FAQs About Nishikigoi (Koi Fish)


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Koi Appreciation

Basically, they refer to the same thing. We use different terms depending on the varieties. We use net pattern for Asagi and Goshiki. We use Fukurin for Ogon, Kohaku, Taisho Sanshoku and Showa Sanshoku.

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Ogon can grow to that size in 8 years or much sooner. However, if the pond is shallow and small, and if it is not fed enough, it can only grow to fit its environment. Ogon has a gene for large growth, to any Ogon can grow big.

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In every Showa Sanshoku variety, Motoguro is a condition of the beauty. If there is no Motoguro, then both pectoral fins need to be white or need to shine beautifully in platinum.

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Yes, the redder the better.

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Koi can be mature enough to breed in three years. In three years Koi have developed mature beauty. The best timing is when they are three years old.

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Motoguro means the base of the pectoral fins is black. Motoguro occurs in varieties like Showa Sanshoku, Shiro Utsuri, Hajiro and Kumontyu.

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Red on the base of the pectoral fins is called Motoaka. Asagi, Shusui and Aka Hajiro have Motoaka.

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Higoi indicates a simple red koi. Benigoi is a koi whose red is more enhanced.

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Hajiro is a black koi whose only white is the tips of the pectoral fins. A red koi with white on the tip of the fins is called Aka Hajiro.

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Hi means “red”

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To become the grand champion, the koi must be over 40 inches long, have a good quality and its pattern must be excellent.

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This is not something you can easily define, but one thing is balance. Balance is very important. To study this further, we strongly recommend reading Kokugyo I.

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There are three things you should keep in mind when raising Koi. First, choose the breeder (lineage) carefully. Study about Nishikigoi (xKishikigoia) and obtain the skill to find an excellent koi. And finally, learn how to raise koi to become at least 40 inches long.

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Kohaku consists of two colors, red and white. This white is called Shiroji. In order for the red to appear beautiful, the white must be as pure as possible.

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First, the fish must be healthy. When the fish is sick, its Shiroji can become dull or yellow. Water quality must be good and the Koi must be fed good food.

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Loran is a nickname given to a Grand Champion at the All Japan Nishikigoi Show.

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Fukurin is the way the flesh between the koi scales form a net pattern. When Koi are small, the space between each scale is too narrow to form this pattern. As koi grow, the space between the scales becomes wider and creates the Fukurin.

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15 years ago, the Hi was considered more important, and redder was better. Recently, white has been more valued. Now, red and white are now judged to be of equal importance.

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If its pattern is better than a certain standard, Ginrin is more important. Especially at koi shows, a good pattern with poor Ginrin will not win top prizes.

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Sumi is the term for black in Koi. Sumi quality refers to its content. The highest quality Sumi is the deepest, true black.

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The requirements for Nishikigoi beauty are body conformation, quality and pattern. Body conformation is most important. A beautiful pattern will no be valued if one of the eyes or half of the tail fin is missing. The most important criterial is that koi should have a beautiful body.

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Showa Sanshoku has more Sumi than the Taisho Sanshoku. Showa Sanshoku has sumi on the head and has Motoguro. The Taisho Sanshoku does not have motoguro or sumi on the head.

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When Taisho Sanshoku are born, there is no sumi on the body. As the fish grows, the sumi appears. When Showa Sanshoku are born, the entire body is black. As it grows, the black disappears and the white and red appear.

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The pigment that forms Sumi is Meranin. This pigment is the same in both varieties, so the quality is the same. Because the Sumi appears differently in patches on Showa Sanshoku and spots on Taisho Sanshoku, its quality looks different to our eyes.

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Because the Japanese flag resembles a Tancho Kohaku, they are very popular and highly valued.

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No. At this point, Tancho is no at stabilized variety. To get Tancho Kohaku, we breed many Kohaku and select those that only have pattern on their heads.

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There are three, shiroji, sumi quality and sumi pattern.

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The size and position of sumi, the number of sumi spots and pure shiroji.

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On Asagi, Hi is traditionally found on the belly, cheeks and the pectoral, dorsal and tail fins. Hi on the pectoral and tail fins follows the standard, but it is not an absolute necessity. Even without the Hi on the fins, the beautiful net pattern on its body is enough to appreciate its beauty. We should not be rigid in desiring Hi on the fins.

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Yes, they are very important. It is the standard for every variety. The shape of the fins are also important. The fins should be symmetrical. Large, rounded pectoral fins add to the beauty of every variety.

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From around 4 to 5 years old, or once they have reached the size of about 24 inches.

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The Hi of Shusui does not change like the sumi of Kumonryu. Although the hi will change a bit from the time is was a Tosai, it will become stable when it is more than 2 years old.

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The skin of Shusui is a strong blue when it is young. It gets weaker as it grows. In principle, the thicker the blue, the better. The blue will get weaker as it grows. A mature koi with high quality blue ground is more desirable. While most blue is getting weaker, the Hi is getting stronger.

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Hi on the head is not an absolute requirement, but the koi looks more beautiful with it.

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Scalation on its back is very important because we look at koi from above. Because scalation on the belly is hard to see, it does not really affect its value.

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It depends on it’s lineage? Some bloodlines have Ai when they are Tosai. Others have Ai when they grow 20-24 inches.

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The level of perfection of a variety means the perfection of the characteristics that the variety has. For example, the prime characteristic of Tancho Kohaku is the true round Hi spot on the head. Platinum has to shine strongly in platinum. In Aigoromo, the beautiful appearance of the Hi plates is critical. It is important to study the character of each variety.

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In the Koi world, there is a social status. Gosanke is the word that that expresses this status. Gosanke refers to the three varieties that represent Nishikigoi. They are the Kohaku, Taisho Sanshoku and Showa Sanshoku. These are known as the Big 3 and have the highest status.

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Crossing Kohaku with Asagi created Goshiki. There have been many crossings and improvements, and there are not necessarily five colors right now.

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In they Kujyaku variety, there is a red bloodline and a Yamabuki bloodline. The redder color is preferred for the red bloodline, but all Kujyaku do not necessarily have to be red. Both bloodlines are judged equally at shows.

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The only difference is whether or not they have scales.

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