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BETTAS by Jim Sonnier


Some examples of Red-loss Bettas

RED-LOSS Bettas could also be called single-colored Bettas. Aside from their beauty the Marbles brought with them another important mutated gene that has impacted nearly all other colors of Bettas. It was noted early that most Marble Bettas did not have any Red pigment, not even in the pectoral fins and gills. I believed that a separate mutant gene (other than the Marble gene that affects Black coloration) was responsible for this absence of Red. I named this gene the Red-loss gene because the Red color found on most young Marbles seemed to disintegrate and disappear as they grew. Sometimes the loss of Red pigment stopped at some point during this process, but often it continued until the Betta was completely devoid of all Red color. These Bettas that had lost all their Red pigment were the best Marbles. By crossing these fish into Cambodian Blues and Greens I was able to produce some beautiful Pastels (see photo). The next step was to produce dark-bodied Blues and Greens that showed the effects of the Red-loss gene. Black Bettas received the Red-loss mutation in their turn. All of these new Red-loss Bettas were superior show fish, since they did not have Red faults to detract from their point totals at shows. The Red-loss mutation is extremely variable in its expression and is dominant over all other Red genes, except extended Red. Some representative spawning results are presented below...

Spawnings for the Red-loss gene
male parent female parent offspring
Red-loss Multicolor high% Red-loss
Red-loss extended Red ?Red Marbles?


Captivating Cambodian Red/White Butterfly HalfMoon male (fish and photo by Sieg Illig)

BUTTERFLY BETTAS are Bettas that have the mutant gene that causes variegated fins. The first color affected by this mutation was Red, but now Butterflies can be found in most of the other colors as well. Some Butterflies have fins that are almost totally Red except for the edges. Other Butterflies have almost completely Clear fins. There are Butterflies of all degrees in between. The ideal Butterfly pattern shows an equal division between Red and Clear on the fins. The variegated fin mutation is dominant but the effects are highly variable from fish to fish. Usually a spawning will produce a few outstanding Butterflies and many that do not have a very good pattern. To develop a Betta strain with the perfect Butterfly pattern would be a notable accomplishment for any breeder!

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This page was last updated on 02/05/13

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