After a cross-country move, water issues and fish issues we seem to be on track with some breeding. It has been a while since we had an update of what we got growing out and what direction we are going with out breeding. So here goes.. and yes I am insane to have this many going on. On the bright side ya’ll will have lots to choose from on AquaBid.. lol.
Spawn 43 – Metallics: This group is of age and being sold. I sent several to the fall shows and they did well. The females in this spawn are super nice.. they have great spread and good branching. Most are a light minty green of all things. Many have the nice wide dorsal bases we are breeding for but what I like most about the girls is their balance. No slanty or long anal fins! their mother took 2nd place both times she was shown. She had a slight dip in her topline or she may have placed higer. Her form and balance carried through and got stamped on each girl in this spawn. That stamp made a real impression on me. We look hard at the males for form but often times are easier on the females allowing imbalance or less than ideal branching. Many times it isn’t our fault as there are very few good ones for sale and you work with what you have. If you want to raise good bettas you have to get the best girls you can get your hands on. Any one of the girls in this spawn will be an asset to a breeding program. Look for them to be posted soon on AquaBid. The really nice ones will not be cheap.. but they will help get you producing some good females yourself.
The boys in this spawn are all over the place. Whereas the girls were minty green the boys are multi’s with some butterfly type patterns thrown in. This line has huge finnage and great branching. So I like to get some maturity on the boys before making any decisions. With the good branching comes extreme branching heading to rosetail. When you get a tail that branches like crazy it often times is short in length in relation to the other fins. So I watch out for that. I want to see the branching as well as long length. So we wait and watch. The ‘frilly’ ones will head to pet homes as they become apparent. So far I am liking a copper with a white splash on his anal, a couple of green and white marbles, and a tri banded Butterfly that is red, white and blue. Also got several nice double tails. They need maturity too as like to see how well they carry their fins. Most of the doubletails are long-bodied.. good for breeding. I try to stay away from breeding the shorter bodied ones as you lose that long torpedo look a betta is supposed to have.
Spawn 44 – metallics [8/6/11]: Yeah, I know.. more metallics. Same female as above spawn crossed with a royal and white from a fellow breeder, Karenc. The female was minty green with some red wash and we have the royal dad. I EXPECTED royal and green with red wash or marbling. What I GOT is a bunch of light bodied fish. A flash light shined on them shows very light blue and green.. pastels. Yeck! Form wise they are looking good. I was looking to cross in the good solid form Karen has in her fish with that nicely balanced female and it appears I will have sone nice look fish. I figured I would have to clean up the color a bit in the next generations but the pastels are kinda throwing me for a loop. I can cross this spawn to the other for a slight outcross but not sure what the pastel is going to do in my goal for shiny dark blue and green fish.
Spawn 45 – Grizzle [8/25/11] Dad was blue bodied with a grizzle patterned blue and yellow fins. Female was yellow bodied with blue speckles [from spawn 27] Female was colored right but could be much better in form. She was shorter bodied and not 180. She had good branching but was more a super delta spread. I may lose the halfmoon spread in this cross but this spawn was after a color. I am trying to create blue and yellow marbles and grizzles. I love the two colors together so trying to see if I can get a yellow body with the blue marble/grizzle pattern on top. This is my F1. At about 8 weeks of age I already have some males in the barracks. One is lavender with yellow fins.. the rest are speckled. They really are too young to tell what color they will be, but so far the form on the boys does not appear half bad. They are shaped a bit different from my other fish so will see how their finnage develops out. For females I appear to have some solid blues and speckles on others. I am watching to see if their mother stamps them with the less then 180 spread.
Spawn 46 – Red and Black: Crossed a red female with one of my black males and have 2 fish. They are still small and one appears to be red. I was curious if the black would improve the red or the red might improve the black. With only 2 fish will not see much. May try again another day.
Spawn 47 – Steel x Royal [9/3/11] A royal DT daughter of this male pictured was crossed to a very nicely balanced steel male. He does have some red wash but form wise he is great. He has the same type dorsal and tail and the anal is shorter and more in balance. I should get royals and steels, hopefully with big full dorsals and nice balance. Some will probably have red wash.. but can work that out with some solid form. But, see spawn 44 about what I SHOULD get… lol. Fingers crossed no more pastels! I have my metallics I am breeding towards shiny blue and green, but I also want the traditional iridescent colors of royal and steel-blue as well as green and turquoise. These guys are the cross for that.
Spawn 48 – Blue x blue/yellow [9/7/11]: Same male I used for the grizzle spawn above crossed to a royal female with yellow fins. Don’t know what I am looking for here.. bi colors as well as a cross for the marble/grizzles above with better form. She is typier.. longer bodied, anal in proportion, good spread and branching. If I need to improve form for spawn 45 I will have some of the same genetic mater with both of them having the same dad.
Spawn 49 – Red Marble [9/14/11] OK.. I got on AquaBid and totally lost my mind the end of August. The problem is that box from the transshipper to my house. I think it is expensive so I make sure it is not empty. That means when I import I usually do it four fish at a time. This splashy pattern really caught my eye and I actually had a female colored like this I could not get rid of because I though it was too cool. So.. bought this boy and am hoping for red and white marbles. I do like the Cambodian body with the red marble pattern in the fins. He has long nice finnage so hoping for interesting fish for the marble and form and finnage classes. This is a really HUGE spawn and I am going to be in real trouble if even 1/4 are males.. gonna have to keep fish moving through the barracks.
Spawn 50 – Reds [9/14/11] This red boy started they buying binge. I sweet talked Karen McAuley into selling me a pair of her reds. The female [Chili] shredded her brother [Cowboy]. He got put in isolation to grow his fins out and to build his betta ego back up. I wanted reds so I imported one.. and he did nothing but hang out with Chili. So, I bought this guy.. and three more fish to fill that box. I crossed him to Miss Chili and got a very large spawn that are just starting to color up. I need to get some pics as they color up down the back and in their faces. This male had great form and so does Miss Chili. I have great expectations for this spawn producing some very nice reds and Cambodians. I would prefer a darker body but for my first red spawn, and my 50th spawn.. I am delighted.
Spawn 51 – Yellow x Orange [9/14/11:] I had a few yellows crop up in my breeding so decided to find a nice yellow male to breed them to. The male I wanted I got out bid at about $85.. so went and bought this one from the same breeder. Over halfmoon, good color and balance I awaited the shipment. As you can see by the spawn dated I got that shipment and all three males went into spawn tanks.. and I got spawns on the same day. My yellow females were not ready so I put him with a very nice orange female I have. She has nice form and I’m thinking orange and yellow fry. They are coloring up like the reds.. fins and along the back.. and I do appear to have some yellow and [fingers crossed] orange. The tank is a new one set up and I do not have a real light over it so I may actually have red instead of the orange. Should have better lighting soon. The female I had up for auction for a few days.. and the more I looked at her the more I decided I did not want to sell.. so I pulled her. She will be back up for auction when these guys [yet another large spawn] get a little bigger.
Spawn 52 – Steel x Royal [9/20/11] Sibling offspring of that nice steel male above. Male is like dad but has a little shorter anal giving better balance and the female is a royal double tail. She is shorter bodied than I like but it was a very small spawn ans I really wanted to keep the line going. I will have the related spawn for crossing to if needed for longer bodies. Again, hoping for royal blue and steel, this time with no red wash as both these fish have clean color. I just pulled the male whem I got home this evening.
Spawn 53 – Red [10/4/11]: Cowboy finally got his fins and attitude back so I put him back in with his sister. This time I put her in with a chimney I made from cutting the top and bottom off a 2 liter soda bottle. Last time she was flirty and in the mood and a few hours later he was a mess. This time was going to keep an eye on them and make sure he could hold his own. When she appeared agreeable [remember she has been bred before at this time] I turned her lose and he right quick put her in her place. I think I had a spawn later that evening. this is a sibling cross and I will have some reds to cross into the others.. both sharing same mother.
Spawn 54 – Steel x Metallic Green [10/3/11]: Male is sibling to the royal with great form above [spawn 47]. This boy has the same great form and balance with a bit broader and fuller dorsal. He too has a bit of red wash that will need worked out of the line. Female was a very nice metallic green from the first spawn listed. I spawned her then sent her to the Connecticut show and she placed 2nd. She too has the wider dorsal base, great branching and spread and very nice sharp edges on her tail. I am expecting some very good form on these fish. I figure I will have some patterned fish with the red wash and marble the metallics carry. All I need is a few good ones and we will improve the color in the next few generations. My metallic males have that super branching and at times do not get enough length on their tails, This male has good branching and nice long length. So I am hoping to bring that balance to my metallic males.
Spawn 55 Steel x Metallic Green [0/9/11]: more metallics. A repeat of the spawn above except with a sibling female. She is just as balanced, has the wider dorsal base and a bit longer fins. Remember I am wanting more length of the tails in my metallics. Similar breeding to allow some crossing of the best of each.
As you can see I have a LOT of fish coming. Some of them will mature up before the shows and will be offered for sale. We will pick the best for breeding and AquaBid and the rest will end up as beautiful pets. We are working on a web site that will tie into our auctions and other very nice fish offered for sale by top breeders. Look for that in the coming months as well. Hope ya’ll are needing fish.. soon!
We have had a breeding blitz and have several new spawns. Some of the older ones are close to 4 weeks now and starting to color up. Here are some of our upcoming spawns.Blue/Yellow DT Male Betta
Spawn 32 – We imported a huge yellow/blue DT male. I crossed him to a pineapple female and got a spawn I loved every fish in. I crossed him back to a blue/yellow daughter and am looking forward to some very nice bicolored fish. I am also looking to fix the traits I loved so much in his off spring. We got a small spawn but they are looking good.BLue/Yellow DT
Spawn 33 – DT Black x black female. Both these fish are mostly black with more iridescence that I want or can be shown. But, they are what I have and we are working with it. Female is very typy and has a great 180 spread tail with good edges. They could be a bit sharper but overall good. Dad is shorter bodied than I would like but he is a double tail so will add broader dorsal bases. And, he is from my breeding so I know what is in the line. These two were the blackest fish I had so we crossed the best form in the darkest coloring. We also have another cross to a charcoal colored dt male and the same female to hopefully improve the color. I am seeing several nice single tails in there with the broader dorsal bases so looking forward to the next few weeks as they develop. The blacks seem to take a while to really get good color so it may be more than a few weeks.
Black bettas are a difficult thing to breed. Attempting to breed nice bettas in this color is not for the faint of heart as many of the really dark black females that are Melano are sterile and spawns fail. It can be discouraging to breed and encounter so many failures so it is good idea to have another line that is easier just to have some encouragement along the way. It is also difficult to get rid of the iridescence or shine from the fish to be a good black. One of our lines produces nice metallics with a lot of black underneath, so I decided to take the most black of the group and breed towards that coloring. Pictured is one of the first males pulled in our F1 generation. He has the metallic shimmer on his body and also into his fins.. but he is not a bad place to start. Already showing some good branching, he should mature nicely.
Another young male recently pulled.. he has more of the shine but also a deeper black. He may, in time, mature with enough shine to be shown in the metallics class. I’m please with what I am seeing form wise at this young age and am happy we have a large spawn and will have plenty to choose from for both breeding and showing. As the group matures we will be looking for the darkest fish as well as the ones with the least shine to breed in our next cross. Since we are going towards the black without the shine, in a few months we will have some very nice fish for sale.
This female showed up in our metallic spawn. She is more of a chocolate color than black, and we may have to breed towards this color as well to have breedable females. This same spawn has given me 2 very nice black butterfly males that will head to the shows in a month or so. They are more this color than the really dark black as well. Also coming along is our spawn out of the huge DT chocolate male we imported from Thailand. They have another month or so to go before we will be able to really see anything. But it looks like we will have a good selection to breed towards the goal of black bettas.
The copper/red-white butterfly male crossed into a very nice green multi female that was a 2nd place winner in Michigan this past spring is producing some very nice fish. We have coppers, greens, copper blacks and marbles. As you can see from the picture, they are a colorful lot. I now have barracks for 118 fish and they are all full. We have 12 females pulled, some of our adult breeders and the rest are upcoming males. And, as you can see in the photo, we room for a lot more.
This male was the first boy out of this spawn and he is turning into a real head turner. He carries a nice wide dorsal and every thing is in balance.. the dorsal flows nicely into the tail which flows smoothly into his anal fin. Shows are still 8 weeks away so we are not gonna push growing him. Color wise he is a multi colored betta and would be shown in that class. I have a very sa-weet royal female with the broader dorsal, long body, a great 180 tail with sharp edges out of another breeding that will be crossed to him in time. That cross should get me cleaner color and back to a nice royal with future generations. We have a saying.. you build the house, then you paint it. With the bettas, you establish your form, then work on cleaning up the color. This boy, and the female to go with him, have everything I desire in my bettas.. now we refine it and go for a BOS [Best of Show].
We bred this male to a pineapple colored female and the spawn is coming of age. I expected a lot of multi colored blue fish with red.. and we are getting a lot of neat colored fish. Most of them are red and yellow colors and some are starting to show some blue in their bodies. We may end up with some nice bicolors for the show season.
This is looking to be a female. She is showing a wider dorsal base that we are breeding towards. If her dorsal gets more red and her body gets more blue, we might have a show fish. There also seems to be a nice shine that may indicate some metallic. If her color improves she will be a very attractive fish.
We also have several reds coming out of this spawn. There is a dusting of blue over the top of this one that would be counted off in the shows.. but his form is very nice. If the blue is even over the red, he may still make a nice bicolor. We may even get a purplish cast that would be very attractive with the red fins. He is also looking pretty balanced.. the anal is not long and lopsided. I am looking forward to what the coming weeks and good food will bring.
I am really excited about the yellow we are getting. I have 2 pulled that are solid buttercup yellow and many others that have yellow fins. This guy has bright yellow fins and a light purple cast to his body. If the purple comes along a bit more he is going to be super hot. So far he is on track to be a great bicolored fish.. this fins are solid and dark, for the yellow anyway and there is no bleeding of the color into the body. If his form is strong, he will definitely be shown.
Overall, I am well pleased with how this spawn is turning out. They are still young.. about 5 weeks.. so another month and these guys will really be looking good.
Things in the fish room have smoothed out now that we are using the reverse osmosis water. We have imported a few new fish, like Hershey to the left, to start new lines and I am actively seeking more tanks to use as grow outs for all the spawns we now have. After losing 12 spawns we now have:
Spawn 17 - Storm x 13-2 – these guys are 12 weeks and many are on AquaBid for sale. We are keeping two pairs that carry a lot of black to start towards breeding black/melano. We have already bred one pair and got a large spawn.
Spawn 18 – Storm x TB – an outcross into a friends line. The spawn that TB came from produced BOS fish and several class winners. TB herself was 2nd in her class earlier this year. I’m expecting multi colors and some black in this spawn as well. Only got 4 fish from this spawn.. it was one of the last with the bad water.
Spawn 19 – 12-C x 12-1 This was a dark copper male with white fringe and a marble female that had great caudal edges and a nice, broad dorsal. We were looking for nice dark or light coppers to show in the metallic classes with this cross. About 8 weeks of age, we have started pulling some of the boys to keep fins intact and the fish growing. So far, I am happy with the quality. We have several boys with the sharp edges we want and others that are almost there. The ones that are almost there will probably be shown in the spring. I have a really nice female coming that is platinum white and will probably be bred as soon as is possible. Most of the colors are a medium copper.. have about 3 really dark ones, some that are starting to marble and a lot of the lighter platinums. We also have a number of double tails in this spawn that are developing well and 1 boy that looks to be a copper/red bicolor. Another few weeks will tell a lot more.
Spawn 20 – Storm x TB A repeat of Spawn 18.. see above.
Spawn 21 – Copper/Red BF x Copper/Red Another copper spawn that are siblings to the previous spawn 19. We were looking to get the copper/red color established. They are about 6 weeks right now and I’m seeing platinum and some with a hint of red in the fins. We still need a few more weeks to see color and how the fins are coming. They are in a grow out with the above spawn so there are a lot of fish in the 30 gallon. I combined the spawns as the coppers breed true. If it is a copper variation.. it is this spawn.. otherwise it came from the above spawn.
Spawn 22 – Royal x 13-2 This male came from a friend. He has huge fins and nice color. He was bred to a female from my 13th spawn that is green. I am hoping for some nice blues and greens in this spawn.. and will probably get some multi colors as well. I was looking to get the males color and fin length with the females sharp edges and broad dorsals. They are about a month now and growing out in a 30 gal about 4” off the ground. Kinda hard to get down there and look at everybody.. but they appear to be developing nice. Another few weeks and we will start to take a hard look at them.
Spawn 23 - Patches x 13-1 This pair are siblings. The male, a green and white marble, took 2nd at the first show of the season and got his fins tore up on the return shipping, thus ending his show career. These fish are about a month now but the colors I’m seeing are very nice.. blue, green, minty green and some multi colors.. and I’m seeing several of the nice wide dorsals and double tails. I am hoping some of them turn into grizzles as I love that coloring. I am also expecting some nicely patterned marbles.
Spawn 24 – Copper/Red x 11-2 This spawn is to get some nice metallics. My coppers have really balanced form and full finnage. The female I bred him with is a very nice female that has great 180 spread, nice branching, broad dorsal and took 2nd to some very nice competition last spring. She is a blue green multi.
Spawn 25 – Sunny x Pineapple. Sunny is the blue/yellow bicolor DT we imported from Thailand recently from GreatBettas and Pineapple is a yellow pineapple imported from the same breeder earlier this year. I honestly don’t know what I was thinking when I crossed them. I wanted to get more of the blue/yellow bicolor. I am expecting multi color fry but hope to get a few that are decent bicolors. I don’t know enough about the genetics behind the yellow.. and it may disappear for a few generations. This spawn will be a surprise. They are about 3 weeks now and are dull, no color has appeared as of yet.
Spawn 26 – 17-A x 17-1 These two are siblings from Spawn 17 that are mostly black with some green iridescence. Male has great dorsal and nice edges and the female has a nice 180 spread and good branching. I am hoping for more of the black color and good finnage. The anal fin of the male fish is too sloped for my tastes right now, so we will have to watch for that in the future generations and look for better balance in the offspring as we get the color we want. Breeding blacks is difficult as the melano females are sterile. I’ve loved the blacks from the beginning, but now feel I have the patience and experience to work them. The spawn is quite large so we will have a number of fish to choose from. We will also be crossing another black pair from this spawn. Will keep you posted.
Spawn 27 – Rags x Daisy. Two new imports from Thailand. Just got the male Tuesday and into the spawn tank he went Thursday. Friday I had eggs and removed the female. He is a blue and yellow grizzle and she is a blue and yellow DT marble. I am hoping to get more fish colored like the parents. I love the grizzle pattern and am very excited to get this pattern in this coloring. There are 4-6 weeks before I will be able to see the color and the form of the fry. This is the beginning of a new line for us so we have no idea what to expect. But, they are from the same breeder, GreatBettas, and am confident they will produce some outstanding Bettas.
On the horizon to breed are Hershey, the chocolate DT that we imported with Rags and our reds. Hershey will probably be crossed to one of the black females from spawn 17. He should bring better color and some broader dorsal bases into the line. The reds are being a real pain. They spawned when the water was real bad, got a huge spawn, and they all died after hatching. I tried to breed them again and no one is interested. Male build huge nest, female not interested.. when he get bored with the whole think she rips his fins almost all off. I may try crossing him with the Pineapple as they yellow is a related color. With so many spawns going right now I will have to wait a bit. I’m now acquiring larger tanks to grow out the 600+ fry I currently have. Time to get some more barracks built.
Woke up today with one of our 1 week old spawns totally gone. There were only about a dozen of them.. but it was a spawn I really wanted. So I tested the water and found the ammonia had gone high enough to be lethal. I usually have large mystery snails to add to the tanks when they get free-swimming.. but right now I only have one. I did get some pond snails last weekend from the local pet shop and added them to the tanks.. but they obviously did not do the job with uneaten food. This was an expensive lesson as it cost me my fry. We will redo the spawn and be more careful with the water in the future. In the mean time I did some water changes on the other spawn tanks. Using some stiff tubing and air hose I sucked up most of the gunk on the bottom and dripped in some more r/o water. Every body else looks good.
In the past I really did not do much to the spawns untill they were a few weeks old. With the new water and set up it looks like I may have to do some partial changes even during the first week. Since they are so small and sensitive at this time I will have to be careful to make sure all things are done gradual. Today I removed about 2/3 of a beanie from each fry tank.. and replace it with new water. Then, several hours later, I did the same thing again. I will try to do some slight changes every other day from now on. Nutritious food and frequent water changes are the best way to have happy healthy bettas with great fins.
We need to make room for upcoming spawns so we are selling some very nice young fish like the male pictured as well as some of the fish we have chosen to breed. This male is maybe 12 weeks old and will continue to mature. He has several nice sisters for sale as well. To see him and our other fish for sale see our AquaBid auctions.