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  • white quality

    I am new to this hobby, I keep koi for over 2 years and still have a lot to learn. I have a question , hope that you all can help. Recently, I came across several 2 year old koi, they look very nice the problem is the white skin is yellowish. I was told that if the koi is female later the skin will turn white. I know that those koi were breed from very well known breeder in Japan. Any opinion will be very appreciated.

  • #2

    Males tend to have yellower heads that remain that way as they get older. Some females will have yellower heads when young but the white comes up as they get older.

    It is a matter of the color thickening. Water quality and food quality also helps.

    Look to the body first, then to the quality of the skin, then to the quality of the color, then to the attractiveness of the pattern...

    And remember, the best you can hope for is that you get what you pay for.


    • #3

      jason's done a pretty good job of filling you in on the options. I can also add that sometimes just out of a mudpond, a face can be colored. Also water quality

      can have some affect.
      Dick Benbow


      • #4

        Keen. Some of this learnin' must be sinking in.


        • #5

          white quality

          Thanks for responding. Those two years old koi about 17" or 18". but the whole body is yellowish. I wonder whether the skin will turn white when the koi reach maturity.


          • #6

            Toro: I do not think anyone is going to be able to give you a reliable answer. If experienced eyes see the koi in person, then there might be a willingness to hazard a guess. But, it would be a guess, albeit an educated one.

            Last weekend a very experienced dealer in high end koi gave me a mini lesson in development of Shiro Utsuri. He showed me photos of very nice specimens taken when they were just tosai. As tosai they were extraordinarily ugly and definitely yellow. As nisai they were beautifully white ... a very pure white. They were from a particular line that has that characteristic (Omosako-bred). Not all Shiro Utsuri share the trait. A domestic breeder also had a few Shiro Utsuri at the show for sale. His tosai did not have the same yellow staining, but were not pure white. There was more a grayish, smudgy look, with some hint of yellow. On his Shiro Utsuri the tosai coloration was predominantly a factor of Sumi formation under the surface. I expect they will have very clear, beautiful whites at maturity, with the quality and patterning of the Sumi being the question mark at so young an age. Unfortunately, we did not get a chance to talk about them, but a friend acquired a couple, so I'll get a chance to see how they develop over time. Does that mean that in a year or two I can get tosai Shiro Utsuri from the same breeder and have confidence how they will develop? Maybe, but not necessarily. If the breeder changes his parent fish, the offspring may differ in development; or the coloration might be a side effect of foods used to promote growth of first year fish, and perhaps the food changed from one year to the next. As a "rule of thumb", you will hear that yellowish whites never become a quality white, but as in so much of koikeeping, there are many exceptions; and the exceptions can be exceptionally desirable fish.

            If we could predict the future of every koi accurately, their challenge would be lost. It is the study of such things that makes koi so much more interesting than other fish. Enjoy them.


            • #7

              The way I hear it; Females won't have as sharp or bright a white till they quit rapidly growing." ...but "yellow" skin is a different factor.


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