Today we were in for a few huge highs, and an abysmal low. It was one of the best days we’ve had in Japan, but also one of the worse !
The previous night while having dinner and a drink we bumped into Tomoya Mochida of Hoshikin Koi Farm. We talked at length about their koi, and the koi we purchased last year. It was great to catch up, Tomoya is a real character and always seems full of energy, laughing and joking about anything and everything.
Tomoya spoke with Hoshino-san (the boss!) and invited us to a harvest bright and early in the next morning. We believed the harvest to be Sansai Kohaku and Showa. But on arriving there in the morning, we noticed these koi were certainly not Sansai. The water was relatively clear and you could make out the varieties and patterns on the koi easily.
As the net started to get pulled through the water, koi started to congregate in shallower waters. If I remember rightly the smallest koi here was 75cm, the larger ones being near 90cm. It was clear to see these koi were big, even when they were 20 or so meters away.
Katsuyuki Hoshino AKA “the boss”, his mother, and Tomoya Mochida the only member of staff rounded up the koi very efficiently. No words were needed and they all knew exactly what to do, and when. As the koi started to break the waters surface it was quite a sight, the famous Hoshikin beni in all it’s glory. These koi were in fantastic condition. There were around 20 koi in the mud pond, a luxury holiday, treated like royalty.
On arriving back to the farm, it was time to unload the koi from the holding tanks on the truck. Now in clear water, and a bowl. It was easy to see why these koi had the luxury of a large mud pond, and an extremely low stocking level.
Absolutely breathtaking Kohaku, Showa and Tancho Kohaku. The koi continued to be moved from the truck, to the bowl, then a larger bowl for Hoshino-san to get photographs of the koi.
Tomoya informed us that the majority of these koi are actually their koi, not customers. The large Tancho was in fact a customers, and he actually made an appearance in the koi house just as it was unloaded from the truck. Good timing, he was a happy man! A whopping 85cm.
In an adjacent mud pond, an equal size of the one just harvested there were just 7 koi. All looked to be in excess of 80cm and from what we could see had patterns to die for. Hoshikin noted it was their No.1 mud pond.
Huge thank you to Hoshikin for the invite to such a personal intimate harvest. Sometimes at harvests it is very busy with people, today it was us, the breeders, and the koi!
Hoshikin magic & serenity.