Sunday, February 24, 2013

Batik Scale Type

If you try, you can easily learn something new about goldfish every day!  Today while researching about the mirrorscale goldfish (some claim this is a koi-goldfish hybrid, while others claim it is pure goldfish), I came across some photos of a scale type I had never heard of before. 

All the fish pictured were produced by a goldfish breeder in Indonesia, by the name of Hermanto.  A simple Google image search for "batik ranchu" will turn up photos of his fish that have been posted and discussed at length on several different online fish forums. 

The scales appear to be of all different sizes, and grow in many different shapes and even in different directions on the fish.  It makes for a really interesting, almost optical illusion-looking pattern.  Hermanto calls them batik after a traditional style of Indonesian clothing, because he says the scale pattern reminds him of those textile patterns.  He thinks this scalation is not specific to ranchu, but could hypothetically occur on many different types of goldfish.  In fact, in my digging online I also found a photo of a common goldfish with a very similar patch of backward-growing scales on one side.  So it seems to be something that can happen to varying extents on lots of different goldfish varieties.

The two image sequences above show the same fish; it decolored from the green fry color into the red and white color you see in the second sequence. 

Reactions are mixed, but there seem to be more people who like it than those who dislike it.  So what do you think?  Awesome or ugly?  Personally, I think it's really cool.  Of course, it's an admirable fish who has perfectly arranged and uniform scales, but I think this scale pattern is also nice in its own way and should be developed more!  Because, at the end of the day, it's the amazing variety of form in goldfish that makes them so unique and special. 


  1. WOW! I have never heard of this before, This is kinda nuts! I think it's pretty cool, however it looks so unnatural

  2. Thanks for sharing - I really like this!

  3. Cynthia at ECR produced some beautiful batik scale ranchu this year. I ordered one for my display tank, she's stunning and what a neat scale pattern to have!