Jump to content


Photo

My first betta breeding attempt (take 3)


  • Please log in to reply
58 replies to this topic

#1 Clara5

Clara5

    Fry

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 85 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:28
  • Betta Count:3 adults - Many fry!

Posted 16 December 2011 - 06:47 AM

Hello,

Here I am with my very first Betta breeding log. I will be detailing what's going on as I see new developments. Any advice you guys can give me will be greatly appreciated, because even though I read a lot about breeding before starting, nothing beats first-hand experience. :D

So, here goes! This is my third attempt at breeding bettas. The first couple I had was too old, the second, the female got tired and started attacking the male, tearing his fins, so I had to separate them. So here I am, with two more brand new fish, trying again for a successful spawn.

I bought the two fish on Sunday December 11th, less than a week ago. I bought them from Canadabetta, a breeder located where I live, in Montreal. He said they were already conditionned and ready to breed, and that is what convinced me to make the purchase, as I didn't want to have to condition them myself.

I chose a green metallic butterfly halfmoon male, and a brown-bodied yellow-finned (with a black trim at the edge of the fins) female. I may decide to post a few pictures of them if you are interested, so let me know! They are pretty young, judging by their size, but I am not sure how old they are. However, since both displayed the right kind of messages to each other at the breeder's, I decided to go ahead and purchase them.

My tank was empty, so I cleaned it quickly set it up and filled it up with water, treating it right away with Betta Basics water conditionner. I waited until the temperature was warm enough and put the fish in the bags into the aquarium. I waited for the temperature to equilibrate, and then proceeded to release them, the female being inside a chimney so as to keep the two separate.

I then waited almost two days for the male to build his nest, which he did, right next to the chimney (actually, it is stuck to its side). He also has a tiny "secondary nest" under the styrofoam cup I put in a corner of the tank, but he seems to always prefer the larger, more elaborate nest. After the nest seemed big enough, I decided to put the female in, but since the nest was stuck to the chimney and I did not want to destroy it, I decided it probably would be best to just take the female out and release her into the tank instead, leaving the chimney where it was.

Now, I am waiting for the magic to happen. It has not been a bit more than two days. The male chases the female around, but doesn't attack her yet. He seems to always be coming back to his nest to add more bubbles to it. The female spends most of her time hiding from the male, but will sometimes chase him around as well if he's not scared her off too much. She still displays her vertical bars and her ovipositor is still clearly visible. I'm not sure if this is possible, but it seems she's gotten bigger around the belly since I got her, maybe an indication she's currently producing her eggs? Sometimes, when the male is away, she'll go take a look under the nest, and will come back to it a few time if the male doesn't chase her off too forcefully away.

However, I have a few questions for you guys and I'll appreciate any insight you can give me:
- Should I feed the couple, or will this be intefering with their breeding process? It's been 5 days that I've had them so far and they've gone without food so far.
- When should I be separating them if things stay the same for longer? How much longer should I wait until I consider this a failed breeding attempt?
- If I do separate them, should I simply put the female back in the chimney and wait for her to seem more ready or should I put them in two separate tanks?
- Should I leave light on all the time? So far, I've closed the lights at night so as to give the female a bit of time to rest during the night. Is this all right?
- Should I remove the chimney, which is taking up a good amount of space in the tank, even at the risk of detroying part of the bubble nest, or should I leave it where it is?
- I started this off without a filter, expecting I would install it once the fry hatched, but since it's been a few days, should I be installing it right away? It's a sponge filter, and what I did last time which seemed to work pretty well, which is to use the tube right above the water line to create less disturbance on the surface. Is that the correct way to use it or should I let it bubble normally under the water?

If you've got any other advice or tips for me, I'd appreciate that a lot. Thank you very much for your time, I'll be posting new developments as they arise!

Have a great day everyone!

Clara5

#2 Maryanne

Maryanne

    UltimateBettas Veteran

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 8,850 posts
  • Location:Pittsburgh, PA
  • Real Name:Maryanne
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:25
  • Betta Count:Enough.
  • Total Fish Count:Many!
  • Referred By:google

Posted 16 December 2011 - 08:04 AM

Yes you can feed them. They will probably appreciate it.

A few days is normally my limit. Or once they stop doing the courting dance and just start co-habitating.

You should separate, recondition and then try again in 2 weeks. (giving them a chance to rest)

I only leave the light on for males tending fry or eggs.

Leave it. Disturbing the nest resets the courting process.

You won't need the filter for awhile after the fry hatch. They'll hatch, be free swimming, and in a few days you can start slowly adding water over the course of a week or so until the tank is full. Once the tank is full you can add the filter (sponge only, on low).


What do you plan on feeding the fry? Do you already have all of the supplies for that?

What size growouts do you have? How are you planning on managing males that need to be jarred?

#3 Clara5

Clara5

    Fry

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 85 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:28
  • Betta Count:3 adults - Many fry!

Posted 16 December 2011 - 09:12 AM

What do you plan on feeding the fry? Do you already have all of the supplies for that?

What size growouts do you have? How are you planning on managing males that need to be jarred?


For feeding the fry, I already have a microworms culture started, so I thought I'd start with that. After that, I was thinking of feeding them ground frozen blood worms alternating gradually with the microworms, and then gradually add broken-up betta pellets mixed in there as well. If I see that's not working well, I can always contact the breeder again to see if he can sell me some other kind of food that I don't already have. Do you think that is all right? Or should I already have another type of food ready? I'm not really into the smelly cultures or the hassle of complicated live foods. I'm only just starting and probably don't have the experience to manage all those different live foods at the same time as caring for the fry.

As for growouts, I have my 10gal that is my breeding tank for the beginning, and I was thinking of using a larger clear plastic tub as a larger grow-out tank, until I have to separate the males. Until I see an actual spawn and fry growing though, I don't think I'll go so far as to actually purchase all the jars I need for that step. Especially since I won't be able to know how many males I'm going to get... I don't want to take-up space that is going to end up not being used if I don't get my fish to spawn. If you mean something else by managing, let me know though :)

Thanks for your answers! If my fish haven't spawned yet when I get back home tonight, I'll probably be separating them. Should I put them into two separate tanks, different from the breeding tank, or could I just take the female out and leave the male in the breeding tank until they're ready to go at it again?

Have a great day!

Clara5

#4 Maryanne

Maryanne

    UltimateBettas Veteran

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 8,850 posts
  • Location:Pittsburgh, PA
  • Real Name:Maryanne
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:25
  • Betta Count:Enough.
  • Total Fish Count:Many!
  • Referred By:google

Posted 16 December 2011 - 11:27 AM

Microworms are occasionally too big for a first time food especially if your female produces small eggs (which means smaller fry). You should look into smaller worm cultures (walter or banana worms), vinegar eels, infusoria, or egg yolk as another first food option depending on the size of your fry.

Your fry aren't going to be able to go from microworm to crushed blood worms. There is too big of a size jump, and you don't want to be feeding just microworms for more than a few days as it has been shown to cause missing ventrals. Freshly hatched baby brine shrimp is key to raising bettas! I'll try and dig up my videos on how to set up a brine shrimp hatchery. If you aren't really into the hassle of live foods, then you probably shouldn't be breeding bettas. Live food is best for small fry.

When you separate your male and female, you should put the female in her own tank. You can leave the male in the breeding tank. He needs to be able to feel that it is his territory. Let your male and female see and flare at each other for a few minutes a few times a day to keep the female producing eggs. Feed high quality high protein foods during conditioning.

#5 Clara5

Clara5

    Fry

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 85 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:28
  • Betta Count:3 adults - Many fry!

Posted 16 December 2011 - 02:00 PM

Hello again Maryanne,

Thanks for the advice about feeding, I'll be looking into that. I think I can go with infusoria or egg yolk for the very beginning with no problem, those are also things I have at hand at home (eggs and lettuce I mean) and I read-up how to make them as well, so it should be fine, and I would switch to worms after.

Baby brine shrimp may be an interesting option, and your videos are probably going to help me out figuring how this works.

However, I have to say it's quite disappointing and disheartening to see that the very first person that gives me advice is also telling me I should not be breeding. I mentionned *complicated* live foods. I have not looked into brine shrimp yet, what I meant by complicated were wingless flies and blood worms, etc... And that was only since this is my first attempt, and it's quite a tall order to ask someone to master how to culture live foods at the same time as raising bettas.
Also, as this IS my first real attempt (the other two were no-go's), I still cannot say if this will be a thing for me. I am trying it out for the moment, and only time and experience will let me know if it's working out, and if it's something that I want to keep doing. As much as I appreciate your concern for the well-being of bettas all over, I am by no means an immature 15 year-old who think it'd be "cool" to have baby fish, and does not understand the consequences of taking up of such an activity. Probably you yourself had a few bumps along the road on your first breeding attempt.
My goal is not to become a full-time breeder for profit, but one that is doing it as a hobby (but a serious hobby), because I love bettas, and I wish more people had access to them the right way, from a loving breeder, not from places like Wal-Mart. Maybe once I get some experience, and IF I decide to step my hobby up a notch, then I'll go looking for trying to improve a color, or finnage, or another characteristic like dedicated breeders. My only regret is that there are no IBC shows in Canada, so I'll never be able to have my fish compete, or at least not until I master the art of shipping them out.

I know I probably talk too much, and am shooting myself in the foot right now... I'll just shut up and wait until something happens with my breeding and then write another 10 pages on it, and bore you to death :/

Enjoy the rest of your day, like I'll try to do mine.

Clara5

P.S. Please understand, I am not b*tching at you for criticising my desire to breed betta, only expressing my disappointment at not being given a chance before being told not to do it. None of us are perfect in this world, but I'll strive all I can to breed bettas to the very best of my abilities.

Edited by Clara5, 16 December 2011 - 02:05 PM.


#6 glasshaven

glasshaven

    Halfmoon

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 763 posts
  • Location:Missouri
  • Real Name:Jessica
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:36
  • Betta Count:20+
  • Total Fish Count:LOL
  • Referred By:Google/Facebook

Posted 16 December 2011 - 03:41 PM

Welcome to the forum Clara5! You'll find Maryanne to be one of the most straightforward, generous people on the forum here that has a sole purpose of helping people raise and care for fish to the best of her well rounded ability.

The videos she mentioned are in this thread and I can say making BBS is no problem for the most part ;) I ended up modifying my setup quite a bit from what I started with originally- you'll find the best way for yourself as you go along.

Thanks to her knowledge, given to me as a complete novice, I have a dozen very healthy fry well on their way :)

#7 Dakota-Rose

Dakota-Rose

    Ohai there!

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 182 posts
  • Location:Canada
  • Real Name:Dakota-Rose
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:16
  • Betta Count:5
  • Total Fish Count:9
  • Referred By:Google

Posted 16 December 2011 - 03:44 PM

If you need a website to get BBS from, this guy is in Canada, and even has a video tutorial for BBS. I have bought several fish from him, and he is very nice :)

http://stores.canadi.../Categories.bok

#8 Maryanne

Maryanne

    UltimateBettas Veteran

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 8,850 posts
  • Location:Pittsburgh, PA
  • Real Name:Maryanne
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:25
  • Betta Count:Enough.
  • Total Fish Count:Many!
  • Referred By:google

Posted 16 December 2011 - 04:00 PM

I'm really sorry that that came off wrong. I was posting at work and have very little time to actually reply, so things come off more tersely than I intend them to be just because I only have a short amount of time to answer.

I was just saying that raising bettas is fairly intensive and requires live food for the best health of the fry. If you didn't want to do it purely for the hassle, then raising your babies is going to be a bigger hassle than hatching the live brine shrimp ever would be. Hatching brine shrimp is very easy and fairly foolproof. It seems fairly complex at first, but it is essentially salt, water, brine shrimp eggs, and bubbles and you'll have baby brine shrimp.

Glasshaven found the link first :) I can't access pictures or movies at work, so I couldn't add it to my first post.

#9 Clara5

Clara5

    Fry

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 85 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:28
  • Betta Count:3 adults - Many fry!

Posted 16 December 2011 - 05:49 PM

Hello everyone,

Thanks glasshaven for the video link, I'll be looking into that for sure.

And a million thanks Dakota-Rose for the address of the canadian seller, unless I find a better price, I'll be ordering from him.

Maryanne, thank you for explaining, I'm understanding that this was probably a misunderstanding. I hadn't looked into the brine shrimp option before because I though microwors would be sufficient, as my breeder assured me they would, but I stand corrected! Thanks for letting me know. I'll be looking for the brine shrimp as soon as possible since...

I have BIG NEWS!!!!! My couple is currently spawning, I even watched them at it! I came home and noticed what looked like grains of salt at the bottom of the tank, I was sure I'd missed everything, but after chasing her a bit, the male let the female approach him and the nest again, and they embraced once more, a few more times. I tried filming them but my digital camera's not very good with filming "macro style". However, I'm happy to see that I've managed to get a successful spawn!!! :D :D :D !!!

I can't see the eggs in the nest, I can only hope the male didn't eat them all while picking them up from the bottom, I guess I'll be looking closer tomorrow morning to see if I see anything. I'm SO excited! (ok, now I DO sound like a teenager :P )

I'll be keeping this log up to date as I go again, I'm guessing the next step is going to be taking the female out and waiting for the eggs to hatch, which if I understand correctly, should be in about 24 hours.

Have a great evening everyone!

Clara5

#10 glasshaven

glasshaven

    Halfmoon

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 763 posts
  • Location:Missouri
  • Real Name:Jessica
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:36
  • Betta Count:20+
  • Total Fish Count:LOL
  • Referred By:Google/Facebook

Posted 16 December 2011 - 05:57 PM

Very fun then!!

The link I gave you is to a thread I started with a simple question about what eggs look like in a nest and everything went uphill from there as the forum stepped in to help me, literally step-by-step to work with the eggs to fry and beyond, not to mention how and what to feed- and how to grow the food!

I really think it's a good read and it seems every time I go over the thread I find more information I can use. I wish people on the forum could have seen my face when I realized I had to FEED the fry, LOL! I was honestly THAT clueless about everything :)

Edited by glasshaven, 16 December 2011 - 05:58 PM.


#11 CA1121

CA1121

    CA1121

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 486 posts
  • Location:Lancaster, CA
  • Real Name:Cody
  • Gender:Male
  • Age:26
  • Betta Count:100+
  • Total Fish Count:Lots!!!
  • Referred By:jfern25
  • Statement:Well Hi!!!

Posted 17 December 2011 - 06:09 PM

Ok I am back from a long period of being gone from this forum, if you need help you can ask me as well. I am 1 1/2 months in my current spawn and preparing spawns all the time. One big thing to consider is that Bettas are one of the most difficult fish to breed. Also always expect the unexpected. Before my current spawn I had 4-5 failed attempts from male killing female...female beating up male...male eating the eggs and fry. Also once the fry are all established, expect about 50% of the fry to die for numerous reasons. I had about 100 fry in my spawn and now 1 1/2 months later I have 8 that lived so far. Though I sound pretty grim, I just need to let you know that this is just some of the factors to expect. I have know breeders that have had 800 fry in one spawn where most survived and spawns that 1 to 20 lived out of hundreds.

You should expect to see some bouncing babies in 2-3 days after the eggs where laid. Then up to 4 days later the fry will be free swimming on their own...this is when most people remove the male. 2 days after that is when I would start feeding them. I never had fry that were too small for Microworms so that's what I start with.

Well Good luck and try to get pics!!!. :tup:

#12 Clara5

Clara5

    Fry

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 85 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Age:28
  • Betta Count:3 adults - Many fry!

Posted 18 December 2011 - 03:08 PM

Hello everyone!!!

One more update! The eggs have started hatching!!! I see a lot of little tails haging down from the nest :D

What's funny is I think their numbers seems to have grown steadily down... the male may be eating them... Should I remove him, even if the fry are not free-swimming yet? I think there are approximately 50 fry for the moment, but I can't be sure, it's hard to see them all when I'm only looking from one angle.

Have a great day everyone!

Clara




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

IPB Skin By Virteq