Shubunkin goldfish

A Shubunkin is a lovely breeding variety of the regular goldfish. They are robust, single-tailed goldfish with nacreous scales and a calico pattern.

Shubunkin Goldfish are becoming a common sight in fish markets all over the world! They’re inexpensive and easy to find if you want to add some colors to your aquarium.

 Shubunkin Characteristics

  • Family: Cyprinidae
  • Origin: Japan
  • Social: Peaceful
  • Tank Level: Top, mid-dweller
  • Minimum Tank Size: 50 gallon
  • Diet: Omnivore
  • Breeding: Egglayer
  • Care: Beginner
  • pH: 6.5 to 8.5
  • Hardness: dkH 2 to 12
  • Temperature: 33 to 85 F (1 to 29 C)

Origin of Shubunkin goldfish

The Shubunkin is a long-bodied, beautiful goldfish breed. They were developed in Japan by crossing short and long-fin goldfish with calico telescope goldfish over multiple generations. They were first developed in Japan from crossbreeding the calico telescope eye goldfish, comet goldfish, and the goldfish in 1900.

Shubunkins are hardy, single-tailed goldfish with nacreous scales and a pattern known as calico. They are not discovered in the wild since they were cultivated through human manipulation. Their ancestor, the Crucian carp, is located throughout Europe and Asia. They have facilitated bodies with well-developed and even fins.

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Shubunkin goldfish Appearance

The Shubunkins are calico goldfish; they maintain nacreous scales. The overlapping patches of red, white, blue, grey, and black typically extend to the finnage of Shubunkins. Blue is the most prized color in Shubunkins. Calico originally denoted three colored varieties of goldfish that did not include blue.

The best blues are produced from line-breeding of good blue specimens of Shubunkins. Periodically good blues may be accepted by breeding bronze with “pink” goldfish, but a grey slate color may result instead.

Shubunkins are perfect pond fish because they reach 9 to 18 inches (23 to 46 cm) in adulthood. A Shubunkin is considered an adult at 1 to 2 years of age, even though they live much longer. With proper diet and water conditions, the average lifespan of a Shubunkin is around 10-15 years.


A Shubunkin goldfish is regarded as adults at 1 to 2 years of age, even though they live much longer. The Shubunkin Goldfish lifespan is 10 to 15 years with proper care. That believes they’re kept in a habitat with proper water conditions and a suitable diet.

As with any fish, the exact growth rate depends on water quality, genetics, temperature, feeding rate, and diet. If you’re lucky, Shubunkin Goldfish could have a lifespan that’s even longer. It’s not unusual to see these fish living in well-maintained ponds for more than two decades.

Shubunkin goldfish Colors and Markings

The Shubunkin is distinctive from the Comet goldfish in coloration and more elongated fins. These fish come in multiple patterns, all with calico coloration. Shubunkin goldfish have a spotted color, usually a variety of red, yellow, orange, white, black, and blue.

The Shubunkin has a very recognizable impression when mixed with other goldfish species. Other goldfish types can be crossed with Shubunkins to have fancy goldfish body types with Shubunkin coloration.

Some Shubunkins may have very clear scales or patches of skin that are scaleless, like their Doitsu koi cousins. All of their fins are slightly longer than Comet goldfish. The fins will include streaks of black to match their body markings.

Variants of Shubunkins

  • London Shubunkins have stout bodies and short, rounded finnage equivalent to the common goldfish.
  • American Shubunkins, also called “Japanese Shubunkins”, have a slimmer body shape than the London Shubunkins with deeply forked, pointed tail fins and longer finnage all around. They are seen of shubunkins and ordinary shubunkins in numerous fish stores and markets.
  • Bristol Shubunkins are somewhat of a long broad-bodied goldfish with a well-developed finnage keeping a tail that is large, relatively forked, and rounded at the end, making a shape. The name Bristol shubunkin arrives from Britain, where they are bred from.

Shubunkin Habitat and Care

The goldfish glimpses in stores are offspring of wild carp from Asia. As a member of the Cyprinidae family, they desire to live in slow-moving lakes, rivers, ponds, or ditches. They provide plant material, detritus, small crustaceans, and insects.

As for habitat, Shubunkins are a member of the Cyprinidae family means they like to live in slow rivers, lakes, ditches, or ponds. In Asia, fish kept in ponds are generally adorned with plastic plants, driftwood, and rocks.

These wild carp were not as colorful, and today’s goldfish have been bred to bring out distinct patterns and bright colors. This breeding has not lost the nature of the fish; their behavior and dietary conditions are very identical.


Shubunkin care is fairly concise since they’re relatively hardy. They do well in captivity and thrive in conditions that other fish cannot. Another big problem with these fish, primarily their large fins, is fin rot, caused by poor water conditions.

Like any goldfish, the shubunkin is extremely messy. This means that you will have to perform water changes and clean your tank often than other fish species. This is not too much of a problem but can be time-consuming.

It would help if you did everything to keep the tank clean to avoid parasites and bacteria; perform a 25% water change every two weeks. Several products are available to add to your tank to help get rid of the parasite.

Keeping the tank clean and your fish happy and calm is the most effective way to prevent disease. When fish are stressed, they can become susceptible to illness.

Tank Conditions

The truth is, Shubunkin fish can adapt to smaller habitats. However, they do best in larger ones. Your tank should be at least 45-50 gallons, and they’re technically proper. That tank size is adequate to keep a single Shubunkin alive, but you can do better.

Instead of raising these fish are in 75-gallon tanks if possible. This will provide more swimming room for the fish, which is crucial for their health and happiness.

The depth of the pond should be at least 3 feet to lessen the risk of the pond freezing during the winter and allow for fish to hide from predators and desire denser, warmer, deeper water during cold periods.

Shubunkin Diet and Feeding

Shubunkins are omnivores and can eat available goldfish foods. Stick to a pelleted diet of about 32-35% protein and 5-7% fat. Goldfish are not vegetarians and require animal protein sources for proper growth. Reproductively-active and juvenile fish will need advanced protein and fat.

They will eat pretty much anything you drop in the water. Feed Shubunkin for 3-5 minutes once a day if the temperature is at or below 70F. Above 70F, you will require to provide this fish twice a day.

Occasional live and frozen foods are excellent to add to their diet. You can deliver bloodworms, brine shrimp, Daphnia, and tubifex worms as enriching and healthy treats. Like shelled green peas, Veggies can be fed up to once a day as a treat.

Shubunkin goldfish Breeding

Shubunkin Goldfish breeding is easy if maintained in the proper conditions. They are very friendly animals and prefer to shoal in larger groups. They’re egg layers that like to breed during the spring.

To start the breeding, must have a separate tank set up, called a breeding tank. This tank should be full of plant life to help spawn and catch the eggs. Artificial plants will perform adequately. These fish like to breed in groups of at least five.

To get fish to spawn, slowly drop the water temperature to around 60°F. Then begin to warm the water by 2-3°F per day until it reaches around 72°F.

After fish have spawned, removing the adult fish from the aquarium is critical, not eating their eggs. This can be achieved by setting up a special spawning tank and removing the adults to their main tank afterward.

One spawning can deliver up to 1000 eggs. Fry will appear from their eggs in about 6 days and start swimming and eating. Be sure to feed them a suitable diet for good growth.


Shubunkin Goldfish care is honestly a piece of cake once you have the proper facts. These hardy freshwater fish can handle pretty much anything! Shubunkin goldfish produce wonderful fish for both beginners and developed aquarists.

They can fit into multiple gathering tanks as well as outdoor ponds. Plenty of fish will work well with them, and holding this fish will deliver you with an energetic and active species.

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