Having a Koi pond can not only increase the visual appeal of a property, but it can also aid in developing a passion for an environment that you are able to maintain for yourself. Koi ponds can certainly encounter a number of issues throughout time, especially considering the amount of time and effort that one puts into maintenance, but this does not mean that such problems cannot be solved and alleviated with a few simple suggestions. The following will outline 5 of the most common problems associated with Koi ponds, as well as ways in which such problems can be solved.
- Predation is a serious issue with Koi ponds, especially during the overnight hours. Cats, raccoons, and even larger coyotes have been known to prey on the fish in Koi ponds. If you are finding this to be an issue for you and your fish friends, then consider making the water too deep for large birds or animals to stand in or place netting on the surface of the water to pose as a barrier between the fish and the predator.
- Parasitic infestations of your fish can not only be difficult to identify, but they can be nearly impossible to identify as many are too small for them to be seen by the naked eye. If you are experiencing an issue of this nature, then consider a better filtration system such as one that incorporates a UV sterilizer. For more on koi diseases see this article.
- If you find that your Koi pond has excessive algal growth which can decrease your ability to see your fish, then there are several ways to manage the algae in your pond. You can choose to either tint the pond water, which will reduce the ability of the algae to gather sunlight, or you can add just a slight amount of salt in the pond, but only if you do not have other plants growing that don’t have some salt tolerance.
- Low oxygen levels can certainly be one of the leading causes of the death of Koi fish. Unfortunately, many people do not realize that they are having this issue until it is too late. Adding plants or a small fountain or waterfall to your pond should create sufficient oxygen and flow to keep your fish alive and happy.
- High pH levels and high bacteria levels can all contribute to the death of fish. Koi ponds may have a pH range between 6.8 to 8.2 but 7.0 to 7.5 is really ideal. There will most likely be natural daily swings of pH of a small amount but that is not something to be concerned about as long as they are small. The concern becomes big swings in a short time or generally pH levels that are outside the acceptable range causing koi skin to become vulnerable to bacterial infection. Two main solutions to keeping pH levels in check are regular testing and if need be adjustments via buffers and acids. In short, buffers will increase pH while the addition of acids will reduce pH.