Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Rue 02-24-2007 11:24 AM

Why breed fish?
I haven't bred fish...but I did breed horses for a number of years...

...and I'm talking about the deliberate breeding of large numbers of fish, not the breeding that takes place in a normal hobby tank situation.

I was wondering what the reasons were that people breed fish? It seems to have a slightly different politics to it...not sure why, unless most people still assume that fish are 'lesser' beings...

Good reasons to breed fish:

1. Improve the species
2. Maintain/increase numbers of endangered species

Poor reasons to breed fish:

1. Just because
2. Maybe the pet store will buy them and I'll make some money (no you won't)

Before breeding fish, you have to do a LOT of research and really know the ins and outs of your chosen's not an undertaking to be done without a great deal of forethought...

...any other opinions? Any other reasons to add to the list? :)

scottysgirl 02-24-2007 11:42 AM

Hmm...I'd say a lot of people breed a lot of things w/out forethough--dogs, cats, horses (I've owned horses my whole life), and themselves for that matter! I guess I would rather see them breed fish if they have to breed something for a number of reasons: fish are easier to keep than other animals, they can at least usually manage to give the fry away (in regard to space, general care required), people can often not be disuaded from breeding something. I certainly agree with your 'good reasons' to breed fish. Yes most people do regard fish as lower forms of life (not me!). Witness tattoed and dyed fish, if people did that to another animal they would be in big trouble!
Anyway just my two cents

musho3210 02-24-2007 11:45 AM

another good reason to breed fish is to learn more about there species in regards to there lifestyles. Its always nice to own a fish that you bred yourself

Gump 02-24-2007 01:13 PM

I've bred numerous species for different reasons and i disagree with your pros and cons.

Your first pro "improve the species" is a con in my book. Breeding two fish of the same species doesn't improve there fry, they should come out just like the parents so if you implying that mixing species to get desired colors/habits/traits then i consider that a con and bad for the over all hobby. Also the average hobiest wont be breeding endangered species so this really should apply. I do like when people try to breed fish like clown loaches that have no record of captive breeding so if they make a break through it could help the wild population or the new movement in breeding south american rays to help out the wild population.

"Just because" as a poor... some people like the challenge of breeding an odd fish that has some weird spawn pattern like some syno cats. Just because one thing challenges some and gives them interest in the hobby i don't think they should be marked down for it. And if you choose the right species for your area and the availability and interest then you can make money breeding even on a small scale in your town. So do some research and watch trends and have fun.

"Before breeding fish, you have to do a LOT of research and really know the ins and outs of your chosen species.." Shouldn't you do this with all fish before you buy them....?

So my input on this list or my reasons for breeding are:
1. spread a rare or hard to obtain fish to the local public that might spark the interest in others to join or rejoin the hobby.
2. Bred fish to feed other fish in my collection
3. I've made some coin on small scale rare breeding.
4. I've done a few species for the challenge

1. hybrids... no problem if you keep it in your house but don't sell fry to a lfs and introduce a hybrid to the public.

scottysgirl 02-24-2007 02:19 PM

Agreed Gump :)

Rue 02-24-2007 04:32 PM

Why wouldn't you want to improve a species? If guppies, for example, have gone from being hardy tank fish to being delicate tank fish...why not attempt to breed a hardy, healthy fish again?

And you don't just go and breed any two fish breed superb specimens together...and hopefully that will result in a greater number of superb fry...(let's not get into line-breeding and cross-breeding right now)...

I didn't mean hybridization, but we could discuss the pros and cons of that too, if you'd like...

I think all breeders have a responsiblity to the organisms they breed, to make certain that they're not abused...if you're breeding feeders, fine...but they need to be properly looked after until they're eaten...

I think attempting to breed a rare species of fish, or one that hasn't been captive bred to date, doesn't fall under the heading of 'just because'...those are both valid reasons for breeding...and both those take a lot of experience...

I was thinking more of the individual who picks out any old male and female guppies - with little thought to breeding quality fry - and then thinks that they are a breeder and that they are going to make'd be surprised at how often that happens...

...and what happens to the poor fry when they discover no one wants them? Lots get 'flushed' and I think that's an unexceptable solution to an avoidable situation...

Gump 02-24-2007 05:06 PM

The reason guppys are delicate tank fish is because they were crossbred for their color to get the "beautiful" fish we have today.

My hybridization discussion would be brief- don't do it. don't think it should have been done with koi, guppys, discus. If you know where to look nature has provided a color and fish shape to suite your visual needs.

As for rare species its not always hard to do but most wholesalers stocklists are so narrow that if you spend a little time and look and research then you can find some awesome species that aren't hard to bred and can depending on your area yield some decent profits.

And if your last two comments were what you were refereing to you should change this thread to stress the importance of educating yourself to the fish you plan to breed.

Rue 02-24-2007 06:02 PM

...I think education is a valid part of this thread...maybe that's your reason for starting to breed fish; to educated yourself about some aspect of genetics, etc.

...were guppies crossbred for colour? Or inbred? I thought the inbreeding is what caused the current health issues with them...

scottysgirl 02-24-2007 06:27 PM

Could amount to the same thing--look at dog breeds, the pure-bred dogs are more likely to have health issues is because they were in-bred to select desirable traits.

Sleepy 02-24-2007 08:10 PM

I´ve almays bred in small numbers because people were happy to buy or trade the fish. The breed fish from those "hobbyists" are usually healthier than what you can buy at Petsmart, Petco or other Franchise stores.
Of course I received money or a plant as a trade which was good. I was able to choose who will be the new owner of my fish and I had influence what other people could do to maintain their tanks in a better way.

I bought my fish only from those hobbyists and I do trust those people more than any seller and I would appreciate it if more private persons would breed fish instead of huge bulk productions which comes from somewhere, kept in antibiotics to avoid any disease which might occur.

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