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    Thread: Brett, Brady, LETS TALK BENI (red color for you noobz)

    1. #1
      Blammo's Avatar
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      Brett, Brady, LETS TALK BENI (red color for you noobz)

      As a welcome to Brett... and make him do something D
      Lets talk beni, in direct relation to bloodlines.
      Brett.
      You begin with Dainichi, please and explain your breeds particular " flavor' of beni, which differs a bit from Brady's.


      Pictures ( LOTS OF THEM) Greatly appreciated.

      This'll be a good one folks !
      Your fixin to find out where the shades and colors of red came from !
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    2. #2
      BickalDIYPond Guest - Time to Register
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      Heres some beni to talk about from Japan... Beni from Purple I think they call it .... Whats up with it ? Sorry, this picture was too small. I will try to find a better one when I get home. These koi had very purpleish beni on their heads. It was the first like that I had seen in Japan.

      edited to add better picture...
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      Rod L. is offline Senior Member
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      Isn't this guys vats (3 of them I think) right along the roadside? If so, we stopped there and I think Joe White bought one or two very nice Koi from him. His house actually sits a ways down the road (not all that far) from the vats.

      Rod L.

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      Clay is offline Senior Member
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      Purple or blue Beni

      I think Savannah was speaking of breading kohaku back with asagi which deepens the red. Maybe it wasn't savannah, but I just read that in the last couple of days somewhere.

    5. #5
      Bill OTMS's Avatar
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      Leave it to the Japanese to figure out how to put rocks on the bottom of a pond artistically and properly. Man, this picture is sweet.
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    6. #6
      Brady Brandwood's Avatar
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      Beni,...

      Such a broad, broad topic Blammoooozzzzzz! An important thing to keep in mind with beni is that it comes in many types, and with varying characteristics,... beni is "pliable" it can be changed with diet, with environment, with light,... for the good, or for the bad,... and what we see in front of us at a moment in time is not necessarily it's true value,... often beni can look thin, look weak when it is young, or when the conditions are not ideal, but if genetics are good it can be improved,... it can be matured and thickened with time,... it can be "finished" with diet, with hormonal influences,... so much to try and grasp with just one color.

      Bloodlines, the environment the Koi is raised in, diet, light, age contribute to the different tints of red we see in beni or hi, and to begin to get a grasp we have to dig in and understand all the things that affect beni. When we understand bloodlines, and the effects of environment, and the effects of diet, and the "looks" at certain ages, and under influences such as hormonal influences,... then we really begin to understand what we are looking at,... regardless of a Koi's breeder. A Koi's size, and it's age at that size will tell us so much about what we are looking at, where the beni is in development, if it is coming in quality, or going in quality. And when we've looked and looked and looked long enough we can tell a Koi's age by the look of the beni, regardless of the Koi's size. A tough subject Bllammooozzzzz.

      Here is a pic of 2 Nisai Kohakus, both females, both raised in the same environment - the top one is of Yagozen type lineage, and the bottm one is of classic Sensuke type lineage. We can clearly see the differing characteristics of hi. Both orange based, but with different tints of red.

      Best Wishes,
      Brady

    7. #7
      Clay is offline Senior Member
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      Brady- I'll bite

      I'm 45 and where glasses. But I just don't see the color difference. If I look at the top fishes tail in the photo and the bottom fishes head (both about the same depth in the water) I CAN'T see a difference. My eye is not as educated as yours. Can please place in words what you see that I am definately missing. Thanks for the baby steps. Clay

    8. #8
      Pacificcoastkoi is offline Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by Brady Brandwood
      Here is a pic of 2 Nisai Kohakus, both females, both raised in the same environment - the top one is of Yagozen type lineage, and the bottm one is of classic Sensuke type lineage. We can clearly see the differing characteristics of hi. Both orange based, but with different tints of red.

      Best Wishes,
      Brady
      Brady ,this is a great comparison,do you have any pics, of these two as fingerlings or 1 year olds?

    9. #9
      Brady Brandwood's Avatar
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      Hue,...

      Hi Clay,

      Your monitor may be acting a little monochromatic, or have the contrast set low. The top Kohaku has beni the "tint" of a candy apple, and the lower Kohaku has beni the tint of a Clemson Football Helmet - it's not an issue of thickness, but rather of bloodline characteristics - the shade or tint of red, and also how the beni looks on the white background (genetic characteristics). The tint or hue of red is "redder" on the top Kohaku, and it will be this way from tosai on through adulthood. IF both Kohakus were of the same bloodline type the tint of red would be the same, if the age were the same, and the environmental conditions were the same.

      Just one example of how many "what ifs" are involved in evaluating beni.

      Best Wishes,
      Brady

    10. #10
      Brady Brandwood's Avatar
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      As tosai,...

      Hi Pacific, yes, I'm sure I have these two Kohakus as tosai. I'll have to gather them up.

      Best Wishes,
      Brady

    11. #11
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      Of course it's a broad topic, Brady :D... and you're a **** good writer for a TV guy

      Now.
      We have " Clemson: and we have " Candy apple"

      These 2 "flavors" of beni.
      Did the breeders simply keep culling for those colorzzz so over a long period time ALL of their broodstock carried the trait and brought it out in the majority of the offspring ?
      PURA VIDA
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    12. #12
      Brady Brandwood's Avatar
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      Evolution,...

      "Did the breeders simply keep culling for those colorzzz so over a long period time ALL of their broodstock carried the trait and brought it out in the majority of the offspring ? "

      Yes, partly Blammmmmmmoooooooozzzzzzz,... individual breeders cull for different reasons, and are looking for different characteristics. Some cull based on body shappe, some cull based on luster, some based on white, on red, on patterning, and some cull based on what will sell.

      So, I think culling in the early years of Koi certainly helped split the characteristics of Koi color and body shape, but also I think some breeders worked with what was available to them, for whatever reason, money, their location,whatever, and because of this the breeders came up with unique characteristics. Koi breeders aren't genetic scientists, they're more creative artists who have moved forward based on what they have found in previous crosses.

      Today, a lot of what is produced in Koi is specifically done to please the buying public, and to excel at Koi shows,... so as an example the "orange" of old style Sensuke has been replaced with a much more vivid red. It's not lost though, breeding Koi with a heritage in Sensuke will generally bring that "look" back up in some of the offspring.

      I have a few photos of Kohakus born this year that show the old characteristics of Sensuke. Two of the males in my Kohaku stable are of Sensuke heritage, and it's fun to see their Grandparents traits reappear.

      Best Wishes,
      Brady

    13. #13
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      growth of color?

      Hi Brady!

      I have a different interest - the way the beni/hi grows on your fish.

      Just about all of my experience is in Dainichi and Jinbei lines - because that's what Brett has. But there is a radical difference in the way colors develop between your fish and his bloodlines. I know this because you are SO GOOD about posting "then, later, and now" photo series (which I adore, thankyou thankyou, thankyou).

      The fish I am familiar with, at about four inches you get a snapshot of the adult. Especially the males will, for a short time, show you if they are going to have good color. So at that size, you can make some relatively sure decisions about keeping/culling fish.

      Your fish seem to develop more slowly. Some of the photos you have posted show the scales with the darker center - from the four inch to ten inch size.

      Can you say something, educate me, on the growth rate of color in various bloodlines? Someday I'm gonna have to come visit...

      Thanks in advance.

    14. #14
      Fishbreeder is offline Resident fisheries biologist
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      I was tard last night, and had to work on a big lake population survey report. Can't spend all my time on koi or I will go broke. LIke a few other koinuts I know, I work for fish. Means I do the other "paying jobs" so's I can spend the money I make there on my koi farm. Works for me, doesn;t work so good for my wife.

      I done got big time here of late. Tryin' out my new "high speed connection" and love it. Out here in the sticks the only fast hookup was by satellite. Giant antenna and all. My wife says, "No big antennas on the front of the house or anywhere it can be seen from the front." I says, "Ever' house in Liverpool gots an antenna on the front." She says, "I rest my case." She won't let me keep my boat in the front yard either. Nor no broken down vans. Makes me feel differnt from all my neighbors. Go figure.

      Hard to add much of anything to the fine points Brady's made. An' I like his pichers. I can see the dif in the two fish very well.

      It is a very complex and subtle subject to be sure. When I was taught about hi quality, a few main points were advanced to me. Hi should have a glossy finish, not a flat finish. A lot of those "blood red" (with a lot of purple) kohaku have poor tsuya (gloss). The finish is flat and dull even if the color is strong and red. Unfortunately I can sell the blood red poor quality specimens for as much or more as the better ones with good gloss and more of an orange-red tint.

      I try to select for the hi with glossy finish and persimmon red tint. This type hi seems to finish off with good tsuya as the fish matures. However, it can appear off-color and weak in young fish. A few things tips me off as to how the fish will turn out.

      In a young koi (say nissai) the hi on the head will many times be darker and richer than that on the body. The appearance might be of two hi types or even colors and can be unsettling. This in conjunction with "hoshi" (stars) in the center of each scale within the hi on the body indicates to me the possibility of a strong finish for that fish. As the fish matures the hoshi grwo until they fill each scale full with strong color. Eventually the colors, tints, intensity, etc, become the same on the body as on the head and the fish starts looking pretty good.

      Nealry all my brood kohaku are either Dainichi or from Dainichi blood. A characterisitic that I really, really like in Dainichi kohaku is the powerful effect of the kiwa on the trailing edge of the pattern (maruzome) which follows the contours of the scales. Sometimes giving a "sawtooth" appearance along the trailing edge of the hi. I value this second only to hi quality.

      One of my problems is that I cannot spend all my time and resources trying to perfect only a couple of breeds. To stay solvent I have to produce a myriad of "off-breeds" (non-gosanke) so I'll have a "nice mix" of low grade koi to sell to water garden stores and fish stores across the country. That folks pays the bills. Selling fish to collectors at shows, in Hollywood, in Houston, etc. is fun and nice, but there ain;t enough of yall out there to keep the farm's bills paid.

      I figured out what I need is a patron. Somebody with enough money that even I couldn't put a dent in it with a koi farm (far from a dent, this farm has made a wreck out of my finances). Somebody with enough interest to let me "have my head" and go wild with what I want to do instead of staying conservative with what I must do.

      Lets see, that would most likely only be the Texas Lottery. I'll keep tryin'.

      Brett

    15. #15
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      I'm working on the Fl lotto so we'll play this by ear, chicken trainer.:D

      Now.
      I've gotten high quality fish from you of different sizes and ages over the time.
      I find that your flavor of beni reddens up a tad.. not allot,but certainly noticeable, in my facility.
      I feed the same as you do.Well... Some Mazuri regular as well, and I supplement greenery, citrus and a bit of sea life on a weekly basis.

      In our talks I know we have about the same PH but we never talked hardness, or TA, to my recollection.
      I wonder how much hardness and/or light has an effect on beni ?
      What are your thoughts on hardness and shimi ? Your ginz have not shimmied but my Marudo ginz have ( a couple)
      I still think shimi is mostly genetic.
      My facility is 63% shade cloth. My hardness is pushing 280- 300 (last time I checked)

      Thanks, Brett
      .Doug
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    16. #16
      Brady Brandwood's Avatar
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      Quick or slow,...

      Hi Savannah,

      Yes, definitely, the classic lines do "tend" to finish or mature at different rates, and in differing ways, such as beni that expands or creeps outward as the Koi grows v/s beni that seems to remain the same in proportion, or that shrinks. Also, specific parent sets will influence how the offspring develop, quickly, or slowly, and some breeders have parent sets for "foreign markets", that produce offspring that color up quickly,... and then their "good" parent sets that produce offspring that develop more slowly,... and there are sets in between. I personally prefer the slow developing Koi,... I think the journey should be long and enjoyable, and I see the most value in a Koi that becomes beautiful very slowly, then holds its beauty for years and years. A little like taking a shot of Tequila for a quick buzz, versus having a glass (or bottle) of good wine and enjoying it.

      Also for Pacific,...

      Here are 3 tosai all born in '04 - all raised in the same environment with the same care - BUT all 3 showing very different traits.

      The left Kohaku shows a good cross of Yagozen and Tomoin/Dainichi,... the center Kohaku shows more pure classic Morita Sensuke characteristics,... and the right Kohaku shows pure Yagozen characteristics. Beyond the beni, look at the body shapes, shapes of the faces, and characteristics of the white.

      Best Wishes,
      Brady Brandwood

    17. #17
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      Brett mentioned the "hoshi" (stars) in the center of the scale. Is there enough knowledge to make a short listing of type of center mass on scales or between scales to make an educated guess as to the lineage of a koi? The start is one, there also see to be darker red centers that are not star shaped, there are also dark red scalloped edges of scales (not good). Can one of you elaborate please? Preferably with some nice macro pictures. :D
      Thanks in advance.
      F'ubba

    18. #18
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      Sorry Doug, I got here late, didn’t want to be a’ thread hog’ so I laid back to see what new thing I might learn. Brady and Sav have done an excellent job and my practical knowledge is certainly way below theirs so I can’t add much to the conversation at the same level that they have.

      But I will add a little perspective. When you go to Japan the first thing you realize about those koi producing areas is how ‘ local’ the koi breeding business really is. At one time there were were over 4000 breeders- most very small and concentrated geographically. Now there are maybe 1000 in all of Japan- and all over Japan.

      It is a lot of fun for koi kichi like Brady and myself to pour over the old lines and get our eyes conditioned to the looks and ‘give away ‘ characteristics of pools of genetics showing up in one breeder’s current production. And there is some science and skill to doing this. But on another level, we all need to understand that VERY few breeders have original lines anymore. Let me try and explain what I mean by that:

      Lets say that Brady, Sav and myself agree to fly to Ojiya village, Niigata Japan from any city airport in the tristate area . We also agree to have stickers of any transfers or local stops we make stamped on our luggage. Two days later we all meet up at Dainichi’s secret sansai fish house. So Brady works his way up from that snake infested swamp he calls home and departs from JFK airport with a stop in San Francisco and then onto Narita airport and then two trains ( a local and a bullet) to Nagaoka and then a car rental to Ojiyashi.
      Sav takes a direct flight from Newark/Liberty Airport over Alaska and into Narita airport and uses her irresistible charm to have one of Dainichi boys pick her up and drive here directly to the secret fish house.
      I, being the moron and cheap skate that I am, try to save and I fly from Newark to L.A. and L.A. to Korea on Korean air and then from Seoul to the old Tokyo airport , then onto the Tokyo train station by bus, then onto the shinkansen and then beg Peter Waddington for a ride up into the mountains. We all get there.

      BUT our luggage( genes) has all sorts of different stickers ( past crosses) on it! Some looks very much the same and we all got to the same destination ( kohaku). However when we talk that night at dinner, each of us has had a completely different traveling experience with many different stops.

      ** for extra credit- who got there first ( how many hours) and who spent the least amount of $$$ to get there!


      OK if you are still with me after that weird story, all kohaku look alike and all are related at some branch in the evolutionary refinement of the variety. But they are really VERY different journeys and therefore, knowing exactly what lines crossed is not possible. Only those breeders with a pure line can even begin to claim lineage purity. Then again, they are doing constant outcrossings. In the end, each individual pays tribute to its ancestors by carrying a certain unmistakable trait that says ‘ Ahha! Dainichi” or “ yep, no doubt, matsunosuki in the wood pile!”
      But we must not think that in 2004 there is a single fish that is pure tomoin or yagozen. Each line has contributed to kohaku but none are created in a vacuum. So Dainichi is now likely to be present in all kohaku bred in Yamakoshi. And most high class sanke will have Matsunosuke or Dainichi blood and therefore some identifiable traits in them.

      There is a kohaku that has done well in koi shows on the east coast in the last few years. This koi is unique to me and I enjoy judging her against the competition because she has a trait that is no longer seen in modern koi- old style Niigata ginrin. This ginrin comes with a thick translucent skin and it is rather subtle. The kiwa is classic. This ginrin lost its popularity when Hiroshima ginrin took over the market with its more ‘ in your face’ garish impression. But the old ginrin is beautiful and linked genetically with the foundation stock carrying excellent skin and very recognizable kiwa. Most modern judges look past this and don’t honor it but rather place this fish high based on uniform color and large bold conformation. I see a glimpse of the past right there before me- a single living example of a line long ago lost. Cool
      JR

    19. #19
      keokoi Guest - Time to Register
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      My man JR is the Old Style Gin Rin Kohaku the reserve champ from last years AFKAPS show???? I gotta know now..... So I can study the fish more....

      Keo

    20. #20
      savannahrobinson's Avatar
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      Went to Brett's, looking for tanchos - someone had asked. Didn't find a good couple for comparison.

      But I did find this.

      In addition to the genetics of the fish, there is also the gender.

      In this photo - the two fish in the middle are both male. The two fish on the outside of the bowl are both femmes. They are all siblings.

      The difference in body shape and color intensity are due to gender. These fish are two summers. The were raised in the same pond, same water quality, fed the same, and have no genetic difference.
      The males are much more "finished".

      Even tho the femmes don't show the hoshi that Brady's bloodlines show - the red will intensify over time. They will end up as red as their siblings.

      Also notice the distinctive scalloping of the color following the scale patter - a distinctive Dainichi trait.
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