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Keeping Koi - General Care

General Care


You should:


  • Feed your fish once or twice a day. Once a day in winter with wheatgerm food and twice a day in summer sparingly with a growth food of your choice.

  • Keep your pond aerated and filtered 24 hours a day.

  • Keep your pond clean of debris on the bottom.

  • Periodically test your pond water (pH, Ammonia, etc.) especially after adding fresh water. Always use a thorough purifier set.

  • Watch carefully for parasites. Kill and control parasites when they are observed through your microscope.

  • Use a chloramine remover whenever adding fresh tap water. If you dont have a purifier set.

  • Have medication and chloramine remover on hand for emergencies.

  • Have a spare tank or aquarium for use as a hospital to treat sick or injured koi. Remember to aerate and filter 'hospital tanks'.

  • Periodically clean the filter. Most filters should be cleaned at least twice a year even though the water looks clear. There is no such thing as a filter that never needs to be cleaned!

  • Change or add new water periodically (about every 2 to 3 weeks) if your pond does not have an overflow for fresh water.


You shouldn't:


  • Overfeed!

  • Change all the water in the pond at once unless absolutely necessary. Sudden water temperature changes may adversely affect your Koi. If you have to do this use a purifier set

  • Over-medicate! Use correct dosage or under-medicate if you are unsure.

  • Overcrowd the pond! Remember your Koi will require more oxygen and more room as they grow larger.

  • Keep the water level of your pond too close to the top edge of your pond as fish may jump out or predators may catch your fish. Allow at least 6" clearance.

  • Permit the use of any insecticide sprays, powders, or pellets near the pond. Also, do not use fertilizers in pond plants.

  • Feed your Koi if your pump goes out. Koi will use more oxygen if they are fed.

Pond Construction


  • Ideally your pond should be 6ft deep if possible, the deeper the better.

  • Where possible you should share the pond (at least 92% shade) to inhibit algae growth, promote and maintain color of your Koi, and keep water temperature cooler.

  • Know the gallonage of your pond. Length x Width x Depth (in feet) x 6.25 equals to total gallons of water.

Handling or moving fish


  • After transporting Koi, float the bag (unopened) in the water for about 30 to 45 minutes to allow the water temperature inside and outside the bag to equalize before releasing the Koi.

  • Always be careful when netting or handling your Koi. Removing the protective slime from the body can lead to fungus or bacterial infections.

  • When introducing new Koi to your pond, be careful that they don't jump out, especially near the waterfall, until they get their bearings.

  • Remember that stress is a major cause of Koi deaths. Stress may result from changes in pond conditions, over handling, over medication, etc.

Pond Tips


Keep a spare air pump or water pump on hand for emergencies.



Happy Koi keeping!

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