Colorful Koi Carp

From their humble beginnings as fish food for Chinese rice farmers, these colorful Koi carp were brought to Japan in the 17th century, not only to be cultivated for cheap nutritious food for their own rice farmers, but also for their aesthetic appeal.

The colorful Koi carp are the domesticated varieties of the common carp. In fact, the word Koi comes from the Japanese word meaning “carp” which was where they were bred for the first time around the 1820’s.

Now Koi are considered to be one of the most popular fresh-water pond fish,, and can be found gracing the waters of millions of outdoor ponds all over the world.

They are not only loved for their variety of colors but also for the longevity of their lives.  The longest living Koi ever recorded in history died at the rip old age of two hundred twenty-six.

Koi come in a huge variety of patterns and colors including, red, orange, yellow, black, white, silver or even blue or green. There are potentially thousands of different types of Koi, with about 20 different popular versions. Koi are popular because of their beautiful colors and designs.

Although Koi is simply a carp, modern specimens are products of selective breeding over many generations.  Outside elements such as the environment that they live in and the diet they eat can also affect the color of Koi.

It is easy to understand the patience and skill it took for the first Japanese breeders to develop such a magnificent fish.

Koi are extremely social with other breeds of fish as long as they are not small enough to be eaten by these opportunistic

feeders.  In a smaller pond Koi may seem to school together, but in larger areas they tend to split up into small groups.

Most fish owners understand that most fish will only grow to the size of their enclosure. However, because Koi can grow to be a large fish, they require and thrive in ponds that are about five hundred gallons or more.  

It is important to keep the number of fish in a pond relative to the amount of water that the pond holds.  The depth and size of the pond is extremely important.

A pond that contains a depth of at least four feet provides enough room for the colorful Koi to thrive.  The health of the fish depends a lot upon the amount of space that Koi fish owners provide their fish with.

Koi can be kept outside in the winter. As the winter temperatures begin to drop, the colorful Koi fish will begin their winter hibernation, and their digestive systems will slow almost to a halt.

However, undigested food in their stomachs can grow rancid and could cause the fish to become sick.  Because of this, Koi should not be feed in weather less the fifty degrees Fahrenheit.

Outdoor ponds can be relaxing when the sounds of the rippling water flows through the yard but, no pond is complete without a gorgeous ornamental fish like the Colorful Koi  

Many Koi owners consider themselves lucky to be able to have these fish touch their lives and brighten up their worlds.

Don Miller has been breeding Koi for over 25 years. If you found the article on Koi Care of interest, you will also find further information and articles at the Koi Guide website