In December 2018 I was on a trip to Japan and on the hunt for a fish to enter into one of the Japanese koi show competitions – never an easy challenge!
The koi are always there, but it’s a matter of finding where the dealer is keeping them, what they’ll let you see, what the price is, and ultimately, what they’ll let you buy.
Finding ‘the one’
Over recent years Nishikigoi Niigata Direct (NND) have been doing some great work with Kikusui, creating some really stunning fish. As I was there I was looking round to see what might be hidden away, and I knew that they tended to keep all of their top stock in blue containers with water from the pond pumped through them and flowing over the top. Nine times out of 10 they’d also be covered over, making the task of finding them even more difficult!
As I was looking round I caught a glimpse of this particular Kikusui, and from the moment I saw it I knew it was a prize winner, potentially even a first prize winner. With a bit of negotiation I agreed to buy the fish and left pleased with my new investment.
The presence of a champion
In early 2019 I entered the Kikusui into the All Japan Koi Show on behalf of the client, sure enough it won first – what an accolade! Later that same year also I entered it into another show and yet again it came back with a prize.
Some fish simply have a presence to them with their bone structure, skin quality and pattern just perfect. From the moment you set eyes on one of these fish you know it is something special.