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Thread: Momotaro Auction October 5, 2012

  1. #1
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    Momotaro Auction October 5, 2012

    The first auction of the new season at Momotaro Koi will be on October 5. Photos will be posted in mid-September. What I find interesting is that the nisai that will be auctioned are now being raised in a 500 ton pond. A short video clip at the Momotaro site gives a glimpse of the nisai from which the auction fish will be selected. The clip has been up for a few weeks. That is, they will have been raised indoors for at least two months prior to the auction. (They may have been there longer. I do not know.) This is a significant period in the raising of nisai. I am wondering why Momotaro is doing this. I can speculate that it gives a degree of finishing before the auction compared to coming straight from the mud; or that it is an opportunity to fatten them for increased marketability; or that it helps bring out the sumi on the Sanke and Showa; or that it allows a period of full examination (including by dealers who visit) in making selections for auction rather than individual targeted sales; or......???? Perhaps space issues just made it convenient to bring these fish indoors sooner and there is no other thought behind it?

    If anyone has insight into the thinking, please share.

    So many millions of fry are selected down to so few for individual marketing at Momotaro that I have to think there is a thoughtful reason behind what is being done. But, maybe I assume too much.

  2. #2
    Daihonmei
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
    The first auction of the new season at Momotaro Koi will be on October 5. Photos will be posted in mid-September. What I find interesting is that the nisai that will be auctioned are now being raised in a 500 ton pond. A short video clip at the Momotaro site gives a glimpse of the nisai from which the auction fish will be selected. The clip has been up for a few weeks. That is, they will have been raised indoors for at least two months prior to the auction. (They may have been there longer. I do not know.) This is a significant period in the raising of nisai. I am wondering why Momotaro is doing this. I can speculate that it gives a degree of finishing before the auction compared to coming straight from the mud; or that it is an opportunity to fatten them for increased marketability; or that it helps bring out the sumi on the Sanke and Showa; or that it allows a period of full examination (including by dealers who visit) in making selections for auction rather than individual targeted sales; or......???? Perhaps space issues just made it convenient to bring these fish indoors sooner and there is no other thought behind it?

    If anyone has insight into the thinking, please share.

    So many millions of fry are selected down to so few for individual marketing at Momotaro that I have to think there is a thoughtful reason behind what is being done. But, maybe I assume too much.
    Morning Mike, it IS and interesting trend in ornamental fish rearing but if you think about it, nothing new for production breeders of any ornamental fish in the world. It is down to reducing natures control over the details of rearing fry and fingerlings. the forst obvious one is predation, but the second is a 'hands on' control of the fish in terms of temperature, rain fall, water quality and diet. This is really the stuff of production.
    But Mike you and I also know the differences of outdoor growing and intensive indoor growing-- Guppies, mollies, barbs etc-- the list is almost endless in that the robust size and color intensity of fish grown in the outdoors is always better than those raised indoors. It may be that the numbers of smaller and that sometimes things go wrong-- terribly wrong, in the wild setting but one look at a four inch sailfin mollie grown in a green water pond with live food and the case is closed!
    Momo and others have the genetics now and that can compensate for the loss of that extra 15% of result. And finsihing is key to selling BIG tosai and it is thing that gets the extra zeros on the Yen count. Nothing wrong with any of this of course as it is just a business seeking maximum production and maximum profit. The rest is just about quirky tradition and mystique I suppose. But there is no doubt that the markets now are all in Asian for the high end koi and those gentlemen love their koi BIG. And indoor intensive technique can guarantee that illusion in tosai and nisai for sure. Even the males can be made to look like big bodied females using indoor technique and diet. Its the name of the game now at production farms.
    me? I still like wooden boats, tailored suits and hand made watches so don't ask me. Your 'Romantic' bud, JR

  3. #3
    Oyagoi HEADACHE6's Avatar
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    I've read several times that the Koi in the North go in the Mud in June (?), and we all know they come out in or around Oct.

    I wonder when the Momtaro Koi go in and come out with them having a longer growing season.



    I too raised Tropicals (Cichlids) outdoors many years ago, I still remember the difference from the ones I had in the basement, both in size & color.

  4. #4
    Daihonmei dick benbow's Avatar
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    how many of us having been to Japan have seen newly harvested Koi lying on the bottom of their indoor ponds like jackstraws.
    It's a sorrowful sight. I think giving the koi a time to recover from the harvest and paracite treatment, makes for a much better looking individual. I think this mentality is akin to those fanatic koi show owners that start preparation well ahead of time with increased water changes and specialized foods prior to their wet pets appearance at the shows.

    interesting to note so many of us koi types had prious water experience with tropicals....
    Dick Benbow

  5. #5
    Jumbo ikoi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
    The first auction of the new season at Momotaro Koi will be on October 5. Photos will be posted in mid-September.

    So many millions of fry are selected down to so few for individual marketing at Momotaro that I have to think there is a thoughtful reason behind what is being done. But, maybe I assume too much.
    I can tell you're eager to see the pictures/videos, Mike. Stay tuned... a few more weeks.

  6. #6
    Daihonmei
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    Quote Originally Posted by HEADACHE6 View Post
    I've read several times that the Koi in the North go in the Mud in June (?), and we all know they come out in or around Oct.

    I wonder when the Momtaro Koi go in and come out with them having a longer growing season.



    I too raised Tropicals (Cichlids) outdoors many years ago, I still remember the difference from the ones I had in the basement, both in size & color.

    Morning Troy, this is an interesting conversation in that we tend to lump and split breeders in Japan by regions and advertising image. In truth, the Japanese breeding system is very complicated. And so you need a sense and an awareness of both the trends and the history of regions and individual breeders.
    There are some generalizations that are safe to make however. And by the way, I have seen many westerners who have never even been to Japan expressing strong opinions about who gets the best production results. Opinions that even the breeders they are talking about don't hold about themselves or their competition or their keiretsu. It is the keiretsu and by extension, the shinkokai, that is the core of Japanese koi business yet most americans see this as some kind of 'dealer's club' which it is not.
    The better way to look at koi breeders these days is by production farm vs old style breeder-- North or south. Some of this can be attributed to resources, wealth and region. But still, old style exists in production regions and production mentality exists in old style regions.

    And lastly it helps to think about production farms as one of two types-- one being intensive grow out facilities and the other, just large production farms ( in terms of output).
    Of those, the famous two are Sakai FF and Momotaro ( origionally an intensive grow out facility for high quality show fish). But even the Momotaro description is an evolution of those type facilities where massive indoor water is used to grow on and finish off big fish -- Narita San in Komachi city is perhaps the 'Father of this concept' starting his intensive indoor facity strictly for grow out, back in the 1980s. JR

  7. #7
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ikoi View Post
    I can tell you're eager to see the pictures/videos, Mike. Stay tuned... a few more weeks.
    Yes, I am.

    There may be a very low chance that I will bid on any, and no chance I would bid enough to acquire any I found most appealing! Still, I find the Momotaro auction photos and video clips some of the best study material around. I will focus on a group of the listed koi to compare particular traits. I'll give a ranking for just one trait, say sumi or head shape. I compare body types among the Showa, some of which will be 'classic Showa' and others will be trending toward Kohaku bodies. I'll study the Sanke over and over and over. At first, the Sanke will seem largely alike except for pattern and proportion of sumi. But, as each is studied and compared, the variety of body shapes, head configurations and pigment types becomes clear. There are endless comparisons that can be made. For fun, I once compared pectoral fin shapes of Kohaku and Sanke... quite different in the Momo lines. Of course, this sort of exercise can be done with any group of koi. I spend more time studying the Momotaro auction koi than others because of the quality of the video clips, the initial superficial similarity and the high quality all of them possess. Plus, I've been doing it for quite a while (not as easy when there were only photos), so I can see differences from prior years (sometimes). And, there are sometimes differences between the auction koi in early October compared to the ones auctioned in November and January, even when the female parent is the same. Seeing the koi live would be a lot better! After a while, however, your eyes adjust for some of the 'photo magic', so I do not think it is a wasted exercise. The downside is that your eyes become adjusted to a level of quality that makes it difficult not to have some sense of disappointment when looking at koi handled by dealers in this country, both live and in photos... and in my own pond.

  8. #8
    Jumbo DavidSoon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
    The first auction of the new season at Momotaro Koi will be on October 5. Photos will be posted in mid-September. What I find interesting is that the nisai that will be auctioned are now being raised in a 500 ton pond. A short video clip at the Momotaro site gives a glimpse of the nisai from which the auction fish will be selected. The clip has been up for a few weeks. That is, they will have been raised indoors for at least two months prior to the auction. (They may have been there longer. I do not know.) This is a significant period in the raising of nisai. I am wondering why Momotaro is doing this. I can speculate that it gives a degree of finishing before the auction compared to coming straight from the mud; or that it is an opportunity to fatten them for increased marketability; or that it helps bring out the sumi on the Sanke and Showa; or that it allows a period of full examination (including by dealers who visit) in making selections for auction rather than individual targeted sales; or......???? Perhaps space issues just made it convenient to bring these fish indoors sooner and there is no other thought behind it?

    If anyone has insight into the thinking, please share.

    So many millions of fry are selected down to so few for individual marketing at Momotaro that I have to think there is a thoughtful reason behind what is being done. But, maybe I assume too much.
    The RAMA Monarchy in Siam or Thailand is an interesting read with the 4th Generation Rama King , King Mongkut opening up Siam to the Western world as shown in the movie " The King and I " , starring Yul Brynner as the Siam King . The first emperor of China is another interesting piece of Asia history where Myth was reviewed a few thousand years later , after Chinese peasants stumbled upon his massive Graveyard in Shanxi and uncovered thousands of Terracotta Warriors but stop short on the excavation work with all due respect given to the First China Emperor who was seeking the Elixir of Eternal Life . The Manchurians were considered a small population of nomads , but ruled the Chinese for many good hundred years , because of one simple teaching from their conquering Emperor " Use the Hans to rule the Hans " . Momotaro breeding history may be short , but Michio Maeda san had compiled his own recipes for growing Jumbo fishes ( Matsunosuke ) and certainly the 500 tonne pond is merely another of his trial to try to bring out the best of his production . Never as complicated as the cultural differences and Histories of Asia ...

    David

  9. #9
    Jumbo DavidSoon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
    Yes, I am.

    There may be a very low chance that I will bid on any, and no chance I would bid enough to acquire any I found most appealing! Still, I find the Momotaro auction photos and video clips some of the best study material around. I will focus on a group of the listed koi to compare particular traits. I'll give a ranking for just one trait, say sumi or head shape. I compare body types among the Showa, some of which will be 'classic Showa' and others will be trending toward Kohaku bodies. I'll study the Sanke over and over and over. At first, the Sanke will seem largely alike except for pattern and proportion of sumi. But, as each is studied and compared, the variety of body shapes, head configurations and pigment types becomes clear. There are endless comparisons that can be made. For fun, I once compared pectoral fin shapes of Kohaku and Sanke... quite different in the Momo lines. Of course, this sort of exercise can be done with any group of koi. I spend more time studying the Momotaro auction koi than others because of the quality of the video clips, the initial superficial similarity and the high quality all of them possess. Plus, I've been doing it for quite a while (not as easy when there were only photos), so I can see differences from prior years (sometimes). And, there are sometimes differences between the auction koi in early October compared to the ones auctioned in November and January, even when the female parent is the same. Seeing the koi live would be a lot better! After a while, however, your eyes adjust for some of the 'photo magic', so I do not think it is a wasted exercise. The downside is that your eyes become adjusted to a level of quality that makes it difficult not to have some sense of disappointment when looking at koi handled by dealers in this country, both live and in photos... and in my own pond.
    Good Day Brother Mike

    I had quite a few Momotaro collections from various oyagoi the last 5 years , and probably some were sent everywhere for "study" reasons . Recently I had about 8 of the Kohaku , Sanke and Showa that were flown back here ( Yonsai ) and most of these already touched 80cm . There are a few out of these 8 fishes that are likely to hit 36 inches or more . Simple patterns and nothing out of the extraordinary . I can post some of their photos later , and if you can make space and time , I can let you select a couple of these yonsai for your study purpose ?? Like Showa , some of these Sanke can be well appreciated and studied even after they're 10 . Are you game enough ?? I can ship them to you for Free .... only thing is .... they can feed alot !!!

    David

  10. #10
    Jumbo Tosai_Sunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidSoon View Post
    Good Day Brother Mike

    I had quite a few Momotaro collections from various oyagoi the last 5 years , and probably some were sent everywhere for "study" reasons . Recently I had about 8 of the Kohaku , Sanke and Showa that were flown back here ( Yonsai ) and most of these already touched 80cm . There are a few out of these 8 fishes that are likely to hit 36 inches or more . Simple patterns and nothing out of the extraordinary . I can post some of their photos later , and if you can make space and time , I can let you select a couple of these yonsai for your study purpose ?? Like Showa , some of these Sanke can be well appreciated and studied even after they're 10 . Are you game enough ?? I can ship them to you for Free .... only thing is .... they can feed alot !!!

    David
    Hi Brother David,

    I can't think a more deserving person on this forum than Mike for your genereous gift. I am sure the knowledge that he gain from studying these fish will be passed to the rest of us.

    Hurry up Mike...before Brother David changes his mind! BTW, let me know if you need to rehome any fish to make room for these "Monster Momotaros". :-)

    Regards,
    Sunny

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