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Thread: Growth in a years time

  1. #11
    Jumbo Tom C's Avatar
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    Jim, please keep posting on all of this. You are so right with all you posted. Most of us go by inchs when we talk about growth. Girth is something not to many of us talk about. I had one this year show a lot of girth growth. I was shocked when I pulled her out. My wife don't think it was the same koi that I put into the pond. She thought I replaced it with another. This year my best growth in inchs was right about 10".

    Thanks everyone for your posts on this!

  2. #12
    Oyagoi koifishgirl's Avatar
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    I would love to join in but I fear after reading the past post I would have to crawl under my pc desk Ask this same thing next year this time



    Judy

  3. #13
    Daihonmei
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    JR,
    just tossing those numbers that you just posted around in my head...it looks like a more linear growth occurs in koi than I thought, but the linear growth looks to be in mass not length.

    So much of our "Knowedge" is just anecdotal. i wonder if koi grow about the same amount of mass for the first 6 years or so?

    maybe even longer because when length slows the mass keeps going....

  4. #14
    Nisai Newt's Avatar
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    http://www.newtcity.com/yabbse/index.php?board=17;action=display;threadid=8329

    Great subject, very interesting. If it starts to head 'south,' though, please feel free to read the alleged 'explanation,' over at our board. Doesn't need to clutter up Brian's board.

  5. #15
    Jumbo
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    Right. The entire concept of koi as a four season fish, as observed by many generations of Japanese farmers, is one of 'energy direction'. And like a lot of things that are observed by man, science can back it up with explanation.

    In the case of carp, their entire bias towards metabolic results is influenced by their environment and diet. So energy is directed to different metabolic functions four times a year. Many of these functions are a form of growth. In fry, the generation and creation of scales is a form of ‘growth’.And sexual maturation tends to be growth in the area of weight and volume ( gonad growth). Anyone who has seen a formally perfect shaped female spawn before a show knows the shocking lose of weight and volume fish hand. At the core of this is a 'sensitivity' to hormonal messages. In every koi, there exists a very delicate balance between the cortisol in their blood and the Growth hormone in their blood. Stress, seasonal starvation etc all manipulate this relationship.

    So when we see ‘baby’ fish from Japan that are exceptionally large, we are looking at fish grown in a perpetual summer ( high protein for cell proliferation and warm water for extending one biological clock signal only), in which bone structure and length are the single goal. In other words, this is a manipulation of growth. As Evan's states in the Text book Physiology of fishes, Growth and metabolism--

    " Thus, until a real increase in food conversion efficiencies can be achieved, manipulation of the growth rate will remain a researcher's tool and a fool's paradise, not withstanding short term profitability in aquaculture settings due to resource allocation and use."

    In other words, the fish is designed for a series of 'growths' and this is triggered by genetics, breeding programs, environment and diet. But seasonal realities have produced an endocrine system that is a biological clock for growth phases. You can manipulate it, you can not defeat it long term.

  6. #16
    Fry
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    Then should we be doing length and girth measurements? The bloodline and growth trends that follow those bloodlines should also be given consideration.

    Growth has been one of the topics of great interest to me. Finally, now my facility is better suited to putting size on my fish.

    I have a domestic Sanke which I picked up in March (CFKS) that was 4" now is at 12"... the gender of the fish (male) and general body build is still lanky. Conformation is still weak at this time, I'm hoping this next year the girth will slowly come and this fish will finally "balance out." This really just falls into ‘I hope this is what will happen,” I have no baseline to judge what I should expect, based on bloodline.

    Last November (04) I received two Momotaro Kohaku, 7-8". One of those Kohaku is now 18" with the full bodied conformation already which makes the fish appear even larger. For this bloodline, pretty much on target for development. Point being some lesser know bloodlines, we have less to gauge what growth trends we should expect.

    C Langston


  7. #17
    Jumbo
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    Hi Connie, that is kinda how growth goes. Consider the koi fry-

    It must first go through a metamorphoses of type from fry to juvenile. Scales, backbone development and muscle mass development. This is why young fish get a higher protein mix and one reason why they live in different areas of ponds and lakes than adult fish. A warmer water layer and more insect life is a natural condition for fry and juveniles. As the summer progresses however, rapid growth in general size does three things- white and red muscle development leads to a fish that can swim in strong bursts but also move rapidly for longer periods of time. This becomes very important for adult koi and they leave the huddled, hidden life of short bursts of energy into the life of a true forager. By fall, the koi must have stored excess amino acids and sugars in muscle, brain and kidney. This requires a certain body mass.

    So this prepubescent existence is pretty much pure conversion of energy for cell production and this ‘first spring/summer’ can be lengthened by man.

    Eventually however, massive protein will actually slow a koi’s growth. It is the periodic fasting, or at least, reduction in protein, that triggers higher levels of Growth Hormone in the blood stream. And excess calories given the wrong time of year will effect color and gonad production volume. We have all seen the female 18 inch koi that looks ‘painful’ in her egg weighted condition. This is a sign of ‘growth’ gone wrong. But not just an issue of weight gain as much as a physical manifestation of a derailed biological clock and confused endocrine system. I think it is important to realize that nature doesn’t give a flip about an individual’s health, when species procreation is at stake. So watching a fish’s present condition and growth is to fail to see that what is being displayed is actually what was happening months earlier.

    Once adolescence is successfully negotiated and the reproductive cycle produces a full adult form, growth is reduced to that of season energy direction and the addition of mass ( including length and girth) of the individual fish. More eggs, less predation and domination by the fittest as mass can translate into survival in extreme cold weather or starvation conditions ( excluding oxygen deprivation which would be the ‘weeding out process’ in excess population in limited water conditions, leaving only young fish to re-establish populations.)

  8. #18
    Fry
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    Thank you JR

    This leads me to a second series of thoughts/questions.

    You have explained the growth of juvenile koi, the importance of appropriate seasonal influence, dietary needs and genetics. But in a mature koi one who has reached bloodline expectations, has received the level of growth and care where remarkable size has already been established.

    If that same koi, had rapid or noticeable decline in body weight/size this would be cause for concern. Whether internal or external....something is presumed wrong.

    If the opposite occurs, if maturity has been reached....growth is less aggressive, the bloodline growth trends have been achieved. The koi itself is under knowledgeable/skilled management, would accelerated growth at this stage be cause for genuine concern?

    C langston


  9. #19
    Sansai
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    the easiest way to get maximum growth out of a koi?


    same way you get 60 mpg with your suv.

  10. #20
    Jumbo Tom C's Avatar
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    Jim, I have heard over the years that high protein foods are the way to get growth. I'm guessing this is way we are seeing more and more foods with real high protein levels. I have a friend that feeds nothing but but high protein foods most of the year. I have to say I don't think he's getting any better growth then me in the pond. On the other hand I have another friend that will only feed Hikari Wheat Germ that has a protein level of 34% and his growth is outstanding. Most of his koi put on more growth then any of my koi. One put on 12" in 11 months. Also his koi look so much better shape wise then the guy feeding the high protein foods. So how much does the protein levels play in growth of koi?


    One other thing, the guy with the good growth has a pond with a LOT of current in it.

    Keep it simple, keep it straight Koi-Bito.com

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