Koi Breeder Career Profile

Do you want to work as a koi breeder?

READ: This page helps you to read about the career and the info you need to decide on whether this is indeed the career you want to follow.

RESEARCH: ​Learn about the skills required and minimum subjects to enter this career, as well as the places where you can study further after school.

PREPARE: If you want to plan and prepare for your career, then join the OZT Community! Members have access to tools while chatting with other students and experts from around the world. Prepare to be amazed!


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18 June 2023


What is a koi breeder?

Koi breeders use their skills to breed specifically selected koi fish to sell for profit.

Koi Fish 1

Alternative Names

They are also known as:

  • Koi Farmers


The Koi Breeder career can be found within the following OZT career categories:

  • Animal Care
  • Business

Monster fish?

Koi can grow really large, with a record of 1,25 meters long (4,1 ft)

Pretty penny?

The most expensive koi ever sold made a whopping $1.8 million!

What does a Koi Breeder do?

Groups of animals a Koi Breeder works with

Fish List Icon OZT

What is the level of Interaction with the Animals?

With who does a Koi Breeder work with?

Most Koi Breeders have their own businesses, but those who do work as employees at existing companies will work with fellow staff, including:

  • Supervisors/Managers
  • Operational staff, such as Human Resources, Finance and Maintenance

What does a Koi Breeder focus on?

Koi breeders focus on breeding the highest value koi

What are the daily tasks of a Koi Breeder?

  • prepare the food and feed the koi
  • monitor their growth and health
  • ensure the safety of the koi by building and maintaining proper enclosures
  • create habitats that will help with breeding
  • market and sell the koi
  • communicate with potential buyers
  • transport the koi to buyers and shows
  • run business

Work Environment of a Koi Breeder

Where does a Koi Breeder work?

Environment –

Koi breeders work equal amounts of time inside and outside, depending on what kind of enclosure (tank or pond) the koi are in.

Places of Employment –

​Most breeders start their own businesses.

What is the average annual salary of a Koi Breeder?

The average yearly salary of koi breeders is US$49,000. This will be different, depending on the country, and whether one works for government or the private sector.

Can Working Koi Breeder be Promoted?

Advancement in the field seldom matters, as breeders are self employed.

For those who are employed advancement in the field typically depends on work experience. Promotion to senior levels are available in all government careers. The levels of each promotion might differ from organization to organization, but generally are the following:

Intern > Junior Breeder > Senior Breeder > Supervisor

What kind of difficulties can a Koi Breeder face?

Running a business always has some form of financial risk. You may also be required to work irregular hours including evenings, weekends, and holidays.

Future Growth and Possibilities

The prospects of future growth in this industry is good, as the pet trade has seen a rise in people buying koi as pets.

Availability of Jobs


Which Skills are required by a Koi Breeder?

The skills required for a career as a koi breeder can be divided into two very important groups. The first is the group containing life skills, which are the core skills that are necessary or desirable for full participation in everyday life. The second group is career skills, or the specific skills required to allow a person to enter and operate effectively within a specific career. Some or maybe even all of the life skills can assist in strengthening the career skills, and they might even be the same for specific careers.

Life Skills

  • Self-awareness
  • Empathy
  • Critical thinking
  • Creative thinking
  • Decision making
  • Problem Solving
  • Effective communication
  • Interpersonal relationship
Life Skills

Career Skills

  • Basic animal handling and care techniques
  • Basic business knowledge
  • Basic customer service skills
  • Good health and physical fitness
  • Basic computer literacy
Career Skills

Which Subjects must I have at School to help prepare for this career?

These subjects are the ones recognized around the world. The subjects you choose at school are important as they lay the foundation for further studies at college or university. While still at school, it’s also important to learn more about the animals you will work with, as well as gain some experience.

OZT has a list of various tertiary institutions where you can study further, after school. Each of these institutions also have their own Group page on OZT where you will find the exact subjects they require of you to have passed in school. Keep these requirements in mind, and discuss it with your school, guidance counselor and parents to ensure that you are prepared!

What will I need to Study to become a Koi Breeder?

Minimum Requirements

The minimum educational  requirements for starting a koi breeding business is a High School Certificate, but a College Diploma, or excellent Short Courses will be of more benefit.

Study Focus

A diploma or short courses with a focus in breeding, animal husbandry, zoology, or a closely related area is preferred.

Study Duration

The duration of most diplomas are between 2 and 3 years full time. The duration of short courses differ, but can range from a few days to a few months.

​Possible Career Preparation Paths

If this is your dream career that you want to pursue, then it’s important to plan the way forward.

Why is planning important?

​To ensure that you understand the requirements for your career, and that you are always prepared for the next step on the road towards your dream. A Preparation Path is like your road map to where you want to be.

Possible Paths:

Possible Combined Career Paths

It is possible to sometimes combine two or more related careers. This normally happens when you study and practice a specific main career, but the knowledge and experience gained also help you to have a paying hobby or secondary income career.

Possible Alternative(s):

Stepping Stone Career

Being a koi breeder can also be used as a stepping stone career. A stepping stone career is one which is used to help you get to another career, normally because the other career is too difficult to reach (sometimes due to things like high fees etc). You can begin as a koi breeder after basic short courses and expert guidance (maybe working under a mentor). The money made can then be used to pay for studies towards a promotion or another career, and the experience helps in gaining knowledge. One paying to help get to the other.

Some of the possible paths:

Training and apprenticeship

Even though it is important to study to get into some of the animal careers, most of the skills you will need will be acquired through on-the-job training. This means that you will learn how to perform some of the daily tasks by actually doing it a few times and learning the steps.

If you want to work for a koi breeder first, before starting your own business, entry level positions (or junior positions) require training sessions even before you are allowed to actually perform your job duties. These sessions are offered by the place of employment, after you have successfully applied.

Apprenticeship under a good mentor is also possible where you need to learn skills from a more senior person or expert.

Join the Koi Breeders Group in the OZT Community to learn more and even interact with the educational institutions that will help you secure your dream career!

Average level of education of the people entering the career

High School Certificate 0%
Diploma or Short Courses 0%
Degree or Higher Studies 0%

Licenses, Certificate, Registration and Professional Associations

Certain animal care careers require some form of legal certification to prove that you can indeed do the work, and work with the necessary equipment.

Although not required by law, certifications may help workers establish their credentials and enhance their skills.

Learn more about requirements by joining OZT in the Community.

Professional Associations

  • None added yet

Where can I study further?

All of the above information will help you understand more about the Career, including the fact that there are different paths to take to reach it. But if you are almost done with High School (Grades 11 or 12), you also need to start thinking about further studies, and WHERE you will study.

See the List of Universities, Colleges and Online Training Academies who offer courses towards animal care and training.

Do you want to Contribute?

Do you have information that you would like to contribute to this career?

My Story




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Join the OZT community and career Group

Join us as a special member and learn more about becoming a koi breeder.Members of the Platform have special access to:
  • Info on the best places where you can study (colleges, universities and online)
  • Expertly designed advice to prepare you for the career, and links to places where you can gain valuable experience. For some career experience is necessary, otherwise you wont get the job!
  • Top notch info on each of the different species you will work with
  • Make friends around the world and share knowledge
  • Compete and win points, badges, games, prizes and certificates. Be the best of the best, while you learn and prepare!

If you have decided on being a Koi Breeder, please click on the JOIN OZT button. Members will be directed to the Group, while non-members will be assisted to register first.If this career is NOT the career for you, then you may return to the MAIN CAREER menu.
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