Shubunkin Goldfish

Every Shubunkin from Blackwater Creek is unique because of their calico colors, which consist of a white and powder blue base overlaid with big blocky orange or red spots and smaller black speckles. They can grow up to 10-12 inches. Our Shubunkins are a popular way to get introduced to pond keeping, and are also a great offering in your pond store. They cohabitate with Koi well and can thrive in an outdoor aquarium or an indoor pond.

Shubunkin Goldfish are a favorite of hobbyists because they come in so many beautiful colors and patterns. Shubunkin's come in, Powder Blue, Red Pattern over Blue, Orange with Black Colors and many more.


The name ‘Shubunkin’ is Japanese and roughly translates to “red brocade”. Shubunkin are similar to Common Goldfish and Comets, but with the characteristic Calico color pattern. Like all calico-colored Goldfish, the Shubunkin has clear nacreous scales. Metallic-scale Goldfish have their color pigments embedded in the scale itself. Nacreous-scale Goldfish have pigment in the skin below and the color is seen through the clear scales. Black pigment lying deep within the skin appears blue to our eye. Ideally, a Shubunkin has a bluish background topped with markings of red, orange, yellow, or brown plus black spots.

Shubunkin’s are often selected for side-view (aquariums), but many are also kept in ponds. The Shubunkin was first developed in Japan and was improved upon in America during the early 1900’s. Later, English breeders bought this variety to its pinnacle. Today, three types of Shubunkin are recognized based by the shape of the tail fin:


-The American Shubunkin has long fins, forked tail and the tips of the tail are pointed like a comet.
-The Bristol Shubunkin also has a forked tail, but the ends of the tail fin are rounded and the tail resembles the letter ‘B’ in profile..
-The London Shubunkin has a short round tail fin reminiscent of the common goldfish.

Goldfish In Space

A variant of our Shubunkin, with a fan tail, was sent into space aboard the last ever Space Shuttle Atlantis, at a cost of $30,000 for less than a gram of water! Read more about the Goldfish in space experiment that Blackwater Creek was proud to be a part of. Read Full Story