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Hey all,

 

I've recently become pretty fascinated about the world of guppy genetics and selective breeding!

I'm trying to read and watch as much as I can to learn about the topic and would love to try and develop my own strain.

I have a couple of preliminary questions:

1. How can you know the phenotype traits of a female? Do you just have to breed her with a male and see what the offspring throw?

2. In regards to genetic diversity, are there any rules/guiding principles in regards to breeding 'new' guppies into a line that youre trying to set in order to increase the genetic diversity, or is this not advised?

3. When trying to create variations/lines, do most people have an end goal in mind and breed for that objective, or do they see what a certain guppy with throw, cull to what they like and watch it develop over the generations?

I would love any other insight that you may have - any fun facts or cool stories that you'd like to share. As I said, Im pretty intrigued by it at the moment.

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16 minutes ago, Jeremy_fishguy said:

Hey all,

 

I've recently become pretty fascinated about the world of guppy genetics and selective breeding!

I'm trying to read and watch as much as I can to learn about the topic and would love to try and develop my own strain.

I have a couple of preliminary questions:

1. How can you know the phenotype traits of a female? Do you just have to breed her with a male and see what the offspring throw?

2. In regards to genetic diversity, are there any rules/guiding principles in regards to breeding 'new' guppies into a line that youre trying to set in order to increase the genetic diversity, or is this not advised?

3. When trying to create variations/lines, do most people have an end goal in mind and breed for that objective, or do they see what a certain guppy with throw, cull to what they like and watch it develop over the generations?

I would love any other insight that you may have - any fun facts or cool stories that you'd like to share. As I said, Im pretty intrigued by it at the moment.

Not a geneticist here, but would really love to encourage you to work through this and develop your own strains of various fish!

Before dabbling at your questions, let me strongly encourage you to reach out to Greg Sage at Select Aquatics. He is a master breeder, and gives a talk at fish clubs all around the US on selective breeding. Here is his e-mail: selectaquatics@gmail.com

Now, to at least some of your questions . . . I found this > article to be very helpful explaining phenotypes, genotypes, traits, etc at a basic level.

And for what it's worth, here's how I'd do it . . . I think you are asking about what her dominant and recessive traits are. As I understand it, phenotype is just the sum of what she looks like -- size, fin shape, coloration, etc. I think you're interested in learning what she may give off when mated. The biggest problem with Guppies is that once a female spawns the first time, she can hold milt from make guppies in her indefinitely, and influence her entire genetic line from that male. So the problem comes when buying a female guppy -- "hey I love the way that one looks!" -- she may drop fry influenced by any number of males she's already spawned with. For this reason, many serious breeders assiduously look for young guppy fry that have been raised in carefully isolated environments. One breeder we recently bought a group of female guppies said something about this in an offhand remark, "They's only been in a tank with my best males of that line." Implication being, they would not be likely to drop fry from mixed, diluted, weak lines. When you spawn a guppy pair, in theory, you'll get a genetic variation that can be basically accounted for with the old punnet square. However, because you may be looking for a number of genetic markers (phenotype distinctives), a Punnett Square may not answer all of your aims. So, the common way to practically work this through is to selectively breed a lot of guppies in single lines. So, for example, if you select 12 guppies -- 4x males that all appear to be from a single stock, and 8x females that likewise appear to be from the same stock as well -- separate these into two lines: 2x males / 4x females in one setup, and 2x males / 4x females in another setup. raise fry from both, and cull brutally for only the desired traits. Then breed those desired traits again, each in the same line. Again, cull the 3rd generation for only the desired traits. THEN, next, you _cross_ your lines, and mix the trait-specific males form one line with the females from the other. This will not solve all inbreeding problems, but it helps to keep the genetics a bit more resilient.

Here's an ingenious way to maximize your livebearer yield: https://aquaticlifefarm.com/web_pages/alf_article_save.html and also: https://aquaticlifefarm.com/web_pages/alf_article_feed.html 

 

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5 minutes ago, Fish Folk said:

Not a geneticist here, but would really love to encourage you to work through this and develop your own strains of various fish!

Before dabbling at your questions, let me strongly encourage you to reach out to Greg Sage at Select Aquatics. He is a master breeder, and gives a talk at fish clubs all around the US on selective breeding. Here is his e-mail: selectaquatics@gmail.com

Now, to at least some of your questions . . . I found this > article to be very helpful explaining phenotypes, genotypes, traits, etc at a basic level.

And for what it's worth, here's how I'd do it . . . I think you are asking about what her dominant and recessive traits are. As I understand it, phenotype is just the sum of what she looks like -- size, fin shape, coloration, etc. I think you're interested in learning what she may give off when mated. The biggest problem with Guppies is that once a female spawns the first time, she can hold milt from make guppies in her indefinitely, and influence her entire genetic line from that male. So the problem comes when buying a female guppy -- "hey I love the way that one looks!" -- she may drop fry influenced by any number of males she's already spawned with. For this reason, many serious breeders assiduously look for young guppy fry that have been raised in carefully isolated environments. One breeder we recently bought a group of female guppies said something about this in an offhand remark, "They's only been in a tank with my best males of that line." Implication being, they would not be likely to drop fry from mixed, diluted, weak lines. When you spawn a guppy pair, in theory, you'll get a genetic variation that can be basically accounted for with the old punnet square. However, because you may be looking for a number of genetic markers (phenotype distinctives), a Punnett Square may not answer all of your aims. So, the common way to practically work this through is to selectively breed a lot of guppies in single lines. So, for example, if you select 12 guppies -- 4x males that all appear to be from a single stock, and 8x females that likewise appear to be from the same stock as well -- separate these into two lines: 2x males / 4x females in one setup, and 2x males / 4x females in another setup. raise fry from both, and cull brutally for only the desired traits. Then breed those desired traits again, each in the same line. Again, cull the 3rd generation for only the desired traits. THEN, next, you _cross_ your lines, and mix the trait-specific males form one line with the females from the other. This will not solve all inbreeding problems, but it helps to keep the genetics a bit more resilient.

Here's an ingenious way to maximize your livebearer yield: https://aquaticlifefarm.com/web_pages/alf_article_save.html and also: https://aquaticlifefarm.com/web_pages/alf_article_feed.html 

 

Wow! Thankyou so much for your comprehensive response! Ill certainly follow up on the resources that you provided :))

Yeah, you are right, I am looking for information about dominant/recessive traits. Its so interesting how they can hold milt (that's a new word for my vocabulary) - makes it a bit confusing. Is the best way to start a project, then, to try and find a breeder with very young females and then isolate from there to ensure that she breeds with the male that I want her to breed with? I guess by the time that any female is in a LFS she's probably already at breeding age.

All my research so far has emphasised culling hard - or as you say brutally. Im pretty excited for this process. It sounds like a rewarding undertaking.

Again, thanks SO MUCH for your response - youre a legend 

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12 hours ago, lefty o said:

you can find video's online delving into guppy genetics, but there have been many chapters written about this in books over the years. in short, if you want to know about a females genetics, you really have to pick her out of a line of guppies who's traits you know.

Thanks for the response! Do you have any book recommendations?

Ok, that makes sense! So picking out a female where you know the genetic line that she's come from - makes sense!

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