Raising the colorful fish called koi is a
fast growing and fascinating hobby. Koi are
not large goldfish but a breed of carp that
the Japanese began selectively breeding for
their distinctive colorings and markings
about 175 years ago. They usually live outdoors
in landscaped ponds that have been constructed
to provide adequate oxygen and water filtration.
They can also be raised in aquariums with
goldfish or other tropical fish as long as
the other fish arenít aggressive. Koi can
be purchased at specialty pet stores or online
from companies that import or breed them.
They can easily be transported in plastic
bags filled with water that are packed in
cardboard boxes. |
Consider the following if you
to raise koi:
- The price of koi is determined by their color,
pattern, size and shape. Owners who plan
to show their fish in koi competitions may
be interested in pricier types with collectable
qualities or pedigrees, but the average pond
owner can easily find more affordable varieties.
It is best to start with less expensive koi
and make sure they survive the winter in
your pond before investing in pricier fish.
- Koi can live in ponds over the winter, surviving
under the ice, as long as the
not freeze solid. They will
not eat much
if the water is very cold.
- Koi usually grow to 24 to 36 inches. Factors
such as the size of the pond,
of aeration, and how they are
fed will determine
their growth. Small koi can
grow to 18 inches
in 3 to 4 years. Although koi
have been known
to live for more than 100 years,
last from 25 to 35 years. They
than tropicals or goldfish.
- Koi are usually fed once or twice a day but
can go for up to 10 days with
Most owners feed them special
will also eat dried or fresh
or cooked rice or oats.
Do not purchase koi until your pond or aquarium
is ready for them.