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  • Results 1 to 4 of 4

    Thread: Some general questions about koi

    1. #1
      SimonW is offline Junior Member
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      Jul 2018

      Some general questions about koi

      1. Gene for big size /fat body = Gene for good appitite?

      I found it hard to believe that fish has gene(s) that directly control their size. In human the hormone productions control our growth, which in turn is controlled by genes (directly or indirectly), and there is no gene that controls our height directly. When the growth hormone production ends, we stop growing.

      My guess is that fish never end growing, so older fish is generally bigger, though they may lose appetite therefore they eventually stop growing. I also guess that fish have gene(s) that affects their appetite directly or indirectly. The better and longer lasting appetite, the bigger the fish will be, and fatter/better confirmation its body will be too. Am I right? I cannot imagine how a koi can have nice topedo-shaped confirmation if it has bad appetite and does not eat well.

      2. Do koi have personality?

      I have an ochiba that is almost always lonely, a very white sanke that is so gentle and patient, and a good-looking kohaku that always rushes which I really dislike. It always disturbs other koi when it is feeding time by rushing in to take food and then immediately rushing away, making huge splashes due to its bigger size: It is the second biggest koi in the pond. I also have a tancho sanke, the biggest one in the herd, that is constant hungry, and it always comes to the dining place first when I come close (therefore I raised my previous question). They are all healthy, but behavior is so different.

      By the way, do the judges judge koi´s behavior/manner in koi competitions?

      3. Is it true that koi never know when they are full? Can they keep eating until their stockmach or gut just bursts?

      I have no idea how much I should feed them, as I have green water and the fish cannot see the floating pellets immediately, so I cannot apply the rule "Feed so much they can eat up within 5 minutes". Instead I usually throw some food into the pond and wait until it is almost eaten before I throw more into it. These days I usually feed them 4-5 times, totally like 0,4-0,5 kg (approx 1 pound) each day for 40 koi, 2 of them a little longer than 20", approx. 10 of them 15-20", 25 of them 10-15", and the water temperature is around 21 C (70 F). Am I overfeeding them? They are still looking for more food after each feeding but I don´t dare to give them more.

      4. I am still confused about how often koi jump when the water is fine and they are healthy. I can still hear splashes from my pond time to time, as I am often sitting in a room facing the pond, with the window open. Every splash makes me nervous. Or maybe all splashing is not jumping? Or do they jump/slash oftener when the water is not clear so they more easily get surprised, like bumping into each other? My observation is that fish don´t mind so much colliding with each other.

    2. #2
      Rob Forbis is offline Senior Member
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      Nov 2008
      Orlando, FL
      Welcome Simon,
      1. Not counting environment, genetics is the major factor in koi size. The Food and water quality set the limitations upon the full realization of genetic potential. Carp and salmon genetically engineered to enhance growth hormone grow faster but ultimately not bigger.
      2. Koi don’t have personality, you are anthropomorphizing. Koi are fish not people.
      3. Koi know when they are full and stop eating. Koi can be fed with timed or demand feeders. Feed based upon your objectives (3% + rapid, 1% slow growth) and what your filtration can process.
      4. Koi jump sometimes.

    3. #3
      graybird's Avatar
      graybird is offline Supporting Member ~ WWKC BOD ~
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      Apr 2008
      San Rafael, CA
      Simon, I am going to disagree with Rob on a few points.

      1. Genetics ultimately limit the koi's size, but proper care and feeding permit you to maximize the koi's genetic potential.

      2. Koi do have personality traits, if not "personalities" -- their behavior toward people and one another can vary greatly among individual koi.

      3. I do agree that you should feed to your goals and the limitations of your filtration; many of us use auto feeders to deliver 6-12 small feeds per day. You would want to "work up to" that number slowly to allow your filter to catch up, if you choose that route. Koi will stop eating eventually given the ability to self-feed, but that level of intake can spoil their conformation.

      4. In my experience, healthy fish in a satisfactory environment do not jump. Exceptions: when new to a pond, or when one is sliding over another at feeding time. In my pond, jumping is always connected to either a water quality issue or a parasite. Do you see any veining in the shiroji of any koi?

    4. #4
      SimonW is offline Junior Member
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      Jul 2018
      I regret that I made the pond so large that I have big difficulty catching the koi. They are really smart: Whenever I put the net in the water they all disappeared into the depth.

      I managed to catch one kohaku 2-3 days ago and I could not see any veining or red streakings on its body or fins except on the tail. I guess that it is caused by stress when it got caught (it fought really hard against my hands and tried several times to jump out of the bowl), as Rich told me that koi can have red streakings directly when they are too stressed.

      Judged from 1 meter distance I cannot see any veining in shiroji of any other koi, not on that kohaku´s tail either after it had been released.

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