December 21, 2005

Murky Water and fish load

Q.>I have a pond that is ~4800 gallons. The pond is 2.5 years old and my Koi are doing great. The problem is that since the pond was 2 months old I have been unable to see my Koi unless the swim to the top…… that applies to winter and summer!!! The deep end is 5 feet and the shallow end is 2.5 to 3 feet. I have an Ultima II Filter that is supposed to be able to filter 20,000 gallons………….I am using a 1.5 hp pump…………..what is the problem??? Why won’t the water clear up?? I have talked to the person that put the pond in for me and he has not been able to come up with a solution that works. I paid a lot for this pond and am so disappointed. Any suggestions??

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A.>
I need to ask a few more questions because I don't see any obvious reason for the lack of clarity. How many koi are you keeping in the pond and how large are they? And is the pond situated where it can collect runoff from rainwater? Where are you located? The only other thing I can think of is the water itself. Did you have a water analysis done to see what chemicals and minerals are in your water? If it is high in iron or other heavy metals it can cause a big difference in the water quality, but the fish might have shown a reaction. Do you have any overhanging wood structures? Is the pond situated in a low spot in the yard where ground water would affect the pond? What are the local surroundings? If there are houses or businesses that pollute the air it can also affect the water quality. I have not seen a northern pond that didn't clear in winter, so this is really confusing to me. If possible, I would like to see a photo or two of your pond. Can you do that?

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Response> I have ~45Koi in the pond............only about 12 large about 14" and the rest are various smaller sizes. There are also about 100 little mosquito fish and 2 Catfish ~ 10 Goldfish..............No water runs off into the pond.......except for the waterfall that recycles the water. I live in Lancaster, California

Here a couple of shots of the pond...........I live on 2 acres and there are two dogs..........a Lab/Shepherd Mix and a Shihtzu.......they both drink out of the pond.

Pics 8 and 9 are both of the shallow end of the pond........the pictures were taken in May of this year.....the water at the time I thought was starting to clear a little..........you can see them on the top of the water............I have two bottom drains and a skimmer.............it is a concrete pond ..............how many Koi should I have?? I have no problem getting rid of some of them...........

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A.>
Remember, when figuring fish load, count those mosquito fish too. Each one should be around 1", right? Put them into the goldfish category. And catfish are the only ones I know that can outgrow koi in a short period of time.... As for the concrete being cured, don't worry about it now because after all this time it's cured. But please test for the ammonia and pH. Do the rest of them also because Nitrite can kill too. Got any plants in there?? It might help. Go to MacArthur website and check out the Microbe-Lift products for mosquitoes too. Maybe you don't need all those mosquito fish either.
PS, your dogs have nothing whatsoever to do with the cloudy water. And a little MICROBE-LIFT, if you are not already using it, could help a lot in clearing up the water. It's also safe for the dogs.

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Happy Pondkeeping!

MacArthur Water Gardens
www.macarthurwatergardens.com

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PO Box 3628
Alpharetta, GA 30023-3628

Posted by bfogle at December 21, 2005 02:22 PM
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