Basement Bettas

Raising Show Quality Bettas

Oklahoma Betta Show

We did well in Oklahoma.  The red males took 1st and 3rd and their sisters got some placings as well. The blue and yellow marble line I am trying to establish had a female takk 1st.

My steel Single Tail Halfmoon took Best of Show [BOS] and his brother, ad Double Tail, took Reserve Best of Show [RBOS] Here is a video of the show.


May 1, 2012 Posted by | Betta Shows, Shows | , , , | 3 Comments

What do we breed for??

Since we breed for the shows, one needs to look at the IBC standards. The form of the fish should show good overall balance and symmetry and be as close to the standard as possible.

The dorsal fin must be at least one-half the length of the body, measured from the base of the center ray to the tip of that same ray. The dorsal fin should also show good width at the base and volume. Like other breeders we have added Double tails to our breeding program to get this broader base desired in the show ring. Many fry will be double tails and others will be single tails with regular dorsals.. but others swill be single tail and show the broad dorsal base with 12 or more rays. We look for fullness and a long, upright first ray in the dorsals and hope we have that in the broader base fry. A variety of shapes are acceptable.. semi-circle, quarter circle, rectangular.. as long as breadth and volume are displayed. A triangular shape, however, is unacceptable. With the DT breeding, one must watch for the first few rays being short and spiky.

The tail or caudal fin should be at least one half the length of the body measured from the base of the tail to the center of the outer edge. When flared, the tail should span at least 180 degrees or half a circle or moon. We also look for the first and last rays to be as long as the center, giving them the sharp ‘edge’ to the “D” shapes of the half-moon tail. When these rays are shorter, the tail takes on a more rounded look, even with the half-moon spread. The long outside rays and sharp edges are a must in your breeding females. They dont have to be a full 180 if the branching on their tail is at least 8 ray branching, but they must carry the good edges. If you dont pay attention to this trait, you can lose it quickly. Personally, I will take better edges and less than 180 spread over a full half-moon spread and the rounded edges. It is easier to get the spread than good edges in a line.

The anal fin needs to be in proportion to the other fins, neither too short nor too much longer than the tail. Again, the center ray should be at least one half the llength of the body measured from the body to the tip of the center ray. It should be balanced and roughly rectangular in shape. Ideally, this shape is an isosceles trapezoid with the shorter side next to the body. Volume and fullness are to be desired. One must breed away from the annals that slope sharply from the front to the back.

Symmetry of the fish should be the same above and below an imaginary line drawn through the center of the fish. The silhouette of the three unpaired fins should be as close to a circular outline without gaps. Beautiful proportions are to be superior to a Betta that is just large. Although the fish are divided into color classes to show, the form of the fish takes precedence. In other words, a Betta with slight color faults and great form will place higher than the perfectly colored fish with form faults.

Female Bettas should be balanced and symmetrical as well. They will be a little smaller than the males and not have the length of finnage. Their fins should be full without being long. Females with longer than fins that is ideal for showing can be used for breeding. Avoid, however, breeding females with really long masculine finnage as it really messes up the overall appearance of the fish and takes several generations to bring back under control. Anal fins especially need to be watched to keep them in proportion to the other two. Being able to breed good females will do much to keep your line on track, and will also give you good placings at the shows. When ever I have had to compromise and breed a lesser quality female, the entire spawn seemed to not be what was desired.

When pairing your fish, avoid duplicating a fault in both. If the male has rounded tail edges, make sure the female is really strong here. It is also good to make sure they are strong in several areas together so the trait is reinforced. Choosing 2 fish where one offsets the others in faults will not yield a high portion of fish showing the combination of all good characteristics. They must both be strong in all areas but one, and the other must be strong there to compensate where there is weakness. Otherwise, you keep getting genetic mish mashes and faults will keep showing up, making no progress forward.

What about color? It is how the fish are classified and shown. But, the form must come first. Once you establish your lines having the qualities you need in their genetics, you proceed to clean up the color. By establishing form, you will have a greater number of fish with the desired qualities to now select for color. If you want to pursue a unique color that is not a classification for the shows, go for it. You may lose a lot of the form getting it established, then lose the color as you try to get the form back, but it may well be worth it to bring forth another beautiful Betta.

January 2, 2011 Posted by | Betta Shows, Breeding Bettas | , | Leave a comment