The pond below is Isa’s number 1 mud pond, containing their jumbo stocks.  In 2013 their Niigata Nogyosai Grand Champion was harvested from this pond a few days before winning the title.

That harvest was one of my ‘musts’ for a number of years.  Unfortunately last year and this year the date of the harvest has clashed with the Nagaoka Koi Show and my commitments there is no chance of me attending.

Isa jumbo mud pond

Isa jumbo mud pond

The above pond is part of the large complex of ponds that Isa has, you can see it below.  Speaking to Mitsunori a couple of days ago he advised that they would be harvesting another pond of yonsai and older Koi today.

Isa Koi Farm mud pond complex

Isa Koi Farm mud pond complex

This was the pond to be harvested, a pond I’ve seen harvested before back in 2009 – http://niigata-nishikigoi.com/node/569.  However, the area has changed since then.  In the background you can see freshly worked soil.  This year Isa have constructed another 6 mud ponds in the white area of the image above.

Pond containing yonsai and older Isa Koi

Pond containing yonsai and older Isa Koi

At the moment the ponds are just partly filled.  Unused this year they will fill with snow and snow melt next spring.

New Isa mud ponds

New Isa mud ponds

New Isa mud ponds

New Isa mud ponds

Large Isa Koi drifting lazily around the pond a awaiting harvcst.


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Isa Koi awaiting harvest

Isa Koi awaiting harvest

Isa staff pulling net

Isa staff pulling net

Hajime Isa and Hidemasa Hirasawa pulling net

Hajime Isa and Hidemasa Hirasawa pulling net

20 70cm+ four year old Koi within the confines of the net.

Securing the net

Securing the net

Securing the net

Securing the net

Have I mentioned that wonderful moment as a Koi’s back breaks the water surface?

Kohaku dorsal breaks the surface

Kohaku dorsal breaks the surface

Showa dorsal breaks the surface

Showa dorsal breaks the surface

Showa dorsal breaks the surface

Showa dorsal breaks the surface

One by one each Koi is carefully lifted by Mitsunori Isa and placed into the paddling pool, some simply stunning Koi.  I may have mentioned the importanceof sumi on Showa once or twice before…

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori raising a Koi to the surface

Mitsunori raising a Koi to the surface

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori and Hidemasa looking at a Showa in the pool

Mitsunori and Hidemasa looking at a Showa in the pool

Close up of Koi in pool

Close up of Koi in pool

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

The sumi on the Koi below is simply stunning.  Just look at the close up cropped image of the same picture and see how thick and glossy it is.  It looks like someone has painted it with gloss paint.

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Mitsunori Isa lifting Koi from mud pond

Close up of Showa

Close up of Showa

Isa staff carrying Koi up the bank

Isa staff carrying Koi up the bank

Hajime Isa lifting Koi on truck

Hajime Isa lifting Koi on truck

Hajime Isa lifting Koi on truck

Hajime Isa lifting Koi on truck

Hajime Isa lifting Koi on truck

Hajime Isa lifting Koi on truck

Hajime Isa lifting Koi on truck

Hajime Isa lifting Koi on truck

Hajime Isa inspecting Koi in transportation tank

Hajime Isa inspecting Koi in transportation tank

Cleaning the net

Cleaning the net

Team Isa

Team Isa

Back at the Koi house adjacent to the family home the Koi were unloaded.  Please forgive the quality of the quick shots grabbed.

The Koi on the right is the same one above being lifted by Mitsunori on the 2 shots.


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Isa Showa

Isa Showa

Isa Tancho Showa

Isa Tancho Showa

Simply stunning sum quality.

Beautiful thick glossy sumi

Beautiful thick glossy sumi

Isa yonsai Kohaku, 75cm

Isa yonsai Kohaku, 75cm

Isa Showa

Isa Showa

Isa Showa

Isa Showa

This Showa wasn’t part of the harvest today but it is one that I developed a soft spot for as I watched the Koi in the crystal clear water.

Isa yonsai Showa

Isa yonsai Showa

Isa yonsai Showa

Isa yonsai Showa

Mitsunori and Hide looking at newly harvested Koi

Mitsunori and Hide looking at newly harvested Koi

A number of the Koi harvested were already sold and left by their owners as azukari.  Each one was carefully measured and photographed in order to update the owners on their progress.

Lifting Koi from the truck

Lifting Koi from the truck

Hidemasa Hirasawa measuring customer Koi

Hidemasa Hirasawa measuring customer Koi

It would be unethical and inappropriate to post pictures of peoples Koi without their permission.  However, this is a close up of a very interesting Koi, each scale having a kado gin type effect on the rear edge.  You can also see it has incredibly deep and thick fukurin too.

Interesting Kado Gin effect on scales of Isa Showa

Interesting Kado Gin effect on scales of Isa Showa

This Showa appears in several pictures above, it is the one that Mitsunori and Hide are admiring in the paddling pool after it was lifted from the pond.  Really quite stunning I am sure you will agree.  I think the size was 74cm.

Isa Yonsai Showa

Isa Yonsai Showa

Sumi close up

Sumi close up

Simply awe inspiring Showa harvested today by Isa, I look forward to the Niigata Nogyosai in 9 days time to see what offerings Isa Koi Farm take.


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