Home | About Us | Contact Us


Koi Forum - Koi-Bito Magazine straight from Japan
Page 1 of 6 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 51
Like Tree5Likes

Thread: Skin is Everything

  1. #1
    Oyagoi yerrag's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Manila, Philippines
    Posts
    1,792

    Skin is Everything

    Welcoming a new koi into a pond and its eventual passing are rites of passage that to me represent a microcosm of life in general. It reaffirms many truths we hold that we take for granted at times. It makes me ponder in search of deeper truths. And these truths may even be superficial, and this brings me to the subject of skin, in koi, and how it parallels how we view our own skin.

    A few days ago, my gosai kohaku died. Today, I still miss its silhouette gliding peacefully in the pond, which appears bare without the full beni-backed koi with its chubby cheeks. I think about how beautiful she was at a distance, but close enough she wasn't as admirable as she once was. Her beni had begun to deteriorate a year and a half ago. It had a shimi, but she also had less visible signs of hikkui. When I had her shimi removed six months ago, it was in the hope that she could regain her former perfect beni.

    But now I have to resign to my thinking that once skin goes, it doesn't come back. And it isn't merely skin, it is the koi itself. It is just like our own skin, as it starts to wrinkle, mostly with what we associate with aging. But aging isn't the same as degenerating, although they are associated. One could age well, and one's skin could still be relatively young. When one is young, but has internal degeneration, it cannot be seen as the organs that have degenerated are kept hidden from our view. But for me, the skin is a window to the state of degeneration in the internal organs, be it human or koi.

    Going back to my kohaku, it grew to 68 cm, which is not huge by any standard. In contrast, my sanke had grown to 81 cm in the same span of time. And its skin is still close to flawless (a amall window by the shoulder, and a nick by the right side, which i hope will heal to become inconspicuous). Yet they came to the pond at the same time as tosai, and both came from the same breeder - SFF - as mixed grade koi. The sanke started out with me at 15cm, while the kohaku at 13cm. They grew up is similar conditions, although the sanke had been to more koi shows and should, technically, have been subject to more stress.

    My pond had been subject to some episodes of neglect, as I was going through my learning curve. I had gone from a brush and mat system to a static k1 with anoxic bio-filters. I had had one instance of being fooled by crystal clear waters only to see a nice 75cm "best of class" yamabuki die from bacteria-laden water, last year. That episode, while a sad one, wasn't so bad considering my other koi were spared. The sanke went to the same koi show, and did not suffer the fate of the yamabuki.

    Which brings me back to the sanke. It was more hardy than the yamabuki, and more hardy than the kohaku. It was larger, and it kept its skin quality going through stresses that had befallen the two koi.

    I now start to think that skin quality in a koi correlates greatly to its internal health and its hardiness. All things being equal, a koi with excellent skin quality is a hardy and more robust koi. Being very skilled at keeping the pond water optimal in necessary to keep koi healthy that is confirmed by its skin quality, but there are koi that are more hardy that would be further confirmed by the quality of its skin.

    I used to wonder if there is much truth to what a dealer told me, that in determining the quality of a koi, you could see the quality in a koi thru the cleanliness of its shiroji, especially when it just arrived from a long journey being shipped from Japan, for instance. I now find myself agreeing more and more to that.

    And this brings me back to the kohaku. I think the shimi and the hikkui it developed already is a portent of its eventual demise. Especially when it is, at 5 years old, still a young koi (It was 3.5 years old when it developed the shimi and hikkui). I had a tancho which had a rapid fading of its head beni two years ago. It was an indication of sickness, and true enough I had to put it to sleep after I found the large belly ulcer from its having a swim bladder condition.

    Getting a hardy koi (that comes with great skin) and giving it a good environment, and feeding it well through advanced years, counts a lot to developing a koi everyone have reason to appreciate.

    Good genes, good care, and good nutrition all come together to develop a winning koi.

    Just my thoughts.

    p.s. When the kohaku died, it was the quality of the beni that had begun to go downhill, but its shiroji showed no evident signs of deterioration. May I suggest then that the health of older koi is defined by the quality of its beni, while when young, the quality of shiroji is better indicated by the quality of the shiroji?

  2. #2
    Jumbo sacicu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Philippines
    Posts
    738
    I fail to get the correlation if there is any. Basing only a few koi in your own pond does not point out much. There is no correlation between skin quality and durability with regards to how long a koi survives.

    Sickness such as heart attacks, sudden deaths, internal organ problems, swim bladder issues is not determined whether a koi has good skin or not.

    What I think determine whether a koi is weaker in health or whether its beni will not last others than another is genetics.

  3. #3
    Oyagoi yerrag's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Manila, Philippines
    Posts
    1,792
    Quote Originally Posted by sacicu View Post
    I fail to get the correlation if there is any. Basing only a few koi in your own pond does not point out much. There is no correlation between skin quality and durability with regards to how long a koi survives.

    Sickness such as heart attacks, sudden deaths, internal organ problems, swim bladder issues is not determined whether a koi has good skin or not.

    What I think determine whether a koi is weaker in health or whether its beni will not last others than another is genetics.
    I should always put a disclaimer that this is an opinion of a hobbyist whenever I say something, lest it gets misconstrued as being the final word on anything.

    I stand by my observations, but do not pretend it takes the place of other hobbyist's observations. If there is corroboration from other hobbyists, then it is stronger. If not, then it is merely anecdotal.

    Rather than be mum and not say something because no scientific study has been made to conclusively proof correlation, I rather let this observation out and share it.

    If everything is just going to be genetics, and everything else is hogwash, then we can carry on and just deem everything to be a product of genetics. A rather simplistic view of the universe. And very much a product of programming rather than careful study. examination, consideration, deliberation, and deduction.

    And can we not just ascribe and lump anything we cannot explain as a cause to be a matter of genetics, please? Tired of that kind of simplistic thinking that's been inculcated into us by the medical establishment. Haven't you heard of epigenetics? Or is the word or concept so foreign?

  4. #4
    Jumbo sacicu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Philippines
    Posts
    738
    Here is something to ponder. There is a well known breeder who does not force growth with his tosai and nisai, who concentrates more on skin quality, whose bloodline has the ability to grow jumbo and concentrates on koi whose beni can can last longer. The problem is the koi imported from the farm also gets more death related incidence(sudden death, swim bladder issues, tumour, heart attack, bent issues, etc.) compared to other breeders. This is the observation of the dealer. So while its true the beni quality can sustain longer, keeping the koi alive and without body issues becomes the problem as the koi ages.

    However based on my own pond experience, I dont see what the dealer sees..
    calloon likes this.

  5. #5
    Oyagoi yerrag's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Manila, Philippines
    Posts
    1,792
    Quote Originally Posted by sacicu View Post
    Here is something to ponder. There is a well known breeder that I know who concentrates more on skin quality, ability to grow jumbo and longer finish period. The problem is the koi imported also gets more death related incidence(sudden death, swim bladder issues, tumour, heart attack) compared to other breeders. This is the observation of the dealer.

    However based on my own pond experience, I don't see what the dealer sees..
    In what sense would this breeder be considered to concentrate more on skin quality? Isn't every respectable breeder the same in this aspect? But if this breeder is focused on growing jumbo, then he may be feeding a protein with an amino acid profile that is geared towards maximum growth. This kind of protein, however, doesn't augur well for other areas that matter as well for the koi. At a certain age, the amino acid profile has to change to one that preserves the structure of the koi, as well as provide more immunity for the koi. That protein should keep the process of regeneration of tissues active, to delay the degeneration or aging of the koi.

    If the breeder sticks to the same sort of protein geared for growth thru maturity, it would be counterproductive to maintaining the koi at a peak state.

  6. #6
    Jumbo sacicu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Philippines
    Posts
    738
    Quote Originally Posted by yerrag View Post
    In what sense would this breeder be considered to concentrate more on skin quality? Isn't every respectable breeder the same in this aspect? But if this breeder is focused on growing jumbo, then he may be feeding a protein with an amino acid profile that is geared towards maximum growth. This kind of protein, however, doesn't augur well for other areas that matter as well for the koi. At a certain age, the amino acid profile has to change to one that preserves the structure of the koi, as well as provide more immunity for the koi. That protein should keep the process of regeneration of tissues active, to delay the degeneration or aging of the koi.

    If the breeder sticks to the same sort of protein geared for growth thru maturity, it would be counterproductive to maintaining the koi at a peak state.

    Nothing to do with protein. His koi bloodline has the genetics to grow long and big. He does not concentrate growing jumbo tosai or.jumno nisai but his koi has more chance to grow long.

    When I say he concentrates on skin quality I mean even if the koi is thin or poor pattern as long as it has very good skin quality, the price will be high. As compared to some breeders that can sell because of the girth of the koi or the pattern is more refines.

  7. #7
    Oyagoi yerrag's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Manila, Philippines
    Posts
    1,792
    Quote Originally Posted by sacicu View Post
    Nothing to do with protein. His koi bloodline has the genetics to grow long and big. He does not concentrate growing jumbo tosai or.jumno nisai but his koi has more chance to grow long.

    When I say he concentrates on skin quality I mean even if the koi is thin or poor pattern as long as it has very good skin quality, the price will be high. As compared to some breeders that can sell because of the girth of the koi or the pattern is more refines.
    Must be some skin quality you're talking about here that buyers will override the relative poor pattern or relative poor conformation. And you'e saying the dealer says he's experienced high attrition rates with koi bought from this breeder, but you're not experiencing it with the koi bought from the same dealer that came from this breeder? How old were the koi when they die? How old is or are your koi now?

  8. #8
    Jumbo sacicu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Philippines
    Posts
    738
    Quote Originally Posted by yerrag View Post
    Must be some skin quality you're talking about here that buyers will override the relative poor pattern or relative poor conformation. And you'e saying the dealer says he's experienced high attrition rates with koi bought from this breeder, but you're not experiencing it with the koi bought from the same dealer that came from this breeder? How old were the koi when they die? How old is or are your koi now?
    Success is measured when expectation of hobbyist are met and failures is the opposite. The problem with long term skin quality is that it does not necessarily translate to long term health conditions. From the way I see it the success rate as compared to the numbers of quality koi brought in over the years is smaller as compared to other breeders.

    I have been fairly lucky as compared to other hobbyist. so far my one of my oldest is around 86cm at 6 y.o. now with skin that will hopefully last for another 5 yrs. Never had any health issues except one time when I transfered her to the new pond, she went wild and almost had a heart attack. I was able to revive her through pure oxygen theraphy and now swim and eats normal. However despite this, I still do not correlate health with how long beni quality can last. Like I said, there are many incidence of koi with even superior beni from the same breeder that died earlier for conditions I have mentioned.

  9. #9
    Oyagoi yerrag's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Manila, Philippines
    Posts
    1,792
    Quote Originally Posted by sacicu View Post
    Success is measured when expectation of hobbyist are met and failures is the opposite. The problem with long term skin quality is that it does not necessarily translate to long term health conditions. From the way I see it the success rate as compared to the numbers of quality koi brought in over the years is smaller as compared to other breeders.

    I have been fairly lucky as compared to other hobbyist. so far my one of my oldest is around 86cm at 6 y.o. now with skin that will hopefully last for another 5 yrs. Never had any health issues except one time when I transfered her to the new pond, she went wild and almost had a heart attack. I was able to revive her through pure oxygen theraphy and now swim and eats normal. However despite this, I still do not correlate health with how long beni quality can last. Like I said, there are many incidence of koi with even superior beni from the same breeder that died earlier for conditions I have mentioned.
    I had the same wild reaction with a koi when I made the mistake of not slowly lowering the salt concentration to be closer to that of the pond being transferred to. She went wild and hit the wall a couple of times before calming down and became still and lost her balance. I had to transfer her back to the first pond and she recovered from it.

    A perfectly healthy koi with perfect beni can just die suddenly the next day, but it does not prove your point that good skin, as with the perfect beni, has no relation to health. I am talking about knowing your own koi and its history, and having observed that koi, and seeing the downturn in its skin quality as a possible indication of a health issue. I gave the example of my tancho and my kohaku earilier.

    You are employing false logic when you make such statements.

  10. #10
    Jumbo sacicu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Philippines
    Posts
    738
    Quote Originally Posted by yerrag View Post
    I had the same wild reaction with a koi when I made the mistake of not slowly lowering the salt concentration to be closer to that of the pond being transferred to. She went wild and hit the wall a couple of times before calming down and became still and lost her balance. I had to transfer her back to the first pond and she recovered from it.

    A perfectly healthy koi with perfect beni can just die suddenly the next day, but it does not prove your point that good skin, as with the perfect beni, has no relation to health. I am talking about knowing your own koi and its history, and having observed that koi, and seeing the downturn in its skin quality as a possible indication of a health issue. I gave the example of my tancho and my kohaku earilier.

    You are employing false logic when you make such statements.
    not false logic but based on probability and the observation of the dealer. For me, I have a theory of it and its still based on genetics in relation to how a koi should be raised.

Page 1 of 6 123 ... LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Skin problem
    By wong in forum Main Forum
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 04-22-2016, 05:52 PM
  2. Skin
    By MikeM in forum Main Forum
    Replies: 30
    Last Post: 12-08-2014, 03:18 PM
  3. skin flukes
    By sav3406 in forum Main Forum
    Replies: 63
    Last Post: 03-19-2012, 08:56 AM
  4. help!!skin problem...
    By alvin9xw in forum Main Forum
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 03-08-2010, 10:29 AM
  5. sensitive skin
    By Carpman in forum Main Forum
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-04-2009, 11:47 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Articles - Sitemap - FAQs and Rules

KB Footer Graphic
Straight from Japan... For the serious hobbyist!
All content and images copyright of: Koi-bito.com