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Topics - sbell

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1
New for 2018 / Favorite - New for 2018
« on: October 30, 2017, 12:56:04 PM »
I knew from early proto pics that new Ancient Fishes were coming from Favorite, but I assumed the Atractosteus gar would be an alligator gar...

But they went with CUBAN gar! The most endangered of them all!



They've also teased a Scleropages arowana, but we'll see what species they do!

2
Animal toy lines / Toba Aquarium sets
« on: May 06, 2017, 04:46:35 PM »
So in recent discussions with Widukind on the Recent Acquistionsthread, the Toba Aquarium series were brought up.

And rather than take over that thread, I thought I'd just start one here.

Not sure who actually makes the Toba figures; I think at least one Yujin model was reused for one* (a Kidako Moray with cleaner wrasse). And they definitely reuse models in their different series.

The only one I have is the Toba Aquarium Series 2--the 'living fossil' series (of course). It includes:

QUEENSLAND LUNGFISH
SPOTTED GAR
PIRARUCU
JAPANESE BULLHEAD SHARK
PITTED STINGRAY
CHAMBERED NAUTILUS
ASIAN AROWANA

They are smaller than your average Kaiyodo figure, but came on really nice stands--only the horseshoe crab is not attached (it just kind of...sits...on its rock).

And because it takes too long to do all the photos...a collage! The arowana is in there twice--its little 'water surface feature' kind of obscures the figure's head:



Also the nautilus looks different because when I originally received the set...I received two heads and no bodies...

Better pictures can be found here: https://goo.gl/photos/k7APV7is3ShdLLpw9

As for other series...I can only find a reference to a 'Korokoro collection' as well--a few of the species are repeats.
http://www.flickriver.com/photos/hengbok-nikita/9418615215/
Lots of crustaceans...Blaine, I'm assuming that you can help out there!

And to be sure, these are just sets that clearly came from the same source. I do believe that there are other Toba sets that may be from other suppliers (interestingly, I can't recall seeing any Kaiyodo-derived Toba sets. It's like the one aquarium that doesn't have Kaiyodo sets).

One that I just found--Kitan Club/Nature Technicolor also made a series in their style http://blog.163.com/ren_jun/blog/static/173375618201257289304/

Anyone else have pictures of these models? Or other sets?

* I just came across a few references to other Toba figures being made by Yujin, like the Horseshoe crab. I can't recall seeing that on the papers though.

3
Animal toy lines / Replica Toy Fish company--coming to an end.
« on: April 08, 2017, 07:40:14 PM »
I am not sure how many people are aware, but Simeon is ending his Replica Toy Fish Company.

His site is already clearing out what he has left (much of which was long gone as of this writing). There are some pretty deep discounts to be found though.

I have been able to get some for my store of course, but once they're gone, they're gone.

I was even lucky enough to get some of the unreleased Chain Pickerel!3 are for store, but I of course kept a couple for myself!



They aren't perfect, but they are rare! He doesn't even have them on his site.

But the good news--not sure how long, but he is rebuilding under a new brand--Toy Fish Factory! It will be similarly styled, sets of fish figures in tackle boxes.

The boxes will be themed, the fish will primarily be freshwater, and the range will be from around the world. I have only seen pics of the box art so far; the fish models themselves are not quite ready.

And if Simeon has his way, there will be LOTS of species. I've seen the proposed list...it's a good list.

4
So it's been a while since I had one to add to this series!

This figure is the Japanese Dolly Varden (also known as Miyabeiwana in Japan), Salvelinus malma miyabei, a Secret Figure from the first series. This particular subspecies is a char found in Japan, although Dolly Varden as a species is found in Arctic and Pacific drainages in Russia and North America (there is even a relict population in my home province!) As with many Japanese fish models (though not all) it is widely fished for. Maximum TL of the Dolly Varden is 120cm according to Fishbase, but most references say 60cm or smaller. The figure, like the Char, is about 1:10 scale.

Being a repainted figure, I don’t need to go into much detail on the model itself—it is a remade White-spotted Char, although there are some differences in the bend of the figure. This is most likely a manufacturing issue, although it may also have been a purposeful difference created to differentiate the fish. Of course, the paint job is what really distinguishes the two models. In short, the Dolly Varden is an overall green, with light vermiculations on the dorsal surface, a scattering of red and gold spots along the sides, and a bright orange belly (the char is mostly brown, darker on the dorsal and fading to cream on the belly). The Dolly Varden fins are also lighter, with only subtle orange (compared to the dark orange tail of the Char).
But pictures speak louder than words, so:

Pictures:









And the bottom, where it's easy to see the detail that Yujin puts into every side of the models (and can often see the numbers in the photos—that’s how we know the Dolly Varden is based on the Char—same number). It’s also easy to see how bright red the belly is!


And then some comparisons. Again, while the Dolly Varden was a Secret Special figure, it was not listed or available like some of the others (like the variants of the Arowana or koi, or the albino char or eel that were with the box set). Perhaps it was a special mail-out like the Masou x Char, but not as fancy—and definitely not as expensive (as any of the other specials, honestly)! And the paper didn’t help—it was part of the Series I revised, but didn’t offer any clues about why the Secret figure existed.

(Dolly Varden on the left, White-spotted Char on the right)





5
(It's all prehistoric stuff so far, but I don't want someone to miss something!)

So, as the collection grows, it turns out I just have so much more than I can really fit in my displays.

And some of this stuff is rare. I still like them, I just need to make some room. If I don't have takers, at some point I'll put them on Ebay, but I'd rather a collector get them.

The following 3 sets are only being sold as sets. I will ship anywhere, but postage will be extra to wherever you are. And payment is via Paypal.

I will not break them up. Serious inquiries only. And there is not much room for negotiation. You could try a trade offer, but I am not looking for much.

And no holds. If you wish to buy them, you will need to pay immediately.

All figures have pretty much been displayed or stored. Light handling.

So, from the lowest to the highest, all prices in USD:

COG Matchbox dinos-- $50 (originally about $8/box)

All 4 sets, complete with box and booklet (dice for scale only--these are tiny). Names are based on the booklets.
EDIT--sold pending payment
Set 1

01   APATOSAURUS
02   BRACHIOSAURUS
03   CAMARASAURUS
04   DIPLODOCUS
05   MAMENCHISAURUS
06   SALTASAURUS
07   AMARGASAURUS
08   GALLIMIMUS

Set 2

01   COMPSOGNATHUS
02   VELOCIRAPTOR
03   DEINONYCHUS
04   OVIRAPTOR
05   BARYONYX
06   SPINOSAURUS
07   TYRANNOSAURUS
08   ALLOSAURUS

Set 3

01   GIGANOTOSAURUS
02   ACROCANTHOSAURUS
03   DILOPHOSAURUS
04   PACHYCEPHALOSAURUS
05   IGUANODON
06   PARASAUROLOPHUS
07   CORYTHOSAURUS
08   STEGOSAURUS

Set 4

01   GASTONIA
02   EUOPLOCEPHALUS
03   PROTOCERATOPS
04   TRICERATOPS
05   CHASMOSAURUS
06   STYRACOSAURUS
07   PENTACERATOPS
08   TOROSAURUS

COSMOLAND Mammoths set-- $75 (no idea on original price--they were Japanese exclusive, and can now be found for $30 EACH on Ebay)

All 6 figures with bases (human skeleton has always been a bit wonky). I think I have the original cards as well. EDIT--Yes, I have the 6 cards. They are giant cards!



Finally...The Quick Walking with Dinosaurs set of four small models with box-bases, multilingual cards and fossil replicas!

Not even sure of original value--available only in France, Belgium and the like right after WwD came out--at Fast food restaurants called Quick. I've never seen complete sets anywhere--even in Prehistoric Times, the fossils were not pictured. Even the collector-among-mortals Dinosaur Collector site only has a single photo--of my figures!

Cost? $125

All 4 together:


Tyrannosaurus with open box + fossil tooth (from the Death of a Dynasty episode)


Juvenile Diplodocus with open box + fossil tooth (from the Land of Giants episode)


Liopleurodon with open box + fossil tooth (he's beached--from the Cruel Sea episode)


Rhamphorynchus with open box + fossil skull (also from the Cruel Sea episode--the only official WwD Rhamphorynchus)


So feel free to ask questions, post comments--but please PM offers and such! And yes, this will be posted on more than one forum.

6
Other/Miscellaneous / New FAVORITE 2016 Coelacanth Walkaround
« on: May 02, 2016, 03:03:04 AM »
Here I present one of the 4 new Soft Models from Favorite (Kinto) in the Ancient Fishes line.

Latimeria chalumnae, the West Indian Coelacanth, one of two species of deep-water lobe-fin from the Indian Ocean (the western part). The only marine fish in the Ancient Fishes series (and other than a few sturgeon, one of the few marine 'primitive' fishes alive now as it is, depending on how you define them).

I referred to Arapaima as popular in Japan as figures, but it's nothing compared to coelacanths (mainly West Indian). I have so many, I've almost given up on trying to get them all (Favorite even makes one other--a much large soft Vinyl one that I won't get because it's just ridiculous in size). Unlike the other species in the series, they are certainly not aquarium fish. Or food fish. But they still suffer greatly due to the effects of fishermen (surviving 100s of millions of years as a group, but never found a way to survie dynamite fishing. Go figure). At the same time, though, their history and strange appearance has made them well-known as natural history curioisties, so that's good!

The figure itself is about 20cm long, giving a scale of roughly 1:12.

Like the rest of the Ancient Fishes, and other FAVORITE Soft Models, the figure is heavy, and came packaged on a card. There is a base, and the figure has a large hole where the base fits. They are not interchangable between figures. The models can sit/display without them, but the hole is fairly big and, really, it looks better with the stand.

Pictures:























And, for scale, Kevin the diver. Dressed like he is, he woudl be dead long before he got deep enough to swim with a coelacanth...probably died of hypothermia  :o



I keep saying it--make sure to get this set!

7
Other/Miscellaneous / New FAVORITE 2016 Silver Arowana Walkaround
« on: May 02, 2016, 02:43:02 AM »
Here I present one of the 4 new Soft Models from Favorite (Kinto) in the Ancient Fishes line.

Osteoglossum bicirrhosum, the silver arowana. This is a big species (>100 cm) of bonytongue, popular in home aquaria in much of the world. They have not been made as figures or toys much--just a couple of rare, expensive Kaiyodo Aqualand figures--since Japan is the only place that makes arowana models, and the Asian Arowana complex of species (Scleropages spp.) are far more popular (despite their rarity, and expense).

The figure itself is about 18cm long, giving a scale of roughly 1:7. I have personally kept a silver arowana that was more than double this size! It was kept with gars, bichirs, and...others (see below!).

Like the rest of the Ancient Fishes, and other FAVORITE Soft Models, the figure is heavy, and came packaged on a card. There is a base, and the figure has a large hole where the base fits. They are not interchangable between figures. Unlike the other models the arowana cannot sit/display without the ase, as it embeds in the side.

Pictures




Yes, they really do always look like they are judging you.






Note how the base sits against the side.









And, for 1:7 or so scale--the Yujin Blugill and the Replica Toy Fish Pumpkinseed figures. I actually kept my Arowana with all of the aforementioned fish, and Pumkinseeds! They got along very well!


Did I mention earlier to go get these figures? Because I will say it again, it's a great model!

8
Other/Miscellaneous / New FAVORITE 2016 Saddled Bichir Walkaround
« on: May 02, 2016, 02:38:06 AM »
Here I present one of the 4 new Soft Models from Favorite (Kinto) in the Ancient Fishes line. I will present all four--but this one is the most important (to me).

Polypterus endlicheri, the saddled bichir. A large (>60cm) very primitive fish from the rivers of West and central Africa, and a member of my favorite family of fishes OF ALL TIME. Just saying.

They are also very popular in Japan as pet and display animals (hence, this is the third tim this species has been made--Colorata and Kaiyodo are the other 2). They have a wide diversity in colours and patterns, and can be bred in captivity (at least by the Japanese) with some regularity.

The figure itself is about 18cm long, giving a scale of roughly 1:3. I have personally kept bichirs that were larger than this figure; I have one now (different species) that is close in size!

Like the rest of the Ancient Fishes, and other FAVORITE Soft Models, the figure is heavy, and came packaged on a card. There is a base, and the figure has a large hole where the base fits. They are not interchangable between figures. The models can sit/display without them, but the hole is fairly big and, really, it looks better with the stand.

Pictures:

















And, for comparison--a 1:3 scale Yujin goldfish (finding a 1:3 human scale is...awkward). I have seen this comparison myself in real life many times. The goldfish (or crayfish, or minnow, or dwarf frogs, or guppies, or shrimp, khuli loaches...) did not last very long...!



If you don't have one, you should get them (the figures...or, if you have the room, a real one)!

9
Other/Miscellaneous / New FAVORITE 2016 Arapaima Walkaround
« on: May 02, 2016, 02:36:23 AM »
Here I present one of the 4 new Soft Models from Favorrite (Kinto) in the Ancient Fishes line.

Arapaima gigas, the Arapaima or Pirarucu. Not just a large fish from the Amazon basin, but among the largest of strictly freshwater fish, at over 3m in length (at one time...)

They are also popular in Japan as figures (I have soooo many...) but this one stands out for more than its size--the colour is great, and of course it is big! Arapaima are not good home-aquarium fish, although they can make impressive public aquaria specimens. They are also, apparently, good eating, and are farmed in South America and south Asia. They can also kill a person if they jump out the water fast enough--like the Arowana, they are bonytongues, but they also have incredibly bony heads, and are basically pure, coiled muscle.

The figure itself is about 18cm long, giving a scale of roughly 1:16.

Like the rest of the Ancient Fishes, and other FAVORITE Soft Models, the figure is heavy, and came packaged on a card. There is a base, and the figure has a large hole where the base fits. They are not interchangable between figures. The models can sit/display without them, but the hole is fairly big and, really, it looks better with the stand.

Pictures:



















And for fun, diving Chap Mei ranger with what would be a full grown Arapaima! This is actually kind of scary to imagine...



And for slightly less fun, the same comparison with a Colorata Arapaima, showing what is, probably, about the largest we could expect to see anymore due to hunting and habitat pressures (still big...just not big). Also, notice the very different colour patterns between the companies!


I'm going to keep saying it--everyone needs to get these figures! Also, the ATF needs a specific FAVORITE section

10
Classifieds / Sbell needs to make room...a HUGE lot of animals.
« on: March 19, 2016, 06:27:20 PM »
So I am finally getting around to this...I have far more than I can display--and the pictures of the following have been in storage for 5 years now! It is an assortment of Schleich (much of it late 90s-early 00s), some Bullyland, a few Chap Mei, some S&N Australian, AAA, and unknown!? Most have never been played with, just displayed or stored (some figures, like the older Bullylands, are still paint worn despite that--Bullyland paint just never took well).

I know that, with time, I could find someone for everything...but when I say a lot, I mean dozens of figures, over a hundred for sure. And I just can't take the time--they've been sitting for too long as it is.

So what is there? Pictures are easier. I will try and produce a list later...but it will be looooong. :shock:

Picures (I really hope these work):

Whole group:


Close ups:








So, to find a good home for this lot. I know it is heavy--about 25-30lbs (~12-14kg) so that will factor in...

I would like $200CDN PLUS shipping. I can send anywhere.

If anyone wants clarification or closer pictures of anything, please feel free to PM me. I am not eager to start pulling the lot apart, but I won't stop anyone from asking.

I could also say I'm open for trades...but I don't have much of a list...again, go ahead and ask if you want! ;)

And find new homes for these...they're kind of wasted in a plastic bin...

11
New for 2016 / Favorite new for 2016--primitive fishes!
« on: March 08, 2016, 02:03:17 PM »
Just revealed on Facebook!



And due out in April. They aren't even bad prices!

12
I am finally getting to put this last ‘second release’ figure up—I kind of forgot!

This figure is the special version of the Carassius langsdorfii (or Carassius aurauts langsdorfii). Unlike the ‘regular’ figure, this one is the domestic version, in a bright orange, as would be expected in a fish tank.

It is otherwise the same model as the brown version. It has a brighter, golden eye, and the fin is more transparent.

Walkaround Pictures:







And to compare with the ‘wild’ paint job. It is clearly very different, with brown & grey compared to orange!





I have some release 1 & 2 comparisons all set to go, that I may add to other appropriate threads. And maybe someday I will get some of the really expensive rare ones!  ::)

13
So, with the [ûrl=http://animaltoyforum.com/index.php?topic=1707.0]Wild Carp figure I recently did as a walkaround[/url/] I mentioned that I had now collected and posted at least one of every fish in the series, but with this one, I kind of hit a grey area on how true that is.

When I did a walkaround for the Lates calcarifer I discovered that I actually had the juvenile figure—in the Second Release of series I, it was a secret figure, so I didn’t know that there was a different one!

But in the same lot as the carp, I was surprised to discover that I also received an adult Lates calcarifer!

I won’t do a full intro like I did the juvenile (I linked to it if it was missed!) since the figure is exactly the same as the juvenile one, just painted differently to reflect the unstriped adult coloration. I’ll just include the photos, and some comparisons.

It is also a First Release version, so the paint is a little rougher, especially around the mouth. Interestingly, the juvenile Lates was not a secret figure in release I (based on photos, the eyes also weren't as deeply red).

Walkaround Pictures:







This is the figure in two parts. The figure number of 13 can be seen—same as the juvenile one:




And to compare with the juvenile paint job—it is subtle, but the ‘adult’ is clearly painted darker on the dorsal surface, with no striping. And, of course, the eyes aren’t red!





Until the next one (just one more variant, and some release & 2 comparisons…!).

14
Yujin / Common Carp (Yujin - Freshwater Fishes Series 2, first release)
« on: January 05, 2016, 03:57:53 AM »
I have now done it! I have at least one figure of every fish in the Yujin Freshwater Fishes series! Interestingly, the carp may be the hardest one to get (at a reasonable price)—especially on its own. If you are starting a collection of them, there are large lots of them that sometimes include the carp—and they always seem to go for fairly high prices. And if the carp is one of the 3 domestic varieties (tricolor, silver, gold) then the individuals alone are really expensive. But I eventually came across a lot where the carp wasn’t obvious, and it snuck through.

Now, I just need to find the variants! A task which, to be fair, I could do if I were willing to spend a year’s worth of figure collecting on 8 figures…!

So, the figure—this is the Common Carp, Cyrpinus carpio, number 20 from the second series, in the first releases. This is one of several cyprinids, including the goldfish, Langsdorff’s goldfish and a few other dace and shiners in the Yujin collection. Carp are originally from freshwaters of Europe and Asia—and are apparently vulnerable to threatened in much of their original range. But, they have been domesticated for centuries, which has led to the species being introduced throughout most of the world, where it can become a very notable invasive pest. But, as a domestic animal, they are notable for their varied and distinct colours and scale morphologies (for example, the three special variants of this figure!), and are popular in ponds and fish tanks as Koi. But those tanks need to be large--the Yujin model gives a length of 80cm; Fishbase gives a maximum length of 120cm, with a common length of 31cm.

This model is about 6.2 cm long, making the figure roughly 1:13 using the Yujin length (If using the Fishbase lengths, the figure is as big as 1:5 or as small as 1:19). The colour is based on a wild colouration. The back of the fish is a dark olive-brown, fading down the sides into a lighter yellowish-olive, and finally to a white on the belly.  The scales are large and distinct, but do not carry all the way to the belly. The pose is overall basic, with the fish in a straight line, the tail bending somewhat. All of the fins are a uniform translucent olive. The head is primarily olive-yellow, fading to darker olive on the top. The eyes are large and gold, while the characteristic barbels on the side of the mouth are sculpted against the mouth rather than protruding out. The base for this one is a grey version of the mud & sticks. Unlike many of the fish in this series, there are plenty of carp figures, from Japan and elsewhere. New Ray in notable for including one, as well as a number of Kaiyodo figures, plus the occasional toy of carp-like fish. They are also a fish most likely to be seen in more artistic models and statues, usually as the Koi variants.

Pictures:










And some scale versions—

At 1:13 (an 80cm animal)


At 1:19 (120cm)


For 1:5 (a 31cm animal—I still don’t have a 1:5 human, so here it is with other 1:5 fish)


So that’s all of the species in the Yujin series. I do have a few other variants and First-Release/Second-Release comparisons to do, but that covers the 31 figures in the set!

15
Classifieds / GeoWorld Jurassic Hunters clear out!
« on: January 03, 2016, 07:25:01 PM »
As many of you are aware, I have a small online store in Canada, Fauna Figures. I carry a few brands, and one of them has been GeoWorld.

However, in the last while the Canadian supply has become pretty much impossible--no distributor, so supplier. So I have had to let the line go.

This means that I have some left, and would like to clear it out what I have, make room for incoming 2016 figures (Safari? Soon? I am told it wil be so!)

So, for forum people, I am offering a special price for those who are interested.

The ones that I still have (numbers in brackets) You can also see their pictures on my site here:

ALBERTOSAURUS (1)
ALLOSAURUS (2)
AUSTRALOVENATOR (2)
CAMARASAURUS (1)
CAUDIPTERYX (2)
CERATOSAURUS (2)
COELOPHYSIS (1)
CRYOLOPHOSAURUS (1)
DEINONYCHUS (1)
DILONG    (2)
DILOPHOSAURUS (1)
DROMAEOSAURUS (3)
EUSTREPTOSPONDYLUS (1)
GIGANOTOSAURUS (1)
GUANGLONG (2)
JOBARIA (1)
LAMBEOSAURUS (1)
MAMENCHISAURUS (1)
ORNITHOLESTES (1)
OURANOSAURUS (1)
OVIRAPTOR (1)
PACHYCEPHALOSAURUS (1)
SAURORNITHOLESTES (3)
SUCHOMIMUS (2)

I am offering them for $4 US ($5.50 CDN). They are currently on the site for $5.99 CDN.

Postage to the US without tracking, for one figure, is about $8CDN. With tracking, it's $16. The postage, however, is affected by total weight.

Other places in the world (even Canada...) will vary, so we can go from there.

If anything is of interest, PM me with what you want, type of shipping (tracked or not) and where you are--I will respond with a total. If it sounds good, I will send you a Paypal request. If you don't like Paypal we can discuss other options (kind of limited, but we'll see).

Of course, if you are interested in anything else from the site, let me know that too--I can figure something out for you!

Thanks for reading!

16
New for 2015 / Fish & Cetaceans 2015--advance poll info
« on: October 12, 2015, 03:45:43 AM »
So I have apparently taken the reins for the 'Best Of' poll for 2015 for the fish & cetaceans.

Below is the list that I have come up wtih so far--can anyone think of any others? Honestly, I do okay wtih the fish, although I may have missed some of the Japanese models; bt I pretty much ignore cetaceans so I might have missed some of those.

Anything people feel shoudl be added? Chime on in! At least, before the poll is created. Whenever that is actually supposed to be (I don't actually know).

Takara TOMY Amazon River Dolphin
Takara TOMY Arapaima
Kaiyodo Sendai Aquarium Commerson’s dolphin (rare chase figure)
Kaiyodo Sendai Aquarium Manta Ray
Kaiyodo Sendai Aquarium Snook (=Japanese Lates)
Kaiyodo Sendai Aquarium Finless porpoise
Kaiyodo Sendai Aquarium Pacific White-sided dolphin
Kaiyodo Sendai Aquarium Wolf eel
Kaiyodo Sendai Aquarium Sand Tiger Shark (very rare chase figure)
Kaiyodo Kochi Bryde’s Whale
Kaiyodo CapsuleQ ‘Invasives’ Smallmouth Bass
Kaiyodo Mega Sofubi 1/35 Blue Whale
Schleich Great white shark (sea life set)
Schleich manta ray (sea life set)
Schleich sea horse (sea life set)
CollectA Blacktip Reef shark
CollectA open jaw Great White Shark
Safari WS Nurse shark (technically released very end of 2014, but part of Safari’s ‘New for 2015’)
Safari WS Tiger shark (technically released very end of 2014, but part of Safari’s ‘New for 2015’)
Safari minis Humpback Whales
Safari IC Goliath Grouper
Safari IC Largemouth bass
Bullyland Beluga Whale
Papo Blue Tang surgeonfish
Replica Toy Fish 3” Striped bass
Replica Toy Fish 3” Guadalupe Bass
Replica Toy Fish 3” Adult Alligator Gar
Replica Toy Fish 3” Juvenile Alligator gar
Replica Toy Fish 3” Rainbow Trout
Replica Toy Fish 3” Kern River golden trout
Replica Toy Fish 3” Brook Trout v2
Replica Toy Fish 3” Steelhead trout
Replica Toy Fish 3” Colorado Cutthroat trout
Replica Toy Fish 3” Greenback cutthroat trout
Replica Toy Fish 3” Coho Salmon
Okinawa Miyage Whale shark + diver
Kitan Nature Technicolor Nature of Japan Ayu

17
Kaiyodo - other series / Silver Arowana (Kaiyodo - Aqualand)
« on: September 06, 2015, 04:06:50 AM »
This is a walk around of a Kaiyodo Aqualand Silver Arowana Osteoglossum bicirrhosum--but, interestingly, not the same model that I've seen elsewhere (it can be seen in this thread http://animaltoyforum.com/index.php?topic=65.40!

I have also never seen it in a catalog scan from Kaiyodo, so I don't know much more, other than it's my only Osteoglossum figure!

And for those wondering, the fish really is that greenish-yellow along the dorsum. Between that and the overall shape, I knew immediately that this was a different arowana figure (but it is definitely not a Scleropages, so I'm good!)











The figure is about 12 cm long, so it is about 1:7.5 scale (assuming it is a full grown 90cm).

And for scale with a 'person' (it's the closest I have, but the right length for an average adult woman)



I've been around big arowana, but never one that large!

18
Like the previous Se-Kin Dragon Arowana, this model is a re-paint of a previous sculpt.

The difference here is that it is being used as a representation of a completely different species! It turns out, this is not uncommon among the Yujin Freshwater fish—although most represent at least hybrids of one of the original species of the figure (and I’ve only seen pictures of a few; they are pretty cool, but very rare and expensive, so that’s a big nope. I thought the Gold Arowana was a tough find!).

This figure is represents a breeding colour Cherry Salmon (or Masu Salmon), Oncorhynchus masou masou . It is stamped with a number 5—meaning that while this figure may share the name of figure 03 (the ‘normal’ cherry salmon) it is a re-paint of the Chum Salmon figure. But what a difference the paint job made!

Many people are at least somewhat familiar with the morphological changes in male salmon when they head upstream to breed (and then die—altering your skull and colouration, plus fighting rivers and predators all the way along the river, is exhausting!). For me, I was most familiar with the changes to Sockeye salmon, with the red body and bright green face, plus a large, fanged, hooked mouth. The Masu Salmon has a similar change to the skull, with a hooked face, but the colours are, literally, out of a Star Wars movie (sadly, Phantom Menace, but the best part…).

The figure captures this colour in fantastic detail. The base colour of the figure is black or very dark olive green (depends on lighting) with bright red irregular bands up both sides of the body, extending from the belly to just below the dorsal margin. The fins are dark and yellowish, with small black spots over all of them.  The eyes are large, and yellow, with black pupils, and the mouth is painted a solid pink. The belly is very light pink. When I first saw this figure in an auction, I thought that Yujin had gone mad—but a little research, and it turns out that they perfectly captured the almost monster-ish colouration of a full breeding-state male Masu salmon. The one thing I cannot find out, is if the hooked jaw has large teeth in it—these are not present in the model, but this is not surprising as the original model is based on a Chum Salmon, which doesn’t have the teeth.

The breeding-age size that I could find for the Cherry Salmon is about 79cm TL; given the 6cm length of the figure, that gives it a scale of 1:13, also like the Chum Salmon.

Like the original mold, the Breeding Colour Cherry Salmon is a two-part one, with the head separating behind the operculum.

The figure I have is on a plain grey river back base—from what little I can find, I think it should have been on one of the painted bases (most of the Yujin Secrets & Specials were) but the seller may have had them jumbled up. No worries though—I just wanted the fish!

PICTURES:
I have a few different ones—the model, of course, followed by a few companion shots with the other Cherry salmon, and with the Chum Salmon. Plus, a picture with the unique paper that it came with!










With the other Cherry Salmon figure—combine these two with the Alevin & Egg model (wrong species, but most salmonids at that size look similar) and we almost have the life cycle; just need a juvenile headed to sea!


Compared to the Chum Salmon, which is the original mold:



With the fancy paper—note that there are 3 blacked out figures—tis figure, the Asian arowana, and a third one. These appear to be the Cherry salmon figure, repainted to represent various colour variations and hybrids. I think there are at least 3 or four of them. I doubt I will ever get my hands on one of those (the Carp/Koi have proven hard enough!)

19
I am now in the realm of ‘versions’ of Yujin fish figures. This means that most won’t require much in the way of species descriptions (after, perhaps, this one) or company information. So there will be a bit less description, and more comparison photos (sort of like the Willow Shiner, except they were combined together in one post because I received them at the same time). The original Red Asian Arowana walkaround can be seen here.

So now, the fish!

This figure is the Se-Kin Dragon Arowana AKA Malyasian Golden Highback Arowana, Scleropages formosus (although some researchers have split up the species into four, and the Gold Malaysian variety may belong in [i[S. aureus[/i] if the species are valid—and most researchers are not yet convinced).  The figure is number 14 from the first series, second release—I think. It isn’t always clear, and I didn’t receive the papers to confirm, but it appears right. This variety (species?) is in most ways like the previous Red Asian Arowana, but is found only in waters of Malaysia. The Highback name comes from the pattern on the dorsal surface—where the scale colour does not ‘cross the back’ (in which case, this would be a cross back), leaving the dorsal black or silver. In this variety the ‘Golden’ part of the name comes from the shiny gold colour of the scales. Like all Asian arowana, these are considered endangered, although captive breeding is done in many parts of Southeast Asia. The Gold Crossback varieties are especially popular as the color and shine is considered a good omen for wealth—which means that they are highly sought after, but most varieties are quite rare (and expensive).

Most aspects of the model are the same as the Asian Red Arowana. It is about 7.2cm long, giving a scale of 1:13. The main difference is colour—instead of reds, the scales are more of a greenish-gold or silver colour. The front margins are dark grey, and the posterior margins of some are more yellow. Along the dorsal row of scales, the colour is primarily the dark grey colour with a silver posterior border (hence the Highback variety). This colour extends across the top of the head. The fins are all somewhat translucent, with reddish washes. The cheeks are the same yellowish-gold colour as the scales. The base that I received is different from the other Asian Arowana, being the coloured-gravel—with-plant style. I am never sure if these are the ‘correct’ ones or not (again, I didn’t get the paper for this one).

Like the Red Asian Arowana, this model is a two-part model, with a head that separates behind the opercula.

In comparing the two figures, the most obvious difference is the different colours. The Malaysian Gold Highback is a nice departure from the far more common red varieties that are seen by most figure makers. The only other difference between the models is the curve at the tail—in the Red Arowana model, the caudal fin is in a straight line with the dorsal fin, pointing straight back. In the Gold Highback, the tail is distinctly curved to starboard compared to the rest of the body. I doubt that Yujin would have made two different sculpts for the model (without making more significant changes—and I do know from an upcoming figure that re-using sculpts is definitely something that Yujin did). More likely it is a variation in the molds—or maybe it is actually from the First Release (since there is no easy way of knowing).

PICTURES:











COMPARISONS (Red variety on the left, Golden Highback on the Right):



(note that the Red Arowana is actually a crossback, with the red extending over the dorsal scales (mostly)--I learned things doing this!)

20
This walk around is part of my series of the Yujin Freshwater Fish series. Part of this will be repeating this same introductory and concluding info because copy-and-paste is easy, and it keeps things consistent.  So feel free to only read this once (or never…) as well as the stuff at the end. My main motivation is that Yujin does not have many walk arounds on this site, which is a shame because they make some great models. It is also an attempt to flood (!) the site with some fishes, because there simply have not been enough lately. ;)

One other thing--when I give the lengths of the living species, I will be using the length given on the figure’s paper for consistency. Some of them seemed off, but they seem close—often better than my original usage of the Fishbase TL (unless the FB one is more interesting…). When there are more than one, I will use the higher values. And the scales will be rounded and approximate!

So now, the fish!

This figure is the Willow Shiner (or in Japan, Honmoroko), Gnathopogon caerulescens , number 18 from the second series. Yes, I was able to chase one down (actually, two one from release 1, one from release 2!) so I only have one more species, #20, the Carp, to chase down.

The Willow Shiner is a medium-sized minnow, part of the carp family. This species is endemic to Lake Biwa in Japan, but has been released in other waters as they are popular food fishes. Unfortunately, this popularity lead to overfishing in Lake Biwa, leading the Japanese environment ministry to list them as critically endangered. And also driving up the prices of the fish to luxury-food levels, which probably didn’t help. They are mid-water hunters, feeding on plankton, insects and other small swimming organisms. The Yujin model gives a length of 14cm, which is close to the 15cm I found elsewhere.

This model measures 5cm long, giving a scale of 1:3. The two models are similar but not exactly the same in colour—this is the first time I have had the same model from both releases to compare. The Second release version is lighter overall, with a light, shiny copper dorsal colour with a distinct cream coloured side and belly. The lateral line is marked by a thin green stripe from the gill to the base of the tail, this line is bordered top and bottom by the cream colour. Most fins are nearly transparent, with light brown along the fin rays. The pectoral fins are an exception, being somewhat translucent but painted a dark brown overall. The scales are large and deeply sculpted. The eyes are large and light golden, with big black pupil.

The First Release figure is very similar, with some subtle differences. First, the dorsal colouration is a much darker copper colour, and extends all the way to the lateral line. The sides and ventral surface are a little darker. The green lateral line stripe is a darker green than the Second Release, and does not extend to the base of the tail. All of the fins, including the pectoral, are the transparent material, with dark brown along the fin rays. The eyes are more silvery, with the same dark black pupil.

Overall, the differences are subtle but become clear. The paint job on the second release model is more defined and detailed, and this may be true of the two lines overall (I only have one other to definitively compare at this point). The First Release version came to me on the brown gravel-with-plant base; the Second Release is on the same base, but the gravel is painted in various colours.

I am not aware of other Willow Shiner models; if they do exist they would likely be from Japan. Possibly from Yujin again, as a strap figure or something!

Pictures (In the order described above, second release then first):
SECOND RELEASE VERSION



   




FIRST RELEASE VERSION



   





COMPARISONS (First Release on the left, Second on the Right):



For those not familiar, the Yujin Freshwater fishes were released as two series of fish, for a total of 32 fish figures. This number includes at least 3 secret figures (whose numbers remain in sequence--all figures are marked somewhere with the number) but does not incorporate a number of re-issues and repaints; there was at least one complete reissue (from which mine all come so far). The original releases, from what I can find, had yellow papers; the second release used light blue for the Series I and black for Series II. The entire set, with all variants and secrets, is actually available as a boxed set on YAJ (for around $300!), but individual figures can be found there or even on eBay for a variety of prices (the secrets & specials are of course the most expensive). Myself, there are still two or three species I don't have, but I haven't put a lot of effort into changing that...

Another nice thing about these Yujin fish model is that, like most Yujin releases, almost all of them come with a natural base and acrylic stem to display them (the Series II has a few exceptions). There are 4 or 5 bases used, plus a few unique ones for some specials. When I received mine several years ago, the fish+acrylic stems were not directly associated with the bases, so I just went with whatever worked (so if you have one or two, and the base is different, now you know why--I couldn't find a way to be sure if the bases were specific). All of the bases are based on environment--wood stems, gravel, river rocks, silt+plants, that sort of thing. Most are monochromatic, but a few are painted differently (again, often for the specials). In fact, if I wanted to get really pedantic, the bases themselves are labelled with letters based on the style, but I won't.

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