What is a Carp?

This question can make us smile for many carp anglers so this seems obvious. But this issue is important and must find an answer for all young fishermen and women who wish to start fishing of this fish.

Catch this beautiful freshwater fish, to first learn to know him before you can fish it.

So, we decided to respond in a simple and clear way to help all people who start the carp in recreational fishing.

What is a carp?

The carp is a fish of the category of cyprinids which constitute the largest family of freshwater fish. But what is a cyprinid exactly?

In fact, the cyprinidae family includes all of white freshwater fish. CARP and other fish such as bream, the gudgeon, Roach, etc., are therefore part of this broad category of freshwater fish.

What is a Carp 1

So we are fish of different species that have as first distinction of being a white fish where the name of “white fish”.

The second peculiarity of these fish is that they live preferably at the bottom of the water away from the surface. Besides, colloquially called these “bottom fish” fish.

The carp is a fish white flesh that lives mainly at the bottom of rivers, ponds and lakes. Its latin name is Cyprinus carpi.

With the link below, you can see the fact sheet for the anatomy of carp and his diet.

Because of his membership in the larger family of fish, carp is a widespread fish that is in the wild exclusively in freshwater. It is found on three continents: Asia, Europe and North America.


The first variety of carp in the natural state was known as carp ‘wild ‘. It is native to Asia minor and, then, introduced in Europe where she was raised.

This breeding was born a new variety of carp known as ‘common ‘. In the middle ages, the common carp was raised to be eaten by the people of Europe. It has also been consumed by populations of Asia minor.

What are the main varieties of carp?

The common carp is the variety of the more common carp in Europe. She is also very appreciated by fishermen in fresh water as it is an interesting challenge in terms of fighting spirit and in terms of size.

For example, it is not uncommon to catch common carp with a size of more than 70 cm and a weight of more than 30 kg.

The record of the world of this variety is currently 45 kg with a length of more than 100 cm. She was caught by an Englishman in 2013.

As can be seen in the image below, the common carp has a thick and slender body covered with regular scales, with the exception of the head.

What is a Carp 2

At the level of the mouth, it has barbels that are sensory sensors and serving him to navigate through the water and to determine what lies at the bottom of the water. It also has a large dorsal fin.

Over time, the common carp was raised and after multiple selections, she gave birth to three other varieties of carp. These varieties are the following: the mirror, leather, love carp carp carp.

There is also another variety of carp called “koi” which is very popular in Asia, and more particularly to the Japan.

The mirror, a popular variety with fishermen carp

The mirror CARP has a body that is rounder than the common carp, which has a more slender body. The junction between the top of the head and the body is also more angular (she has a sort of bump).

Unlike the common carp, mirror CARP has shimmering irregular scales, where his name. These scales are spread unevenly over parts of his body. They are usually found in the middle of the body and at the level of the dorsal fin.

Another distinctive point, her skin color is also more Brown than common carp.  In terms of its weight and size, mirror carp can reach a size of more than 80 cm with a weight of more than 30kg.

Leather, a near mirror carp fish carp

The leather carp is very similar to carp mirror in terms of size and weight, but it differs from it by the lack of scales on its body. Her skin is smooth and shining in the Sun leather, from where its name.

What is a Carp 3

Mirror carp and the leather carp are very appreciated by fishermen for their power and their combativeness. Their rugged and imposing body allows them to struggle vigorously.

Love, a fish come to Asian Carp

Love, also called “white love” or the Chinese carp, carp is a rangy carp variety that has a white and brownish color throughout his body. She hails from the Amur River, which is located in Asia and river that runs through Siberia.

Its size is closer than mirrors and leather carp common carp. Its distinctive point is a more rounded and flatter than the common carp. She has regular scales on its body. As with the other varieties of carp, it can reach a size of 110 cm and a weight of 35 kg.

The Koi, a fish popular in Asia

This variety stands out other carp since his body is composed of a mixture of colors. It has a dorsal fin less powerful than the other varieties of carp. The Koi can reach a size of 30cm and a weight of more than 10kg.

This koi carp!

Unlike other varieties of carp, koi carp is a ceremonial fish found in gardens with aquatic basins.

As we can realize, different varieties of carp have some common points to recognize compared to other freshwater fish.

In General, three criteria to identify the biology of the CARP compared to other freshwater fish.