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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have some Red Zebras and Yellow Labs that I have raised from fry, the parents has since passed away. I just noticed that one of my female Red Zebras is holding. What are some of the down falls of having fry/full grown fish that are inbred?
 

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Many breeders do this intentionally when trying to get colourful peacocks and the like. It's not recommended but I've seen many healthy fish that were inbred. They may carry bad genes who knows. It's not a big deal. Some may say otherwise. I would just say try to find the fry seperate homes so they don't breed themselves.
 

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rls07c
inbreeding can trigger the expression of a faulty gene if the offspring get two copies of a faulty gene. It doesn't take inbreeding to cause a faulty gene to manifest in the fry, as a faulty gene plus a faulty gene would be the same as 2x the same faulty gene.

Outcrossing can introduce faulty genes or faulty gene combinations to any bloodline of fish.

So... the answer is usually to avoid both excessive and random inbreeding and blindly outcrossing. My answer has always been to allow pairings to naturally form out of as large a group as possible.
6 to 12 fish are a good size. One of the wonders of nature is how the female fish choose a male that helps to create healthy viable young... even if it means picking the male fish out of a tank that isn't perhaps the fish we would have guessed was the "best" male.

I hope that helps.
 

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many breeders line breed. if done properly there is no problem with it. just be sure to cull out any fish with defects. it also helps every third or fourth generation to add some new stock to get some different genes in there.
 

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More important are the labs and zebras in the same tank? If so they crossbreed notoriously. Crossbreeding/hybrids are a much worse problem than inbreeding or line breeding as its commonly called
 

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Breeding fish from the same parents is actually pretty common practice in the hobby today. In recent years it has become clear to more and more people that fish collected from a certain place often are different from fish of the same species that are collected elsewhere. For example if one travels a river in South America, the geophagus found in place A look slightly different than geophagus of the same species in place B that is just a few miles upstream from A. Similarly people catching fish in lake Tanganyika find that cichlids collected in bay A can look quite different from those of the same species found in bay B.

The goal of many hobbyists is the preservation of that kind of diversity found in nature. If we want to do that, we can not cross breed fish from two collection points, even if they are of the same species. Most of the time it is impossible to find other fish of the same type locality for cross breeding. This leaves line breeding as the only choice for the preservation of biodiversity, meaning we have to keep on breeding cichlids from the same parents over the course of many generations.

One has to assume that this is also what happens in nature, and that's how the differences in fish of the same species in different places have evolved. It works in nature because only the fittest survive and procreate. If we do the same in a captivity, it has to work there as well. Letting the fish find their own partner is one important step in making that happen. Removing any genetically defective or deformed fish is another. Unfortunately many people raise all fry regardless of possible defects. Some even select genetically inferior fish and breed those, because they look different and thus are interesting.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the advice guys.

One more question. If the smallest of fish "from the original group of fry" breed rather than the larger fish, would that mean, that group of fry would be smaller fish? Assuming these are Labs and Red Zebras I am referring to.
 

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Depends on if that is due to a genetic fault or the outcome of poor raising. If the size was factored by a genetic fault, then quite possibly.
 

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Don't forget with that mix the fry could be hybrids.
 

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RRasco said:
Depends on if that is due to a genetic fault or the outcome of poor raising. If the size was factored by a genetic fault, then quite possibly.
I second that answer, but would ad that it's fairly unlikely that the small size is due to a genetic defect. It's much more likely that the smaller fish happened to be weaker, and got less food. Only one fish can be the top dog, and somebody also has to be at the bottom of the hierarchy, even if you have no genetic anomalies in the group.
 
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