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Thread: Over the years

  1. #1
    Daihonmei dick benbow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    seattle, wa

    Over the years

    as I look back from my vantage point along the way, I've come to realize that head knowledge when not mixed with practical application leads to a void in learning.

    I used to think that in my day and age, when we had nothing to learn from, no books, no dealers, no clubs, no shows, no KB; we were at a gigantic disadvantage. And I honestly believed we're not as lucky as today's modern students of Koi. But as I assess the responses on the threads I realize that there is something missing from within the class of newbee Koi keepers. They have good head knowledge they have picked up, BUT it is not backed up from personal experience. They accept what others say they have learned without walking the path of personal experience.

    I want to encourage the newest generation to learn all they can BUT to
    hold the knowledge so freely shared in a place where it can be verified
    by personal experience. Varying genetics, water and climates can negate
    a person's learning under different sets of circumstances. While certain truths can be counted on to be good throughout the world, varying conditions can present a new set of differences that must be adjusted to your locale and the problems they create conquered.
    Dick Benbow

  2. #2
    Daihonmei aquitori's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    NorCal Biotch!!!
    Quote Originally Posted by dick benbow View Post
    They accept what others say they have learned without walking the path of personal experience.
    I see alot of new hobbyist like this out there and even more "new" koi dealers out there who have no personal experience as a hobbyist.... Kinda sad in some ways, but hell we are all living in the internet age. Where as back in the late 80's to early 90's there was probably 1 household out of 100 that had a computer...

    I guess I am just one of those old guys out there who had to buy and keep buying from my dealer to get him to share his knowledge...Damn I wish the internet bomb was around in the early 90's...hahahahaha..I do have to admit the old Waddy videos did come in handy during those times.

    Just my thoughts...
    The world sleeps as the chance to learn something new passes.

  3. #3
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Orlando, Florida
    Read some pond care and filtration articles from 20 years ago and you realize how far knowledge has advanced. Oh, and how much better the equipment available compares to the stuff put together back then! Even 10 years ago, would you have thought there would be so many koikeepers using constant trickle water techniques? Or, building ponds over 5,000 gallons? Or, actually raising koi in their home ponds to over 28"? 'Book learning' does wonders for the basics... even if the 'book' is the internet.

    It's getting beyond basics that really requires personal experience and observation. And the breeders are always coming up with something new to challenge assumptions.

  4. #4
    Oyagoi Sangreaal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Northern California
    There is one basic thing about life that never changes...and that is change. Life IS change. That's what makes the difference from spawn to spawn, from pond to pond, from system to system. What may be a constant one year may be completely different the next, throwing what one's just learned out the window...for today. It may come around again tomorrow.

    And that's what the books can't teach us. The freshness of forums, if one can pick out the pertinent information of the times, helps, because they too are in the constant flux of change that a book published last year or last decade, by its very nature, cannot address with timely accuracy.

    In the end, it is the fish themselves that teach us the most. They are constantly in the here and now, and if we can learn from observing and listening to them, we can surf the tides of personal experience instead of being washed away. We can verify what we've learn from books and forums and websites, or we can discount it, according to what our fish tell us.

    The koi themselves will ever and always be our greatest teachers. Honor them.


    "Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and
    paints his own nature into his pictures."
    --Henry Ward Beecher

  5. #5
    Daihonmei dick benbow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    seattle, wa
    quess I did a poor job in making my point. Put another way, so much information read on the chat lines and from magazines is accepted as fact by emerging students. yet because of lack of practical application and personal experience, much of what they accept as truth can not be proven by their experience.

    So while I'm excited for their opportunities, I would caution them before they completely embrace a concept to spend some personal time with it before doing so.

    does that make sense? and as marie has has opinioned, spending time with our koi is the ultimate experience.

  6. #6
    Oyagoi RayJordan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    San Antonio, Texas
    I agree with Dick's comments. I worry when a new hobbyists starts buying expensive koi. Sometimes they do not have a mature pond system, q-tank, or a real koi net and tub. When the new expensive koi get sick they are ill prepared to treat it. When the expensive koi is ruined or dies they can get discouraged and then move on to a different hobby.

    (note -expensive is a realitive concept. for some a $100 koi is expensive)

    Unfortunately, koi keeping is a hobby that takes time and experience to master. Reading books and internet forums are helpful but can also be dangerous because of lack of perspective and hands on experience.

    Finding a mentor or two (via a koi club for example) is a excellent way to help newer koi hobbies miss a few of the disasters other new hobbyists will experience. Helping another hobbyist catch and check their koi is the best way to learn how to do your own. It also makes sense to team up with a koi buddy to help each other as needed. Nothing beats hands on experience and time in the hobby. I guess this is one reason I really encourage new hobbyists to show their koi. Learning to net and transport koi successfully to a show is a very important training exercise for when you need to net and examine and treat a koi with a injury, parasites, or infection. Also nothing beats seeing your koi in a tank next to other koi to drive home the differences in husbantry, genetics, pond water quality, etc. etc.

    I wish there was a book or two or a internet forum that could teach everything needed to be a successful koi keeper. But, keeping koi is more complicated and requires learning some skills by hands on experience and repetition.

  7. #7
    MCA is offline
    Honmei MCA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    you can find many decent books on koi health...how to diagnose and treat. but where do you find a whole book dedicated to pond system design that talks about TRPs, GPRs, all the different ways to do mechanical, bio conversion, aeration....etc.

    And the major dollars should be spend on system design and build. Without a good system, well maintained, it is a total waste to purchase more than pond grade koi.

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