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Cha Utsuri Development

Last year I visited a pond that contained a wonderful example of a cha utsuri, I recently shared a video of the koi on social media and it got me thinking...

I'm sure I have a picture of this when purchased in Japan?

After some digging around I managed to find a couple of shots I took when it was lifted from the murky waters of a heavily stocked pond in the smaller fish house at Marusei Koi Farm. If I remember correctly, Yoshiyuki hadn't seen the koi harvested and was assessing it for the first time as she was placed in the bowl...

Being honest, I don't have much knowledge about what to look for in a potentially good cha utsuri. One knows how they 'should' look when finished, but as to the indicators - they're beyond me!

Logically, I suppose I'd come at it like I was looking for a good chagoi...focusing on body, head shape, scalation, clean skin and even colour. The final jigsaw for a cha utsuri would be the sumi and how this compliments the koi...

Whether or not it thickens up, I'd leave to the gods!

In this instance, from bowling the specimen we can see those traits are definitely present. If you enlarge the shots (apologies about the quality) you can see the even scalation and colouration, the strong back bone, thick peduncle, pleasant head shape and the placement of the sumi is particularly exciting - interesting yet complimentary. If my memory serves, the koi was brought on the proviso of...

"Well, if the sumi comes, it's a bonus!"

Below is a screenshot from the video I took last year, because the koi is in a similar position, it makes for an easier comparison.

The gamble certainly paid off! All of the positive 'chagoi attributes' the koi displayed in Japan have continued to develop and elevate this koi to a very high standard indeed. BIG BONUS: The sumi consolidated! Not only that, but to have the presence of attractive menware (sumi that divides the face) is particularly lovely! The skin quality has developed an almost metallic golden glow to it, truly stunning in my book!

Here's a shot taken on the day that better highlights her wonderful attributes (the pecs appear much smaller in this shot - blame me!) Not bad at all for 86cm, I fancy she'd do alright in a show...

- Koi like this could put me off go-sanke (...almost!)

*Thanks to Nikki Murrell of Imperial Koi for access to the pond and koi.


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