Koi Fish Ponds

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How to Acclimate your New Koi Fish

How To Acclimate Your New Koi Fish | Acclimating Koi

Koi fishes are species of carp fishes(Cyprinus carpio) which symbolizes calmness. Koi fish are beautiful and colourful. As it is one of the favourite pond pet fish they can now be found in ponds all across the world.

The preferred water temperature of koi fishes is between 18 to 30 Degree Celsius. Therefore, Acclimating / Introducing new Koi to your pond is very important, if not done correctly it can endanger the life of the fish or can lead to fatalities.

Like most other species of fishes, koi fishes can adjust to a wide range of water temperatures but they cannot tolerate sudden temperature changes. The most important thing to remember is making the transition of your new Koi fish is as stress-free as possible.

Following are the important steps to follow after receiving and before introducing the Koi fish to Pond.

Step 1: Visual Inspection:

Unpack your fish from the carton box in a dim-lit room and inspect them through the sides of the plastic bag for any major signs of distress. It is very important that the fish is not exposed to direct sunlight immediately since this could startle them and cause stress.

Some of the Stress Signs areas are listed below.

  • Frequent turning sideways and swimming in one direction

  • Jumping

  • Scratching / scraping the pond wall

  • Sluggishness / lying idle at the bottom of the shipping container

  • Swimming with the head down.

  • Swimming erratically

  • Frequent gasping for air

  • Looks Separated from other Koi

If you don't notice anything unusual. Then proceed to step two.

Step 2: Equalise water temperature by Floating the bag:

All ways take temperature readings of the water temperature of the fish bag and that of Koi fish pond. Depending on the variation in temperature the bag should be floated on the surface of the pond.

It takes usually between 15 - 30 minutes. Always be alert and monitor the fish closely during the floating period.

A transition for Koi fishes from Warm to Cold is MORE Stressful than going from Cold To Warm. So acclamations from warm to cold should be done very slowly without causing stress to the fish.

Note: The best time to acclimate fish is during early morning hours.

Step 3: Introduce the Koi fish to the Pond:

Gently scoop the fish out of the plastic bag preferably using your bare hands and place them into the pond. Your hands are a lot less abrasive and it will be far less harmful to the Koi fish's protective slime coating. If the fishes are too large for you to handle please use a net or simply let the fish swim from the bag into the pond.

Note: Do not add the shipping water into your pond.

To read more about building garden water features and Koi Fish Ponds follow the links below.


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