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Thread: the world's smallest koi?

  1. #11
    Honmei Brutuscz's Avatar
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    I once had 3, 6-8inch koi breed in a holding tank. I had them listed on ebay..and in a separated mesh cage in a larger tank. The three bred and eggs were all over the mesh cage. They actually hatched, but the fry died after a month. I was not prepared to raise fry in that tank...that was for sure. I did not know the age of these three koi, but I thought for sure they were too small to breed.

  2. #12
    Daihonmei
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    I brought this thread up for three reasons-

    1) to have some fun !

    2) to suggest that koi, as primitive animals, have great variation. And carp in general have HUGE variable potential

    3) I'm also preparing the tests for the new ZNA applicant and a presentation for the ZNA judges ( the ' Rangers' of koi judging! LOls) about the challenge of judging in US shows.

    I have seen adult koi competing with normal aged koi in the size two division. You can easily tell by the shape of the fish and the age development of the scales and skin. I've seen 'eggy' ones as well. Most come out of small water gardens and are by definition exposed to lots of nitrates all their lives ( the plants are 'supposed to' not allow this but of course there are never enough plants to counter the potential production of an overstocked, unfiltered water garden).

    What does fascinate me ( see purpose for thread #1) is the perfectly patterned, well finished lustrous male fish kept at 6 inches all it's adult like. In a cruel way, it is a work of art ( much like the deformed goldfish- cruel inbreeding for beautiful and fascinating purposes). JR

  3. #13
    Oyagoi dizzyfish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brutuscz View Post
    Brady, A new line of high quality bonsai koi for small ponds!! A radical new idea??
    Nothing new here. Blackwater Creek has been producing them for several years, just for small ponds. I remember they had them at the Central Florida show 3 years or so..... ago. I had about a 6" koi spawn at the Louisville show a few years ago in a selling tank. Luckily it was a small spawn and not too polluting. It's pretty easy to keep koi to 2" at 1-year old, but many start to deform.
    Mitch

  4. #14
    Daihonmei
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    So Mitch , is that done by genetics/ nature ( breeding tiny adults) or by nurture ( stunting them with low food and small nitrAte laden quarters)? JR

  5. #15
    Jumbo
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    Carp are definitely amazingly pliable, or moldable into set shapes, sizes, and colors. Growth and size are so easily manipulated. It's interesting that we still hear comments like "So and so breeder produces nice looking fish,... but they don't grow very large." If we look at the breeder's space limitations,... stocking habits,... water exchange habits,... feeding habits,... and harvesting and storage habits we can see the keys. The same with hobbyists and the growth rates they achieve.

    Part genetics yes,... but also a large part formula. A Magoi baby can easily be kept small too.

    Best Wishes,
    Brady Brandwood


  6. #16
    Daihonmei PapaBear's Avatar
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    One of the Cali breeders was working on a "Miniature Koi" breeding program a few years ago too. It's been a long time so I don't remember who, but he was a few years into selectively breeding "mini-me" Koi with "normal" frame shapes and the best skin he could cull for. His goal was a safer alternative for Aquaria or garden ponds.

  7. #17
    Oyagoi dizzyfish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JasPR View Post
    So Mitch , is that done by genetics/ nature ( breeding tiny adults) or by nurture ( stunting them with low food and small nitrAte laden quarters)? JR
    Hi Jr,
    I don't recall the method BWC uses, but I have experienced it plenty of times in backyard breeding. Many fry get off to a poor start from a lack of available food. I'm sure it is compounded by poor water quality as they grow, albeit slowly at best. The koi that grow fastest begin to eat the smallest ones. I don't believe genetics has much to do with it, but the ones who start growing first have a considerable advantage. I wonder if it makes sense to intentionally keep breeder males on the small side to protect the females? Doesn't seem like this would limit the growth potential of the offspring.
    Mitch

  8. #18
    Sansai redman's Avatar
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    I have read that most Tobi are rarely keepers due to lack of color/pattern and that they will eat their siblings. Would a breeder consider growing out some to use them for future breeding to increase the size of the koi in their lines?

  9. #19
    Tategoi
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    I breed 3"-5" koi last year. The males seems like they need to be in the 4"-5" for them to be able to breed. However, I did breed 3" females. They don't have as many eggs as 4"-5" females. And small loaded females look like their back is broken. And these are the ages of 2-3 years old.

    Not proud of breeding them but was very happy that I got to learn from them so I don't make the same mistake with big koi.

  10. #20
    Daihonmei
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    The subject of 'tobi' is an interesting one. As Brady as shown us in real live spawns, the variation can be huge in a group of siblings. And environment can be identical yet the genetic results vary. Some is down to sex and aggressiveness of the individual but there does exist in nature this concept of a Tobi. So all the other possibilities and explanations aside, a tobi is a thing of nature. It is an individual that experiences an unusual growth spurt as a fry. And several possible myths have arisen from the hobby literature regarding tobi's. WILD tobi ( that is, aspawn born in the wild with limited food resources) show a high degree of canniblism. They eat their brothers and sisters! This is not normal behavior. All fry are indeed predators and find food by eye sight rather than by smell ( not well developed sensory ability yet). Tobis in the wild common carp are also strong survivors due the high protein source they have taken in!
    In koi, and I'm not honestly sure if this is fact or myth, it is said that Tobi are ugly - suggesting that they are throwbacks to wild genes. But I have been told by Japanese breeders that they look for Tobies and don't cull them??? Now it 'could be' both as the genetic roulette wheel could produce a tobi with a good nishikigoi phenotype ( look) as the statistics say that is possible.
    But I have seen pictures like the one Brady posted but with huge brownish black siblings towering over white speckled and red speckled colored siblings. So we need to be careful what assumptions we make about the idea of Tobies. At the end of the day, I think the concept of a tobi is very real as a scientific observation. But with line bred and inbred koi strains, I don't think tobies are a common phenomena. At least not as common as plain old genetic variation within a group of line bred and inbred individuals like gosanke.
    Brady do you believe there is much cannibalism amongst your gosanke stock? More importantly, they say when a breeder or reseacher removes the tobies in a wild setting, a new group of tobies arises from the population to take their place! That would imply that this is all a social dynamic and involves domination for space and food at the expense of the weaker siblings. JR

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