Category: Koi Variety Guide

Koi or more specifically nishikigoi , literally “brocaded carp”), are colored varieties of Common carp (Cyprinus carpio) that are kept for decorative purposes in outdoor koi ponds or water gardens.

Koi is an informal group of the colored variants of the Cyprinus carpio. Several varieties are recognized by the Japanese. Koi varieties are distinguished by coloration, patterning, and scalation. Some of the major colors are white, black, red, orange, yellow, blue, and cream. The most popular category of koi is the Gosanke, which is made up of the KohakuTaisho Sanshoku, and Showa Sanshoku varieties.

History

Carp are a large group of fish originally found in Central Europe and Asia. Various carp species were originally domesticated in East Asia, where they were used as food fish. Carp are coldwater fish, and their ability to survive and adapt to many climates and water conditions allowed the domesticated species to be propagated to many new locations, including Japan. Natural color mutations of these carp would have occurred across all populations. Carp were first bred for color mutations in China more than a thousand years ago, where selective breeding of the Prussian carp (Carassius gibelio) led to the development of the goldfish.

The Amur carp (Cyprinus rubrofuscus), a member of the Cyprinid family species complex native to East Asia, was aquacultured as a food fish at least as long ago as the fifth century BC in China, and Jin Dynasty (fourth century AD) texts mentioned carp with various colors.The Amur carp was previously recognized as a sub-species of the common carp (as C. c. haematopterus), but recent authorities treat it as a separate species under the name C. rubrofuscus.

Koi carp were first bred for color in Japan in the 1820s, initially in the town of Ojiya in the Niigata Prefecture on the northeastern coast of Honshu island. The outside world was unaware of the development of color variations in Japanese koi until 1914, when the Niigata koi were exhibited at an annual exposition in Tokyo. From that time, interest in koi spread throughout Japan. From this original handful of koi, all other Nishikigoi varieties were bred, with the exception of the Ogon variety (single-colored, metallic koi) which was developed relatively recently. The hobby of keeping koi eventually spread worldwide. Koi are now sold in many pet aquarium shops, with higher-quality fish available from specialist dealers. The collection of koi throughout the years has become quite the social hobby for many who have ponds. It is also common for hobbyists who are passionate about their koi to join a club specifically for their koi and ponds. Members tend to share their knowledge of the fish with others and even help each other out when they are in need of help with their koi.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Asagi Koi

Asagi are koi that display a blue net-like pattern on the back, complemented by red or orange on the belly, gill plates, fins and body. The red or orange pattern will develop up from...

Kikusui Koi

Although technically they are the Doitsu version of Hariwake, scaleless white koi with patterns of orange or yellow are commonly referred to as Kikusui. The bright, metallic colors of Hariwake are also present in...

Goromo Koi

Goromo are, in essence, a Kohaku with blue or black edging added to each red scale. There are three sub types of Goromo: Budo Goromo have a blue edging outside of the scales that...

Kikokuryu Koi

Kikokuryu is in essence a Kumonryu that is metallic. This fish poses many challenges to those who dare breed them. You can boost sales with this fish because no two will be alike and...