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    Senior Member Rank = Yonsai Naoki Atsumi's Avatar
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    The truth about colour enhancing techniques

    Now I don't know how many people will be interested in this, and it would be quite a long story to tell them, but I thought it would be a good opportunity to explain what I know.
    First of all, I would like to talk about the background to the fact that colour enhancement by KOI food is not really necessary, and that KOI is a higher quality product that does not rely on it, but that people's ideas have changed with the changing times.
    In order to talk about all this, we have to talk about the KOHAKU lineage.
    The KOHAKU lineage, starting with TOMOIN, has long been considered to be of the highest quality when it is deep red. Especially in the eastern part of Japan, including NIGATA, there was a time when people were deeply concerned about this and pursued it.
    Therefore, it has been believed that YAGOZEN, one of the lineages that have emerged since then, is a genuine KOHAKU that has a light pinkish red colour when young but naturally turns deep red as it grows to 3SAI and 4SAI. The old OGAWA KOHAKU belongs to this trend, as does DAINICHI who represents NIGATA and its family breeders such as NOGAMI and MARUYAMA.
    It is difficult to explain the texture of KOHAKU in words, because all KOHAKU taken in photographs have the same texture, but I hope that this snapshot of YAGOZEN KOHAKU that I happened to find will give you an idea of the texture of BENI KOHAKU, which was considered to be the best in the past.
    http://kawarigoi.iinaa.net/img402.jpg
    Unfortunately, the KOHAKU, which has long been regarded as one of the best in terms of texture, has a problem with its body shape, with the largest being around 70cm long, and very rarely over 80cm. In the 1980's and 90's a completely different lineage emerged, the SENSUKE.
    SENSUKE originally came from an unknown small breeder in NIGATA, but Mr. Iizuka of MATSUE brought it back to western Japan and spread it. The SENSUKE KOHAKU had a pale and characteristic BENI, but its unbeatable cannonball shape was unrivaled, For a long time, breeders in eastern Japan continued to pursue the quality of the Beni, while breeders in western Japan tried to make the breed bigger. At that time, there were many traditional NIGATA breeders who did not accept that the SENSUKE was not a KOHAKU because it would grow but not become deep red.
    At that time, the goal of many breeders was to pursue the common task of how to put the ideal Beni on the body shape of a SENSUKE. Some breeders, such as TAKEDA of HIROSHIMA, succeeded in this, but no one was able to fix and establish mass produce the breed.
    The common problem they all had was that the quality of the BENI was diminished in the pursuit of conformation, and that the pursuit of BENI prevented them from growing. One day, however, a revolutionary breeder overcame this problem and his name was SAKAI of HIROSHIMA. He was able to overcome the problem by feeding colour enhancers to the SENSUKE.
    Since then, KOHAKU has been over 90cm and even over 1 meter long, and has won the Grand Champion for many years in a row. Since then, not only SAKAI but also MATSUE, the originator of SENSUKE, TAKIGAWA, TAMAURA and TANIGUCHI have been producing a new type of KOHAKU (KOHAKU that turns deep red when fed colour food) mainly in western Japan. (MOMOTARO also belonged to them, but it became slightly different by adding the blood of the huge MAGOI in the latter stage).
    The only East Japan representative who can compete with them is DAINICHI, and they have succeeded in enlarging their lineage in the generation of their sons. In East Japan, MURATA and TORAZO are producing KOHAKU with SENSUKE's blood, but on the basis of East Japan's policy of focusing on BENI.
    Nevertheless, KOHAKU is now the era of Hiroshima's SAKAI, and another achievement of his revolution is that JAMI, SIMI and HIKKUI disease are rarely seen in KOHAKU compared to the past. The reality is that their fans are being keeping KOHAKU with colour enhancing techniques.
    Of course, the main purpose here is to advertise the food, but KENTARO SAKAI mentions in his lineage the importance of the colour enhancement technique.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qtuXM7JnueI
    On the other hand, if you raise a KOHAKU of these types, the usual feeding technique will leave the BENI with an orange colour instead of the bright red characteristic of the SENSUKE. There are a few exceptions, such as males, which naturally turn bright red, but on the whole this is the case.
    The reason why I mention this, albeit somewhat prematurely, is because of the Grow and Show contest that is starting among you because I saw a video of a British bred KOHAKU and I felt a strong sense of SENSUKE blood. (I don't know where he actually got his OYAGOI from), so I thought it would be a good idea to mention it, because I think that the people who have got them will be looking for colour enhancing techniques. However, it is not just a matter of buying them like buying a lottery ticket, but the result of the autumn will make a difference in the technique. I strongly believe that the competition will be a turning point that will have a positive impact on the British KOI society.


    Last edited by Naoki Atsumi; 10-06-2021 at 12:34 AM.

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Rank = Adult Champion samp09's Avatar
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    What techniques can be used to enhance the colour?

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    Senior Member Rank = Yonsai Naoki Atsumi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by samp09 View Post
    What techniques can be used to enhance the colour?
    Thank you for your interest. The basic principle of Nishikigoi keeping is to feed them as much as possible. This is rarely practiced outside in Japan. As we have said many times before, it's not just a matter of following their appetite, but of fine-tuning your senses by checking the faeces, the way they swim, their colour and their mucous membranes.That's why water quality testing with test kits is not considered important in Japan. The reason is that it is natural for nitrite and ammonia to increase with more food. KENTARO SAKAI said in his video that he uses a different formula for water temperatures of 22C and 24C. Saki-Hikari DEEP RED is a top quality feed and is available in the UK, if you can afford it. However, I suspect that the price is excessive. I am not aware of the effectiveness and digestibility of European colour enhancer feeds. That is a matter for you to try and find out. I hope that trial and practice will show this to be the case. To facilitate this fine-tuning, I would recommend sprinkling Spirulina powder on regular food, as some advanced hobbyists do in Japan. This is both cost effective and convenient and allows for flexibility. It is essential that these ingredients are properly digested and absorbed. At a certain point, the feed should be returned to normal. In Japan, this is usually at the end of September. KENTARO SAKAI says that it takes two months to whiten the back ground. It's all about trial and error and fine-tuning, and whoever gets it right is the winner. That's the way we do the things.
    Last edited by Naoki Atsumi; 10-06-2021 at 05:16 AM.

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    Senior Member Rank = Kyusai Spongebob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Naoki Atsumi View Post
    Thank you for your interest. The basic principle of Nishikigoi keeping is to feed them as much as possible. This is rarely practiced outside in Japan. As we have said many times before, it's not just a matter of following their appetite, but of fine-tuning your senses by checking the faeces, the way they swim, their colour and their mucous membranes.That's why water quality testing with test kits is not considered important in Japan. The reason is that it is natural for nitrite and ammonia to increase with more food. KENTARO SAKAI said in his video that he uses a different formula for water temperatures of 22C and 24C. Saki-Hikari DEEP RED is a top quality feed and is available in the UK, if you can afford it. However, I suspect that the price is excessive. I am not aware of the effectiveness and digestibility of European colour enhancer feeds. That is a matter for you to try and find out. I hope that trial and practice will show this to be the case. To facilitate this fine-tuning, I would recommend sprinkling Spirulina powder on regular food, as some advanced hobbyists do in Japan. This is both cost effective and convenient and allows for flexibility. It is essential that these ingredients are properly digested and absorbed. At a certain point, the feed should be returned to normal. In Japan, this is usually at the end of September. KENTARO SAKAI says that it takes two months to whiten the back ground. It's all about trial and error and fine-tuning, and whoever gets it right is the winner. That's the way we do the things.
    Intersting, so we should stop worrying about nitrite and ammonia! and testing water quality
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  9. #5
    Senior Member Rank = Yonsai Naoki Atsumi's Avatar
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    It's just a cultural difference or a basic difference in the way we see things.
    The comments on the video about the old man, which I have already mentioned, all praise him for his unique and finely tuned way of keeping his TOSAI.
    https://youtu.be/5MhmgN1wqkw
    If we could just follow the textbook and everything would be fine, we would just follow the manual, but we Japanese are finding out that this is not the case.
    In other words, what we look for above all else is results, not water quality.
    It is difficult to explain this in words, but for example, if you want to reduce ammonia and nitrite in a mud pond, it is easy to do so by feeding a small number of KOI with a small amount of food. If he feeds 100 KOI with a lot of food and they die, he is a failure, but if he finishes 70 KOI in good condition, he is praised as a person with a keen sense who has found the compromise. That is how we feel about KOI keeping. There are many other differences, but can you understand these?

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    Senior Member Rank = Adult Champion samp09's Avatar
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    Interesting. So maybe put some sort of liquid on the food like a salmon oil, then sprinkle spirulina powder so it sticks to it and feed that maybe? My Isa showa is loosing a lot of its Sumi it seems, possibly because of the warm water. Anything that helps in that department I am all for!

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  12. #7
    Senior Member Rank = Yonsai Naoki Atsumi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by samp09 View Post
    Interesting. So maybe put some sort of liquid on the food like a salmon oil, then sprinkle spirulina powder so it sticks to it and feed that maybe? My Isa showa is loosing a lot of its Sumi it seems, possibly because of the warm water. Anything that helps in that department I am all for!
    Egg whites are commonly used. If you can dry them well, you can just moisten them with water. However, it is no good if you make a lot of them and let them deteriorate.
    https://www.youtube.com/results?sear...=spirulina+koi

    There are many possible cases of degeneration of SUMI. This is an example of SHIRO UTSURI, but there are people who believe that SUMI that sinks once and rises again is real one.
    https://omosako.com/process/29/snap1.html
    https://omosako.com/process/30/snap1.html
    In any case, if the texture of SUMI that the KOI has is excellent, we can only wait for it to appear on the surface and take root.
    Let's talk about the texture and quality of SUMI some other time.

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    Senior Member Rank = Adult Champion samp09's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Naoki Atsumi View Post
    Egg whites are commonly used. If you can dry them well, you can just moisten them with water. However, it is no good if you make a lot of them and let them deteriorate.
    https://www.youtube.com/results?sear...=spirulina+koi

    There are many possible cases of degeneration of SUMI. This is an example of SHIRO UTSURI, but there are people who believe that SUMI that sinks once and rises again is real one.
    https://omosako.com/process/29/snap1.html
    https://omosako.com/process/30/snap1.html
    In any case, if the texture of SUMI that the KOI has is excellent, we can only wait for it to appear on the surface and take root.
    Let's talk about the texture and quality of SUMI some other time.
    The sumi situation is a strange one as it was so thick and strong but seems to have faded In a lot of places currently, as I said before, I believe its maybe due to the heat as my pond is around 24 degrees and gets direct sunlight pretty much all day.

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    Senior Member Rank = Yonsai Naoki Atsumi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by samp09 View Post
    The sumi situation is a strange one as it was so thick and strong but seems to have faded In a lot of places currently, as I said before, I believe its maybe due to the heat as my pond is around 24 degrees and gets direct sunlight pretty much all day.
    Excellent! Can you keep the temperature at 24 degrees for a long time? Of course you have to take it one step at a time, but try to increase the amount of food (as little as possible and as often as possible). There are some crazy hobbyists in Japan who feed more than 10 times a day, even at night with a light! So let's forget about SUMI for a moment: it seems that the owners of SHIRO UTSURI in the two photos were not so pessimistic about the loss of SUMI and concentrated on making it bigger first. I want to say this out loud again and again, what we are aiming for is the shape and luster of that old man's overcrowded KOI. This is one of the few success stories outside Japan.
    https://youtu.be/IBn4VfwslCk
    It is not because he is a South African that he could do it.
    It can be done in the UK or by Europeans. It's just that what is taught and transmitted is a bit odd. Compare the body shape of KOI's in the UK. There are so many KOI's that are the wrong shape. This is due to inadequate water temperature and overfeeding. Please try to fine-tune the body shape so that there is more meat in the shoulders, back and tail tube! In Japan, no one has a microscope, but professional breeders often do, because they keep their KOIs in overcrowded mud ponds. Someone in the UK must have seen this and misunderstood the need for a microscope. What you need is information about the average Japanese hobbyists. And they are not rich, they are excellent. What they have in common is the ability to judge digestion and the art of fine tuning.

    The reason why I dare to say this is because I want to share the same pleasure with you. Wouldn't it be great if your KOI got bigger and better? If it's more fun to examine it with a test kit or a microscope, then give up. Our basic attitude and philosophy is how to improve our fine-tuning ability so that we don't need to have such things in our hands.
    Last edited by Naoki Atsumi; 14-06-2021 at 02:03 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Naoki Atsumi View Post
    Excellent! Can you keep the temperature at 24 degrees for a long time? Of course you have to take it one step at a time, but try to increase the amount of food (as little as possible and as often as possible). There are some crazy hobbyists in Japan who feed more than 10 times a day, even at night with a light! So let's forget about SUMI for a moment: it seems that the owners of SHIRO UTSURI in the two photos were not so pessimistic about the loss of SUMI and concentrated on making it bigger first. I want to say this out loud again and again, what we are aiming for is the shape and luster of that old man's overcrowded KOI. This is one of the few success stories outside Japan.
    https://youtu.be/IBn4VfwslCk
    It is not because he is a South African that he could do it.
    It can be done in the UK or by Europeans. It's just that what is taught and transmitted is a bit odd. Compare the body shape of KOI's in the UK. There are so many KOI's that are the wrong shape. This is due to inadequate water temperature and overfeeding. Please try to fine-tune the body shape so that there is more meat in the shoulders, back and tail tube! In Japan, no one has a microscope, but professional breeders often do, because they keep their KOIs in overcrowded mud ponds. Someone in the UK must have seen this and misunderstood the need for a microscope. What you need is information about the average Japanese hobbyists. And they are not rich, they are excellent. What they have in common is the ability to judge digestion and the art of fine tuning.

    The reason why I dare to say this is because I want to share the same pleasure with you. Wouldn't it be great if your KOI got bigger and better? If it's more fun to examine it with a test kit or a microscope, then give up. Our basic attitude and philosophy is how to improve our fine-tuning ability so that we don't need to have such things in our hands.
    yawn, really tedious now
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    Extreme Koi Member Rank = Rokusai AlanF's Avatar
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    A bloke who had been to Japan once told me the Super Grand Champion Koi breeder told him the secret to his success was to put a shaved carrot up his arse for 24 hours and then urinate in the pond. True strory

  20. #12
    Did he give you any pictures Alan?

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    Senior Member Rank = Sansai PeterDunn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlanF View Post
    A bloke who had been to Japan once told me the Super Grand Champion Koi breeder told him the secret to his success was to put a shaved carrot up his arse for 24 hours and then urinate in the pond. True strory
    something like this I hope!
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion Ajm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterDunn View Post
    something like this I hope!
    Don't even wanna know what you typed in for that lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlanF View Post
    A bloke who had been to Japan once told me the Super Grand Champion Koi breeder told him the secret to his success was to put a shaved carrot up his arse for 24 hours and then urinate in the pond. True strory
    Quote of the year !!! :-)
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    Quote Originally Posted by spongebob View Post
    quote of the year !!! :-)
    +1 :d :d :d
    ......

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    Senior Member Rank = Yonsai Naoki Atsumi's Avatar
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    I found a video of KOI where the colour enhancer is clearly working outside of Japan.
    I asked them about it, though I didn't get a clear answer.

    I am not sure who kept them and for what purpose and how as they are not English speakers, but basically I think those are well grown.
    This is the kind of shade that can be achieved by using colour enhancers in a timely manner, and it is an indication that this is possible in Europe and the UK.

    In addition, some of them also show the typical side effects of colour enhancers, mainly a yellowish tinge to the nose and cheeks. However, none of them seem to be suffering from serious skin burns. In the past, enhancer foods derived from animal proteins (e.g. Krill and Shrimp) often caused skin burns, which did not recover until several years later. Today's spirulina-based colour enhancers are much easier to use than in the past.

    What we can learn from this is what type of KOI is best suited to be fed with colour enhancers? And at what temperature and for how long should they be fed? And so on.
    We also need to know when to stop the treatment and how to bleach the yellowed nose.

    We will see what happens when the colour enhancers are applied, and then hopefully some of the British hobbyists will put them into practice, and the debate will deepen.

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    Senior Member Rank = Yonsai Naoki Atsumi's Avatar
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    He's been feeding colour enhancers since July and today he's going back to normal food and starting to bleach the skin.


    This is what it looks like before he start enhance the colours.
    There are still a lot of KOIs with pale coloured BENI.

  32. #19
    Tried it last year for 12 months, it didnt work

    Quote Originally Posted by AlanF View Post
    A bloke who had been to Japan once told me the Super Grand Champion Koi breeder told him the secret to his success was to put a shaved carrot up his arse for 24 hours and then urinate in the pond. True strory

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  34. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlanF View Post
    A bloke who had been to Japan once told me the Super Grand Champion Koi breeder told him the secret to his success was to put a shaved carrot up his arse for 24 hours and then urinate in the pond. True strory
    Was he standing behind him when he said that? And was he sure it was a carrot he put in there?
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