Operating a successful koi pond is expensive. A lot of people think that many koi dealers are actually millionaires given the high costs of the individual fish they sell. While this isn’t true in most cases, there are some things you can do to greatly maximize the costs and benefits of owning a koi pond.
Learn How To Identify Special Koi
The difference between a wealthy and average koi dealer is their ability to differentiate regular koi from specimens that are exceptional. This takes a keen eye and profound understanding of koi in general. For example, a master koi breeder can inspect a pond full of 200 fish and within less than a minute can identify fish which are the cream of the crop. This skill can be honed by traveling to and spending time in Japan, the land from which koi breeding originated. The reason is because Japanese breeding techniques are quite different from the West. After spending some time around Japanese koi breeders you will develop a good idea of what works and what doesn’t.
Price Your Koi Based On The Breeder
The breeder you purchase your koi from is extremely important, but most amateur koi enthusiasts are content to buy fish from the first dealer that comes along. Experienced breeders find a dealer they can trust, and stick with them. Good dealers will sell koi that have quality skin, patterns and most important of all, longevity. Their fish have specific characteristics that veteran breeders look for, and they are always sold at a reasonable price.
Know The Market
Understanding the market, and what certain specimens sell for, is a key ingredient to success. An experienced koi breeder who identifies a special fish will always refuse to buy it if the dealer sells it a price that is too high, as it won’t be possible to make a profit off of it. This is only possible if you know the market like the back of your hand, and can look at a fish and get a good estimate of what you can get for it. Remember, the general rule of thumb in business, any business, is to sell a product for more than it’s worth and when you buy get it for less than its worth.
For instance, if you spot a 35 cm Tosai that a dealer is selling, and he tells you he wants $2,000 for it, chances are he is trying to overcharge and the fish is actually worth less, even if it is an exceptional specimen. But an experienced dealer would know this, and would either attempt to haggle with the dealer to get it at a lower price, or then refuse to buy if they couldn’t. Being able to walk away from a deal is the key to success in any business, whether it be koi breeding or otherwise. Successful koi breeding, like any other field of endeavor, takes years of experience and the ability to learn from mistakes.