Species group: Koi
Other common names:
Scientific name: Cyprinus carpio
Although the Showa Sanshoku Koi shows the same three colors as the Sanke, it is a totally different variety. The Showa is one of the most exciting varieties because it can change strongly through the years. Various Showa types have been developed, including Kindai Showa, Hi Showa, Matsunosuke Showa, and Kage Showa.
This Koi is black based instead of white and therefore we can see different patterning in mainly the black color. Where they can be best described as spots on the Sanke, on a Showa they are far more present as a patterning. Furthermore they have a different bone structure which can easily be recognized due to the higher backbone. On a Showa the black on the head is actually a good thing; dividing the face in two, it adds a lot of charisma to a Showa. On the pectoral fins the black shows up in a fan shaped coming from the base. It is called motoguru.
Koi are peaceful, social fish but can cause stress to other fishes because of their constant activity. They are compatible with similarly active and constantly feeding species like the Goldfish.
Koi grow large, up to about 3 feet or more, making an outdoor pond the only suitable habitat for them. Ponds should be at least 500 gallons in capacity, requiring larger sizes for bigger and more mature communities. For areas that freeze in the winter, pond depth should be at least 4 feet, and heaters must be provided to prevent the pond from completely freezing over. Water should be well oxygenated and efficiently filtered because of the fish’s tendency to excrete large amounts of waste. Outdoor ponds should be protected from predators like cats and raccoons, and from winged fish-eaters like herons, hawks, and eagles. Net or wire screens are recommended, so are shade trees to cover the pond from airborne predators. Floating plants like lotus and water cabbage, as well as bamboo canopies, are often used to provide shade and some protection for the fish especially in the summer.