I've decided to focus more on Kohaku. Shusui out into chestnut pond, plus some more general thoughts.

I bought a 50m, 1 inch diameter hose to speed up siphoning the hatchlings into chestnut pond; and it worked a treat. I do hope the extra speed of transit didnt harm the fry though. I moved some of them by hand and some I siphoned through a standard garden hose like last time just in case. It's very difficult to estimate how many fry there were - more than my original kohaku spawning, but a lot less than the shiro spawning. I couldnt even guess how many there are - lets just hope they come along nicely in the fry pond.

Ofcourse, it's left me with more spawning brushes and vats to clean.

I've lost count of how many spawnings I've done; must work it out really, and reflect on how they've gone. It must be at least 8 or 9. And each time I have to clean this lot! (and the vat)
Here's the final part of siphoning the showa hatchlings into horseshoe fry pond. the new rectangular tank worked really well - it made a good spawning vat and was easy to drain down and siphon out of. It's also a convenient shape for holding 1inch fry after harvest time, which I plan to test out when we harvest the ponds next time - and the ability to use it for these different things is one reason why I bought it.
There are so few showa hatchlings and the fry pond has space for a bunch more, so I've done another kohaku spawning. Mixing varieties in the same fry pond is not what I wanted to do, because I think it will make 1st selection more difficult. yamabuki would be very easy to tell apart from the showa fry - but they didnt spawn. I decided to go for kohaku in the end because they have no black - so selecting a kohaku will be different from selecting a showa, which has black. the only downside is that a fry from the showa without black may look similar to a kohaku fry - and that could dilute the quality of the kohaku looking fry that I harvest. I'll just have to live with the compromise and see how it goes. There are so few showa hatchlings that I doubt this will be a big problem. And to be honest, the showa female is such a powerhouse that one of her offspring with only red and white, and no black could still be pretty good!

Here's short snippet of the kohaku spawning:

Kohaku spawning - 12th August 2013

Fertilisation rate of at least 50% is satisfying; the number of eggs is lower than I would have thought for a 68cm female, but she's been reared this year for growth rather than for breeding . Now I have her, I can condition her for spawning next summer and I don't expect the number of eggs to be a problem next year.

The kohaku spawning was made up from the same male parents I used in my early summer kohaku spawning, with a new female - a 68cm sansai okawa kohaku. It will be facinating to see what differences if any there are in the kohaku from from this spawning vs the earlier kohaku spawning. All the parent fish have good qualities in their own right, and they all come from good genetic lines - but whether I can raise the fry well, and grow them on, and whether the genetic match between these three actually works is all part of the risk I'm taking with this project. there is a lot of uncertainty. all I can say is, I am drawn to the kohaku variety, and I will be focusing on this variety more in the future. infact, I am already planning my spawnings next year, and kohaku will feature strongly, at least 2 spawnings. This is where I will focus my time and resources. I also want to get the yamabuki going, and ofcourse I'm keen to see how the shusui match goes and this will determine it's place again next year.

I have two good male sanke, but I'm going to give this variety a miss. I would spread myself too thin if I take this on too - focussing on one variety but with other interesting varieties also playing a part will give me a greater chance of achieving my aims. now I've found good quality kohaku and showa females, I will back those as best I can, and also keep the shiro and shusui going where I already have good females. and the yamabuki and kujaku are a bit of a wild card; the female quality is there, but the match up with the males I have just didnt work this year. I am going to rejig my yamabuki males, and I've still not decided what to do with the kujaku.