It may be winter outside but in our hearts, it’s spring - especially when we have sights to cheer us from the autumn koi harvest. Our Wenvoe store was once more tempting me with some great fishes from the breeder Omosako. Like all big koi, these pedigree fish demand a large pond with excellent water quality but if you’re in the market for these kinds of specimens you probably know that already.

Corals come in an amazing range of forms and colours and I’m almost ashamed to say this one stood out thanks to a bit of a Christmas tree vibe! It is, of course, a far more permanent addition to the home of any serious reefer in the shape of a maricultured Acropora millepora. We have strong links to our suppliers in Indonesia and seeing their cultured corals return to our stores has been one of the few good things to happen this generally miserable year. We’ll focus on the conservation benefits behind this supply chain in an upcoming piece. This was one of a gorgeous array of goodies on offer at our Crawley store.

Fancy goldfish aren’t everybody’s cup of tea but it’s true to say that they’re fishes with a lot of character. Like dogs, they’re bred in a dazzling variety of pedigree forms that all happily cross, giving rise to any number of mixed traits and levels of vigour. They may have the body of a pug in a tutu but they have the heart of a foot long pond fish and need much more space and care than you might think, given their frequent fate as children’s pets. Their care requirements are complicated by their convoluted digestive tract, making factors such as diet more complicated than their more streamlined kin but good examples can be impressive fish. Expect youngsters like this Red & White Oranda to grow to 20cm or more and make a 200-litre aquarium look small. This was one of a nice range of fancies at our Hare Hatch branch, who can also advise you on better choices for those small, unheated tanks that are often the start of our childhood journey into fish keeping.