The rain of Niigata and not finding a great deal of fish, it took it’s toll on the parties moral. Now in Okayama, the sun was out, the air was fresh and our spirits were high with excitement for the following days. Taniguchi, Omosako, Tamaura, Takigawa, Sakai Fish Farm and Momotaro are on the visit list. Also with the Narita Jumbo Tosai Event on Sunday. The next few days were going to prove interesting.
Today we visited Taniguchi. Based North of Fukuyama it’s a 90 minute journey in the car from Okayama. Situated in a valley between rolling hills. Lush green trees, the foliage seemingly blurs into one huge green pillow. With Spring now here, the area was alive.
Making our way into the office we had a chat with Taniguchi and his staff. Back in Autumn we selected 22 Tosai, we were aware that there were 4 missing so we discussed options as to replacement Koi. No problem Taniguchi said. He arranged his paperwork and had circled the particular Koi that were here, the females, the males, the ones to stay as Azukari and the ones that were missing.
In total out of the 22 Koi. 5 would stay as Azukari for the summer, 4 were missing, and the remaining 13 were a mixture of males and females that would have to the shipped this Spring. In the main, good results.
Taniguchi and staff proceeded to net a pond of Koi for me to select from. The aim was Sanke, Kohaku, and Gin Rin Kohaku. Little did I realise, his Gin Rin Showa had also come on leap and bounds over the last 18 months. They looked really impressive!
Picking out 10 or so Koi. The overall quality was really nice. I always love picking koi at Taniguchi as he does breed some seriously nice Koi, all with great patterns. Taniguchi then priced up all of the Koi in the bowl and sexed them all. All Female he said, one or two I wasn’t confident on but we will see.
Sorting out the replacement Koi first, I then selected one more to make up the box for shipping. Very pleased with the selections, a peach of a Gin Rin Kohaku, two lovely Gin Rin Showas, a Kohaku, and a rather unorthodox yet quirky Tancho Kujaku.
Once I had photographed the koi we were invited inside for lunch. A delicious Ramen was ordered, much appreciated compared to the Japanese style lunch tray they often give us here! Taniguchi caught me looking at some of the magazines laid out on the table, flicking the page over appeared a rather famous Sanke bred by Sakai Fish Farm. Winning many Kokugyo awards in Japan she is very well known, you may recognise her. Taniguchi told me that he had just bought it! He will hopefully use it as a parent fish. I asked if it was for sale for a laugh… thankfully he just laughed and didn’t take me seriously. One of my favourite Sanke’s ever! I really look forward to seeing how her offspring come on. I really hope she performs for Taniguchi-san. Now nearly 90cm!
After lunch, Taniguchi’s staff started to prepare our Azukari koi in a bowl. While this was happening we walked around Taniguchi’s other fish houses. One Koi house the parent fish were being kept, and some spawning had already begun. Not wanting to disturb them, I quickly took a photo and went on to the next fish house. By the looks of it it was a female Kohaku and male Gin Rin. Quite an early spawning but with Taniguchi’s bigger fish house now, he can afford to breed and keep a lot more Koi.
Making our way back to the tosai houses our Koi were already in the bowl ready for viewing. 2 Sanke, 2 Gin Rin Kohaku and 1 Kohaku. All a really good size and female. The Kohaku being the biggest at around 42cm. Being on the food, they were far too active in the bowl to do one by one photos so I grabbed a quick photo of the 5 of them together. The beni quality in particular speaks for itself. These will stay this summer at Taniguchi as Azukari. Fingers crossed we have some good results.
With time ticking on, we didn’t have time to visit any other breeder so we headed back to the Hotel to get some overdue work done!
Pretty much all of the Koi we have chosen are now on the website ready to buy.