The longest running Amphibian Community on the Internet.

Tags Register FAQ Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Caudata.org Store


Ethical question on runts

This is a discussion on Ethical question on runts within the Axolotl Eggs, Larvae & Breeding forums, part of the Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) category; Hey everyone, I have a half ethical question and half genetic responsibility question. So I have bred my axolotls successfully ...

Axolotl Eggs, Larvae & Breeding Eggs everywhere, how did that happen? Will it be albino or wildtype?

Like Tree42Likes


Reply

 

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 7th May 2013   #1 (permalink)
Member
 
jdlqh8's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 89
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: jdlqh8 is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Ethical question on runts

Hey everyone,

I have a half ethical question and half genetic responsibility question. So I have bred my axolotls successfully and am currently selling the babies. My moral dilemma comes from the runts of the batch. Now I know the major runts need to be culled which has been done, however there are some that are like 1.5 inches while others are like 4 inches. (Obviously they are separated)

My question is, is it ethically ok to sell the smaller ones. So part of me says if they are going to survive and grow then it should be fine, they have made it this far so why not? However I’m not sure about how they will grow up. Will they always be runty? Should I cull them as well? What is the ethical thing to do as a seller as well as what is the ethical thing to do as an axolotl enthusiast who wants to strengthen the genetic line of axolotls… or at least not hurt it.

What do you think?

Note: As of this moment I have only sold the healthiest looking axolotls.

Thanks for your thoughts!




Last edited by Azhael; 7th May 2013 at 23:01. Reason: Removed ad parts.
jdlqh8 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 7th May 2013   #2 (permalink)
Site Contributor
 
Azhael's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Age: 32
Posts: 6,645
Gallery Images: 19
Comments: 2
Rep: Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

Variation in the speed of development is to be expected so unless they are showing signs of health issues, have deformities, etc, the fact that they are growing slowlier is not an issue and it doesnīt merit culling. Culling slow growers could also further reduce genetic diversity.

There are other ethical matters that deserve consideration, like the breeding of GFPs or breeding from endogamous pairings.



__________________
Please become acquainted with the forum rules.

Useful Links: Caudata Culture | Species Accounts | Care Articles | Newt and Salamander FAQs | Axolotl.org | Axolotl FAQs | Forum Functions.


Non Timetis Messor.
Azhael is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 7th May 2013   #3 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Age: 62
Posts: 339
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: wandering is a well respected, valued and knowledgeable member of Caudata.orgwandering is a well respected, valued and knowledgeable member of Caudata.orgwandering is a well respected, valued and knowledgeable member of Caudata.orgwandering is a well respected, valued and knowledgeable member of Caudata.orgwandering is a well respected, valued and knowledgeable member of Caudata.org
Default

One of 13 that I bought at 1 1/2 inches didn't grow at 16 degrees like the others. I kept it on its own at 21 degrees fed it on small foods and hey presto it started to grow. It caught up with the others at around 5 inches, even overtaking some. I have kept this one and would not now describe it as a runt, even though I initially considered letting the others eat it.

Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 2



wandering is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #4 (permalink)
Prolific Member
 
xxianxx's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 2,477
Gallery Images: 4
Comments: 7
Rep: xxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.org
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

You guys are all kinder than me, my runts are snacks, I pull the biggest few larvae from a batch and let the rest get on with some natural selection.



__________________
Axolotls available, wild type, copper, golden albino. P.waltl, Golden mantella, E.tricolor, T.verrucosus, I.a.alpestris, B.variagata, A.andersoni available now. Pm for details.
xxianxx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #5 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 165
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: karipatra is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

I may be in the minority here, as I'm not a breeder, but even if I were, I wouldn't kill, as that's what we're talking about, a baby axie unless it had major deformities.

If I judged all of the babies I ended up hatching just by growth rate, all but 2 would be gone, as the ones that were cut out of their eggs 10 days after my first 3 hatched are much smaller, and EVERYONE is much smaller than Audrey!

Just my 2 cents.




karipatra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #6 (permalink)
Member
 
jasper408's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Nationality:
Posts: 210
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: jasper408 has given consistently good advice and informationjasper408 has given consistently good advice and informationjasper408 has given consistently good advice and informationjasper408 has given consistently good advice and information
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

Quote:
Originally Posted by xxianxx View Post
You guys are all kinder than me, my runts are snacks, I pull the biggest few larvae from a batch and let the rest get on with some natural selection.
That's surprisingly exactly what I do.



jasper408 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #7 (permalink)
Prolific Member
 
layna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Age: 26
Posts: 1,268
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: layna has given good advice and informationlayna has given good advice and informationlayna has given good advice and information
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

I honestly think thats awful, why would you feed the little ones to the bigger ones just because they are little!
I can understand if they are majorly deformed and have no chance at survival (even then i would give it a chance, if it could still eat and swim).

I thought this was a website of axie loving people, and some of the comments on this post have thoroughly disgusted me



__________________
Im animal mad, if your not, too bad

If you like my advice, please add to my reputation so others know im helpful
layna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #8 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 270
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 2
Rep: pondweed has given consistently good advice and informationpondweed has given consistently good advice and informationpondweed has given consistently good advice and information
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

Layna, I think it's a site for axolotl (and other amphibian) enthusiasts, but that also covers collectors and people who like to observe their behaviours, and see them less as loved-pets. And there's nothing wrong with that. The site has a scientific bent, not just a forum for pet owners, and a lot of really helpful information comes from people with other approaches to amphibians. They can breed and observe them in numbers pet owners couldn't; more opportunities to learn, and less temptation to sentimentalise.

Smaller, or unlucky larvae, would be picked off in the wild. (One of the other reasons they lay so many eggs; all sorts of predators out there, including each other!) If you're breeding them in those numbers, you can't raise all of them as loved-pets, and so letting them do what comes naturally isn't, from my point-of-view, horrific or sickening.

I'd like to add I won't be letting my axolotls eat each other, and will separate if there's any biting/excessive growth difference. That's because they'll be my pets. But I'm prepared to tolerate other people's approaches, even if they may not be the kindest, and I may not agree with them.

Edit: Or to look at it from another angle, how is letting the runts live with their bigger siblings to be eaten if they're unlucky enough to be predated on any different to keeping feeder fish or shrimp in your axolotl tank, or feeding them live worms?

( I'd even argue for the feeding of pellets of frozen bloodworm; the owner isn't instrumental in the killing of the creatures that made gone in to those products, but another human has called the shots and taken the responsibility for the pet-owner. )




Last edited by pondweed; 8th May 2013 at 08:04. Reason: extra thoughts
pondweed is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #9 (permalink)
Prolific Member
 
layna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Age: 26
Posts: 1,268
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: layna has given good advice and informationlayna has given good advice and informationlayna has given good advice and information
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

I understand thats it may not be possible to raise them all, but then i dont see why you wouldnt cull them as eggs.
Im not saying people cant kill their axies, im simply horrified that they do.

I see it the same way as any other animal, i wouldnt feed a grown dog, a puppy, simply because the dog eats meat.



__________________
Im animal mad, if your not, too bad

If you like my advice, please add to my reputation so others know im helpful
layna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #10 (permalink)
Member
 
jasper408's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Nationality:
Posts: 210
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: jasper408 has given consistently good advice and informationjasper408 has given consistently good advice and informationjasper408 has given consistently good advice and informationjasper408 has given consistently good advice and information
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

Quote:
Originally Posted by layna View Post
I understand thats it may not be possible to raise them all, but then i dont see why you wouldnt cull them as eggs.
Im not saying people cant kill their axies, im simply horrified that they do.

I see it the same way as any other animal, i wouldnt feed a grown dog, a puppy, simply because the dog eats meat.
You're not quite understanding. Instead of babying the smaller ones, they just aren't separated if they lag behind in growth. It has nothing to do with age, and there isn't any intentional feeding.



jasper408 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #11 (permalink)
Field Herper
 
Niels D's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Age: 35
Posts: 1,213
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: Niels D is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgNiels D is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgNiels D is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgNiels D is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgNiels D is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgNiels D is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgNiels D is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgNiels D is considered an Authority at Caudata.org
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

I do not seperate slow growing animals from "normal" develloping animals if the eggs hatched at the same time. If the "slow" animals manage to avoid being eaten then they're sure to be raised to an adult. If they get eaten then they've served as a meal. If I would find this disgusting, than nature would disgust me even more. The survival rate of larvae is a lot higher in my care than in the wild.



__________________
P.r.schrenckii/L.laoensis/P.deloustali/P.chinensis/P.guangxiensis/Paramesotriton sp (Roter Warzenmolch)/S.lacertina/Triturus macedonicus/T.dobrogicus macrosoma/T. karelinii/C.e.popei/N.viridescens/P.waltl/C.orientalis
Niels D is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #12 (permalink)
Prolific Member
 
layna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Age: 26
Posts: 1,268
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: layna has given good advice and informationlayna has given good advice and informationlayna has given good advice and information
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

I guess i just see animals as things to be cared for. Therefore my opinion is that this is wrong.
I fully understand what you are saying to me but i still dont agree, i think if there are ways to prevent an animal dying, then it should be done.



__________________
Im animal mad, if your not, too bad

If you like my advice, please add to my reputation so others know im helpful
layna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #13 (permalink)
Prolific Member
 
xxianxx's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 2,477
Gallery Images: 4
Comments: 7
Rep: xxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.org
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

Quote:
Originally Posted by layna View Post
I guess I just see animals as things to be cared for. Therefore my opinion is that this is wrong.
I fully understand what you are saying to me but i still dont agree, i think if there are ways to prevent an animal dying, then it should be done.
Why bother to cull eggs when you can use excess larvae as a food source ? I used about 2,000 axolotls as feeders last year, they went to provide a natural diet for several species of newt/sal who appreciated them. There is no way I can raise all the eggs I get over the course of a year, last year I gave away or trade hundreds of eggs but there is always an excess. Many species would naturally predate on smaller amphibians so I am just replicating part of a natural diet. If you dont like it well I am sorry but there the facts, you can either kill the eggs or use the larvae its as simple as that.



__________________
Axolotls available, wild type, copper, golden albino. P.waltl, Golden mantella, E.tricolor, T.verrucosus, I.a.alpestris, B.variagata, A.andersoni available now. Pm for details.
xxianxx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #14 (permalink)
Prolific Member
 
layna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Age: 26
Posts: 1,268
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: layna has given good advice and informationlayna has given good advice and informationlayna has given good advice and information
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

In which case i would choose to kill the eggs before theyre hatched.



__________________
Im animal mad, if your not, too bad

If you like my advice, please add to my reputation so others know im helpful
layna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #15 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 170
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: racheljritchie is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

I am in the same mind as Layna, I understand nature and what would happen in the wild but i am the person who turns away from the screen when the fox catches the rabbit, i have even been known to run out of my house after a cat that was torturing a wild rabbit and also a mouse (my neighbour who owned the cat thought i was crazy). we had rats in our garden and we put poison down, i found a half dead baby rat on the grass...i was mortified and felt so guilty

Its not always a case of pet or science etc....its just who i am and how i feel



racheljritchie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th May 2013   #16 (permalink)
Site Contributor
 
Azhael's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Age: 32
Posts: 6,645
Gallery Images: 19
Comments: 2
Rep: Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)Azhael has maxed out Caudata.org's Reputation System (we are not worthy!)
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

Donīt get me wrong, i donīt discriminate. I either leave the larvae with the parents and take out any juveniles or advanced larvae that manage to make it, or separate a number of eggs and keep them all together to compete. The only exception are T.dobrogicus which have to be separated after a certain size or theyīll destroy each other, so if you are trying to raise more than one, you simply have no choice.
Iīm all for allowing competition and having a bit of natural selection. This benefits our captive populationīs future. Itīs the raising of every individual that damages and compromises future generations.

Saving a "runt" (not necessarily a slow grower) today may well cause a lot more suffering in the future. Itīs not nice, but itīs real.



__________________
Please become acquainted with the forum rules.

Useful Links: Caudata Culture | Species Accounts | Care Articles | Newt and Salamander FAQs | Axolotl.org | Axolotl FAQs | Forum Functions.


Non Timetis Messor.
Azhael is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th May 2013   #17 (permalink)
Prolific Member
 
xxianxx's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 2,477
Gallery Images: 4
Comments: 7
Rep: xxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.org
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

Quote:
Originally Posted by layna View Post
I thought this was a website of axie loving people, and some of the comments on this post have thoroughly disgusted me [/COLOR][/FONT]
I actually missed this post, I suggest you save your disgust for the people who abuse axolotls with poor water quality, too high a temp , an inappropriate diet or show general negligence in the care of their pets. Rather than people who provide a high standard of care and supply the rest of you with good quality axolotls, if you wish to keep any runts I have I will be more than happy to supply you with several hundred a year on the understanding that you collect them and keep them your self..



__________________
Axolotls available, wild type, copper, golden albino. P.waltl, Golden mantella, E.tricolor, T.verrucosus, I.a.alpestris, B.variagata, A.andersoni available now. Pm for details.
xxianxx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th May 2013   #18 (permalink)
Administrator
 
Mark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 3,241
Gallery Images: 898
Comments: 26
Rep: Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11Mark goes to 11
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

Just because a lava is small doesn't mean it's a runt. Recent studies in larval development of Taricha concluded that variation in embryonic and larval growth were an important feature in coping with seasonal predators. Who's to say that large axolotl larvae are less prone to predation than smaller ones? Big is not always good if you're on the menu.

Obviously it's not viable to raise all larvae from a captive breeding and applying a selection method that represents wild pressures is all but impossible for the keeper. Where amphibians are concerned size is not indicative of fitness. We'd be better off raising fewer and keeping all sizes.



Mark is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th May 2013   #19 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 35
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: MEEX has started on the right path
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

I've been asking myself this very question, first in an 'is it a good idea to keep a runt?' and more recently in a 'why did I bother?' kind of way.

I should have known this thread wouldn't have any easy answers!

I rather foolishly became attached to my little runt, even though I knew it was probably a mistake to keep him and definitely a mistake to name him (Giuseppe).
I have to keep brine shrimp bubbling away for him every day, and that was the one part that put me off in the first place.

The rest are divided into 4 tubs, first by colour and then size. The majority are all in together but I've separated the smallest (not true runts) just to give them a chance. They'll make it or they won't - but I don't have the time or energy to house them individually like I know some do.
Any that get injured will be hospitalized or sent to live in the sea/freezer/bird table water bowl, depending how badly injured they are, but I don't like the idea of axie eating axie, or worse, half-eating and finding a furry floater - which is never nice.



MEEX is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th May 2013   #20 (permalink)
Prolific Member
 
xxianxx's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 2,477
Gallery Images: 4
Comments: 7
Rep: xxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.orgxxianxx is considered an Authority at Caudata.org
Default Re: Ethical question on runts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark View Post
Just because a lava is small doesn't mean it's a runt. Recent studies in larval development of Taricha concluded that variation in embryonic and larval growth were an important feature in coping with seasonal predators. Who's to say that large axolotl larvae are less prone to predation than smaller ones? Big is not always good if you're on the menu.

Obviously it's not viable to raise all larvae from a captive breeding and applying a selection method that represents wild pressures is all but impossible for the keeper. Where amphibians are concerned size is not indicative of fitness. We'd be better off raising fewer and keeping all sizes.
I am probably misusing the term "runt", I havent (up until recently) raised full batches of axolotls due to space, so have had no interest in raising slower growing axoltols. In my tanks with a high stocking density those axolotls who lag behind their siblings in growth just dont make it and I select the smallest for feeders when I need to thin the numbers down. How ever to assume that a faster growth rate would not lead to increased chances of survival in the wild is debatable. Smaller axolotls get predated by bigger axolotls, there is definitely an advantage of being the biggest in a batch, wether there is a disadvantage I dont know. If you wish to compare information on other species look at tiger sals they have a percentage of the population who change physiologically to become cannibal, which in turn promotes a faster growth rate and they predate on smaller members of their species. Bigger is better for those guys and leads to an increased chance of survival, who is to say the same the is not true of axolotls ?



__________________
Axolotls available, wild type, copper, golden albino. P.waltl, Golden mantella, E.tricolor, T.verrucosus, I.a.alpestris, B.variagata, A.andersoni available now. Pm for details.
xxianxx is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

LinkBack
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads

Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Metamorphosed Axolotls-ethical questions oceanblue Laws/Legality and Ethics 29 19th June 2013 21:56
Runts in axie eggs? karipatra Axolotl Eggs, Larvae & Breeding 5 27th January 2013 18:44
Filter question and cycling question.... malcorn Axolotl tank set-ups, filters, substrate 2 1st September 2010 19:31
2 baby axolotl runts stopped eating and died Munchausen Sick Axolotl? 5 7th June 2009 03:25
Filter question and glue question grant Axolotl tank set-ups, filters, substrate 8 25th June 2005 00:24


All times are GMT. The time now is 12:54.