First visit today , was to Maruhiro koi farm . Spent a good time looking through the nisai ponds , but couldn't really find anything that jumped out at me , which was slightly worrying as I was looking for the koi for our two show and grows we are talking about running . Don't get me wrong , there was a lot of nice nisai , but not better than we had back in the uk . We explained this to Hinori san , who said he will bring in some more later in the week from his other facility . We then spent a little time looking through the other ponds , again some nice koi , but nothing we were looking for . Then we went to last pond , and started catching up some better quality koi, here I was looking for Azuakri koi , that is koi to leave with the breeder for the summer in the mud ponds . This time we had no problems finding suitable candidates . In fact there was so many , it took a good hour to sift through them to find a couple as the choice was good indeed , and every tie we thought we had finished , Hinori found another one . Whittled my final choice down to 4 . There were a few rub marks from the harvest , but the breeder assured as they would come good in the mudonds and bearing in mind the success we had last year with his fish , I wasn't unduly worried . The first was a nisai kohaku with an interesting pattern and measured 55cm . The next were three sansai , all with good bodies for growing , and we know the pond they will go in gets very good results . Three step kohaku was next and was 59cm , this had a real presence in the vat , and was a definite for the mudpod . You may see a slight mark at the tail in the video , this will be fine by next October . Two more kohaku and sanke both 56cm were next , although slightly smaller ,I know these will still grow to a good size , sometimes ponds can have a bad summer , ph drops , or spawning by unknown male ( happens at all breeders sometime or another ) . The skin and the body are very good on the sanke . Also the kiwa and sashi should start coming good this year . These koi are very nice quality , but at this time of year arnt looking their best , no food for several months in very cold water and indoors . These will be totally different in October when harvested !
Today was going to be hard to see breeders as a lot , if not most would still be breaking down the show , or collecting their koi . So we decided to start around mid day , which worked well as I had some work to do on the website . So after a quick stop at the 7-11 we went off to Marusie koi farm . Once we arrived , we had a coffee and chat with the old man , some how we got around to the subject of holidays , I said my last one was my honey moon , he just laughed and said at Marusei , no holidays , we work 365 a days a year ! Not bad for a guy in his mid 70s ! For those who have visited the farm , and seen the extent of the operation , you can see why . We wondered off to have a look at the koi , unless you have been there , you cant explain the sheer volume that these guys breed , and sooo many varieties . Prices were given and I started looking for sanke , and I struggled a little if im honest , and I didn't want to go into the more expensive ponds so early in the week , that's usually reserved for when I know how much money I have left . So after a while the son joined us , and we explained we would come back later in the week , to look at the higher quality sanke . He smiled and said ok , do you want to see your koi ?? What koi ?? The sansai that were selected for you ? I was intrigued , ive been sent pics from our agents , but don't remember buying any thing . He pulled up a net with 8 sansai , hi utsuri , masuie ogons , and kujaku in . All around 50 cm , he said bigger , but im playing it safe . After a short conversation , it seems that I was sent a couple of pics of some very well priced koi,so with my stress head on in the shop , I thought they were samples so said yeah ill take two boxes , it now dawned on me now , that these wernt sample pics , they were the actual pics , seems like im buying fish by accident now as well lol ! So bearing in mind I had videos and pics , no work was needed , a nice little touch , and 8 very well priced sansai in the bag already , when I thought we would struggle today . ( This is one of the advantages of having agents always based out here ! )
For the first time that I can remember , I could be possibly be accused of not having built a lot of enthusiasm up for coming trip to Japan . With the passing of my mother , and the exruciating pain my knee is giving me , and then travelling half way round the world with two bags and hobbling on a crutch , and once again being awol on my wedding anniversary , you may begain to understand how I felt . Not even arriving at Hanneda airport seemed to lift my spirits ( this wasn't helped by the fact I was offered a lift in a buggy at the plane ,trying to be being a tough guy I flatly refused , then after walking for 15 mins to arrivals and someone saying blimey you should have took that lift mate , my mood wasn't getting any better ! )