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Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: F35 ()
Date: March 13, 2005 09:03AM

I don't understand all the hard feelings towards hybrids. Some cichlids which have been classified as different species end up breeding and producing offspring....well, what is the definition of a "species"? A species is a group of organisms with similar characteristics which can produce viable and fertile offspring. So if two fish that we have classified as different species can make babies which can grow up and make more babies, then the classification of those species are technically incorrect. A true hybrid is sterile. When a horse and a donkey mate, they produce mules. Mules are sterile, they cannot produce their own offspring, thus, Donkeys and Horses are different species. All too often organisms are classified according to visible physical traits, but there can be many phenotypes for one species...just some thoughts.
The complaints about hybrids sometimes annoy me. Half of the people who say things like "I don't like flowerhorns cause they're hybrids!!" are probably just spitting out something they heard on another post. They have read it and now they have the same opinion...these same folks probably have Shi-Tzu puppies, or a pug, or some other "purebreed dog"...I know they're not "hybrids" cause they are all the same species, Canis familiaris, but if seen in the wild, you'd have to think that...based solely on physical traits, that they would be a different species from a german shepard, great dane, huskie and a newfoundland dog right?

Anyway, this is a rant I have been wanting to get off my chest for a while. If you are one of those people who always bash hybrids, stop for a second and ask yourself why, and then ask yourself if you know that it is really a hybrid. If anyone wants to discuss the matter, I'd like to. Thanks for your time.

Peace eye rolling smiley

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: Cody ()
Date: March 13, 2005 11:30AM

I'd like to discuss. You only refer to Flowerhorns in your rant. Flowerhorns are the only readily available hybrid that can produce fertile offspring. I will be using the theory of evolution in this. Flowerhorns are a cross of the midas, red devil, red terror, Brazillian High Hat, and either the pink-headed cichlid or the black-belt. All these fish are very similar in body shape and most get a large nuchal hump like that of the flowerhorn, which means they probably share a common ancestor. Having close genetic resemblence will have a completely different effect than the ones with different genes. In the case of the blood parrot it is crossed with one of several combos. The RD and severum, or the RD and turquoise severum, or midas and severum, or midas and turquoise severum (Amphilophus labiatus, A. citrinellus, Heros severus, H. appendiculatum). These fish are from entirely different regions, the RD and midas from Central America, and the severums from South America. They are also entirely different in body shape. The severums have a square body with tall fins. The midas and RD have a bulky, more elongated body and fins that are not as tall. With that said they must have big genetic differences. If they do not share a recent common ancestor then you will get infertile fry. Going back to what you said about dogs, you said they are a species (Canus familiaris). Actually, if hybrids do not get a latin name than nor should the dog. Dogs are a cross of several different canines that the early humans bred. Because of the amount of wolf that was bred into them, dogs can succesfully breed with wolves. It is likely that the horse and donkey share a common ancestor but it is probably so far back that it has no effect on the offspring so they are sterile. All cichlids share a common ancestor with all the defining traits of cichlids but it goes too far back to have zebras and convicts having fertile babies. I do not support hybridization. The only hybrids I know of that I can't stand people breeding is the blood parrot. They are born with so many defects and none of them can close their mouths all the way. Flowerhorns are a happy and totaly healthy hybrid that if we want more we need to breed them and not their original factors. Keeping fish is about mimmicking their environment for our enjoyment not changing it. If it doesn't happen in the wild it shouldn't happen in captivity (aside from decor, substrate and all that).



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/13/2005 11:35AM by Cody.

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: MITCHELL ()
Date: March 13, 2005 11:49AM

i think that rare fish should not be hybred because they sould be used to keep the species around. if you can tell its a hybred it wouldn't be used in a breding program,but many are hard to tell from there parents.also some like the parrets are very deformed physicaly and mentaly
if you want hybreds enjoy,but don't sell or give them to anyone without them knowing what there getting

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: MARK ()
Date: March 13, 2005 04:57PM

WHAT IS A HYBRED? I HAVE HEARD OF A HYBRID. IS THIS A NEW WORD I AM UNAWARE OF ?

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: Cody ()
Date: March 13, 2005 06:23PM

A hybrid is a cross between 2 or more different species. Variations don't count.

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: F35 ()
Date: March 13, 2005 07:09PM

I would also like to see rare cichlids preserved, but if it mates with other cichlids to produce babies that look a bit different...and those babies can have babies, then the rare cichlid is not a rare species, rather it is a rare phenotype of a more common species. Still, if that particular phenotype exists in the wild, then I believe it should be preserved as is.

Peace eye rolling smiley

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: F35 ()
Date: March 13, 2005 07:31PM

Ok, a few points to tackle here, here goes.
Yeah, I mention the flowerhorn cause that's the one that angers me. I hear people ranting about not liking flowerhorns cause they're hybrids, but they're usually healthy fish, and they can have viable and fertile offspring, so technically they're not "hybrids" and I see nothing wrong with them.
You bring up a good point with the parrot and I feel the same way. They have created these fish which are unhealthy and have many defects, some of which are quite debilitating, making their life pretty crappy, so I am against breeding to make such a fish. And, since they can't produce viable and fertile offspring...at least I don't think they can, forgive me if I am wrong here, then they are indeed a hybrid.
As I said before, it just gets me sometimes when people are spewing out little comments about flowerhorns when they don't even know what they are talking about and are just repeating something that they've heard on a previous post. As far as dogs go, if all dogs can breed together, and they can also breed succesfully with wolves, then according to the laws of science, they'd all be the same species. You're right that they shouldn't have their own latin name, perhaps they should not be Canis familiaris while wolves are Canis lupus, but there are lots of blurry lines when it comes to binomial nomenclature. Donkeys and Horses are different species, yes they once had a common ancestor, if you go far enough back they have a common ancestor with us, but evolution has gone on, and speciation has occurred. With dogs, and several cichlids, it has not yet reached that point.
Anyway, my rant is pretty much done. Cody, I'm sure you know what I mean when I talk about folks that bash Flowerhorns without knowing why they are bashing them. I know too many people who know very little, but have lots of opinions on things that they know nothing about, mainly just cause they heard someone else talking about it. Perhaps I should have called the subject "Don't bash flowerhorns unless you know what you're talking about", but it's too late for that now smiling smiley

Later folks

Peace eye rolling smiley

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: Cody ()
Date: March 13, 2005 08:32PM

I do know what you mean. I don't like it either. The species to make flowerhorns live so close together they could occur in the wild but it is highly unlikely to get that combo. I don't like when people bash flowerhorns either. I've seen large flowerhorns and if I had the money and space I would've bought them. They were following up and down the tank and begging me for food. It was really cool. People just hear rumors about hybrids and spew out what they don't know.

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: Jermain ()
Date: March 13, 2005 09:21PM

Well most people are concerned about letting hybrids that fish hobyists made themselves out of their tanks. And this actually is justified once you think about it. Sure hybrids and mutations among species are what allows for evolution and gives off the most "fit" species as a result, but this only naturally occurs out in the wild. And if its not happening in the wild and only taking place in water surrounded by glass with an electronic filtering system and thermostat, fish hobbyists would have to ask themselves, "what are we doing?"

The fact is, hybrids are a normal thing, but not when its because a fish is forced to since there are no other fish of its own kind in its tank.

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: Mr. Limpet ()
Date: March 13, 2005 10:25PM

- an Englishman that plays polo and drinks sherry.

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: Noel ()
Date: March 14, 2005 09:35AM

I totally agree with Jermain. And I haven't seen anyone bashing flowerhorns here (sorry if I missed it) just parrot cichlids.

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: F35 ()
Date: March 14, 2005 01:18PM

But if it is a true hybrid and it was released (I'm not advocating this) then it would be sterile and would be no risk to the wild populations. If it is not sterile, it's the same species as something else, just with a few different traits. White skin, Brown skin, different eye colour and hair types, same species.

Peace eye rolling smiley

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: F35 ()
Date: March 14, 2005 01:44PM

Actually Noel, it was more on Cichlid-forum.com that I guess I've seen people senselessly bashing flowerhorns, not so much on here, only a time or two. I frequent too many cichlid sites smiling smiley

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: Freaky Jason ()
Date: March 18, 2005 05:18AM

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and they can have viable and fertile offspring, so technically they're not "hybrids" and I see nothing wrong with them.

This is incorrect...no matter how you explain it or spell it out flowerhorns are hybrids. Here are a few results from www.dictionary.com...
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hy·brid Audio pronunciation of "hybrid" ( P ) Pronunciation Key (hbrd)
n.

1. Genetics. The offspring of genetically dissimilar parents or stock, especially the offspring produced by breeding plants or animals of different varieties, species, or races.
2.
1. Something of mixed origin or composition.

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Main Entry: hy·brid
Pronunciation: 'hI-br&d
Function: noun
1 : an offspring of two animals or plants of different races, breeds, varieties, species, or genera

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an organism that is the offspring of genetically dissimilar parents or stock; especially offspring produced by breeding plants or animals of different varieties or breeds or species;

No where does it mention that in order to be correctly classified as a hybrid the offspring must be sterile. winking smiley

Now, my only problem with flowerhorns are the breeders. Many breeders cull out the "low-grade" flowerhorns and sell them off as trimacs. you can't buy a "pure" Amphilophus trimaculatus anymore without going through a reputable breeder or importer and paying high shipping costs. This also goes for breeders of other species such as midas and red devils. Again, you can't buy a pure midas or pure red devil without going through someone like Jeff Rapps who has them imported and breeds them from stock taken directly out of their native lakes. If "lazy breeders" would take a bit more initiative and responsibility to make sure their fish are sold as exactly what they are then there wouldn't be so much hybrid bashing imo. I have no ethical problem with hybrids and in fact I almost bought a flowerhorn once. I still might eventually but right now if I were to pay $100 for a single fish it would be the awesome 6" male trimac that a friend in Cincinnati has. grinning smiley

Oh, and to Cody...not all the species that are used to make flowerhorns are found together in nature. Here's a list of some of the more commonly used species and where they're most commonly found in nature:

Red devils and Midas are most commonly found in Nicaragua and Costa Rica
Trimacs are found mostly in Guatemala and Mexico
Synspilus are mostly found in Belize, Mexico and Guatemala
Carpintis (where many flowerhorns get their pearls) are found mostly in Mexico
Red Terrors are from Colombia, Peru and most commonly Ecuador

Now sure the trimac, synspilus and carpintis are all found in Mexico, but Mexico is an awefully big place and there are probably few places if any where these species can be found together. smiling smiley

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Re: Hybrids, Hybrids, Hybrids?!?!
Posted by: Mkirk08 ()
Date: March 19, 2005 10:37PM

Personally i dont have any hybrids not because of my dislike for them but because i just dont prefer them. If your into hybrids thats great, whatever you like is what you should have.

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