Whats your take on hybrids???

Discussion about cichlid conservation and captive bred programs

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Would you ever keep/create/buy a hybrid???

I am strongly against any form of hybrids, different species or genuses bred together.
49
92%
I dont care. as long as it is pretty i would take pretty much anything!
2
4%
i see no problem with hybrids they are actually healthy for the hobby.
2
4%
 
Total votes: 53

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James Shingler
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by James Shingler » Tue Oct 14, 2008 4:45 pm

Our hobby at its worst?
Franken-Flowerhorn-fish

Image

How are these are created..........
http://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/p ... p?news=957

Is trying to stop these abuses, a good argument for hybrid breeders having a registration system organized by a body like the ACA?

If hybrid makers are not allowed to show their creations within cichlid keeping organizations, we can have no influence on their practices?

dogofwar
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by dogofwar » Tue Oct 14, 2008 8:20 pm

No more freakish than this:

http://www.bristol-aquarists.org.uk/gol ... bubble.htm

Neither is my cup of tea...but to each his/her own...

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Alex Odesit
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Alex Odesit » Tue Oct 14, 2008 8:56 pm

James Shingler wrote:Our hobby at its worst?
Franken-Flowerhorn-fish

Image

How are these are created..........
http://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/p ... p?news=957

Is trying to stop these abuses, a good argument for hybrid breeders having a registration system organized by a body like the ACA?

If hybrid makers are not allowed to show their creations within cichlid keeping organizations, we can have no influence on their practices?
poor "fish?", defiantly sign of people cruelty to come up with idea creating something like this in purpose.
Last edited by Alex Odesit on Wed Oct 15, 2008 10:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

Bas Pels
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Bas Pels » Wed Oct 15, 2008 1:40 am

These are not only hybrids, but the tails have been cut off

This is a nightmare, abuse of fish and the production of these victims, but also the keeping, should be banned

In our country it is forbidden to cut the tail (and ears) of dogs - rightfully in my eyes. To me this is just as wrong as with dogs

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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by James Shingler » Wed Oct 15, 2008 10:00 am

Bas Pels wrote:These are not only hybrids, but the tails have been cut off

This is a nightmare, abuse of fish and the production of these victims, but also the keeping, should be banned

In our country it is forbidden to cut the tail (and ears) of dogs - rightfully in my eyes. To me this is just as wrong as with dogs
I could not agree more.
This cruelty will be made illegal in the UK (Animal Welfare Bill) but sadly a loop hole exists in the Animal Welfare Bill and they can continue to import and sell them without fear of prosecution. :(

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Bojan Dolenc
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Bojan Dolenc » Thu Oct 16, 2008 8:57 am

James Shingler wrote:
Bas Pels wrote:These are not only hybrids, but the tails have been cut off

This is a nightmare, abuse of fish and the production of these victims, but also the keeping, should be banned

In our country it is forbidden to cut the tail (and ears) of dogs - rightfully in my eyes. To me this is just as wrong as with dogs
I could not agree more.
This cruelty will be made illegal in the UK (Animal Welfare Bill) but sadly a loop hole exists in the Animal Welfare Bill and they can continue to import and sell them without fear of prosecution. :(
I subscribe to your every word! This is abuse of our wellborn hoby :o
Change in habit, producing change of function, is the main cause of the production of change in living structure. F. Wood Jones (1953) Trends of life

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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Aquamojo » Mon Dec 29, 2008 7:03 am

Alex Calder wrote:One more time I shall wade into this.

To me a line bred fish sits in equal place with a hybrid. I honestly do not care for either. Do I respect the time and care put into developing lines? Honestly no, this care could be better placed else where in my opinion. Is it going to go away? No it will no, there is too much money involved.

The only positive, to me, is that it will attract new people to the hobby which we can then educate and hopefully sway from these fish.

This whole topic created a "can of worms" in my Cichlidbase project as we had to tackle the idea of including line breeds and hybrids. In the end while none of us were very supportive of these fish we realized that they are in the hobby and the fish themselves deserved to have proper care. We are still tackling the methods mind you and it is a conundrum on it's own. I may not like Flowerhorns but I recognize that the fish did not choose to be made.

This may seem rather harsh to some but it is my position and belief.

I fall in line with Alex and "dogofwar"...including the "wading through" part. I recently chaired a committee of BOT members that attempted to sort through the issue as it relates to the ACA. The only thing that was resolved was us sorting through the definitions of each. As far as the club goes....my opinion is that if Hybrids are out...so should the fish that are line bred for aesthetic reasons (Discus, Fancy Angels, Albinos, etc) There's no difference. It comes down to intent and not process. I just looked at the ACA's trading post and saw the following "species" of Discus for sale: Silver Pigeons, Red or Blue Pigeons, Flachen Snakeskin, Pigeon Snakeskin, Marlboro Red, Red Pigeon Blood, Pigeon Blood, Red Turquiose, Blue Diamonds, Flachen, Santarem... Where exactly are THESE found in nature? Ridiculous.

The concern that I have seen in our discussions about Hybrids/Line Bred fish is "how will it affect our annual show"...not "how will it affect the club". The fear is...and it's quite simple...if we lump fancy LB fish with hybrids, then refuse hybrids...we would have to eliminate fancy LB fish (Discus, Angels, etc) And that would decimate the show. Should that be important? Certainly from a financial standpoint in making the show successful. So is it all about the money? Should it be?

I think the real issue is how we can educate people on ALL things cichlid...including the ups and down of creating OTHER cichlids. From the ACA's position we should be an organization that educates and doesn't dictate. Our focus should be on responsible fish keeping...responsible breeding. One of our recent suggestions to the BOT was to revise the wording in our mission statement to "Further the conservation of cichlids in their natural habitat AND IN THE HOBBY."

Image

Every time I read someone post that "at least fancy line bred fish are the same species" I want to bang my head off the wall. I've heard things like, well "they've been a part of the show for years, so they are grandfathered in"...what the heck does THAT mean? As my late father used to say, "they either is or they ain't".

For the record I don't keep, nor will ever keep a Flowerhorn...but I respect my fellow aquarist's passion for whatever it is that they want to keep in their tank. My exception is the mutilated type fish shown above. I see no difference than if some idiot wanted to remove a leg from a Golden Retriever...or the ears off of a cat. Stupid.

Rant off....
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Dan Woodland » Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:33 pm

I've avoided posting on this thread like the plague but I think Mo and company have nailed it. I don’t think any of these “lines” of fish will go away completely so educate “those keepers” in hopes they migrate away from the dark side. :D

Basically keep what you want to keep and to each their own! Personally I keep pure strains, others may differ in opinion and that’s fine. Enjoy the hobby the way you want but please be responsible and be upfront about your breeding and distribution of any babies. Don’t pass something off as a FH or as a Pure Cichlid when it’s not.

In regards to the ACA, policy is policy. I don’t care if something has been “accepted for years” or not, if it’s decided to update policy that’s it, every will have to abide by that new policy. In reality should the policy be changed regardless of the possible affects on the ACA and/or the show? I don’t rightly know, I’d hate to be on the BOT during this session. Actually I take that back, if you remove the emotion from it it might be an easy task. Like it or not money and success of the show has to be a strong consideration in policy update conversations.

Should there be a separate class for each of the line-bred or hybrid fishes? Is it even an issue with the currently accepted judging guidelines (officially or unofficially, published or not)?

A possible solution:
In our local annual show you can show anything you want, as long as it’s a Cichlid or catfish. This isn’t expressly stated in the show rules, http://www.ohiocichlid.com/oca-extravaganza/show-rules/, so if you wanted to show a peacock with one eye, a bull nose, no tail, and it lay on its side, spend the money for the entry fee and enjoy, thank you for showing. As a matter if fact our show rules don’t address the type of fish or its condition at all. Now common sense says it’s a Cichlid and Scavenger (catfish) show so you would think you’d get a heavy dose of show quality Cichlids and catfish and all the lesser quality stuff would not be shown or if shown will be weeded out in the judging process.

Chances of that fish winning anything let alone the best of anything is just about nil. My one suggestion is a separate class for the hybrids just like you would have a class for all peacocks awarding the best peacock as compared to the others. When was the last time an angelfish or discus won best of show in the history of the ACA? They have won a class by default as someone has to win but how many have won it all? Is that even a concern? I say no, let them show what they want.

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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by dogofwar » Mon Dec 29, 2008 2:56 pm

The perspective that Willem has expressed very well is that the cichlid hobby - and the organizations that represent it - are big enough to include and accept people who like both wild-type and man-enhanced cichlids...just as the betta hobby, livebearer hobby, angelfish hobby, discus hobby, etc, etc. are. The issue isn't what kinds of cichlids you like, but whether you keep, breed, and distribute them in an ethical ("responsible") manner. Bravo!

I've often wondered how to properly judge the peacock class when many of the fish are truly different from what's found in nature. I think more often than not the "prettiest" fish win...or the ones with the most un-naturally bright colors...which is OK...but far from using natural type as the standard...

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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by nick a » Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:13 am

Excellent synopsis f the situation Willem!
For those that haven't had a chance to peruse the article:
http://www.cichlidae.com/article.php?id=429

You've covered many of the points. A yeoman's effort to discuss the gray-zones in the definitions.

You have hit many but, missed some of the realities that exist in the hobby.
From the ethical point of view there is no real difference between hybridization and line breeding. Both are done with the aim of creating cichlids that are considered "more beautiful" and/or sought after.
The reality is often that 'starter' populations from the wild are limited. There is no lack of 'ethics' or dark intentions involved. It is simply the way it is.
For example, the infamous 'electric yellows', with the overwhelming number in the US hobby today tracing it's ancestry back to a very limited 'starter' group. Are all of this massive number to be considered line-bred and not to be kept by the serious hobbyist?
http://www.cichlidae.com/article.php?id=188

Another example is the Divandu albimarginatus Anton brought to the US. We have a small batch of fry from 1 pair of his fish. Should we flush them all down the toilet now because all offspring from that batch of fry will be line-bred from that one original pair? Or should we strive to breed and spread these types to secure a large captive population?

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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Bas Pels » Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:29 am

A clerical word from aside (before I eventually get into the issu itself) Santarem is a town on the baks of the Amazon - near the place where the Rio Tapajos enters the amazon (approx halfway to the coast, starting from Manaus) on the south bank

Thus Santarem discus could - if Discus are found there - eve nbe wildcaught

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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Willem Heijns » Tue Dec 30, 2008 1:33 pm

Nick,

you seem to have missed the point of my article. never did I say that line-bred cichlids should not be kept by serious hobbyists. many of the species that I brought into the hobby started off as a group (all brothers and sisters) taken from wild parents. and I also selected the "best" ones to breed with. there is simply nothing wrong with that.
Slàinte mhath!

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James Shingler
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by James Shingler » Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:12 pm

But where does selecting the "best" of wild types to breed from become line breeding? :? (not that I have got that far myself, just keeping my chosen WC and TB of one species and locality going is hard enough for me).

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Aquamojo
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Aquamojo » Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:55 pm

Bas Pels wrote:A clerical word from aside (before I eventually get into the issu itself) Santarem is a town on the baks of the Amazon - near the place where the Rio Tapajos enters the amazon (approx halfway to the coast, starting from Manaus) on the south bank

Thus Santarem discus could - if Discus are found there - eve nbe wildcaught

Thanks for the clarification Bas. So how does one actually "develop" something like this?

Image

Image

Image

What I can't understand is why something like this is OK for the ACA and technical hybrids are not. Someone had to really work at getting these Willy Wonka flavors and shapes. I'm sure that in many cases a mutation (good or bad) is singled out and bred out further to get the desired result. Good for the fish? Or good for the hobbyist? Should we care?
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Dan Woodland » Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:04 pm

James,

Breeding any two fish from the same spawn is line breeding whether wild or not. The only way to avoid line breeding wild fish is to select one fish from two different populations in the same river system. Even then I think you can technically call it line breeding. Then line breeding occurs in the first generation from that "wild" pair if you breed the siblings.

As Willem said there is nothing wrong with line breeding. I agree until it is used to create something that does not occurs in nature or is created for the sole purpose of making a profit. For example, Albino or long fin Astronotus ocellatus...

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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Bas Pels » Wed Dec 31, 2008 2:53 am

Dan Woodland wrote:James,

Breeding any two fish from the same spawn is line breeding whether wild or not. The only way to avoid line breeding wild fish is to select one fish from two different populations in the same river system. Even then I think you can technically call it line breeding. Then line breeding occurs in the first generation from that "wild" pair if you breed the siblings.

As Willem said there is nothing wrong with line breeding. I agree until it is used to create something that does not occurs in nature or is created for the sole purpose of making a profit. For example, Albino or long fin Astronotus ocellatus...
In my eyes, this might be a very usable definition for linebreeding. A slight flaw might seem that it makes a line of 1 generation possible, but to me, that is precisely its strong point: linebreeding is breeding with related fishes. period

We might, however need another word voor the wrong kind of breeding, creating new varieties. Selective breeding does not seem te be right, because one will have to be quite selective to keep a line as it originally was. Any idea??

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Aquamojo
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Aquamojo » Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:53 am

How about "cosmetic line breeding".
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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by nick a » Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:43 am

NOW I think you guys are getting to the meat of the matter! The point I was trying to make & others have made ever so much more eloquently, is that we ALL line breed--there is rarely much of a choice to do otherwise unless one has resources vastly beyond what's available to most folks. Hence my quibble with the phrase I quoted on ethics--which appears to ascribe ill motives to all of us (where none may exist; the hobbyist is just doing the best they can).


The bone in the center of this meat is that 'somewhere' there MUST exist a database which supplies everyone with not only pictures/written descriptions of what the 'standard' of any species is but, what the expected variations within the population may be. This site has done remarkable work toward that effort, but much remains to be done.

Organizations, such as the ACA, can easily set up guidelines for their shows under the dual headings of "Hobby fish" & "Natural fish" (for example) to avoid the narrowing of the hobby etc...but, a clear written list should be provided up front to explain the groupings. Those organizations could further the goals expressed here by flexing some collective bargaining muscle and come up with a method of certifying importers, fish farms, dealers etc....for positive practices---while black-balling the bad actors. Frankly, for most in the hobby this is where confused IDs, mixed batches, mislabeling etc....begins. Many folks work hard to correct these issues, some don't & create a chain of errors.

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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by dogofwar » Wed Dec 31, 2008 8:52 am

Great discussion!

It makes sense to differentiate the development of hybrids like flowerhorns from random ones (a female mbuna in a tank of 100 various mbuna spits a brood).

It also makes sense to differentiate the development of line bred fish with special characteristics (e.g. fancy angels, fancy discus, AER peacocks, electric blue jack dempseys, blood red oscars) from captive attempts to maintain fish that are authentic to the wild.

It is true that ANY captive breeding of fish varies to some degree from what occurs in nature (and could thus be defined as line breeding), but that doesn't mean that best attempts to maintain wild-type fish should be lumped into the same bucket as attempts to develop fish that differ from the wild type (also through line breeding).

This is a great opportunity for the ACA to educate: what are the best techniques that hobbyists can use to maintain fish that are authentic to what's found in the wild? How should they be labeled? What are the risks of indiscriminate breeding, etc.

The real underlying issue here is attitudes.

There are SERIOUS hobbyists and scientists dedicated to developing fancy versions of cichlids. Here's an example: http://www.theangelfishsociety.org/genetics.htm

There are also SERIOUS hobbysists and scientists dedicated to cataloging wild fish and maintaining fish as close to what's found in the wild as possible.

And there are SERIOUS hobbyists and scientists who focus on both...as well as knuckleheads in each (or both) camps.

The common thread through all of this is a fascination with cichlids and the need to be responsible in keeping, breeding, and distributing them. People who act irresponsibly - mislabel stuff, breed and distribute fish indiscriminately, practice poor care of their fish, etc. - should get the stink eye. People who happen to have a different set of interests in the cichlid hobby than others should be welcomed with open arms.

PS I'm also a big advocate of what nicka describes here:
"Organizations, such as the ACA, can easily set up guidelines for their shows under the dual headings of "Hobby fish" & "Natural fish" (for example) to avoid the narrowing of the hobby etc...but, a clear written list should be provided up front to explain the groupings. Those organizations could further the goals expressed here by flexing some collective bargaining muscle and come up with a method of certifying importers, fish farms, dealers etc....for positive practices---while black-balling the bad actors. Frankly, for most in the hobby this is where confused IDs, mixed batches, mislabeling etc....begins. Many folks work hard to correct these issues, some don't & create a chain of errors."

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Re: Whats your take on hybrids???

Post by Bas Pels » Wed Dec 31, 2008 1:00 pm

MoJo wrote:How about "cosmetic line breeding".
I do like this term - especially as cosmetic surgery alters one's body - and to my taste usually produces discusting results :)

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