A Koi pond can contain a dazzling array of quality koi carp. Some sport multiple bright colors, while others are monochromatic. Some boast a metallic sheen, while others have understated, matte bodies. Part of what makes a Koi pond so enchanting is the variety in appearance of the Koi fish who inhabit it.
While many people are drawn to the most brightly and festively colored Koi, there is something to be said for fish with more subdued appearances. In their simplicity, they add a touch of elegance to a collection.
The Ochiba Koi fish is one breed with this subtle yet tasteful appearance. The term “Ochiba” means “leaves of autumn on the water” in Japanese, and this Koi’s gorgeous appearance fits its poetic name.
Read on for more information about the origins, appearance, temperament, and care-taking of the Ochiba Koi fish. Note that you can learn more about adding Ochiba koi to your pond by checking out our koi providers page.
In the mid-90s, the golden-brown chagoi koi and the gray Soragoi were bred, and the Ochiba Koi was the result.
The chagoi is a friendly species of Koi carp that comes in various shades of brown. Its scales are sometimes Ginrin, which means they sparkle in the sunlight. It can also have a Fukurin effect in which its scales are outlined in black, giving it a fishnet appearance.
The Soragoi is another highly sociable breed of Koi fish. This breed sports a solid color of silver or gray. These fish are also often Ginrin, giving them a sparkly finish.
Ochiba Koi have a solid base color of light blue-gray. A brown pattern overlays this base color. This appearance provides the origin for the Ochiba’s name: the brown markings are the autumn leaves floating on the “water” of the bluish base.
The pattern on an Ochiba Koi can vary from a reddish copper tone to a deeper, darker bronze shade.
Ochiba Koi fish come in both Doitsu (fully scaled) and Wagoi (partially scaled or scaleless) varieties. The scales on the base color of the Ochiba are usually reticulated, so the body of the Ochiba often has a fishnet effect.
Being bred from two of the most friendly kinds of Japanese Koi, the Ochiba Koi fish is one of the friendliest Koi breeds. Many Koi collectors introduce Ochiba into their Koi ponds for the express purpose of encouraging the pond’s population to be more sociable.
Ochiba Koi will often be the first fish in the pond willing to eat out of their human’s hand. They learn to recognize their feeders quickly and are highly likely to jump when the feeder comes into sight.
Ochiba Koi fish require the same kind of care as most other breeds of Koi. These fish are omnivores, so it’s essential to provide them with a healthy mix of plants and animals in their diets.
Ochiba Koi thrive best in artificial cold-water ponds. They are resistant to most cold weather as long as the pond’s bottom does not freeze and enough surface remains open for gas exchange.