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The broadtail moor is, in effect, a jet black veiltail with spherical protruding
eyes. Far Eastern imports generally have good eyes and colouration but a somewhat
'rectangular' body outline and a thin-lobed, deeply-forked tail. Breeding for
the broad tail seems to result in smaller eyes and a bronze or silver belly,
and it is a challenge to prevent the deviation of these characters from the
standard whilst improving the tail.
This fish is more common in the Northern societies than in BAS.
In the Far east, the moor is called the black dragon eye or the black peony.
The moor standard is as follows:
- Depth of body to be greater than 2/3rds of body length
- Eyes to be projecting from surface of head
- Dorsal fin to be single, all other fins to be paired, caudal fin to be divided
- Minimum length of caudal fin to be 3/4 of body length
- Trailing edge of caudal fin to have no apparent fork or pointed lobes
- Extremities of other fins to have a rounded appearance
- Minimum length of body to be 5.5 cm (2¼ inches)
The fish should be bright and alert, with a short body with a smooth outline.
The eyes should be prominent with good development and well matched; these eyes
are not the same type as on the globe-eye, they should be spherical and not
truncated cones. The dorsal fin should be carried high and erect, and the caudal
fin should be well divided.
The colour should be deep black only without a trace of brown or silver.
Ideal profiles are illustrated below:
These fish have a good overall matt black colour; the deep, round body has yet
to develop, but the heavy, drooping veil tail is already apparent and will grow
larger with age. The fish on the left has small patches of uncoloured finnage; ideally the whole fish should be matt black. Shown at BAS 2007 (left), BAS 2009 (right) and BAS 2003 (top).
Fine, adult fish with solid black colouration but slightly small eyes. Shown at BAS 2006 (the fish on the left is slightly out of focus - as many have found, it seems to be difficult to get a digital camera to focus on a matt black fish, especially against a dark background).
Very good adult fish overall, but with a few patches of uncoloured finnage, somewhat triangular pelvic fins and slightly small eye development. Shown at BAS 2007.
It is difficult to breed moors to the standard and to achieve good colour, shape, finnage and eye development all in one fish. Common deviations from the standard include bronzing on the belly and short,
rounded contours in the paired fins, in that the standard calls for long,
pointed fins on the underside (as in the veiltail) and an overall dark matt
black colour. Breeders tend to find that as they develop the veiltail body shape and finnage they lose the large eye size so common in oriental globe eyes.
Occasionally, individuals are seen with a red trailing edge to the caudal fin (i.e. the tail); this is very fetching, but such fish are downpointed at shows. However, it is from such 'sports' that new strains arise and can gain popularity (such as the black and white panda).
© Bristol Aquarists' Society