If you lurk around the koi chat rooms and forums as I do you pick up a lot of information from people who are just getting started in the world of koi. These soon to be koi addicts are searching for answers and yet don’t have the direct experience of koi culture. The number one topic on their minds is “What kind of koi should I get?”
1) The first decision to make is to whether you want to buy from your local supplier or through the internet. If you have a local koi supplier, go and have a look at the quality of their koi as well as their facilities. Get an idea of how knowledgeable the owner is about koi in general, but more importantly, about the specific koi that he has in stock.
The time of the year to buy your koi. If you want imported Japanese koi, which are the best quality koi usually, then the harvest time in Japan in October and so will arrive in overseas countries in November or December.
2) That they’re swimming smoothly and efficiently, and not with any jerking or unsmooth motions.
3) That the koi is not damaged in any way, looking carefully at their gills, all their scales, their fins, and quality of their eyes. Ensure that there are no damage, ulcerations, or discolored spots.
4) That they’re not in respiratory distress and that their gills are moving evenly and rhythmically.
5) That they’re interacting and socializing well. Koi that swim alone or are hiding in a corner may not be the healthiest or most robust.
6) If you need a closer look at a koi that you like, ask the owner to hold them up close for you to see.
Generally, you should have 1000 L of water for each koi, especially with the Japanese variety. Plus, your pond should be ready before you go buy the koi.
If this is your first ever koi pond and you’re looking at top of the range koi, it may be wise to not buy your entire stock of expensive koi at once. If going for a $10 to $20 koi, then many will be able to afford the whole new family at once.
Dennis is a koi fish enthusiast who finds peace in tending to his koi fish pond. You can get free practical information and personal observation on caring for koi at