Male Koi – Pay Attention!

In the upcoming September issue (issue 6) of Koi Talk, Ricky Stoddart delves into opinions on why male Koi fish are often a better purchase. If you can’t wait for your magazine to land in your letterbox here’s a taste of the article!

If you haven’t started buying male Koi I ask, why not?

Since I started in the world of Koi keeping there has been an obsession with Koi keepers wanting female fish for their collections. In years gone by it is true that females had the biggest bodies, better shiroji, and ultimately grew bigger. This has led to big demand for female fish and, therefore, higher prices. Move forward to 2021 and it’s time to change the conversation, pay more attention to male Koi and start getting more bang for your buck!

If you haven’t already started exclusively buying male Koi as many have done with females for several years, I ask you why not? I would encourage you to forget everything you’ve ever been told about male Koi and open your eyes to what you’ve been missing out on. Ultimately if you are trying to build a collection of high-quality Koi you are going to get so much more for your money with males than you are by sticking to a female-only rule. 

The biggest complaint about male Koi for a long time has been the body shape and winding back to when I started Koi keeping, they simply weren’t strong enough. Over my years in the industry, however, I have watched them drastically develop to a level where they simply cannot be ignored. I believe this is primarily down to the development and progression of the major bloodlines and a change in attitude from the breeders. By simply paying more attention to them and investing in them the same way as the female Koi the end results are completely different.

The typical male body shape that is etched into most people’s minds is the long, skinny frame with oversized pectoral fins. There are still plenty of this type of male Koi around just as there are females with pudgy bellies and dumpy frames. So, what does the modern male Koi body shape look like? Powerful is the best word that I can use to describe it because in most cases they are much bigger in stature than equivalent-sized female fish. There is a good reason for this which is the way the weight is distributed over the body.

Male Koi are very muscular in their make-up and tend to carry most of the weight in the shoulder region. Opposingly, females carry more weight all over the body, particularly underneath where most of the egg will reside. So, the net outcome of this is that we now have male and female Koi that exhibit equally as much body volume but carry it differently.

Ricky Stoddart, Koi Talk issue 6

The article picture features two All Japan Koi show winning male Koi of the highest quality. Bred by Dainchi Koi Farm, they are as good as any females. Would you choose either of these over a female Koi?

Look out for the full article in issue 6 of Koi Talk. If you’re not yet a subscriber issue 6 will soon be added to the Back Issues page of our website.

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