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"good" Colors / "bad" Colors


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  • Regular Member

Hello, all.

I can't find out anything about pastel goldfish... Peach, apricot, etc.

I'm curious because some of the prettiest fish I've ever seen--and my favorite oranda of all time--were pastel.

Do breeders avoid/cull these colors, or are they recessive?

Do judges in shows disqualify them?

Are there genetic drawbacks associated with breeding these colors, as there are for, say, merle Great Danes or white Boxers?

Inquiring minds want to know!

Caroline in San Jose

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Guest Orandaman

I think you're right about judges not liking pastel colors.

I read in "Goldfish Breeding and Genetics" by Joseph Smartt and James H. Bundell that describe desirable colors in fish as being strong, rich, vivid and striking. Muted, diffuse, muddy and weak colors are undesirable.

Colors in orandas do not show up for 2 or maybe 3 seasons. That's 6 to 9 months. Culling them for color may not be a wise decision. Although some enthusiast may. I wouldn't want to throw out fish I spent 6 to 9 months caring for.

You may be the few that prefer lighter shades of color.

I heard from one aquarist that exposure to natural sunlight will stimulate or enhance color development. I suppose it's like getting a tan.

I hope that answers some of your question.

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  • Regular Member

Orandaman, I have proof of natural sunlight enhancing colors in fish. My current tank gets filtered sunlight on it for 3 hours in the winter months every morning (more sunlight during the summers due to longer days). At first, the colors on my red/white fantails was enhanced, then the red spots began to enlarge. Now, the gold solors are coming in. With some, it is in the tails. With another, his enitre head is gold on a white body.

I'd attach pictures, but they never stay still long enough and my digital camera is lame.

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  • Regular Member

And my peach self-colored oranda got more pale when she was in a QT with only incandescent light, so maybe full-spectrum light helps intensify color too?

I can't say I prefer pale fish to vivid ones. The vivid ones are almost always prettier, especially when you see them together. But every so often there's that ruffly long-finned bright-but-light pastel that makes me willing to stare at it for hours.

I still wonder if breeding more vivid fish might be more desirable for other reasons, such as more genetic problems with the pale ones. Otherwise, it looks like the pastels would have come into fashion at some point, even if just as a temporary fad.

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