are mostly a marketing term created by petco. Oftentimes they are not true giants (3+ inches), but there isn't a large splenden they're mixing with some other type of betta to create a king. Oftentimes petco king bettas have "wild" coloring - black, blue, green, and/or red.
Domestic bettas were selectively bred to fight and for coloring/looking pretty from wild bettas, of which there are several species. Giant bettas have been bred from those already modified breeds. However, characteristics of the wild betta can still show up in regular bettas and giants alike, such as a longer, more tube like body, and "wild" coloring, explained above. I hope this information is helpful!
Them being giant or not is dependent on their size, 3+ inches. There is no way to tell if a fish has a giant geno unless you know the background genetics of the fish. If you did that you'd be lucky to get a few true giants.
My King is quite the happy eater also. He eats at one feeding what almost the entire rest of my lot eat combined. And he would eat more if I'd let him. He's grown maybe an inch since I got him over the summer. Never has gotten the overly full belly, just likes to eat and be the biggest of my bunch :)
IMO giants are genetic. I experimented on them - fed frequently and fed once a day. The giants still grew, though they're smaller than the ones fed frequently ..... as the regular betta that doesn't get enough food.
When breeding giant x giant you won't get 100% giant. The most I've heard is 30%. The 70% consist of regular sized bettas and bigger than regular but not big enough to be giants .... maybe these are your kings - not sure.
I've bred them - to regular and to the giant rejects. NONE became giants. All the fry became regular bettas. The only difference is that these offspring eat twice as much and grows twice as fast until a certain size where they became very fat/thick. I've never bred for F2, so I don't know if they will eventually produce giants.
True giants x regular = regular and genos (regular size). If your lucky and breed the genos (F2) you should get bigger bettas. Breed F3 and you should get true giants. .... Theoretically.
Locals say that if you breed a pair of 5.5cm (body only) you will eventually get true giants. According to them, these guys are stunted giants (not fed enough).
Not sure about number of eggs or low fertilized rate because my spawns produce a lot of fry. The problem is that they are vulnerable towards diseases so you will lose a lot if not careful.