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Genetic/colour help? And some misc questions!

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Hi guys!

Currently have a batch of eggs. My new red female oranda x with my new male blue Chinese oranda.

First thing is first, these are not fish I would usually CHOOSE to spawn. While they are beautiful to look at the female is not show standard (forked tail, curls to caudal, single anal fin), and the male, while technically he does not have any faults as per se, is typical of far eastern orandas bred for above viewing/the old Bristol standard (now replaced by the short bodied square finned standard for SV) with a longer body and long forked fins. Like I said, they are lovely to look at, very active and just in general gorgeous fish (fast becoming two of my favourite goldfish actually!) , but the female is not really a fish I would deliberately breed if I had access to better specimens, and the male I would cross to a similar old type to produce orandas suited for the pond and top view.

That said, they are not bad fish by a long shot, being not even a year old yet they both show lovely wen growth with big thick heads and carry themselves well. The male in particular has a typical ‘top view’ head with a very square/blocky face from above. I would LOVE to one day have him in a pond as he has been bred to be viewed. These two are slowly changing my mind about orandas! Never used to be a fan of wens!

The eggs are currently 48+ hours old at room temperature. I can see eyes and notochords (backbones) forming when I look close. Tomorrow morning at 10am EST they will be 72 hours old. Room temp fluctuates between 20-23*C but only slowly/is quite steady

Anyway, onto the questions. My main question is what can I expect colour wise? My only familiarly with colour is the shubunkins and calico. Being that (as I understand) the blue fish is a white body with a black wash/pigment overlay, and the red a white with a red overlay of pigment (not 100% on that to be honest, correct me if I am wrong) my concern is that I will get an abnormal % of bronze fry (Bronze being all layers of pigment, white, orange and the black, etc)

On the other hand, I understand blue is recessive? Which would lead my fry (the ones that colour up anyway) to being orange like the mother but carrying the blue genes (provided she does not carry them, in which case I will get a % of blue fry).

As you can probably tell goldfish colour genetics are NOT my forte. Bettas, yes, goldfish I have no experience with beyond the shubunkins, lol! I am just assuming a similar inherence to koi.

Secondly is, at the temperature previously mentioned when can I expect hatching? At 72 hours? Currently the plants and salvaged eggs are in 2gal buckets (two of them) and I have one 5gal tank set up to transfer some eggs to (as soon as it reaches room temp, just set it up) and the other 5 gal coming on Monday. As I plan to ruthlessly cull at 1 week any singletails or obvious defects (bent backs, etc) I am hoping this will tie me over for a few months with daily or twice daily WC as they grow. I’ve never intensively reared goldfish fry before, I just let them go in their own ponds (no adults) to grow. This is new to me. I will look into rubermaids as they grow, or even just suck it up and buy a second tank. Though unless by some amazing coincidence I get amazing fry I don’t see myself keeping many, if any at all, as I lack the room in my 1 bedroom place.

As I understand goldfish will take non moving food items right from the 48 hours after hatching when the yolk is used up? I know with bettas they needed live food in order to get the hunting instinct/feeding instinct going. As I see liquid food recommended I am guessing this is not the case for these guys? I have on hand Wardleys version of liquifry, and instant BBS (pre hatched and killed/in a jar for easy feeding. I always mess up hatching them muself.). Will these non moving foods be adequate? I plan to start with liquifry and eventually co feed with the BBS over the course of the week, and if I can get my hands on a culture, microworms, as I have always found them a good food. Once they can take adult food I will probably move them straight onto NLS pellets crushed, bloodworms ground, and all those things.

Thanks guys! Any help or direction to articles would be helpful! All my previous egglayers (goldies and koi) were raised outside in a pond setting, and bettas are basically cared for by the male, discus by the parents, etc, so I have little to no actual experience with raising fry myself indoors in an intensive setting! :)

Edit: Double post for some reason :P

Edited by Amber

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Oh congrats amber! Now pics of the parents! Keep us updated.

Relating to color my best guess is that if you have an orange/red parent most offspring will be red/orange as well. That's just a guess tho. I am pretty sure it is much more complicated. Since it also depends what genes the red fish is carrying. Maybe Michael will stop by for better info.

Just wanted to say not to cull all the single tails! Last year at the koi show they has this awesome jumbo single tail oranda and it was super pretty! Maybe keep the single tails which show pretty body development and such. I ended up not buying that oranda just because she was much faster than my ryukins. I think perfectly adapted for pond life tho.

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Hey Captain!

I’ve been considering keeping some of the short bodied singles should I have room, I should have specified that better sorry! I meant long bodies single tails (comet looking fry) would be the first to be culled. Like you I have seen some beautiful fish like that. I believe the term for a single tailed fancy is a nymph, well, that’s what they are sold under here anyway, and quite often at a decent size (2 inches in body) they can fetch a nice $20, which would make raising them worthwhile cost-wise. :)

but it all comes down to how much room I have sadly. If I had enough room/time I would raise every single one, but floor space is… Limited, to say the least in my place. My old set up gave me nearly unlimited room for ponds (and I could set up extra colapsable koi ponds as need be) but here, not so much. ): I moved my wardrobe out into the loungeroom today in an effort to free up enough space for Rubbermaid’s or another large tank when the need for them comes around. I think I’ll be able to wrangle it, but I might have to sacrifice some gallons and increase the WCs to get by if I keep too many past the .5 inch stage. Like they say, it takes the same time and effort to raise less quality fish as it does good ones, and that’s time and water/space I could be giving to those nicer specimens that I want to focus on.

I’ll put some recent photos of the parents up in a post in a moment! Mischa (the female) is hard to photograph as she avoids the camera/flash. She is one of those fish that look so much nicer in real life. I have a video of when I first bought them home (a month or so ago) that I may also try to upload as it shows her better. :)

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Photo time! In true me fashion they are all terrible!

Here is a (very bad) photo of Mischa (red female) taken a few weeks ago. She has a single anal fin, curls to caudals, and a broken dorsal (though that last one is non genetic). She's one of those fish that look impressive and make awesome pets, but she is no where near the breed standard, and as a result not something I would usually breed from.

IUPdR.jpg

Here is a (also very bad) photo of Rico (blue male) taken a few weeks ago

VyRJB.jpg

Mischa is still very beaten up. She was in terrible condition when I got her. Though she’s come a long way in a month, if you saw the photos from when I first got them you'll know what I mean :) . I can't wait until she really heals up properly though, as she's still missing some fins.

Unfortunately that broken dorsal seems to be permanent, but hey, she’s such a sweetie. Some ryukin in the sale tank was bullying her and I suspect was the cause.

Like I said, they are nice fish to look at and I <3 them, but they not really good breeding stock in all truth. :P However, they seem to be convinced that dropping eggs every few weeks is a good thing to do, so here I am.

Edit: Keep in mind these guys are only babies themselves. Not even a year old yet, hence the thick fins and young look still. They are starting to get those lovley flowing fins though! They are around 2.5 inches in the body each and rapidly growing. :) I'm liking the wen growth for such young fish!

Edited by Amber

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I really like them! Considering how young they still are they are very lovely! I love the color on the male! His fins are very full and flowy.

Yes nymphs exactly! I couldn't remember the name lol.

I would love to one day breed my fish. Goldfish seems to me much nicer to breed than bettas because then you don't have to deal with the hundreds of little male jars.

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You really should breed them if you ever get the chance! It’s wonderful fun, I’m now just hoping fungus doesn’t get my eggs! I’ll have to go get some methylene blue tomorrow or something as a preventative thing. :)

As for Rico (the blue boy), he’s absolutely gorgeous in real life! You’d love him, he has a huge blocky wen, short (but very slim!) body and these beautiful tapering fins. He is locally bred too. He’s very typical of the old oranda standard (shishigashira oranda) which called for square wens, slightly longer bodies and deeply forked fins (the Bristol Club has a good explanation on their page of the previous standard) for hardy top view fish. I know he does not fit the modern standard by a long shot, but that older shishigashira oranda is the style I have always liked best in the breed.

The old standard called for fish like this

Oranda_shishigashira_goldfish_plate.jpg

While our modern oranda had been developed to fish like this

oranda-goldfish3.jpg

And that’s not bad at all, both types are beautiful in their own rights, but the modern is generally not a pure type oranda, rather there is breeding to broadtails and the like (toskain too, which is one of the reasons curled fins are so common. I suspect Mischa of having some toskain some generations back because of her extensive caudal fin curling.). I love Rico because he is an almost pure oranda (from the intial lionhead crosses) bred by a reputable breeder and quite close to my ideal ‘old style’ oranda. In the far East this type of oranda still prevails, but that aspect of the breed is being lost as breeders are forced to breed the most popular types in order to turn a profit, much like the case of other rarer breeds like the wuhan goldfish.

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The advantage the older varieties have is that they are much healthier and rarely have swim bladder issues. I see that with my Einstein. He is very easy going and healthy.

My teenage veiltail also has a similar square wen like you describe. He also has a very long body and no swimming issues either.

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The advantage the older varieties have is that they are much healthier and rarely have swim bladder issues. I see that with my Einstein. He is very easy going and healthy.

Yes. I was thinking the same thing!

Congrats on the eggs :) Best of luck to you. How exciting!!

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Hi Amber,

:Congrats: on the fry! That is so awesome! :)

As for colors, you are right in the blue is recessive, so I would expect all F1s to be at least half to all metallic orange. Of course, there is the possibility that mom is actually and F1 offspring of a full metallic orange and something else, so you may get some other color variation.

I am just guessing, but I think you should start seeing fry tomorrow.

If you like, PM me your email. I can send you Joseph Smartt's genetics book. It's free for download (legally) somewhere, but I couldn't remember where anymore.

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Thanks Alex! I will PM you my email, I’d love to read that book! :D I have no idea what genes Mischa could be carrying. She’s from the same breeder but a separate spawn, and seeing as he had a focus on blue oranda (amongst other rarer colours) its possible she may be F1 to blue herself (Or something else I guess). Either way it’s good to hear their not co dominant or anything like that, because that would probably result in bronze fry (due to pigment layers)

77 hours in and we have some fry! Well, to be more accurate a few eggs I must have missed in the parent’s tank have hatched! I have tried to gently remove the fry I can see in cups to the buckets. However Mischa (the red girl) associates my hand with food from when I had to hand feed her while injured (she couldn’t compete with Rico, now however she barrels him out of the way!) and generally will come over and eat them before I can remove them. Do’h.

It’s hard to see what’s going on in the buckets, but in the 5gal I can see the eggs, very few infertile ones, and all the rest are well developed with eyes and notochords easily seen. However, none have hatched yet that I can see (though some may be hiding in the hairgrass, their seems to be one or two empty egg casings there!)… I’m chalking this up to the smaller body of water going through temp fluctuations easier, so the fry in the parents tank have had a constant and higher temp… At least that’s what I hope has happened and it’s not fungus or something! I’m getting worried seeing fry in one tank but not in the other…

Another question, is algae a decent fry food? I have soft brown algae on the rocks in the tank I can scrape and feed alongside the BBS and liquid fry food.

Fingers crossed!

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Just a quick note regarding the tail curling. That is not always a genetic issue but a grooming issue. I know to groom a proper tosakin tail the tosakin must be kept in a dome bowl at all times. This promotes the proper positioning of the fish so the right parts and muscles are moving and the tail won't be soft and weak causing breaks and curls.

They are kept in relatively shallow water with 100% daily water changes to ensure proper water quality. Keeping fish in too deep or having the wrong muscles moving can cause the bones and cartilege not to strengthen so there are weak spots in the fins promoting breaks and curling (which I believe is just a healing of a microtear)

Most breeders do not breed with show quality fish, they want a dependable stock that still fit show standards not the extreme qualities that show fish provide, in the extreme means there are more genetic variances.

As for colouring, I honestly don't know how many genes are associated with colour in a goldfish tetraploidal dna chain but I can only presume that there is a lot of them seeing as there are so many different colour varieties. Guanine though is associated with the mettalic on the scales I believe. I have a feeling it would take a few generations and possibly a crossback to make your line breed true but it sounds like this is just a chance game as you don't have the space to carry out a big operation (kinda like me I feel for ya there sista)

How many hatchlings so far?

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Anyway, onto the questions. My main question is what can I expect colour wise? .

Thanks guys! Any help or direction to articles would be helpful!

very nice fish and congratulations on deciding to raise some goldfish , fancy, . it should be very enjoyable and interesting.

Looks like you have it all well mapped out . I can only suggest that if pressed for space that a sever selection be made soon and only a few grown this first time to see if parents are producing anything good.

live food is ofcourse one of best ways to start them off and spirolina dust is very good.

I will guess that most will be red . with 5-10% wild colour range from chocolate brown to brown blue.

I have found that some J. Smartt articles to be a little dry to understand on the practical part and very full on theory. when you finish if you are still wishing to know more on specific colour result regarding blues and browns read S.Chen on colours inheritance. I have it in PDF if you want it. It too is guarenteed to put one to sleep if read after hours.

am looking foward to following.

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No hatchlings in the fry tank I can see, the eggs I missed in the main tank (lodged behind the filter motor box thing) hatched this morning however, at roughly 72 hours. However the main tank is always warmer then the fry tanks/buckets as it drops slower in temp, so I am hoping that is why I have no hatchlings in the fry tank yet, and that it is not that I have messed up somehow already. I understand tomorrow morning (96 hours in) is when they should be hatching anyway at 20*C (though the room does fluctuate a bit higher then that) so I have hope yet. :)

Interesting on the tail curling, I was not aware of that. So, genetics may play a part, but proper (or in this case, improper as she should not have curls being an oranda) housing is also a huge part. My great grandmother got her hands on some of the first toskain imports to Aus many years back and always had trouble getting the correct form in her fry. Although she’s too old for it now (nearing 100!) I think she’ll be fascinated to learn this one :) . I may experiment and try keeping some of these guys in deeper water once they are a few weeks old to put more drag/gravity on the fins rather then the shallow water favoured for tosakain fry. See if it helps keep fin development straight.

I’ll admit right up, goldfish genetics and breeding is not my usual thing. I did occasionally spawn shubunkin in the pond in breeding nets (various family members belong to the Bristol Club and used to breed Bristol and Japanese/comet shubies) where they raised themselves, but koi and fighting fish is what I usually stick to, though I have dabbled in discus and breeding others before. Usually with koi (and the occasional goldfish spawn) I would raise them out in the ponds, and of course male fighters and discus take care of their young through the hard stages, so I have little experience with this. I’m currently at uni so I don’t have the luxury of a large yard/ponds and room for all those tanks (and a very encouraging mother from a fish orientated family who never minded me over running my bedroom with tanks.) Goldfish are something I just kind of picked up as rescues from bowls and various other terrible places to let them run free in my pond. I never had much interest in them as I was absorbed in my bettas. Eventually I got my first true fancy (A white butterfly telescope) which made me ‘get the bug’ and start to dabble in them seriously (she was followed by a red and white tele and a calico butterfly tele, they lived happily in a 3ft together). These two orandas are the first I have had in over a year and a half however due to some mishaps with the previous set up back home. All the pond goldies and the various the rescues (and I mean ALL of them, there’s a good 25+ now) are still happy and healthy though back home in various ponds.

On the breeder thing, I can see why breeders would not breed extreme pairs constantly. I am becoming more and more fond of these guys as a potential future breeding pair as they are going to be huge, healthy fish, with the potential to produce good fry of the old oranda type like Rico (the male) is. In addition I hear Mischa’s parents are very nice fish (local breeder) , so even if she is a bit flawed herself she hopefully will pass on some of those good genes. And I am a sucker for traditional type orandas as previously said, so I would have no qualms breeding to that standard instead of the Bristol one. There are no goldfish shows of clubs here anyway, so I only have myself to please with the type of fish I breed! :P

As for big operation, you’re right, no way do I have the space! :P And if I did have the space for a large scale breeding project it would probably be for butterfly telescopes. Though, if this spawn produces some nice enough fry I would be tempted to start a blue oranda line. As I understand though the offspring, should Mischa be a pure red, will all carry blue genes even if they don’t express it, so sibling crosses would produce some blue fry, as would outcrosses to other F1 blues (or of course, visually blues too) so it would only be a matter of the next generation after this one to have the colour set. I’d be more interested in crossing those blues out to calicos to try for blue based (shubunkin style colour) calicos though, as they are one of my favourite colours.

... Though, limited space has never stoped me with my bettas. If all goes well with these guys afterwards I may look into a nice HM breeding pair :P

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The advantage the older varieties have is that they are much healthier and rarely have swim bladder issues. I see that with my Einstein. He is very easy going and healthy.

Yes. I was thinking the same thing!

Congrats on the eggs :) Best of luck to you. How exciting!!

Agreed. I think it’s Tithra (not sure how to spell it) who has two gorgeous orandas in that older style. I love her red and white one!

And thankyou, I'm just hoping they will hatch now! :P

Edited to add- Thanks for that Mik, it’s reassuring to know most will ‘colour up’ to red, I was worried I’d get stuck with a bunch of bronze fry I would then have trouble homing! :) I might get that PDF off you one day (not now though, I’m already half asleep!)

I think I’ve got the culprit of the unhatched eggs. The corner where the fry tank is is slightly cooler then the rest of the room. While everywhere else is a toasty 22*C, it’s a few degrees cooler there. Well, I’ll find out if that’s the reason tomorrow I guess. Eyes and notochords are much easier to see tonight, so they seem to be growing at least! :)

Edited by Amber

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Three posts in a row (sorry guys!) but we have fry! 12 I can count on the dwarf rush have hatched (and still some eggs to go!), and I have no idea how many may be in the hairgrass. Maybe some, maybe none. Other 5gal is being bought down tomorrow to move them into. Also no idea how many have hatched in the buckets either. Filter is off on the fry tank. Will put it on after they are free stimming for a few days and strong enough to fight the current.

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So exciting!!!!!

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We now have aroung 25 I can see clinging to the dwarf rush, an unknown number in the hairgrass (impossible to see them, lol!) and no idea how many in the buckets. Other fry tank will be here today hopefully, so looking good! All seemed to be hatched as the only eggs left are obviously infertile ones (cloudy). Once they are freeswimming I'll move all the plants but the hairgrasses back into the main tank so they don't die (further) from lack of light.

All in all, I'm estimating 50, so seems like a managable number even with the confined space after culling. :)

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