There is an increasing number of people who are trying to breed koi fish using the dry fertilization technique. However, nothing is better than the classical method where pre-selected koi fishes are allowed to spawn in the pond. And the reason for this is it is quite simple- allow the koi fish to do what comes naturally to them while you focusing on preparing the spawning environment.
The following are the steps involved in the breeding process for Koi fish-
- Selection of Parents:
While choosing the parents for the koi fish you need to identify their genders. Males are slimmer when it comes to the appearance and females are roundish. The male koi which are matured enough have roughness on their grill plates.
One should only choose matured Koi for breeding, whereby the age for them is at least two years. If young koi is chosen for koi breeding, they will produce week off-springs which will hold little commercial value. While selecting the koi, one should ensure that they have no deformities. Also, those koi should exhibit high-quality markings and colors with excellent body conformation.
Some breeders prefer to use two males as against a single female to maximize the output. The process of breeding for koi is quite physical which may result in a lot of injuries and hence the ration of 2:1 should not be exceeded.
- Preparation of the Procreating Environment:
Once the parents are identified, they need to be taken out from the main pool and they should be put in, into smaller pools where they would be properly conditioned for procreating. Males are isolated from the females for at least 1 month before allowing them to procreate, to prevent indiscriminate procreation.
Eventually, over the month, the female becomes rounder and is moved to the spawning pool. After the female is moved, the males are introduced to the pool, once the female gets acclimatized to the surroundings.
The spawning pond should have a maximum area of 6 to 12 sq meters while being thoroughly clean and un-chlorinated. Care needs to be taken to introduce enough spawning material to get the female to lay her eggs. For this, synthetic ropes can be used due to easy handling and lesser damage caused to them. The spawning pond should have good aeration while maintaining the water tranquility and hence strong but silent air filters pumps can be used.
- Actual Spawning: The movements of the female koi attract the male koi, who tries to force over the female as against the wall. When 2 males are involved, the female gets sandwiched between the two. The thrashing & bumping of the females at the hands of the males causes them to release their eggs which fall into the spawning material along with other places. These eggs, due to their sticky nature will stick to the surface they come in contact with. And while this happens, the males also release their sperms on the eggs which fertilize them.
- Isolation & Incubation of Eggs: Once spawning is done, the spawning rope needs to be lifted and needs to be transferred to the hatchery to prevent the eggs from damage and predation. Care needs to be taken to ensure that the hatchery has the same temperature as that of the spawning pool.
- Rearing the Larvae: Most eggs hatch in 4 to 5 days post the spawning process. By 6th day all the eggs get hatched and the newly hatched larvae look like armies of commas. While rearing the larvae, the main challenge comes up when it comes to feeding. The larva needs to be fed at least 5 times per day while ensuring no water pollution.
This is the answer to the question of how to breed koi. Would you like to pick up the highly rewarding hobby of breeding koi, post reading this article?