Betty Splendens ...Part 3


About Betty Splendens
By: BettySplendens
Submitted: 2003-09-15

Victoria Parnell

About Me:

I first started keeping bettas when I was 11 years old, veiltails I was able to get from our local pet store. One day the owners showed me a new shipment of females that had recently arrived, and I was instantly intrigued. I had never seen a female betta before, but many of the aquarium fish books I had read described themas 'nondescript', 'plain', and 'brownish-red'. These females were brilliant blues, reds, multicolors, and even a cambodian. I brought three of them home with me, and at the same time purchased Walt Maurus's book Bettas: A Complete Introduction.Within a week the book was well-worn and dog-eared, easily falling open at my favorite pages: The photo of an extended red doubletail, a pair of bettas circling for an embrace, and the chapter on spawning bettas.I had to try it! I'll never forget the thrill of that first spawn, and I raced home from school every afternoon for 2 days just to see if the eggs had hatched yet. When I finally did see the tiny tails hanging from the nest, I knew I was hooked.
he contact information for the International Betta Congresswas in the back of Walt's book, so I immediately signed on as a junior member and started raising blacks, butterflies, doubletails, and marbles. Back then, the doubletail betta was the hottest thing around, and you never heard about the Halfmoon (although it had been developed a couple of years before).

As time went on I got distracted by my horses (another passion), high school, and growing up and cut way back on the bettas. I still kept a couple of lines going, but I just didn't have the time to change hundreds of jars every day anymore. I let my IBC membership expire, and, in its natural progression, I moved on to dating, career,and a brief stint as a (ahem) "rock star", and didn't have the time or resources to get back into the fish heavily until I stopped moving all over the world and settled, more or less permanently, in Ohio.

I started slowly at first, getting back into contact with my old IBC friends who supplied me with new starter stock. I was amazed at some of the new colors and lines that had been developed in my absence, and found myself getting hooked all over again. One of my breeder friends started telling me about the 'new' Halfmoon form with it's 180 degree angle and perfect symmetry, and sent me a photo. I was blown away by the way the fish looked, and started studying the history of the Halfmoon; who created it and how, what factors contributed to it's appearance, and more. I wrote a lot of emails and asked a lot of questions. It seems that the beautiful Halfmoon form wasn't a simple Mendelian trait, but a phenotype that required the hand of an artist to produce with any regularity. You needed the right parents, the right conditions, the right food, and the right exercise. I was like a woman possessed.

Some time later,I rejoined the International Betta Congress and was impressed by the fact that the IBC was now, truly, an international organization, with members as far away as Norway and Singapore. The great medium of the internet had brought us all closer together, and good bettas were being produced en masse in Asia and sold in the US at affordable prices. I imported some good solid green HMs from Thailand and was able to get some nice extended red stock from Americans Mark Milliken, Sieg Illig and Pete Goettner, which I outcrossed to Asian stock to produce the Inferno red line I am still working today.

The website came into existence when our company began developing an Administrative software module for small business use. We needed a working prototype to show to clients, so I used the software to create the Betty Splendens website. Bettas were an ideal way to put the software through it's paces, with colorful photos, articles, files, and more. Because they were an obsession for me, I had a ridiculous amount of fun writing the articles based on my own studies and experiments and taking the photos. New features were added almost weekly as I got ideas for them. As time went on, some of these were discarded, others elaborated upon, until we had the website as it is today. I started selling my excess stock from the site, and as the site gained popularity and the bettas sold faster than I could breed them, I was encouraged to expand the fishroom and breed more and better bettas.

Some breeders breed for color, others for finnage. I'm always intrigued by the ones that concentrate on color,because some amazing things have been produced by them. Jude Als created the 'Mustard Gas' betta, Chok Pengdit has come a long way with his 'Suthasine Golds', and I've always been fascinated with the black/yellows, black/orange marbles and more that come out of Marianne Lewis's projects.

I, however, am a finnage breeder. As beautiful as a color was, it never looked right to me unless it was also combined with my 'ideal', the HM form. I bred, and still do breed, for finnage in my lines, looking for good edges, lots of branching, and extended dorsals. As a result I got a very high percentage of true HM fish from my spawns, and from these I could start outcrossing and trying to develop more unusual colors and patterns, such as 'Brass' (gold body, red fins), 'Patriot' (blue marble with red/white/blue triband), and others. That way I could still create unique colors without compromising the finnage.

In addition to bettas, I enjoy drawing, competitive jousting, Fender© guitars, writing, MMORPGs, and travel (among many, many other things).

Please enjoy the website, and feel free to drop me a line if there's anything you'd like to see here, or just to say hello. ;)



If you sent an email and didn't hear back from me, please try sending to adifferent address! I always try to answer all of my email, even if ittakes awhile. If you never get an answer, chances are your email wasn't received. :-/

AIM: BettySplendens


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