The Four Seasons and Your Koi Pond

The Four Seasons and Your Koi Pond

Spring

Your Koi pond will literally come to life at the first of springtime. The life in your pond have spent the previous Winter in a proverbial hibernation, and is ready to come to life at the first signs of warm weather. This is the perfect time to begin maintenance on your pond before the fish, plants, and other pond life come back to live from their winter slumber. As the days begin to get warmer, your pond will start drastically changing. If you are not careful, you may miss this much needed opportunity to perform maintenance. Generally, watch for temperatures around 50 degrees, as this is the perfect time.

Spring time is a very weak time for your fish, because they have not eaten for months, and have may be living on a low level of energy. This cause your Koi to be more susceptible to attacks from organisms such as bacteria, parasites, viruses and fungi. This makes Spring the opportune time to take all preventative measures possible. Adding a large spectrum of treatment solutions will greatly reduce the amount of disease causing pests and material. Once the temperature warms up, another dose of this treatment will ensure that your Koi will be well protected while they redevelop their immune systems. Once temperatures warm up, your Koi immune systems will be effective enough to protect themselves from disease.

Fall

Fall brings a change to your pond, as the majority of plant life begin to change. Fall is a time you move all plants that cannot withstand lower temperatures indoors, or in a green house.

Another issue during fall is leaves. Falling debris will have to be cleared more then any other time during the year. Skimming the pond daily will help maintain a healthy, clear pond. Alternatively, you may want to invest in a pond cover.

Winter

Winter is coming, and this will be the first Winter that you go through with your Koi pond. Think of Winter as a down period for your pond, as less events happen during Winter then any other time. However, there are special precautions that you need to take before Winter arrives, to ensure that your pond and fish survive.

You will need to feed your fish far less during the winter months. Talk with your local pet store to determine how often you should feed your Koi.

Prepare for cold weather by investing in the items you will need during the summer. Koi have been known to withstand constant temperatures as low 39 degrees, and temperatures slightly lower then 39 degrees, for short periods of time. When buying a heater, remember to research what size you will need to adequately heat your pond during the winter, otherwise ice will still form, causing potentially dangerous amounts of gas in the water, due to it being trapped under the ice. In extreme events, it may be a good idea to have an emergency tank inside available.

Summer

Summer is considered one of the best and more vibrant times for your Koi pond. Temperatures are beautiful, and you are more able to enjoy your pond then during the cold winter months. However, by no means, should your maintenance drop during the summer months. Remembering a few things during the summer months will ensure that your pond stays beautiful and lively.

During the summer months, the oxygen level in your pond actually decreases. Proper precautions should be taken, especially if you live in an area where temperatures stay high for the majority of the year. If you witness your Koi hanging out towards the top of the water, and they seem to be gasping for air, this may be a good indication that your pond does not have a high enough concentration of Oxygen.

Not unlike other situations in life, heat brings on potential parasite and illness. The majority of parasites are not seeable by the naked eye, so instead, you must watch your Koi for signs of illness.

You may notice strange behaviors in your fish such as rubbing against objects, scratching, shaking, or shivering. Each symptom could indicate a different type of illness, so it is important to watch closely.

If any type of change is noticed, contact your local vet, pet store, or Koi dealer as soon as possible. While some parasites will cause little damage, some illness such as KHV or Koi Herpes Virus have a high mortality rate, and should be treated as soon as possible.

 

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