The Iridescents

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Sherolyn-Basement Bettas

Turquoise, steel and royal blue are called the three iridescent colors. 

Iridescent colors make up the top layer of the betta and are caused by cells called iridocytes. These cells form a dense color layer which can cover all other colors. Originally, on wild Betta splendens the normal iridescent color is turquoise/green. This normal iridescence (represented by genotype sisi) is limited to ray-like projections into the fins and several iridescent dots along the body of the fish. 

Selective breeding gave rise to a mutated iridescence gene which lead to spread iridescence (represented by genotype SiSi). The Si gene is responsible for the increase in density and distribution of the iridescent color so that it covers the entire body and fins of the betta (with exception of the head). 

The spread iridescent gene (Si) is dominant to the normal (wildtype) iridescent gene (si). 


Turquoise – the best way to describe turquoise is, a color between blue and green: 
(Turquoise HM male)

Steel blue – this is a lighter, greyish kind of blue: 
(Steel blue DT male)

Royal blue – the darkest of the three iridescent colors and sometimes almost looks like purple: 
(Royal blue DT male)

A turquoise betta is represented by: BlBl
A steel blue betta is represented by: blbl
A royal blue betta is represented by: Blbl

Turquoise and steel are not dominant over each other. 
Both colors interact to produce a blending of the two colors into a new color: royal blue. 
This type of inheritance is called intermediary dominance. 

Turquoise x turquoise
100% turquoise (BlBl) 

Steel blue x steel blue
100% steel blue (blbl) 

Royal blue x royal blue
25% turquoise (BlBl) 
50% royal blue (Blbl) 
25% steel blue (blbl) 

Turquoise x steel blue
100% royal blue (Blbl) 

Turquoise x royal blue
50% turquoise (BlBl) 
50% royal blue (Blbl) 

Royal blue x steel blue
50% royal blue (Blbl) 
50% steel blue (blbl) 


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