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Thread: Forehead color loss

  1. #1
    Fry
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    Aug 2009
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    Forehead color loss

    My koi has completely lost a large red spot on it's forehead, the area now appears to be a pinkish skin. Explanation?

  2. #2
    Daihonmei PapaBear's Avatar
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    We need before and after pictures along with some details about your water parameters. Koi losing color is easy. Genetics will do it every time, but so will age and/or water issues. How old is the Koi, what variety, where did you purchase it, who is the breeder, etc...?

  3. #3
    Fry
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    forehead - color loss

    Quote Originally Posted by PapaBear View Post
    We need before and after pictures along with some details about your water parameters. Koi losing color is easy. Genetics will do it every time, but so will age and/or water issues. How old is the Koi, what variety, where did you purchase it, who is the breeder, etc...?
    The fish is pretty large, maybe 18 inches, I've had it for many years. It has shiny white scales and red spots. When I first got it, it had a nice round red spot right on top of it's forehead, hence it's name "Spot". Over a couple of years the spot got smaller and has now disappeared completely and the area looks like a soft pinkish skin. I read that koi do not in fact have scales on their forehead and I have seen other fish that look like skin from the front of the head, on top going back. I just want to know if this happens to certain fish, as I thought the color would get more defined over the years, not less.

  4. #4
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    Sometime in the 1980s, I paid the 'outrageous' price of $4.99 for a 3-inch Tancho Sanke found at an aquarium shop. The red circle on the head disappeared within a week. The Shiro Bekko that remained stayed around for about 10 years until my ignorance killed her. I've not trusted maruten (red head spots) markings on koi under 18-inches since then. You probably did nothing wrong. It was likely impermanent 'baby Hi'.

  5. #5
    Daihonmei PapaBear's Avatar
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    I'm pretty sure Mike just nailed it. Beni on unprotected skin is often the first to go, and many a beautiful young Koi loses its beauty long before full maturity. Where you buy your Koi makes a big difference as does their age at the time of purchase. High quality Koi are more expensive and only carried at more specialized dealers. The older the Koi at the time a breeder offers it for sale the higher its quality to begin with. The younger they are offered, the lower the expectations of the breeder for its future.
    If you purchased it at a typical pet store or watergarden store and it grew to 18" before losing its beni you've actually done pretty well. Pat yourself on the back
    Larry Iles
    Oklahoma

  6. #6
    Oyagoi kntry's Avatar
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    Tancho spots can go really fast. Genetics, stress, poor water quality.

    From what you described, it was probably genetics.

  7. #7
    Tosai
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    I have had the same thing happen to a sanke I've had for two years. It had a lovely big red spot on it's head, which over the course of the last 7 months has just faded away to nothing more than pinkish skin. In fact the fish has turned largely whitish all over. Nothing has happened like this to my other herd, and they remain colorful. I definitely chalked it up to genetics--that it was just how the fish was going to be meant to be.

    Sigh. Too bad for the fish, because it's largely pretty unattractive now...so he's on the hist list to ultimately be replaced once I find a fish that's suitable during a visit to my local fall harvest in September.

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