Q: I know your general feelings on the topic, but would an otherwise young, healthy, and very uniquely colored petstore betta be worth breeding at all?

Question submitted by John, Broomfield - Colorado

A: Petstore bettas are great first bettas, good to learn with, good as pets, and could be OK to spawn for as long as you just want to go through the motions of a spawn and learn the very basics, with no expectation what-so-ever as to the results. 

However what petstores bettas are NOT good for:  

bulletbreeding quality stock
bulletgetting predictable results
bulletgetting fry with acceptable finnage
bulletgetting fry with clean color
bulletoutcrossing to a quality line
bulletgetting more with the same pattern as pet store betta you have

If any of above is our goal then I will be an angel and save you months of work, money and frustration (and possibly a few stomach ulcers) by saying DO NOT try it. Heck, you are going to be so pissed off at the results of your spawn that you may become depressed, irritable, possibly even violent. In short, I am probably saving your marriage by now (or your sanity, if you have not already lost it in marriage LOL). Guess that would make me a SAINT? O:) (notice the halo)

Seriously people, there's a reason they say "you get what you pay for". And there's a reason petstore bettas are $3.99 (or whatever they sell them for now a day). Trust me on this, I started with a pet store betta and spawned him twice. Out of about 200 to 400 fry NOT ONE looked like the father. Finnage was bad. Colors were flawed. Blue bettas had red in them, red bettas had blue iridescence, etc... These kinds of flaw are HARD to get rid of (you might need 20 years to clean them up - and I am serious when I say 20 years). What looks "Uniquely colored" to you may in fact be just random marbling or pastel color, impossible to duplicate unless you had a similar female to spawn with (and still there would be no guaranties), hence if creating more bettas with same unique coloration is your goal, you are in for massive despair ;). 

Hugh. Wise buffalo has spoken. 
Hugh #2: Above is not a reflection on my weight. I am only 115 lbs.
(granted I am kind of hairy.... LOL)

OK, enough nonsense, I am done for today's column, see you all tomorrow.