Headquarters, Seattle Laboratory
Koi (Cyprinus carpio koi)
Cyprinus carpio belongs to the cyprinid family of fish and are globally distributed. At least 80 species of cyprinids are used as a fishery resource, and many species are also utilized as a source of protein. The common carp has been cultured for about 2500 years. It is the second highest farmed fish in the world, with production primarily occurring in Asia. C. carpio is a popular angling and ornamental fish and is the third most frequently introduced species in the world. The life history of carp is characterized by flexibility, they have long life span with an extended breeding season (up to 9 months) and the ability to spawn multiple times each year. Carp body proportions can vary greatly, but they can grow up to 12 cm in length and weigh up to 60 kg. The common carp (Cyprinus carpio carpio) typically have small eyes, thick lips, two barbels at each corner of the mouth, large scales, and strongly serrated spines in the dorsal and anal fins. The color of carp varies; in the wild, they are usually olive green to bronze or silvery in color with a paler underside. Koi carp (Cyprinus carpio koi) are an ornamental domesticated subspecies, which are brightly colored with orange, yellow, white and black markings. Koi are important in aquaria and pond culture as pets or show species, and can garner high prices on the ornamental fish market. The WFRC has utilized koi as model cyprinid species in fish health research. Specific pathogen-free koi stocks have been utilized in multiple disease challenges.