When we carry out first selection (at around one inch) we only keep a small percentage from each spawning to put back into the mud ponds to grow on for another month. What this means is that we need less pond space for those fish to grow and we can therefore free up some of the nursery ponds to carry out a second spawning.
A couple of weeks ago we spawned Shusui and then last week, whilst we had our three students on work experience with us, they helped us set up for our second round of spawnings on the Thursday and on Friday morning the Yamatonishiki set and second Showa set spawned.
The Shusui went out into the mud pond last week and today, the Show and Yamatonishiki went outside too. This means that all of our fry ponds are full again.
This is the second Showa set spawning last Friday
The eggs on the spawning ropes
The fry after they have hatched and swum up for their first gulp of air
Mark draining down the spawning tank after having removed the spawning ropes
Mark gently washing the fry down into the collecting bowl
The fry gathered in the collecting bowl
Lots of fry!
Lots of mad people hunched over bowls – what can we be doing??!!
Ahh yes – here’s Sue selecting the black fry from the white ones. The black ones get sucked down a tube into a collecting bowl.
I cannot explain to you how frustrating it is trying to sneak up on a koi fry so that you can suck it down the tube. The annoying creatures just keep swimming away from you and boy are they fast!!
This type of selection is only carried out on Showa and Shiro Utsuri fry as we don’t keep any offspring from these spawnings who don’t have black on them. You can see the black on the baby koi even at this size and so by selecting just the black ones to be grown on, they can get the maximum benefit from the extra space in the mud pond and also won’t get eaten by the often faster growing siblings without black.
Thanks Myles and Sue for giving up your time to come and help us today.