Pearlscale Goldfish
  Origin - China Difficulty - Intermediate
  Availability - UnCommon Adult Size - 5 to 7 inches
  Price - Cheap Scales - Nacreous

 

YOUTUBE Video:

  Yellow Pearlscale - Show quality yellow and white pearlscale.

  Fat Fish - Several show quality adult Pearscales.

  Crowned Pearlscale - Several Pearlscales, including an adult crowned Pearlscale.

  Black and Orange - An Adult black and orange specimen.

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History and Origin of Pearlscales

Pearscales look similar to Fantails at first glance, but their body shape is actually a bit different. Pearlscales are the only goldfish breed to have scales with a different shape than the common goldfish. The scales are thicker at the top,caused by deposits of calcium carbonate, whhich gives them their bead-like appearance. It is also what makes the scales transluscent. All Pearlscales have Nacreous scales.

They are a relatively recent breed, and have only been around since about the late 1800s or early 1900s.



Special Care for Pearlscales

Their scales are somewhat delecate, and can get scraped off. If they are, the scale that replaces it will be a normal scale, not a bead-shaped one. So it is best to keep them in an aquarium without any rough surfaces.

Other than that, they are reasonably hardy and are often kept in ponds due to their pleasing top profile. Unlike other pond fish however, they are not very tolerant of cold, and should be kept in temperatures of no less than 55 degrees fahrenheit.

Because of their round bodies, they are not fast swimmers. Keep them only with similar goldfish (lionheads, bubble-eyes, ect..), so they can get their share of food. Anecdotal evidence suggests additional calcium may be needed in their diet due to the extra requirements for growing their scales.



Ideal Characteristics for Pearlscales

Pearlscales have the most spherical body of any breed. Depth of the body should be 2/3 the body length or more, and should be as wide as it is deep. Wider seems to be better. Many modern Pearscales are so round as to look like golfballs, and this is very desirable in this breed.

They have very small narrow heads (relative to their fat bodies anyway), and no wen. The back is arched directly behind the head, but not dramatically so as with a Ryukin, and the arch is even more mild than that of a Fantail. Scales should be domed and have a bead-like appearance (the more prominent the beads are, the better). Pearscales can get fairly large, about the size of a big orange.

Fins should be short and erect with a rounded appearance. All fins are paired except the dorsal. Finnage is similar to a standard Fantail with a divided Caudal fin. Transparent fins are tolerated in Pearlscales to a much larger degree than in other breeds, though color saturation of the fins is always desired.

All Pearscales have nacreous scales. The "beads" should have a lighter color than the base skin, and the more striking the color difference the better. Red, orange and white (or mottled orange/white/red combinations) are the most common colors. But there are calico and black (sometimes called "blue") versions, as well as Tancho (aka "redcap") versions also available. Recently "Chocolate" varieties have been developed.



Known Variants of Pearlscales

Crowned Pearlscales (also called "High-head" or "Hamanishiki") look identical to normal Pearscales except that they have a half hood. Because of the appearance of their scales, their wen looks more like two giant bubbles than the normal cauliflower-like bumps seen on other goldfish wen. The wen should be a single mass (either a single bubble or a split bubble), with no additional bubbles behind or under it. Except for their wen, they look identical to standard Pearlscales.

There is a longtailed version of the standard Pearlscale sometimes referred to as the "Phoenix Pearscale", but they are uncommon. They have fringetail type finnage.



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