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Monday, May 13, 2013

MerLion Arowana Blog 10 - Ranchu Journey II - Tokutake San

MerLion Arowana Blog 10 - Ranchu Journey II - Tokutake San

  • Behind this house (in Hamamatsu), were the fruits of more than 50 years life dedication of a ranchu breeder - The late Tokutake San.

    Tokutake San was named by many in Japan as “The Father of Ranchu”.  He has dedicated more than fifty years of his life in improving the bloodline and promoting the breeding of Ranchu in Japan. He did so by distributing some of his specially selected Ranchu to other breeders for strengthening the Ranchu bloodline in Japan. Due to his age, Mr. Tokutake has stop breeding for commercial purposes and breed purely for his own enjoyment (during the time when I met him. 

    Sharing of fish bloodline is something that I have not seen happening in the arowana industry. This is understandable as business competitive advantage is important to the surviability of an company. But again, doesn't the ranchu industry face the same predicament? If so, why and how can the Japanese do it and not any other nations?

    The Japanese Koi and Ranchu breeders has clearly proved that only through unity...with intergrity can one country's fish industry truly excel!

    What you are about to see ...I hope you can undertand and appreciate that these ranchu are very special. Why? "these ranchu are liken to be his grandchildren"..quoted Haru San. At the age of 90, you can understand Tokutake San would only took pleasure of what was the best from his many years of breeding.

    Please allow me to present you the Tosai ranchu parent of Tokutake San...10cm -12cm. I was lost of words when i seen them. You can never imagine the joy during that moment and the sense of privilage to be able to be there in person.

    Tokutake San ranchu bloodline was well known to be of very thick “backbone”, wide “eye to eye width”, very strong “tail seat” or “saucer” and large in size. Usually, they were very strong “swimmer”. 

    Swimmer? Is this part of the bloodline? Yes...the body overall structure and inherit ability to propel itself gracefully; and yet able to display its diginity.

    This is something I hope to achieve in arowana.

    I visited him during the Altumn in 2001 (if I remember correctly). His ranchu has already grown to be very huge size. At that time, he has already reduced the food feeding amount to his ranchu.

    This was one piece that he has refused to part with him. It has a special "design" and the "trunk" to the tail was so thick! 

    This piece was packed.

     Look at the trunk and the size of the tail!! ( top ranchu)

     Look at the width of the ranchu!

    This one has a long body.

     This piece was the second piece that I packed! Tokutake San only willing to part with two of his 20-30 pcs of parent ranchu.


    This ranchu....perfect!

    Another shot of that same rachu that clearly display the nice body curvature.

     Nice bending that shows the trunk and tail connection.

     The healthy and shinning scale.

     Look at their Trunk again!

    Tokutake San passed away at the age of 92 years old. But his ranchu bloodline continue to lives in many Japanese ranchu today...especially ranchu from Hamamatsu!

    The lesson that I learned from him is to dedicate onself not only to one fish...but also to one fish community!

    I hope you have not only enjoyed the ranchu photos but also appreciate the work of fish breeders.

    1829hrs 11 may 2013