Almost everyone has already dealt with the question of how old the protégés in the pond can get – if everything goes well.
Do you know Hanako? A Japanese koi legend claims that Hanako died sometime in the 1970s, aged over 220. But there is no evidence or photos showing this metusalem.
If you browse the Internet about the age of carp, you will always come across information that says that 50-60 years is a realistically achievable age. But that is the carp in nature, which apart from one or the other extremely hot summer or very cold winter does not need much to fear.
What about koi in ‘captivity’? Discontinued breeding animals live on many Japanese koi farms, and we know for sure that they are 30-40 years old. In some cases, these are still used for breeding with very good success. But are 30-40 years in European koi ponds realistic? Since the koi hobby only really started to boom in Europe around 20 years ago, it may not be possible to make a final statement about it today. But the fact is that in the ponds of the first stage you can already find one or two Koi that are said to be over 20 years old. Mostly these are varieties that are not very far from the original carp, the Magoi. This is, for example, the Chagoi, the Soragoi or the mixture of both, the Ochiba Shigure. The rule in European koi ponds, however, are koi with a maximum age of 15 years. This could also be related to the fact that the colors of koi, especially in their youth, are full of luminosity and charisma and many ambitious koi lovers give up the koi when the point of maximum beauty seems to have been exceeded.
And How long do koi fish live ? With very good husbandry under constant water temperatures, good nutrition and few disasters, 30-40 years should be possible without any problems in the home pond. But one should consider that every catastrophe (for example high ammonium or nitrite levels) sometimes leaves behind irreparable damage to the koi, which reduces the maximum possible age.