If you’ve watched the video of the 100ton landscaped pond at KoiAqua – http://nishikigoi.life/2016/09/20/visit-koiaqua-100-ton-landscaped-garden-pond/ – you’ll already be aware that there are some serious quality Koi at the facility.

Many of the Koi in the video linked above, and elsewhere at KoiAqua, are ones that Thomas Pohl has selected as tosai, or nisai, and grown on to their current size, much as a breeder would do, selecting ones that will continue to be grown, whilst others are offered for sale.

The Koi below are some that we bowled up during my visit, they may be for sale, they may be sold, they may be ‘tategoi’ and not for sale.  Serious enquiries only should be directed to KoiAqua (www.KoiAqua.de).  All Koi reside in Germany, so only mainland Europe is servicable.

Just a note regarding ages, where I’ve stated an age, it is the age that the Koi would be regarded as if being harvested in Japan this autumn, i.e. a nisai is approximately 16-17 months old.

This particular Showa jumped out at me (not literally of course) as soon as I looked in the pond in which she was swimming.

As the certificate below states, she was 33cm in March 2015, now she is around 57cm as sansai.  The quality is just quite beautiful.


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Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Head close up, Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Head close up, Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Sumi close up, Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Sumi close up, Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Certificate, Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Certificate, Dainichi Showa, Sansai

The 2 Koi below are both Dainichi Sansai, of a similar size, again growing from tosai.

Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Dainichi Showa, Sansai

Dainichi Showa, Sansai

One pond contained around a dozen Isa Showa, purchased in tosai in the spring, and now nisai.  I rank Isa Showa as being right up there with the best, see this piece I wrote last year about Isa nisai – http://nishikigoi.life/2015/10/13/isa-koi-farm-nisai-harvest/.

There were some super nice tategoi being raised by Thomas, here are a few of them….

I write so often about Showa being about sumi, and the first example below had a wonderful patch of super thick and glossy sumi sitting perfectly placed on the shiroji, or white ground, just to the right of the dorsal ride before the dorsal fin.  Whilst in other areas the sumi will fall upon the red we can see the overall sumi quality from that area.

Isa nisai Showa

Isa nisai Showa

Sumi close up, Isa nisai Showa

Sumi close up, Isa nisai Showa

The next 2 Showa both exhibit sumi which is becoming a frequently seen style among Isa Showa.  In the first we can see this sumi clearly wrapping up from below and creating a white border between it and the sumi.

Isa nisai Showa

Isa nisai Showa

Sumi close up, Isa nisai Showa

Sumi close up, Isa nisai Showa

The Showa below was the one that first struck me in the Isa Showa pond, however my immediate thought was it was male.  Sure enough it is.  Again we see that sumi working in almost perfect unison with the beni to create a white line between the patterns.


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Isa nisai Showa

Isa nisai Showa

Sumi close up, Isa nisai Showa

Sumi close up, Isa nisai Showa

When I shared these photographs on Facebook last week someone questioned whether the sumi would come good.  The solid sumi spots at the base of a number of scales on both the above examples, gives enough faith that the sumi will come good, coupled with seeing examples like these below at Isa Koi Farm harvested last October 2015.

Close up of Showa

Close up of Showa

Beautiful thick glossy sumi

Beautiful thick glossy sumi

Another Isa nisai from KoiAqua, this one giving no doubt about its sumi quality potential.  Super thick sumi on this young Koi which works well with the relatively sparse and small beni markings.  Nice neat balanced motoguro rounds of the package.

Isa nisai Showa

Isa nisai Showa

Sumi close up, Isa nisai Showa

Sumi close up, Isa nisai Showa

The above Koi were all being grown in the relatively small ponds at the main retail facility.  At Thomas’ home there are a number of other ponds where larger Koi are grown, including the 100ton pond featured the other day – http://nishikigoi.life/2016/09/20/visit-koiaqua-100-ton-landscaped-garden-pond/.  We spent a few hours there photographing a number of Koi of various ages and sizes, here are a few.

The 2 Hi Utsuri below were bought from Shinoda Koi Farm as nisai.  Shinoda Hi Utsuri have the potential to grow truly huge, check out last year’s harvest pictures here – http://nishikigoi.life/2015/10/18/shinoda-koi-farm-jumbo-hi-utsuri-harvest/.  One thing immediately struck me about these 2 Hi Utsuri, the shade of the red.  They were both incredibly strong and deep in colour, when many Hi Utsuri are on the definite orange side of red colouration.

Shinoda Hi Utsuri

Shinoda Hi Utsuri

Shinoda Hi Utsuri

Shinoda Hi Utsuri

The Hi Utsuri were duly followed by this Benigoi, another variety of which many examples have a tendency towards the orangier side of the red colour scale.

Benigoi

Benigoi

Benigoi close up

Benigoi close up

Benigoi close up

Benigoi close up

The following day Thomas approached me and said, ‘you wanted to know where the red colour came from’, and presented me 2 products, 2 of Koi Aqua’s own products.  The first a bag of Koi Aqua Koi Pond Elements, then a bag of Koi Aqua own recipe Koi food.


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KoiAqua Koi Pond Elements

KoiAqua Koi Pond Elements

KoiAqua Koi Food

KoiAqua Koi Food

Now, I can be as cynical as the next guy when it comes to magical products for Koi and ponds, however I had noticed the difference first, and been presented the reason afterwards, it wasn’t as if I was being given a sales pitch.  Talking to Thomas later in the day he explained that when he got into corals the first challenge was keeping them, the next challenge making them look as beautiful as possible.  If you’ve seen the video of the coral reef aquarium here – http://nishikigoi.life/2016/09/18/visit-koi-aqua-video-coral-reef-display-aquarium/ – then you might be inclined to agree that he has cracked both the challenge of keeping them alive and keeping them beautiful.  Thomas explained he wanted to do the same with Koi, and the 2 products above have helped him do that.  The website for KoiAqua is in German only but if you translate with Google it gives a pretty good idea – http://www.koiaqua.de/Koi-Pflege/Koi-Krankheiten-behandeln-und-vorbeugen/KoiAqua-Koi-Pond-Elements.html.

The images below just some of the range of products that Thomas and his company have developed and distributed around the world for coral reef aquariums.

Pohl's Extra Special - Colour enhancer for corals

Pohl’s Extra Special – Colour enhancer for corals

Storage rack for KoiAqua and Korallen Zucht products

Storage rack for KoiAqua and Korallen Zucht products

A few more Koi which we bowled up to photograph, all grown on from younger ages.

Nagoshi Kohaku

Nagoshi Kohaku

Shinoda Ginrin Showa

Shinoda Ginrin Showa

I found this Ippinya Koyo particularly interesting.  Thomas has many kawarigoi from Ippinya Koi Farm which is based in Aichi prefecture.  I think this particular example was sold and soon to be shipped to its new owner.  Similar, but subtly different, to an Ochiba Shigure in that the background is a fawn brown shade, as seen on some Chagoi, whilst the pattern was a rich orangey brown. A similar Koi one the 90bu Sakura Prize at the 2016 All Japan Koi Show – http://nishikigoi.life/2016/01/30/2016-all-japan-koi-show-sakura-prize-winners/ .

Ippinya Koyo

Ippinya Koyo

Close up, Ippinya Koyo

Close up, Ippinya Koyo

Close up, Ippinya Koyo

Close up, Ippinya Koyo

I posted these pictures on Facebook a couple of days ago – https://www.facebook.com/niigatanishikigoi/posts/1154957691214576 – rapidly got over 200 likes including Futoshi Mano, President of Dainichi Koi Farm, I wonder whether he recognised them as his own?

These Kohaku were purchased in spring as tosai from the parent Super Rikidozan.  For sure a little bit special, I particularly like the one of the left in the first picture.  I believe this is the first year tosai were available from Super Rikidozan, so it will be interesting to see how they develop.


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Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

Dainichi Kohaku, nisai, Super Rikidozan bloodline

This is a Showa bred originally by Hiroshi Mano at Dainichi Toyota.  As you can see from the tape in the bowl over 75cm in length.  When it originally came to Thomas as a tosai it looked like a Kohaku with almost no sumi.

Dainichi Toyota Showa

Dainichi Toyota Showa

Another Dainichi of similar size which, as you may guess from the pectoral fins, is a male.  As soon as it was in the bowl I just said, give me the right female to pair it with, I suspect this could be a great parent fish.  Whilst the pattern may be ‘non standard’, the quality of the parts is quite superb, the body, the beni, sumi and skin.  Look at the thick fukurin in the close up images below.

Dainichi Showa, male

Dainichi Showa, male

Close up of Dainichi Showa, male

Close up of Dainichi Showa, male

Close up of Dainichi Showa, male

Close up of Dainichi Showa, male

Finally another Dainichi Showa which will continue to be grown at KoiAqua.

Dainichi Showa

Dainichi Showa

As you can see, some truly beautiful Koi swimming and growing in the care of Thomas Pohl at KoiAqua.

Still more to bring you from my visit to KoiAqua, in the meantime check out KoiAqua at www.KoiAqua.de.

Thomas will be visiting Japan at the end of October, including visiting the Niigata Breeders Auction which takes place on 1st November – http://nishikigoi.life/2016/09/01/19th-niigata-breeders-auction-1st-november-2016/ – you can contact him with any specific Koi you may be looking to purchase.


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