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Thread: Winter Preparation

  1. #1
    Oyagoi HEADACHE6's Avatar
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    Winter Preparation

    I know , it's still Summer. But in just over 90 days it will be December.

    So what could/should we be doing in these next 90+ days to make sure our Koi strive the winter months ?

  2. #2
    Oyagoi
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    talking in high 40's this next week at night so take your 90 days and subtract 91.

  3. #3
    Honmei Brutuscz's Avatar
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    I am bringing them indoors this year. I learned my lesson!!! I lost too many good koi last season..and then dealt with ulcers since then. I believe it was all a result of the bad winter. I purchased 3-1200gal pools and set them up in my basement. They only cost $90 each at target...and come with a pump. My basement stays at 55deg all winter. So..i may feed lightly once or twice a week. I am also considering using prazi and formalin/mal green when I first bring them in...as a precaution. Any thoughts on this as a prophalactic treatment?


    If your desire to succeed is greater than your desire to fail, then you will succeed.

  4. #4
    Oyagoi Ethan25's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brutuscz View Post
    I am bringing them indoors this year. I learned my lesson!!! I lost too many good koi last season..and then dealt with ulcers since then. I believe it was all a result of the bad winter. I purchased 3-1200gal pools and set them up in my basement. They only cost $90 each at target...and come with a pump. My basement stays at 55deg all winter. So..i may feed lightly once or twice a week. I am also considering using prazi and formalin/mal green when I first bring them in...as a precaution. Any thoughts on this as a prophalactic treatment?

    where do you live that you bring them in?

    how cold does it get?

    I leave mine outside, and we saw two weeks last winter where temps pretty much stayed between 0 and 20 degrees. ice on pond, but not everywhere.

    no dead fish in 5 years doing it this way.

  5. #5
    Honmei Brutuscz's Avatar
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    I live in Ct. My issue is that my pond is at the top of a hill, and is 4ft below ground..and 16inches above. It was getting an ice cube effect...with no good insulation and cold on all sides. So, the bottom went as low as 35deg. I was seeing the effects of frostbite..and several died. Even the survivors didn't do great. Many had ulcers. Some actually lost their beni. It was perfect going into winter...and gone coming out.
    I did normal overwintering at my old pond for years with great success. But, this pond is just not good for it.

  6. #6
    Tosai
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    must be pain to bring them in and out. I live in so cal and the cold weather is not an issue.
    I wonder if Jap farms bring their koi in for the winter?

  7. #7
    Oyagoi
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    before my new pond my koi always came in for winter ,i had 3 tanks set up in basement.
    well should not say always first 2 winters they were outside and last winter i had 2 ft of ice on pond(no snow no frost and cold weather went deep in ground).so i had tank set up for the ones that came to hole in ice that were in total stress.majority had to ride it out.lost some but major problems next spring.
    so that was the last winter they stayed outside.

    with having them inside i never heated water or room(cold basement like 55+) fed VERY little and did ALOT of waterchanges.
    should go get a picture some year of someone i helped build for indoor.
    Basically he bought one of my 6ft POP tanks.can not remember pump size 1000-1200 gph .that pump sits on bottom of tank in middle ,comes up and elbows to top of a laundry basketas a shower laudry basket has ALOT of holes in bottom.laundry basket is sitting on top of plastic board decking
    his laundry basket is filled with PVC shavings and mat on top he cleans. makes a nice TT and he feeds little and does waterchanges.(maybe he has changed it over years???)they were out the other night and wished they could build a pipe from pond to house as a chute to get them inside.they do use pond water to fill tank so transfer is quick and easy.they are a retired couple.think maybe this year i need to help them catch and move them in.

    these are not show koi but nice pond koi that the owner cares to not lose.and he is so much happier not having issues in spring esp cause catching 1 koi in a full pond of water would be impossible for them.

  8. #8
    Oyagoi HEADACHE6's Avatar
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    So for those of you who plan to place your koi inside for winter your going to do nothing over the next 90 days .

    But , What do the other Hobbyist need to do over the next 90 days to have their Koi in peak condition for the winter months ? Or are you going to wait until you get there (Dec.) , which is too late to do much ?

    What are our Koi doing for themselves over the next 90 days to prepare for winter ?

  9. #9
    Daihonmei
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    Preparation for winter begins around the end of June. A koi becomes very strong and healthy over the summer months and adds to it's length and overall body mass. This is preparation for the times ahead. So it is our responsibility to make sure koi are not stressed or set back during these important months.
    But once the nights begin to get cool and the water cools, and once the lighting begins to change ( if you have delicate plants like ferns they will tell you that the seasonal change is beginning) the fish will also change.
    They will become very interested in feeding again with a sense of aggressiveness, and colors will improve on the fish ( this is another reason that koi shows are held in the cooler autumn weather).
    Just look at the koi as always being 'a season ahead' internally. You'll notice that your koi tend to put on girth in the autumn and the skin becomes noticeably whiter. This is the final run to winter stasis.
    If a fish is not progressing well during that time period ( typically late September to mid November) then that fish must come in. And of course all tosai should be brought inside if the water tends to freeze over more than a few weeks where you live.

    Because koi are seasonal fish they are also 'plan ahead' fish! And in the autumn and they are also preparing their reproductive organs for next springs egg production. Winter will cap that process off and spring diet, water changes, lighting changes and temperature changes will direct all nutrition to waking up and development of reproductive organs. That process however actually begins when most folks think they are only preparing their koi for winter! And remember if you wait until a month or two before winter to prep koi FOR winter, it is really too late. So think ahead, like your koi do, and begin to prepare your koi for winter starting June 30th! Feed them well, keep the water quality up and stable and make sure they are healthy and fit. Continue that pace as they enter autumn and then slow the feeding as the light and water temps change ( 50 F). - JR

  10. #10
    Honmei
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ethan25 View Post
    where do you live that you bring them in?

    how cold does it get?

    I leave mine outside, and we saw two weeks last winter where temps pretty much stayed between 0 and 20 degrees. ice on pond, but not everywhere.

    no dead fish in 5 years doing it this way.
    Ethan,
    If I only had a dollar for all of the times I have heard similar claims.....right Brutus? Beware Ethan, your time will be coming, trust me.

    Steve
    The views presented are my personal views and not that of any organization that I may belong to unless otherwise specified. [email protected]
    CKHPA

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