A koi pond can be a stunning addition to almost any yard. They do require work and maintenance though, and one of the most important tasks is keeping the water clean. Here are seven tips to help you keep your pond water clean and maintain your koi pond this summer.
One of the most vital aspects of pond health centers around your fish population. You don’t want too many fish for the space you have. Generally, having more than 10” of fish per 100 gallons of water is considered overpopulation. So, if your four 2” fish (8” of fish total) in your 100-gallon tank have grown to be 5” fish (20” of fish total), you have overpopulation.
Try not to overfeed your fish. Any food that they don’t eat decays in the water and can lead to water quality problems over time. Try not to give them more food than they can eat in 2-3 minutes, and make an effort to scoop any uneaten food out of the pond.
Fish food isn’t the only debris that can end up in your pond. Debris like leaves and cut grass often wash in during storms and may break down over time leading to unsafe ammonia levels. Clean out your pond periodically and add beneficial bacteria to maintain balance.
The plants that are in and around your pond play a vital role in pond health and water quality. In the summer, the peak of the season, no more than 40-60% of the surface of your pond should be covered or shaded.
Keep It Cool
You likely know about the dangers of winter weather for ponds, but the heat of summer can also be a problem. When water temperatures are above 75 degrees Fahrenheit, the water may not hold enough oxygen for your fish. Add shade plants to keep things cool, and if that isn’t enough (and you see the fish gulping air at the surface) add an aerator.
Make sure that your pump is the right size for the pond. The pump should be able to circulate the entire volume of the pond every hour. If it isn’t it may be too small, the intake may be blocked by debris, or you may be forcing it to pump the water too high.
Finally, make sure your filter is big enough for your pond too, and when in doubt, upsize. Having a filter that can handle more than your pond is better than a filter that can only handle your capacity at max. Also, remember to clean your filter regularly.
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