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Thread: Spring Thaw, Dead Koi

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    2

    Spring Thaw, Dead Koi

    My Boyfriend bought a home with a Koi pond Last July, Besides alot of alge the fish thrived. Most were in thier teens, some smaller ones. We were told that during winter the fish would hibernate and not to worry. We did NOT use a heater, we DID keep the pump running all but 3 days. We live in Denver,CO. and when the pond thawed we found dead fish, 5 so far out of 8. What did we do wrong? What are the best steps to take now to keep our remaining Koi alive and to make the pond a better environment. We still may get some snow in April also. Can anybody help us we are very sad about this whole thing, but want to bring the pond back to life. Thanks for any replies.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    23
    Sorry about the fish, im new also, but have read on this board that if the water freezes over the gas cant escape and that can harm the fish, some make a hole in the ice for the gas to get out, and others use a heater. Someone with experience will answer soon..........

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Lakewood,Ohio
    Posts
    1,078
    Bruzi, Welcome! So sorry to hear about the fish loss, but you HAVE TO put a heater in your pond. Living in Denver, with your winters you have to keep the pond from freezing over. You need to have a whole in the ice so the gasses can excape. I feel sorry about your fish but it seems alot of us ponders have to learn the hard way on some of the winter problems.
    DENISE

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    2

    We Sure Messed up

    We so appreciate your answers anymore info is appreciated. It makes sense now. My Boyfriend did turn green one day at the horrific smell that came out when he made a small hole in the ice. Now I know it was gases. We will be SURE and have a heater ready for those days where it is to cold out....But, about all the string and blanket alge? Last year it overwhelmed us. How do we go about starting fresh with our pond? Is it expensive? We just want our little Oasis from the world back. We DO want to be more knowledgable this year. Thanks again for the responses

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Orange County, California
    Posts
    771
    Sorry about your fish bruzi.

    Welcome here!
    Linda
    I Just Love My Pond! It brings me such joy!
    3.3.6 Koi/Spot, Diick, Jane, Whetta, Piita, Rusty
    1.1.2 Cats/Pumpkin, Sammee

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Fallbrook, CA
    Posts
    1,355
    Hi and welcome

    Do a search on the whole site for 'tote', you'll find a thread refering to a Tote Box Heater - it works and costs next to nothing.
    David

    Patience is the key - to everything

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Orange County, California
    Posts
    771
    Also search for "blanketweed" (blanket algae), I've written a book on it. (Not really, just a lot of info and very recently. DanP who posts a lot on here lives in Colorado, maybe he'll see this and give you some tips.
    Linda
    I Just Love My Pond! It brings me such joy!
    3.3.6 Koi/Spot, Diick, Jane, Whetta, Piita, Rusty
    1.1.2 Cats/Pumpkin, Sammee

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Onalaska,WI
    Posts
    126
    Here in Wisconsin, the winters get very cold. With the exception of this past winter. We went to Farm and Fleet and bought a stock tank heater. The things they put in stock tanks to keep them thawed for cattle to drink out of. When the temps drop low enough to freeze the pond completely over, we plug in the heater and it does the trick. This is our third year and we haven't lost any fish. This past winter was so mild, we only had to plug it in for about 10 days in January.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Town of Genesee, WI
    Posts
    1,965
    Every winter I think about doing the tote box heater, last year I even bought all the stuff, just never got it toghether, I'm such a procrastonator. However we have a small submersable pump, bought at Home Depot, and set it so that it will just bubble the water at one end of the pond. This will keep a hole open also, depending on how cold it gets the hole may down size to a golf ball but it also works. Some people use the bubbler pump and then put the tote box heater over for extra protection, this would be the best, and maybe next winter I'll have one built.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    591
    Quote Originally Posted by bruzi
    My Boyfriend bought a home with a Koi pond Last July, Besides alot of alge the fish thrived. Most were in thier teens, some smaller ones. We were told that during winter the fish would hibernate and not to worry. We did NOT use a heater, we DID keep the pump running all but 3 days. We live in Denver,CO. and when the pond thawed we found dead fish, 5 so far out of 8. What did we do wrong? What are the best steps to take now to keep our remaining Koi alive and to make the pond a better environment. We still may get some snow in April also. Can anybody help us we are very sad about this whole thing, but want to bring the pond back to life. Thanks for any replies.
    So the pump was running.. but you mean none of the water bein pumped was bein exposed to air at all like through a waterfall? The pumped water was just strictly circulating underneath the ice covered surface?

    Had the fish been in there from even before you guys got the house (I presume) or did you guys add them? How much were they fed throughout the summer/fall?

    I live in Denver too and over my first winter with my pond I lost 2 or 3 fish..even with a hole in the ice and bubbler. But the ones I lost were ones I had gotten late in the summer from a guy in an overstocked scenario. My theory is those fish just werent healthy (fattened up so to speak) enough to survive the many month "hibernation".

    I could be wrong about that, but I didnt do anything different over this winter thats just leaving us, and I didnt lose anything this time around.
    My Pond Pics Here

    I've come to the conclusion that theres only one question in regards to ponding that can be answered simply and with absolute certainty..... "Do I have to add water before I add fish?"

    Every other question must be answered starting with "It depends".

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Pelham,N.H.
    Posts
    9
    I live in the northeast and it gets pretty cold here also. I do use a heater but what I mostly use is a pump pointing up to disturb the waters surface. when the weather is going to be below zero I plug the heater in for that time of below freezing.I've learned that as long as the water is moving it won't freeze over. another thing I've seen is an aerator that bubbles up the water.It's beneficial cause it adds oxygen to the water. Good luck next winter.



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