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Betta Breeders Canada - Betta fish care

Updated on May 10, 2014

Betta Breeders Canada

Betta Breeders Canada is an official chapter of the IBC (International Betta Congress) and is also a registered non-profit organization. Our goal is to help promote the proper breeding of Betta splendens within Canada and to make more colours and varieties of Siamese Fighting Fish available to all Canadians!

We'd love to have you join the Betta Breeders Canada group.

In April 2014 we had our first ever online auction for 10 great pairs of bettas. It was successful. We are getting close to having enough money for a real sanctioned IBC show in Canada! ... Note we also have an unofficial facebook group that I run. Just search FB for "Betta Breeders Canada" and you'll surely find it!

Best Betta Books Online

If you would like to hold off on joining an awesome betta club, you might want to consider a book about bettas.  These will guide you through the basics of keeping your betta healthy and happy.  Healthy bettas are the key to successfully breeding bettas and raising the babies to be colourful adult betta fish!

These are the best selling betta books on Amazon!

Betta: Your Happy Healthy Pet [Hardcover]

Bettas (Complete Pet Owner's Manual) [Paperback]

Caring For Betta Fish [Paperback]

Betta Care (Quick and Easy) [Paperback]

Bettas [Hardcover]

Zoo Med Betta Care Guide Book - (4 pieces)

About Betta Breeders Canada

Betta Breeders Canada (henceforth mentioned as the BBC) is currently mainly a Betta forum for Canadian enthusiasts. We are in the process of some intense growth to help spread this awesome hobby throughout Canada though!

The group is made up of dozens of fans of Siamese Fighting Fish. We share tips on how to properly care for bettas, and how to deal with any unfortunate diseases that may arise. Also, numerous fun stories about our bettas are discussed!

The main goal of the BBC, however, is to help new breeders learn the art and science of breeding their Siamese fighting fish. Learning how to breed these feisty fish really does take some initial work and dedication. They are not like many other species (such as guppies) where you just put a male and female together and 30 days later you will have some babies (known as fry in the aquarium world).

Preparing for a betta spawn takes a few weeks of prep-work and careful planning, but the rewards are endless. Successful members are proud to show "spawn logs" with many pictures of betta fry as they grow up.

If you are interested in joining us, we welcome you to visit as at the Betta Breeders Canada community. We'd love to see you on the forum! Membership and activity in the forums is limited to people who have active paid memberships in BBC and the international betta congress as well.

BETTA BREEDERS CANADA NEWS

BBC is proud to announce that we are now selling great products from the Atison's Betta line. Also available are Indian Almond Leaves and teabags, filters and more. Check out Betta supplies for items and prices!

Members get a 10% discount on all purchases!

Great Aquarium Resources

For information on supplies for bettas and other fresh water aquarium fish, check out these website...

Top Quality Bettas Are Avaible Now

Some of the best bettas available online are listed here:

If you have any specific questions about how to breed saimese fighting fish, I'd love to hear them. Then, I can help incorporate the answers into this page for you!

This slim mini heater is perfect for any betta tank. It is just 1/4" thick which allows it to be easily hidden out of the way in any betta tank. Now you don't have to worry about how you will keep your betta fish in a heated tank! This is by far the best method of heating a betta jar or tank that I have come across.

This product is available in 7.5 or 15 Watt versions. The 7.5Watt heater should be perfect for a 1 to 2.5 gallon betta tank. At 15 Watts, this heater can heat up to 3 to 5 gallons of water. This ultra-slim betta tank heater is perfect for a desktop aquarium. It is also fully submersible so you can even place it out of the way on the bottom of the aquarium.

At only $9.99 you can properly heat your betta's jar efficiently and for a great price!

Breeding Bettas - how to breed fighting fish step by step

A quick summary of what is involved in betta breeding

If you want to breed bettas, the first step is to do as much reading as you can. The process can be quite confusing for a beginner, but once you learn the process, it becomes easier with every spawn.

The first stage is picking the right bettas, but that will be discussed elsewhere on this page. Once you have your fish, you need to help get your bettas ready for the spawn. This is done by keeping the male and female Siamese fighting fish in separate containers but in full view of each other. They should be fed a variety of high quality food. You may want to alternate feedings of "Atison's Betta Pro" with live foods such as adult brine shrimp, white worms, and grindal worms. You can find these at your local pet shop or at BuyMicroworms.com. Try to change the water every two to three days to ensure the highest water quality possible.

You can spawn your fish by putting the male in a 5 gallon tank, filled up with 6" of water. In the tank, have a heater set to 80 or 81F as well as some plants for the female to hide in. In one corner, have half a styrofoam cup or an Indian Almond leaf to entice the male to build a bubble nest.

After the male has had a day on his own, put a chimney lamp (or the cylinder part of a 2L pop bottle) in the middle of the tank. Place your chosen female in this enclosure. This helps make the male and female interested in each other, but unable to spawn because of the barrier. When the male has a nest built, and the female starts showing vertical bars, the bettas are ready for spawning. The female may also start swimming with her head down at a 45 degree angle.

When all these signs are present, release the female and watch from a distance. The female might initially hide from the male betta, but she should eventually start to chase him and lead him to the nest. They will then start spawning by the male wrapping around the female, causing eggs to eject as he fertilizes him. The female betta becomes 'stunned' and slowly sink to the bottom of the tank. The male fish will gather the eggs up in his mouth and spit them into the bubbles, then wrap the female again. This process continues for several hours. When the female betta starts hiding again, the spawning process is complete and you should take the female fish out.

Leave the male betta alone and undisturbed for a few days. If you watch him too much, he may get annoyed and start to eat the eggs. Basically, the male betta will watch the nest diligently. Any eggs that fall out of the bubbles will get gathered up and spit back into the nest.

The betta eggs will hatch within 24 to 48 hours depending on the water temperature. The father will continue spitting them up into the bubbles until the betta fry (another word for young baby fish) are able to swim horizontally on their own. At this point, you should take the male betta out before he is enticed into eating the fry, since he hasn't eaten any food in up to a week by this point. Some advanced betta breeders will leave the male in as the babies grow up, but I suggest taking him out until you are more comfortable with betta breeding techniques.

And there you have it - a quick guide to breeding bettas. Why not join the Betta Breeders Canada forum by clicking here. We can answer any questions you may have. If you continue reading below, there is an overview of what foods you should feed your betta fry.

Halfmoons Vs Crowntails

The big debate would be if halfmoon bettas are better than crowntails. I personally prefer halfmoons since it's easier to get their fins to stay nice as they age. What do you think?

Which are better - Halfmoons or Crowntail bettas?

Time for your input!

We want to hear what you are most interested in so we can continue to improve both this squidoo page, and the BBC forum content!

What betta information do you want to learn more about?

See results

Learn the best techniques for Betta fish care! - Learn how to properly take care of your Betta fish

The Betta Handbook
The Betta Handbook

"If you can only get 1 book about Bettas this should be it. Dr. Goldstein is an expert and although I do disagree with some of his thoughts on the need to keep Betta variety names to a strict scientific form, I realise his intentions are good as well as valid. His overview of the Betta world is most complete and the many less known "wild" betta species receive excellent coverage in his effort. I do wish it had more photos of the more recent varieties that have been developed such as the Crowntail and Halfmoon but the descriptions are very good and a web directory guides readers to sites which will fill in the gaps. Any of Dr. Goldsteins books are an excellent addition to the Betta or other tropical fish fanciers library. I've been keeping Bettas for more than 40 years now and Dr. Goldstein's books were there every step of the way. This book will most definitely enhance your pleasure in keeping these fascinating little fish!"

 

Betta fry food - What live foods are ideal for baby betta splendens

I've got tiny babies - now what do I do?

Over the years, I have heard and read about the debate regarding what foods are the best to feed to growing betta fry. Part of the reason for this unending debate is that none of the foods would be considered the ideal. Typically, there is some sort minor issue that can be found for any food you may consider feeding to your baby bettas.

The standard foods people think of feeding to their fry include egg yolk, infusoria, Atison's Betta Starter, vinegar eels, walter worms, microworms, baby brine shrimp (bbs), grindal worms, white worms, and Atison's Betta Pro. These are conveniently listed in a rough guide to when (in the overall life cycle) you should think about feeding the above foods to your bettas.

I will try to explain some of the pros and cons of each food, and end off with the tips I have developed as I learned to become a successful Canadian betta breeder (the foods may not all have explanations yet so please come back in a day or two to see if I have updated this section yet).

Some people start their betta fry diet off with egg yolk. Basically, one can hard-boil an egg, save the yolk, and dilute it with some dechlorinated water. Several times per day, TINY amounts of this yolk can be fed by medicine dropper to the betta fry. The benefit of this is that it is cheap, always available, and nutritious. Unfortunately, any uneaten egg yolk (and there will be plenty of this) will quickly foul up the water, so you will have to clean the tank a few times per day.

Atison's Betta Starter is a commercial finely powdered betta food for babies. It has everything the fry need at the early stages of their lives, all packaged up into a size that will fit into their mouthes. Unfortunately, it isn't readily available in Canada yet (this might change soon) and comes in very tiny containers. Some people report that their babies do not readily take to non-live foods.

Vinegar eels are very similar to microworms. They are cultured in a mixture of apple cider vinegar, apple juice, and apple bits. They wiggle continuously like microworms. The benefit to these is that they 'remain in the water column'. Basically, unlike microworms, they don't fall to the bottom within 10 minutes. They stay out in the open for the betta fry to continuously hunt. Microworms measure a few millimeters long and I personally believe they are one of the best first foods for young bettas. They are easy to culture, and one culture can literally last forever if properly taken care of.

Another early food for betta fry is newly hatched baby brine shrimp (usually referred to as BBS). You might have had brine shrimp in the past without even realizing it. They are the same as sea monkies that many children grow in little jars for fun. BBS are most nutritious right after they are hatched, before the yolk sac is used up. They are hatched in salt water at 80F and will hatch within 18 to 24 hours. I usually have my 'hatchery' right in the fry tank so that it is easily kept at 80F. Baby Siamese fighting fish can be fed a mixture of microworms and BBS for the first 4 to 6 weeks of their lives, until they are ready for grindal worms.

Grindal worms can be considered a larger version of microworms. They are the next food for baby bettas after brine shrimp and microworms. They can grow to 1cm long, and are cultured in soil. I feed my grindal worms flaked baby food every day to maintain booming cultures. By doing this, my betta fry can be fed grindal worms every day!

Whiteworms are larger versions of grindal worms. They can grow to several centimeters long and have similar culturing requirements as grindal worms, except that they are a bit more picky about temperatures in their soil. When grindals are no longer cutting it for the juvenile bettas, I usually try to move on to whiteworms if I have some available.

Daphnia are water fleas. There are several species available, with the main difference between them being the size. They live in water, and can healthy cultures can be maintained with either yeast, spirulina, or 'green water'. They can be fed to juvenile and adult bettas by directly transferring them to the fish tanks.

Ultimately, your bettas will need to be transitioned to betta pellets as these will be the staple food for the life of the fish. To do this, start the process when the betta fry are about 2.5 centimeters long, not including the tails. Every few meals, try feeding a few pellets. They may not be interested at first, but if you keep this up, they can be weaned to pellets quite easily.

Vote for your favourite aquarium fish books

Time for the readers to decide. Tell us what general fish keeping books are your favourites. Help others find fantastic fish (and betta) books!

The New Marine Aquarium
The New Marine Aquarium

by Michael S. Paletta. Fully illustrated step-by-step handbook is designed to help any beginner with planning, setting up, and stocking his or her marine aquarium. Includes information on equipment, filtration, Live Rock, and specimen selection. 144 pages

 
The Reef Aquarium, Vol. 3: Science, Art, and Technology
The Reef Aquarium, Vol. 3: Science, Art, and Technology

The Reef Aquarium Volume Three: Science, Art, and Technology Reefkeeping science involves the interplay of biology, chemistry, and physics. However, a reef aquarium is not simply a product of scientific knowledge. The application of engineering and its product technology, makes it possible to duplicate the specific biological, chemical, and physical requirements of a coral reef in a relatively small volume of water. This third volume in The Reef Aquarium series, provides the most thorough descri...

 
The Conscientious Marine Aquarist: A Commonsense Handbook for Successful Saltwater Hobbyists
The Conscientious Marine Aquarist: A Commonsense Handbook for Successful Saltwater Hobbyists

Drawing upon a lifetime of aquatic experience, marine biologist Bob Fenner demystifies the process of planning, setting up, stocking, and managing a beautiful, thriving slice of the tropical ocean. A leading advocate for the responsible collection and care of wild-caught specimens, Fenner starts with the basics and proceeds to give the reader the scientific background and expert-level secrets to being a smarter consumer, better reef steward, and more successful marine aquarium keeper.

 
A PocketExpert Guide to Marine Fishes: 500+ Essential-To-Know Aquarium Species
A PocketExpert Guide to Marine Fishes: 500+ Essential-To-Know Aquarium Species

---Comprehensive: 500+ species photographs, covering all popular and commonly available aquarium species ---Authoritative: expert advice on feeding and captive care ---Informative: aquarium suitability ratings for every species ---Easy to use: complete species name and common name indexes

 

The Down and Dirty of Raising Your Baby Bettas To Be Healthy Adult Bettas

As mentioned earlier, one of the most difficult aspects of breeding bettas is the pre-spawn effort. The bettas need to be "conditioned" to be in tip-top shape. Then, they need the correct spawning tank setup. Finally, they have to accept each other and spawn for you.

Well, if that's the most difficult aspect of learning how to breed your bettas, then a close second would be knowing how to keep your babies growing quickly (and sticking to the necessary routine).

Come back soon, because in the next few days, I'll be adding detailed instructions (including a fry maintenance schedule) on how to get your baby bettas to quickly become healthy breedable adult bettas.

Betta Breeding VIdeos

Here are some great home made betta videos. Many Canadian Betta breeders love to share videos of their bettas breeding. YouTube is the perfect place to do this! Found one you like that's not on the list? Why not use the 'contact lensmaster' feature to ask me to add it!

Tropical Fish For Beginners - start with a betta!

Every day, hundreds of people tread their first steps of their journey with tropical fish. These first steps can look very different for various people. Some people may randomly walk into a pet shop and be fascinated with the available fish. Others may know a friend or family member who keeps fish and slowly develop the infamous "itch" to start their first aquarium. For many people, betta splendens - also known as siamese fighting fish - are a great way to dip your feet into the tropical fish hobby.

There are many reasons why having a betta as your first tropical fish is a good choice. Bettas do not require complicated aquarium setups or accessories that most other fish do. A betta can be quite happy in a medium sized (1 to 2 gallon) tank or jar. While most accessories are optional, some items and decorations will definitely make your betta a happier fish. Bettas can be quite active and healthy without gravel, filters, or lids. However, some decorations will definitely help entertain your betta.

Since betta tanks are inexpensive compared to those of other tropical fish, the money saved can be used to spruce up your new fish's environment. Some favorite decorations include divers, buddhas, fake plants (silk are best), little glass fish, and anything else you think your fish might like! As you can see, the decorations you can add in your betta's aquarium are endless, and definitely fun!

Betta fish care is also much simpler than caring for other tropical fish. If you keep your fish tank at approximately 80 Fahrenheit and feed the proper amount of betta pellets (just a small pinch twice per day), you will run into very few problems. Water changes need only be once per week and it's quick to change 100% of the water in a 2 gallon tank. You can do less drastic water changes if your fish tank is filtered. Proper water changes will ensure the health of your betta and it's potential tankmates for years to come.

Finally, your betta doesn't have to be a lonely fish. Male bettas cannot safely be kept with other males. If you have enough aquarium plants and hiding place, female bettas can be kept in groups, making for a nice tropical fish tank. A single male betta can safely be kept with a medium or large apple snail. Other good tank mates include chinese algae eaters or other small non-aggressive fish that do not have flashy tails. Fish to avoid are guppies, mollies, and platties.

Once you have bought your first siamese fighting fish, you will become hooked. Many people ultimately want to try their hand at breeding bettas, and information on this is available higher up on this page.

I'd love to hear what you love about bettas! Do you breed them yourself? Any specific questions about Siamese fighting fish? I'm here to help...

Betta breeders, before I begin, any questions about... - How to breed fighting fish step by step

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    • mmwoodward profile image

      mmwoodward 4 years ago

      I'd love to see more breeders in Canada in general. I have a very hard time finding any Canadian breeders at all. Even on AquaBid, Canadian breeders are so very few and far apart. It'd be great to have active, quality breeders so that I have more options with future bettas to bring home.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Not if your water will stay around 80 to 82F!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      hey! i live in the tropics... do i really need to use a heater?

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 6 years ago

      @nebraska lm: they are used to condition the water to help improve the chance of success with a betta spawn...

    • nebraska lm profile image

      nebraska lm 6 years ago

      Never heard of the tea bag thing. What are they used for with Bettas?

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 6 years ago

      @anonymous: Hi there sorry for the delay. Did you read the whole page here? Almost all of that can be learned on this page. You can give baby brine shrimp which you will have to hatch. you can try a fry food from your pet store too. Did your eggs hatch?

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      my betta finally spawned when must i tak t female n male out... wat else can b give instead of microworms. im really so excited thank u vey much for t guidance

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      finally gud news t pair spawned today mrn.when shld the female out n keep t male wit eggs and hw many days will i take for fry to pop out..... im alll excited thanks to u for all t assistance..if i dnt have microworms wat else can b used...

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 6 years ago

      @anonymous: i would judge the females mostly by if they seem interested in the males. If they are swimming on a 45degree angle (with head on a tilt down) and are trying to get to the male then they are likely ready for a trial of letting them out :) Did you have any luck yet? It is important to be patient as I have had bettas take up to 3 weeks to spawn. If they are being gentle I leave them be until they spawn...

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      The male keeps circling t jar... no t tank has no gravels its a flat surface. The male s buildin up his nest so shall i wait for a day n then put t female.. imp most of females r plump but lackin verticals stripes do i wait for them or

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 6 years ago

      Hi. That sounds like you are doing things right so far. Are the two fish following each other as much as they can (ie is she trying to get to him through the plastic jar)? Do you have gravel on the bottom (if so, take it out as eggs can get lost in there when they fall)?

      If your female is white it makes it harder to judge if she's ready because she can't show her vertical bars as well. If she swims around with a head-down position, she is likely to be ready. Make sure the male has a nice nest ready.

      It shouldn't hurt to try letting her out but watching fairly closely (without disrupting them) for signs of aggression. If they start fighting too much,then remove the female! Let me know how that goes, or if you have any other questions...

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      ya i do use pellets food too... t dried worm s supplement.as of nw i got a 10 gl tank wit a crown tail betta n white female in a jar t tank is wit plants n a banana leaf for t male to save his bubbles and small size sponge filter... my male started to build his nest it's a day since i introduced t female my question s when i shall put them together...

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 6 years ago

      Are you using any quality betta pellets as well? Most people would use them as the main diet then supplement with frozen/live foods. What have you done so far with tank setup and with trying to breed? Have you started by reading the section on "step by step" betta breeding advice below?

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      tubiflex dried worms n live worms..i bought a few female bettas and a few crown tails males, pal i wana learn to breed them n wat t step i need to take in settin up t tank.... i hope im not askin to many questions...

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 6 years ago

      Simeon - I doubt would be easy to import them. Do you have any local aquarium societies there? I would start by looking for someone in your country. What are you conditioning the fish with?

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      is it possible to get microworms imported o india

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      thanks pal, ur advise ws really helpfulll

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 6 years ago

      @anonymous: poor conditioning would be my guess!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      hi i have my bettas for breeding but the female keeps swimming away wat culd b t reason...help needed...

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 6 years ago

      @anonymous: Try contacting the owner of http://www.buymicroworms.com if you are in north america!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Is the only place you can buy microworms online?

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 8 years ago

      [in reply to IslandGirl] I would do that by the 3rd week if you are going to do that. I personally do not, and haven't had any related problems.

      Sounds like you've been bitten by the betta breeding bug. It's very addicting. There are two betta books linked from this lens, and either will be a great resource for you to start with (always good to have a book or two related to the fish you want to breed..I myself have 3 betta books!)...

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      At what point do you recommend adding the air pump for the fry, and covering the spawning tank, so the air is as warm as the water? I cleaned out my spawning tank, and now I can't keep myself from wanting to breed my second pair... seeing as how I was all set up. I Think I'm hooked.

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 8 years ago

      [in reply to IslandGirl]

      Thanks for the update! Unfortunately egg eaters are relatively common with betta breeding. I hope you try again with either the same pair or the other pair you mentioned. If you do try again, remove the female completely from his view and that should help!

      The infusoria should be plentiful in that lettuce water. Green water is great for feeding brine shrimp (it's how the stores grow them up). Good luck :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Why, thankyou clefty :) I have lettus in water about 2 weeks old. I Hope there is enough infusoria in there, (along with the plants I have) that I may rotate in for feedings... don't suppose "green water," is good for feeding BBS, as well? :D Then I wouldn't want to buy liquid phylankton to feed B.B.S. I am sad to report that my first try went well up until the day the fry hatched, the father ate them before I was brave enough to remove him. I'm feeling put-out, about the failed try. I think I did not have my female's tank far enough away from his, she has her vertical stripes back leading me to think she could see him well enough for that to have been his reasoning for eating his fry. I have another breedable pair, but also doubts about trying again. While I was online, "reading up" on the subject, thought I would "drop you a line" saying,~Thanks~

      at least now I feel like I'm on the right path.

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 8 years ago

      [in reply to IslandGirl]

      If you add a bunch of plants, they will come with "infusoria" which is basically tiny tiny stuff that newly hatched betta fry can eat. They will also use up their egg sacs for the first few days so you should be fine. Hope they grow up into nice bettas for you!

      Also, the BBS are perfect for bettas, even when they are just a few days old...

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I've owned and loved my Bettas for years, for fish I think the have such a cool personality, I just tried my hand at breeding for the first time, 4 days ago I introduced my pair, and now I have eggs 1 whole day old, problem is, I think I cultured the wrong food for my young as a starter diet. I have baby brine shrimp hatching as I type this, but their eggs are about the same size as my betta eggs, and my micro worms are not quiet ready, do you think they will they be okay for the first few days of eating, with just the BBS?

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 8 years ago

      [in reply to tyrone] HI Tyrone. Hopefully you come back for the answer :)

      I like using the anal fin (the one below most of the body) to check for males vs females when they're still young (though it is not perfect). Basically, you look at the back point of it. If it's pretty square, it's likely a female. If it's more pointy (V-shaped) it's likely a male. Usually if it looks male it will most likely be male, but if it looks squarish (female) it could still turn out to be male as it develops.

      You can also combine this with looking at the ventrals (the two little fins that come out near the belly and point down). If they're LONG, then it's a male; if they're short and less full, it'll probably be a female.

      For your last question, it's usually males that blow bubbles, but I've had some random females that do so as well :) Female bubble nests are usually smaller though.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      how do you tell the difference between young males and females and do only the males blow bubbles,

    • CleftyToo profile image
      Author

      CleftyToo 8 years ago

      [in reply to Penycat] Thanks Penycat! That ebay seller certainly has the best bettas on ebay that are from North America :)

      Just commented on your lens ;)

    • Penycat profile image

      Penycat 8 years ago

      Great lens! I'm also part of the IBC, trying to start a chapter here in NC, I raise plakats and halfmoons, but mostly plakats:) Don't you love them? I'm also currently working on a betta lens with my experiences (have the same ebay guy you to featured on mine...lol) He's got great fish! Thanks again for this lens and hope to hear more!