Cypriniformes (Carp, Minnows)
HABITAT AND RANGE
They are native to Europe but can now be found throughout the world, except in the poles and north Asia. They live in small or large, manmade or natural, slow or fast moving reservoirs but prefer slow-moving, large bodies of water with soft sediments. The common koi, however, is now most popular in small ponds and water gardens.
They are a variety of the common carp. They can grow from 30-60cm. The most popular variety of koi has a red and white body pattern, although some also have black and yellow colorings. They have two barbels on each side of their head and serrated dorsal and anal fin spines. These fish are the largest members of the minnow family.
They are omnivorous, eating mostly invertebrates like mollusks and crustaceans. They also eat a variety of insects, fish eggs, fish remains, plant tubers and seeds.
REPRODUCTION AND LIFESPAN
These fish can live up to 20 years old. They spawn in late spring, early summer in shallow water. The females scatter the eggs that stick to vegetation, and the males fertilize them externally. After this, there is no more parental care. The eggs hatch in about a week. Temperature, food availability and stocking density all affect individual growth.
They feed by sucking up sediments, then ejecting it and selectively eating particles while they float in the water. They are generally found in a school, although larger ones may be more solitary.