Jump to content
pk333

Hybridisation & Mixing New Bloodlines.

Recommended Posts

Hello peoples

Let me start out by saying that I am not a scientist or biologist, have little or no knowledge of DNA and therefore anyone who likes can dismiss my ramblings as just that, ramblings of an oft disillusioned hobbyist.

Ok a little background about myself.

My parents used to keep and breed Oscars, Blue acaras and Red Forest Jewels (as well as guppies, mollies and platys) in the 70's and early 80's when I was a kid. We moved house in the mid 80's and they sold all their tanks.

I got back in to the hobby about 5 years ago, and after 2 years dabbling with various SA cichlids, found that I really liked keeping and trying to breed dwarf cichlids.

I can't speak for what the hobby was like in 70's and 80's as I was a kid, and apart from helping dad with water changes, I spent more time playing down the local creek than I did paying too much attention to what my parents were doing. But I do know there was not as much information available to my parents as what we have available to us today.

Edited by pk333

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have many pet hates about the hobby, one being, walking in to a LFS and seeing fish labeled incorrectly, either with an incorrect scientific or common name or with an old and now outdated name. Sometimes it's seeing 3 different species of fish all labeled the same, for example 3 different species of Geophagus all labled as Surinamensis. Or 3 different line bred forms of Apistogramma macmasteri labeled as "wild caught" viejita or "gold" viejita. Or seeing a Gold Saum labeled as a Rivulatus or Green Terror "Rivulatus".

In each case there is a 99.99% chance that the fish are truely labeled incorrectly.

In the case of the Surinamensis, Suriname stopped the export trade of ornamental fish some time in the 90's I believe (happy to be corrected, could have been the 80's or very early 00's). Few real Surinamensis made it in to the hobby in Europe and the USa, let alone in to Australia, but most commonly we see various G. altifrons sold as Surinamensis.

In the case of Apistogramma viejita, this a Columbian apistogramma that is found in the FARC (read Columbian drug lords and anti government para military) controlled parts of Columbia and no one (well white people) go collecting there as non locals tend to be kidnapped and held for ransom. Mike Wise (the apisto man) states that viejita hasn't existed in the hobby in since the 80's and even then it was rare. All forms sold today as viejita are a line bred form of A. macmasteri.

As for the Gold Saum, Green Terror, Rivulatus, well that's a discussion that can (and has) taken up pages. Most people don't even know it's correct scientific name, let alone can tell the difference between the 3 species involved in the argument. Suffice to say, no one is breeding true Rivulatus or Green Terrors in Australia for the Aquarium trade. Whether they have an orange, red, "gold" or silver trim to their dorsal and caudal fins, they are all Gold Saums.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
But I do know there was not as much information available to my parents as what we have available to us today.

Depends....a lot of information given on forums is erroneous

In the 70's and 80's there was no internet....but there were fish clubs....with lots of older members who knew their stuff

I learn from People who had bred more species than you can now buy.....

No canisters just simple air driven filters and tanks that were metal framed

I'd enter the club shows held each month....and learnt what was a champion fish....and what wasn't

Put a mislabeled fish in the show....instant disqualification

and no one would Win a show with a hybrid!!!

No body would dare sell deformed fish....now it's an art form

No fancy test kits.....you looked at the fish and soon worked out if they were Happy or not

I would do the rounds on my pushbike (no gears) each Saturday and visit 6 shops......and they all sold from planted tanks and had the odd New specie for sale

All the shop keepers were hobbyist first...retailers a distant 2nd....

I'd Love shops to be like the 70's......

The hobby is certainly more commercial these days....do people know more???

They tell you they do!

Don't get me wrong....I don't claim to know it all....I'm still learning

I just believe I had a better education in the subject than most get these days......from a few old blokes....most are no longer with us

Edited by Rod

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing a lot of breeders are always on the look out for is new blood to mix in with their current breeding stock. This helps reduce deformities in succeeding generations, and may help breeders to produce a new line of a species that highlights a specific trait, for example long fin bristlenose, triple red cacatuoides, or German Blue rams.

One of my early memories is walking in to a LFS with my dad. Dad was checking out some Red Forest Jewels (some one want to post their scientific name?) and decided against buying the new ones in stock because they looked significantly different to the ones he was then currently breeding, yet they were marked as Red Forest Jewels. Another memory is walking in to another LFS with my father a few years after he had sold up and dad commenting on the poor quality of the Blue acaras compared to what was around when he was breeding them.

Now how is a hobbyist supposed to obtain new stock from a LFS when the LFS does not correctly label the fish they are selling. Don't get me wrong people, this is not to bash LFS. Often they are only selling the fish under the same name that the wholesaler (bayfish, AI) sold the fish as, and the wholesaler bought them from an overseas wholesaler (such as Aquarium Glaser in Germany) and the wholesaler may have bought some wild caught fish that have already past through two or three sets of hands, or from breeders with questionable practices.

Lets provide an example that happened to me.

In the middle of 2010 I bough a pair of Apistogramma agassizii that were labled as agassizzi "fire tail".

Now agassizii are what's known as a super species. They are found right along the Amazon river and many of it's tributaries right through Peru and Brazil and are also found in other river systems not linked to the Amazon. There are literally dozens of location variants and sub species. Many of these may eventually be split off as an individual species in their own right, while as will be classified as a sub species of Agassizii.

One of the problems with agassizii (and many apistos) is that many are collected by indigenous Indians and sold to exporters in Peru who ship them wholesalers in Europe or Asia. Quite often the Indians use a "common name" or "descriptive name" because they do not know the scientific name (or there isn't one). the Indians are very protective about where they collect the fish from, because they do not want europeans coming in and over fishing their streams and ruining a source of income, so they keep there collecting sites secret. So the Peruvian exporter does not have a locational name (a name that says where the fish was collected) and adds a descriptive name instead.

So back to my agassizii "fire tail". So I wanted them identified, so I got on apistogramma forums in the hope Mike Wise could i.d. them. Thread Here. It is one of my great regrets that I lost my pair (because of incorrect water issues) and was not able to source another pair.

The reason why I wanted them identified, was to find out if they were wild caught. In apistogramma circles it's not the done thing to cross breed wild apistos of the same species from different locations. Why, because down the track they may be split in to different species and we (well purists) do not like hybrids in the hobby. That's not to say people don't breed wild caught apistos with line bred apistos. It's common for some breeders to mix wild caught cacatuoides in to their line bred variants every now and then to strengthen the bloodline and help limit deformities.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok lets jump back to the Red Forest Jewels. 20, 30, 40 years ago we did not have the internet, and not everyone had access to publications that listed the then known cichlid species. At the same time, species may have not have been as split as they are today. Just because one species was found across a number of neighbouring streams or rivers, and the ones found in each stream looked a little different to its neighbour but that didn't necessarily make them separate species. So who is to say we didn't have different species of Hemichromis brought in in successive imports and some hobbyist breeders snapped them up to mix in new blood to their existing stock. Now we have hybrids and these hobbyist breeders then sell some juveniles back to their LFS's.

Don't think it happens?

Last year I was in a LFS looking at a tank of Red Forest Jewels and there were clearly two different types in there. An employee even pointed this out. Oh and there was a "pair" breeding in the tank.

Anyone here keep oranage head geos? So we know (or are relatively sure) there are as yet two undescribed species of orange heads. Geophagus sp. "Tapajos orange head" and Geophagus sp. "Araguaria Orange Head". Both species are listed in South American Eartheaters by Thomas Weidner, long considered The Bible for geos and other eartheaters. Anyone here heard of Heiko Bleher? Some of our discus keepers possibly own books published by Bleher. Heiko Bleher travels the world collecting fish and writing publications about them. Ask him his opinion on where the two variants of orange heads are found. He has a rather different opinion to the geo bible when it comes to the Araguaria, by a couple of thousand kilometers (ok well maybe just one thousand k's).

Anyway back in 2008/09 I bought some juvenile Araguaria off a member here. He was well known for breeding quality Araguaria and many members bought stock off of him. In 2010 some one posted on here a wtb Tapajos "orange head" add. Well on jumps the same member and says he has plenty for sale. Said member only had the one variant, but was quite happy to sell it under both names. This is how accidental hybridisation occurs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Eventually I'll get to bristlenose. But for now it's time for me to stop my ramblings and get ready for work.

Required reading for the next chapter, two current threads here.

what are orange spot b/n?

Starlights

It would save me a lot if Ray jumped on here and explained how longfin common bn's and longfin albino bn's were bred. Which one is the crossbreed?

Oh and I'll be surprised if even one person reads all this in it's entirety.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

me finks he is trying to say HE IS SICK AND TIRED OF SEEING F@CKED UP FISH ..and sick of ppl selling somthing its not....SO ANOTHER WORDS KEEP THE BLOODY FISH PURE FOR THE FUTURE FISH KEEPERS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Woohoo Rod, that got you out. I was hoping you would reply, because you are some one who knows there stuff.

I'm not necessarily talking just about obtaining information from forums. But there are some forums that are linked to a lot of scientific articles or a owned and/or moderated by genuine experts in the field.

And yes my parents tanks were all metal frame, some even with a type of putty, not silicone holding the panes together, on metal stands with air driven box filters filled with marbles, activated charcoal and filter wool.

OK serious questions.

How many different species of Red Forest Jewels did the club/s have in the 70's?

Where did the Blue Acaras come from?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
me finks he is trying to say HE IS SICK AND TIRED OF SEEING F@CKED UP FISH ..and sick of ppl selling somthing its not....SO ANOTHER WORDS KEEP THE BLOODY FISH PURE FOR THE FUTURE FISH KEEPERS

To a point.

If some one likes balloon rams, well that's up to them.

It's just as much about understanding what you own and where it comes from, and not calling it something it isn't.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
am reading , trying to figure out the point , oh well off to work

Felt like banging my head against a wall while mumbling to myself for a couple of hours today.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gday

In regards to LFS miss lableing livestock (dry goods) I would like to offer a different veiw and that is at least 15 -20 years ago most if not all LFS where owned by mar and pa operators and where not large super stores, couple this with that the amount of live stock that was bought was from the actual breeder and not just via a large wholesaler looking at numbers and not so much quality. These mar and par shops had the knowladge because they also had the true passion for the industry and also usualy deep imbeded in the fish coulture (including clubs).

The sad fact is that it is not just the shops or the junior staff it is also a huge part to the wholesalers selling mixed (supplied) stock and these are mixed in with sub quality fish /stock as they are trying to cover there margines. (yes back to the dollar)

Now please dont get me wrong I am not saying that there are not great LFS out there however with there overheads and extra insurences and the added preasure of the dreaded ATO breathing down there necks, they can not source alot of there stock directly from the breeder and also learn the knowladge from the breeder on all the care instructions and quality control that has happened to get them there live stock.

As for the bloodlines and species that are in Australia well wether we wish to accept it or not there have been / and are illeagly imported livestock that has and does enter this country, so with this in mind it is not hard to believe that there are" new" bloodlines in Aus. I must say I do have to shake my head when I hear people say that there is only 1 of this certain species in Australia and this is due to to only 1 being imported by "accident". the other side of this is that due to this industry is still a little cloak and dagger with many breeders not disclosing what they breed or where they breed. As when I started in the industry I found it hard to crack open the old nuts and get help as there were no "forums" only your LFS to start you off.

So there is my little rant on this

Cheers

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cloak and Dagger, secrets, accidental/deliberate misinformation- These are things present in any industry where there is $'s. Seems it's the way of the world...

I couldn't care less if someone hybridizes X fish with Y fish so long as they don't sell the babies as "pure strains of either". You could go for the "what about my children's children's children?" argument but in all seriousness do you really think that the world as we know it is going to be around that long? Sometime in 100 years is someone in Brazil going to say "Oh ****! All our little native fish are gone, we better restock- Lets get some from the aquarium industry in Australia?" - not likely....

Personally I have been keeping and breeding mostly Tanganyikan cichlids for the last 15 years, I maintained very high quality fish and never on sold what I considered to be a low quality fish- ie. generally unheathly, bent fins, bent faces, irregular bodyshape, etc. These days these things are the norm, look in virtually any petshop... balloon this and that, other linebred munted fish that in the old days would be hard to pass off as a feeder.

If your lucky you may actually get a decent quality HEALTHY fish. It all depends on the particular fish you are looking at and it's origins... AI/Bay/other importers are all at the mercy of their suppliers this isn't unique to the aquarium industry!!!

Kids these days have less attention span than a goldfish and you really think that this situation is ever going to get better? The future of this planet is very bleak indeed...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This thread has shown many different ways that hybridisation can occur.

Over the years there have been many improvements to filtration water chemistry, and resources for gathering information.

After working with wholesaler/importers, retail and being a hobbyist I have witness.

Fish being miss labelled by overseas wholesalers/ importers as well as breeders. With today’s technology some of these could have been sorted quick and easy by very little use of the web.

As Rod and B/N john have said, part of the blame can be shared by some of the old nuts and not so old nuts that don’t share their information readily, me being one of them. As until the forum changed hands and I became a mod, I don’t think I had even made a post.

Some other reasons our problems can be attributed to the breeders, who look at anything to turn a quick buck e.g. A tank full of different Malawi cichlids that a hybrid has occurred; or a system where large American are kept and after a large water change has triggered a mass spawning and cross fertilisation has occurred. Although by accident or not, the hybrid was born, raised and sold as whatever it looked closest to for the ‘quick buck’.

We all know blood lines can be renewed with great cost and time spent by the dedicated few who will search out and pay for strait bloodlines.

I think as a whole the hobby has to be the one to practice certain amount of integrity to stop the unwanted hybridisation and inform shops, breeders and wholesalers of miss labelled fish.

Maybe if as a collective, we stand together, share information, work together and look at this as a hobby not just a way to make money, we can achieve more than we could imagine.

For at the end of the day it’s the hobbyist that has to set the standard not the supplier.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IMHO,difference between True Hobbist and the general fish keeper is thus,True hobbist=breeding true to form ,which some times will invlove line breedibg ,for the mere fact of keeping a more wild type fish and general fish keepers =ppl who love "pretty fish"'which is the reason why such things as "ballons" (which should be out lawed ,and is Totally cruel)and the breeders/whole salers of said fish are just PURELY after greed...then comes into factor the moral difference between gen y and gen x and the silly so called fish guru thing ,as they say on mkr "less is more",on a side note,i would hate to be a chiclid keeper,not a rant just my opion ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

meh rosey glasses mate

Everyone wants to think we were all suave gurus back in the day.

lol

I used to absolutely love pet shops in the 80's

most were ma and pa operations

and bloody hell 90% of the fish were always misslabled.

Everywhere I went on family trips we visited pet shops

and it was hardly an isolated problem.

The internet has been the best thing by far that could ever have happened to the fish keeping hobby.

Anyway, I keep fish as a hobby.

ie as a way to have fun.

I even have my own hybrid line of pink cichlids that I treat like guppys.

Life is too short to worry about what other people do in their fish tanks. If you find yourself doing so, start another tank to take your mind off it!!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Not sure what the Generation thing has to do with anything?

Thats why your y ;) ...could go on wit a speil ....but really whats the point?,i and ppl alike know what i mean

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Clearly you haven't bought fish from me or understand how much I know about Tanganyikan cichlids. Or the connections I have around Australia...

;) thats why you're Gen X?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Clearly you haven't bought fish from me or understand how much I know about Tanganyikan cichlids. Or the connections I have around Australia...

;) thats why you're Gen X?

was not a personal attack on you matey ,more a general synopsis ,and as for connections...i have optus lol gets me all around australia and overseas ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×
×
  • Create New...