'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hobby

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'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hobby

Postby Philsuma » Sun Nov 25, 2012 6:36 pm

I see this argument used by some, to justify attacking or defending Selective Breeding and/or 'Line Breeding" in the U.S Dart Frog Hobby.

This is my take on a few definitions:

1. HARD Selective Breeding - Going out of your way to find / intentional breeding for certain traits, or combination of traits. Advertising or looking far and wide for specific frogs to start a very specific breeding project with a specific end in mind, such as colour or pattern for instance. Example, Hobbyist John from NYC spends 2 years looking for and obtaining 2-3 Dendrobates leucomelas that have a blueish dorsal tint, from both a California and a Kansas hobbyist in a concerted effort to obtain a breeding group in furtherance of future 'blue' Leucs. HARD selection is NOT ok in my personal opinion.
Hard Selective Breeding is Synonymous with LINE BREEDING

2. SOFT Selection - Selecting one or more frogs that in your 'hobby opinion' for YOUR OWN personal gratification -look appealing to YOU. Example, You buy them locally and although you intend to breed them, you are not trying to produce any specific result other than healthy animals. OK to practice in my personal opinion.

...just a start here folks - as always, please discuss.

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby XxExoticPsychExX » Sun Nov 25, 2012 7:43 pm

Makes logical sense to me; The way you have defined these terms, that is. I don't mind not being picky over color or pattern variations in a specific morph or local of dart frog that I'm choosing to obtain. However, according to the definitions, I could still be accused of 'Soft' selective breeding if I were to purposefully not choose to purchase and breed an albino or melanistic, naturally occurring specimen of the specific frog that I would be trying to obtain. Of course, this would only occur if the situation were to present itself at the time. Lucky me, this same situation happened when it came time to purchase my first ever dart frog during Frog Day 2012. At the same time though, they were both from the same breeder and could have just as well been siblings. If I were to purchase both, I could then be accused of further inbreeding these animals. :|

On the other hand, would 'Soft' selective breeding also include choosing specific individuals who look healthy as opposed to choosing for their color and pattern variations? If so, then it seems as though I could never keep from being accused of doing something I shouldn't do by someone. Totally disheartening. :cry:

As for 'Hard' selective breeding, I tend to see that as a whole different level. You would be purposefully choosing to breed for a very specific trait or traits, with the intent to have subsequent individuals produce offspring with only said trait or traits. I'm not a genius in genetics, but even I can see the repercussions it could have on a species in terms of limiting its genetic variability and possibly causing health defects/issues.


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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby Philsuma » Thu Mar 07, 2013 8:06 pm

Picking what you personally consider to be a pair of gorgeous frogs - selected by you...is not 'Selective Breeding, nor is it "Line Breeding".

'Selective breeding" / HARD or "Line Breeding", both involves hard effort to pair up and spend years worth of work to produce a given result - often a 'product" for commercial purposes.

90% of the Average Hobbyist can not come close to the effort that goes into those above definitions. Selecting a few frogs based on colour or appearance is nowhere close to being considered 'bad" IMHO.

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby DrNick » Fri Mar 08, 2013 11:55 am

Philsuma wrote:Picking what you personally consider to be a pair of gorgeous frogs - selected by you...is not 'Selective Breeding'


Well, by definition it is... You select frogs and breed them, thus selective breeding. However, I completely agree with you that in practical terms there is nothing wrong with this and the gulf between this type of behaviour and practical line breeding seems often not to be obvious to some. Which is odd.

The important point I think is that fortunately our (hobbyists') diversity of opinion on what is 'gorgeous' is just as broad as the range of colourations we can select from in a given morph. We can select away to our hearts content and not interfere with the pool of colourations coming through in the wider hobby. The problems arise when it becomes fashionable to 'like' a certain appearance and multiple breeders select for a given appearance. Then we may see convergence.

Of course I always keep frogs I like the look of, who doesn't. This is selective by definition. However, for a given variable morph the frogs I 'select' will probably all look entirely different! And all equally "gorgeous" (to me!!). Thus categorically not line breeding....... My humble opinion!

To summarise - I think option two can be split down the middle between those who select diverse appearances that they happen to like and those who happen to like a certain appearance and select accordingly. Neither are cardinal sins IMO but the latter is on more shaky ground....

Nick

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby RichFrye » Fri Mar 08, 2013 12:20 pm

What should be understood is that when someone selects the far left, right , up or down and purposely breeds to the far extent of anything (small spot, sky blue , albinism, any pumilio that looks different than the mean group that they came in with) they are driving away from what genetic drift has worked so hard to settle.

What we should strive to accomplish in our hobby is that which has already been done, naturally.
But, of course there are guys who habitually feel the need to cherry pick the bluest, reddest, finest spot, solid this, spotted that , crazy whatever etc. , and the longer they have been in the hobby, and the more frogs that pass through their hands the more the general hobby seems the accept their irresponsible breeding habits.

We all selectively breed. Some do it in a responsible manner, others are like little children in a candy shop.
Darts with parasites are analogous to mixed tanks, there are no known benefits to the frogs with either.


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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby Chuck Lawson » Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:13 pm

It seems like the terms "selective breeding" and "line breeding" may be getting conflated here...

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby RichFrye » Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:21 pm

Simply, all breeding in the hobby is selective breeding. We select/choose to put frog 'a' with frog 'b'.
The thought process behind what ones chooses is anywhere from as natural as possible to the far extent of not natural and all possibilities in between.
Line breeding involves selection and related (line) frogs.
All line breeding is selective, not all selective breeding is line breeding.
Darts with parasites are analogous to mixed tanks, there are no known benefits to the frogs with either.


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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby Chuck Lawson » Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:28 pm

RichFrye wrote:Simply, all breeding in the hobby is selective breeding. We select/choose to put frog 'a' with frog 'b'.
The thought process behind what ones chooses is anywhere from as natural as possible to the far extent of not natural and all possibilities in between.
Line breeding involves selection and related (line) frogs.
All line breeding is selective, not all selective breeding is line breeding.


+1. If you've selected two frogs - or even 200 frogs - and toss them together to breed, you're engaged in selective breeding. If the real issue is inbreeding depression, then selective breeding is probably an overly inclusive term.

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby Philsuma » Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:32 pm

Chuck Lawson wrote:It seems like the terms "selective breeding" and "line breeding" may be getting conflated here...


Yeah, agreed...but that's a byproduct of trying to marry science with an oft-times self indulgent hobby. The end result which is discussion amongst the hobby may clarify things down the road.

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby Philsuma » Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:42 pm

Sean S's 'Sky blue line' of Dendrobates tinctorious 'Azureus' is a good example here. Is this:

1. "Hobby maintenance" of a small group of frogs, expressly kept to preserve the line ? A naturally occurring population found in the wild and documented by expeditions ?

2. A made up label to market a different type of frog ?

3. Line Breeding. An entire operation with additional individuals added to the breeding group and offspring carefully selected to further the desired gene pool ?

Selective Breeding ?

Line Breeding ?

Good for the hobby ?

Bad for the hobby ?

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby RichFrye » Fri Mar 08, 2013 2:05 pm

SS line of azureus and his lemon drops are two prime examples of 'high/hard' selective breeding for certain traits...to make more money than "normal' azureus or yellow backs.
It's as simple as that.
Some people don't think hybridizing any two frogs that can cross breed is wrong.
Ads on DB for his lines of "sky blue" have people (some, some people) drooling and falling all over his unnatural creations.
Bad? If you ask me, yes , it's a bad thing. With a number of possible bad things created for the frogs and our hobby.
Sean makes most of his money on his snakes, I think...
Darts with parasites are analogous to mixed tanks, there are no known benefits to the frogs with either.


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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby Philsuma » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:11 pm

some possible 'hobby' definitions...

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby jacob374 » Fri Oct 11, 2013 7:53 am

If so, then it seems as though I could never keep from being accused of doing something I shouldn't do by someone. Totally disheartening. :cry:
On the other hand, would 'Soft' selective breeding also include choosing specific individuals who look healthy as opposed to choosing for their color and pattern variations?

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby Philsuma » Mon Aug 25, 2014 10:06 am

it could, sure.

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby Roadrunner » Thu Nov 06, 2014 10:03 pm

All the allelles from a population are not needed in their new glass homes. Selecting the "best" suited for breeding in their new environment is the best we can do. Environments differ all over the country from pressure, humidity, heat and viv style choices. By breeding "the best" from so many different environments should keep the ability to handle different environments intact rather than keeping the best animals from a 70-78 degree 60-80% relative humidity environment. If you don't want hybrids "tainting" the bloodlines you should really start registerring frogs because NOTHING you do can stop it as people come and go like the wind. There is no way to herd the hobby to do what you want esp. random breeding to keep all the alleles. This only perpetuates a standard that's unable to be accomplished without continuosly going back to the wild.
The difference between horses and frogs genetically is that frogs can produce thousands more offspring over a lifetime. This lends well to breeding out deleterious alleles. Once they are gone you have a stable population which, although it may not have resistance to native diseases they may not encounter anymore you have animals suited better for glass boxes in the hobby and the actual bacteria and pathogens encountered in their new environment.

Try to outbreed and find unrelated sources to mate up pairs but I have inbred dwarf tincs over 7 generations when I started the hobby because they matured at about 6 months old and the last ones were just as healthy as the first for the conditions they were in. If you can keep frogs alive for 20 years that's a 140 year plan. You should look towards longevity if you're worried about inbreeding.

As for outbreeding depression, I've seen one paper that stated there weren't many studies on it and their conclusion was that the effect was close to statistically insignificant. I'd think it'd be least worrisome esp. if the populations were actually contingent or closely related.

I just hate to see people bitch because other people are "ruining the hobby" for them when it's their hobby too and there is an easy answer to the problem as to where everyone could just get along. The entitlement that anyone in the hobby has to breed frogs the way you see it is just that, entitlement that no one is entitled to. The perpetuation that the hobby will fall apart if everyone doesn't breed frogs a certain way only hurts the frogs. Cause then everyone has to go back to wild caught cause no one does it the right way. At least the hybrid people don't need wild caught animals to perpetuate their part of the hobby.
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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hob

Postby Philsuma » Fri Feb 19, 2016 10:44 pm

Sean Stewart was line breeding no spot azureus for years.

YEARS.

The average hobbyist only stays in the hobby for a year or two. Just selecting a pair of nice looking pumilio is NOT line breeding or even 'Selective Breeding'. Line breeding must be actively done for a long time and multiple generations. YEARS.

Just by saying 'Hey look! You just SELECTED 2 pumilio based on what you like in colour, size ect, SO you practice SELECTIVE BREEDING".

Nope. No you do not practice selective breeding. You are 100% OK

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Re: 'Hard' vs 'Soft' Selective Breeding in the Dart Frog Hobby

Postby Philsuma » Fri Nov 04, 2016 4:29 pm

bump for breeding / in-breeding


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