The Byodo-In Temple Koi

On a visit to O’ahu in November, I went to the Valley of the Temples in Kaneohe with my cousin. The Byodo-In Temple has two acres of koi ponds that have two resident black swans and lots of small snapping turtles as well.

The temple is a half-size replica of a 950-year-old temple in Uji, Japan, near Kyoto. It has appeared in episodes of Hawaii Five-O and Magnum, P.I., as well as standing in for South Korea in the first season of the TV show Lost.

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Here are a few koi: orange-and-white, orange-and-black, and a calico!

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More koi! (The koi ponds cover two acres)

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Here is one of the swans. Add a black swan to orange and white koi to get the calico palette!

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‘Calico’ Koi

Calicos truly come in all colors! Here are ‘calico’ koi:

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Calico Koi

I’ve seen people on the internet refer to koi with these markings as calico. I’m sure there’s a more technical word for this among fish hobbyists, so I’ll keep looking. Aside from the range of colors and patterns, what I love about koi is the impression I have that they are conscious, curious and deliberate.

The collection of koi in this lovely pond at Fashion Island, Newport Beach, seem tame. That is, much closer to being a pet than to being sushi I’d want to eat.

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Calico Koi #2