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Call (352) 357-4563

Search Our Fish For Sale
Share on Facebook Share via e-mail Print Share on Twitter Share on Google Bookmarks Share on Tumblr
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Search Our Fish For Sale Search Our Fish For Sale

Call (352) 357-4563

Call (352) 357-4563

Koi Breeding Begins;

 Koi Keeping begins in Ojiya Japan Though there is not much known about Koi keeping and breeding in the pre-1800 era, it is widely accepted that the true colored Koi originated in Japan from the Niigata prefecture (similar to a small county) during the early 1800’s. Nishikigoi originated in the villages of Takerawa, Hi-gashiyama, Ota, Taneuhara, and Kamagashima. Today, some of these villages have been enveloped by the expansion of the city of Ojiya, the home of Nishikigoi. There is actually a beautiful Nishikigoi Information Center in the center of Ojiya that displays traditional and modern Koi ponds and gardens as well as the history of Koi.

There are no official records of the first Koi mutations but it is thought that it was a red carp called "Hookazuki" (Ho-oh-kah-zoo-kee), perhaps from a mutant black carp. It was from this red carp that the first all white Koi was produced. When these two Koi were crossbred, the result was the very first red and white carp. Originally called "Hara-aka", meaning red belly, it wasn't until 1930 that the breed was stabilized and officially documented as the Kohaku, still by far the most well known and popular of the Koi breeds.

Around the same time in Niigata, other Koi mutations were developing. It was not long before the all black mutation, now known as the Magoi, was discovered by breeding two strains of wild carp: one brown/black and the other blue/black. Also from this early mutation came the first true blue Koi, the Asagi, meaning "light blue". It wasn't until years later that an Asagi Sanke was crossed with a Doitsu Metallic Koi and the first Shusui, meaning "autumn water", was bred.

                                   A Brief History Of KoiCyprinus-carpio (common Carp)

Humble Beginnings

It may be difficult at first to believe that all Koi breeds can trace their bloodlines to the rather plain, black Common Carp (Cyprinus Carpio), but if you think about all of the dog or cat breeds that have been developed through selective breeding, it's natural that the same has been achieved with  fish.

It is believed that the Common Carp was transported from Eurasia to the Far East over 2,000 years ago, then to Japan through either China or Korea, where they were bred as a food source. Since carp are so hardy, they were able to withstand such long traveling periods. There is evidence that the Common Carp finally made it to Japan approximately 1,000 years ago.


The next stage in Koi breeding is known as the third mutation of Nishikigoi. This is the stage where the Bekko varieties were first discovered and bred. This variety consists of the Shiro Bekko, the Aka Bekko, and the Ki Bekko.

It is said that Japanese farmers kept the carp in mud ponds to supplement their daily diet of rice and vegetables. Most likely the carp were kept in reserved mud ponds rather than in the rice paddies, for carp would eat the rice plants making them more of a burden than a blessing. As many a biologist will tell you, when a species is kept and bred utilizing a small gene pool, mutations will occur. In the case of carp, these mutations produced changes in color. The farmers who owned these mutant fish prized them and kept the fish as collector items instead of food for the table. When these irregularities were discovered, farmers began breeding them as a hobby. It is believed that this happened somewhere between 1840 and 1844, many years after carp were brought to the Japanese Islands. And so, the breeding and keeping of Nishikigoi, or Koi, began and now they are enjoyed by hobbyists worldwide.

ISanke Koi For Sale from Blackwater Creek Koi Farms.t was from this handful of Koi breeds that all other Nishikigoi types were bred, with the exception of the Ogon variety (single colored, metallic Koi) which wasn't developed until recently. The last development of this early time was a great breakthrough in Koi breeding and is still revered as one of the most traditional of Koi breeds. A tri-colored Koi called a Taisho Sanshoku, more commonly known as the Sanke, was first seen during the Meiji era (1868-1912). Though it is not known who first developed this breed, the Sanke was exhibited for the first time in 1915, when the Koi was about 15 years old. Mirror Carp

In the early 1900’s, Koi keeping began to take flight. Koi had become a symbol of luck and prosperity. At this time, most Japanese mansions and upper-class tea houses had at least one Koi pond for viewing pleasure. Japanese Koi breeders then came across a separate type of carp that brought in a new string of Koi breeds: Mirror carp were introduced into Japan from Germany.

Their large, shiny, uniform scales - five to six times larger than normal - became quite popular in Japan and the fish became known as Doitsu (Japanese for "Deutsche" meaning "German" in the German language).

The first successful crosses between the German carp and the Japanese carp were made in 1904. All resulting "scaleless" varieties were to be known as Doitsu Nishikigoi. These modern varieties contributed greatly to the expansion of Nishikigoi throughout the world and finally provided the genetics for the last part of the Koi puzzle - the Ogon.

Meanwhile, after the Taisho Sanke was introduced, the Showa Sanshoku Sanke (later called the Showa) was discovered and with it the came the end of the Taisho era. In 1927 the Showa Sanke made its debut, primarily a black Koi with red and white markings (as opposed to the Sanke which is a predominately white Koi with red and black markings).

In the early 1920’s, a wild carp with golden scales was crossed with a Koi in hopes to produce the greatest amount of golden color possible. By 1946 the first Ogon (golden Koi) was produced. The name "Ogon" initially referred only to the gold form, but today it applies to all single-color metallic Koi. Ogon’s are included within the Hikarimono category ("Hikari" meaning "shining" and "mono" denoting a single color).

All Koi types bred after this time are considered modern breeds that have been developed recently, such as Matsuba Ogon (1960’s), Gin-Rin (reflective scaled) varieties (early 1960’s), and the Midorigoi (light green Koi) in 1965. All together, 13 colors and their numerous varieties are currently recognized for Nishikigoi.

Shusui Koi For sale from Blackwater Creek Koi Farms Kohaku Koi for sale from Blackwater Creek Koi Farms. Nice Asagi Koi from Blackwater Creek Koi farms




Shiro Bekko Koi for sale from Blackwater Creek Koi Farms. Aka Bekko For Sale from Blackwater Creek Koi Farms. Ki Bekko For Sale from Blackwater Creek Koi Farms.

Shiro Bekko

Aka Bekko

Ki Bekko

Showa Koi For Sale from Blackwater Creek Koi Farms. Yamabuki Ogon Koi For Sale from Blackwater Creek Koi Farms.


Yamabuki Ogon

Koi pond originated in Rice Patties