Understanding Koi Varieties: Vol. 1

We have had many requests for a blog dedicated to explaining the different varieties of Koi. We thought that it would be a great idea to familiarize our customers so that they are most educated on selecting the Koi that will be perfect match for their ponds and in return educating their customers.

The top three varieties in Japan are referred to as the “Go-Sanke”(also known as Kohaku, Sanke, and Showa). These are the most popular varieties in Japan and around the world. Not to mention these Koi are the most produced variety in Japan! Kohaku is also known as the King of all Koi.

These Koi come in varieties known as Doisu (Scaleless) and Ginrin (Diamond Scaled).

 

Kohaku- The King of Koi

Kohaku have white (Shiroji) based bodies with red (Amber) patterns -referred to as Hi:

Below are pictures of some examples of different styles:

Tancho Kohaku (Red circle patch on head)

Inazuma Kohaku (Lightning bolt pattern)

Two Step: Two patches of red pattern

Three Step: Three patches of red pattern

Sanke “Taisho Sanshoku”

Sanke have white (Shiroji) based bodies with red pattern (Hi) and black spotted patterns:

Below are pictures of some examples of different styles:

Tancho Sanke: Red (Hi) circle patch on head with black (Sumi) pattern

Doitsu Sanke: Scaleless (leather skinned)

Inazuma Sanke : Red (Hi) Lightning bolt pattern

Ginrin 5-Step: Diamond scaled with five plates of red (Hi) pattern

Showa “Showa Sanshoku”

Showa have white (Shiroji) based bodies with a black wrapped pattern (Maki Sumi) along with a red pattern (Hi):

Below are pictures of some examples of different styles:

Hi -Mostly Red (Hi); Little White (Shiroji)

Kindai -(Modern) Have more white base (Shiroji) then the red (Hi) and black (Maki Sumi) pattern

Tancho Mark- (Red circle pattern on head) and a black wrapped pattern (Maki Sumi)

Kin- Metallic

Doitsu- Scaleless (leather skinned)

Gin Rin- Diamond scaled