Matsuba are Koi Carp of the Hikari Muji category i.e. metallic Koi of a single colour. The defining feature of Matsuba is their strong scale reticulation (known as fukurin). This is the pronunciation of the scales, highlighted by the cuticle within the skin, giving the fish a net like pattern. When a Koi Carp is described as metallic, the easiest way of defining this is by looking at the fins which will be opaque (i.e., not transparent). The skin of a metallic fish may also look reflective under certain light – not to be confused with Gin Rin.
Matsuba come in several sub-varieties. The first of these is Gin Matsuba, which have a Platinum/Silver background or base skin colour (known as Gin). Next up we have Ki Matsuba which have a Yellow background or base skin colour (known as Ki). Finally, we have Aka Matsuba, which have a Red background or base skin colour (known as Aka).
When selecting Matsuba Koi Carp, you should look for a fish of high quality, with a strong and consistent base skin colour, free of blemishes. The colouration should extend neatly into the fins which will again be consistent in colour and completely opaque. As Matsuba are metallic fish it is important to look for a Koi with excellent skin lustre. The skin reticulation/fukurin of Matsuba should be vivid and pronounced with the base of the scale exhibiting a much darker, almost black highlight.
Matsuba are truly unique and as a result make a fantastic addition to any Koi pond.