Koi Fish FAQ's

In the Koi world, there is a social status. Gosanke is the word 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.

Sumi are the black colored markings that sometimes appear on koi, especially Sanke and Showa. It is prized among koi breeders, particularly those that live in Japan. Among the Japanese, sumi is desirable due to its style and the specific location where it appears on the fish.

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

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

Koi usually live around 20 or 30 years. The oldest Koi on record was named Hanako. It purportedly lived to be about 226 years old. It lived in a pond that was in a stable area (read low geologic activity) and was passed down from generation to generation. Hanako died around 1977.

During the summer, when the water temperature is above 15 degrees celsius, feed your Koi fish a high-protein Koi food. During the autumn and spring, when the water temperature is between 11 and 15 degrees celsius, feed them an easy-to-digest wheat germ-based Koi food. When the water is below 11 degrees, stop feeding your Koi.

The size of a pond will not stop a Koi from growing. The size of the pond, along with other factors like health, feeding, water temperature and water quality affect the speed of their growth. A Koi will keep growing until it has reached its genetically predetermined size.

(BEN ee) Describes deep solid red.

(goh SHEE kee) A five-colored koi, on which white, red, black, and light and dark blue are mixed to give a purplish appearance. Scale reticulation on the red and white, or on the white only.

(HEE) General term for red.

(kee) means yellow.

(keen) metallic gold.

The Gin Rin is a specific type of koi that is distinguished by its breathtaking, sparking scales. This characteristic is most apparent in younger fish, and will subside as they age. Nevertheless, this is one of the most prized varieties of koi and is sought after by enthusiasts.