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Thread: Winter Preparation

  1. #31
    Oyagoi HEADACHE6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Grant , In my monthly Nichirin (March 09') a gentleman named Chiaki Takahashi doesn't feed his Koi from Nov. to May. He states that many feed to early in the Spring.

    If your able , that article (Koi Keeping in Spring) might help with some ideas.

  2. #32
    Tategoi moikoi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by gcuss View Post
    Thanks JR!

    I think I'm going to go with the insulated shed for now. I'll be able to control the environment a bit better and I'll be able to keep the water 48 degrees or more. How long can they go without eating at 48 degrees? I'll be looking at 3 months or so I believe.

    depending on the weather mine don't get fed for 4-5 months.

  3. #33
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    This all depends on the age and condition of the fish. A tosai is likely OK under ice for 8-12 weeks. A sansai can probably make the 16 weeks.

    Try this idea on for size--- A koi entering winter is like a traveler passing across the desert or an astronaut traveling from ship to ship in a no atmosphere zone. EVERTHING must be self contained as there are no resources along the way! The mistake that most beginner hobbyists make is to try and get some 'reserves' into the fish during the event of winter. That is not possible. The fish is in a state of survival and as a cold blooded animal, it has little if any ability to take in and process reserves relative to need. So the fish is 'suited up' once it enters true winter. The only way to slow this is by 'The burn rate' and 'duration time'. The burn rate is the amount of calories a koi must expend to survive and the duration is, of course, how long it must remain in statis. Not to worry too much as the koi is designed by God and Nature to cope-- within reason.
    So a mild, realtively short winter is a wonderful tonic for a strong, healthy koi! But a long very cold and drawn out winter of 16-18 weeks will do what nature intended, and that is to weed out the weak young and unhealthy adult fish.
    I will tell you that if temperatures drop streadily and settle in at 45 F it will not kill any fish. And so I tell you the 'astronaut story' because in the end it is the duration and fluccuation of temperature that kills more koi that absolute temperatures ( unless you go below 32 F which is possible and is very deadly). - JR

  4. #34
    Oyagoi gcuss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Maple Falls, WA
    Thanks again. I'll be keeping their water at about 48 ish degrees and let them do the 3 month winter then. The koi are all in great shape, I'd even say kinda fat so I think they'll be fine.

    And I'm going to look into the no food till may thing Troy, thanks for the info... anyone else do that?


  5. #35
    Oyagoi Eugeneg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Near Toronto, Canada
    Quote Originally Posted by Brutuscz View Post
    All true JR. But the one thing beyond our control is koi have terrible immune systems. I really believe all the inbreeding, line breeding have affected their health in a terrible way. Infusing the blood of magoi and wild carp back in to the mix is one way the breeders can try and improve this(I read a few articles on this). I stopped beating myself up over ulcers a few years ago after reading some articles in Bito magazine. The Maruyama showa had an ulcer the size of a thumb at the base of it's tail. The winner of the wakagoi young show had a pus filled abscess that was incised and drained prior to the show. These are koi kept in the best of conditions by top breeders...and look what happens anyway. We do the best we can...but, a lot of the health issues are inherent to the breed of fish we are keeping. I look at my reef tank...same yellow tang for 3 yrs..no ulcers!!!
    When I had my winter issues this season..It hit my showa more than any other type of koi. They handled it terribly. More inbreeding in showa?? I don't know. But, It wouldn't surprise me at all.
    Considering the inbreeding required to produce show fish their immune
    systems are amazing. The one thing that can not be done is to keep
    the fish under the ice . I f in a colder climate a cover has to be made over the pond and the temperature should not drop below 44f in the coldest of
    conditions. The best preperation for winter is a mud pond. The idea of not feeding for six months is ridiculas. I feed at 50f but very little and the wheat germ pellets are soaked with some frozen orange juice so they are falling apart.

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