How Long Do Koi Live For?

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how long do koi live

Question. How long do koi live for? I’ll just start by saying that it is over 200 years. No, we didn’t accidentally double tap the zero on that number. That’s a real two hundred, and years. But is this the normal life span for most koi? Let’s investigate further.

Before you consider purchasing one of these beautiful aquatic creatures for a backyard pond first please consider the time that you may have to invest in looking after them. As you have just read, Koi can survive for an absolutely insane amount of time, much longer than many ordinary pets. Sure, there are some pets that do survive and become a life long pet, such as some parrots and even goldfish like this one. But even those extended lives are no match for koi who can survive for centuries. But not all of them can and do. In what can be considered totally unfair, some breeds live for only a fraction of the time possible.

Who would have thought it? The breed of koi that don’t have a very long life expectancy are the ones that have been specially bred. Yep, we humans shortened their life for our own artistic pleasure. Many of the popular breeds only live for about 25 years, which is but a fraction of what is possible. Believe it or not, the wild ones, untouched by human interference, are the ones that can reach a tender old age. But these are probably not the ones that you should consider getting as a pet. Who would care for them after you have gone?

But there are other factors that can affect the longevity of  koi. Without a doubt, the biggest factor in attaining an old age is the environment in which they live. If the koi is kept in a small pond with bad water and is fed poor quality food they won’t live for very long. Also, if they are susceptible to predators that will drastically shorten their life expectancy. These are all factors in which we can control and get the most life out of our pet. We have answered the first question, how long do koi live? What was the longest ever recorded life of a koi?

Hold onto your hat because this is a really old fish. There was a fish in Japan called Hanako that lived for 226 years. He died in 1977. Just take a moment to reflect how old this pet fish was. He was already 26 years old when the USA made its Declaration of Independence, and it survived through the turmoil of WWII. Surely that is an astounding achievement.

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how long do koi live


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