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Thread: Ideal pond footprint.

  1. #1
    Oyagoi dizzyfish's Avatar
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    Ideal pond footprint.

    A lot of people seem to think a 6-7' deep pond is best for koi development. So if you have a pond that deep what would be the ideal square footage of the footprint?(length x width) My pond is 20'x40' by 4.5' deep and the koi swim all over it. They get great exercise swimming the 40' length. Often they are down at the waterfall end and I feed at the opposite end, so they have to sprint down when I start feeding. Would a pond say 15' x 10' by 7' be better than my pond? How much better is depth than length?
    Mitch

  2. #2
    Tategoi moikoi's Avatar
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    mine is 29' long pear shape.the widest part being 16'. the depth...from 20"-8.5 ft at the BD.

    if i can do it over again and if i have the space. i would do something like...25 X 12 X 7.5-8 ft deep.

  3. #3
    Jumbo B.Scott's Avatar
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    Surface area on a pond is a good thing. It means you have a much larger area for oxygen exchange and promotes growth and good conformation by giving them plenty of room to exercise. There is little purpose of keeping fish in a pond that is very small and very deep. Sort of like living in a well I would think!
    The down side of a big pond is than netting a fish becomes a full scale intervention and examining a fish leaves more to chance. As ponds become larger water changes and the like become a greater chore as well. A source of water with a large flow rate is needed and filters become massive.

    I think a size of 10X15X7 is a pretty good size for a normal hobbyist. That works out to almost 30 tons of water. it gives the fish some room to move and is still small enough to heat and if need be, cover in the winter.

    B.Scott
    Semper in excreta, sumus solum profundum variat

  4. #4
    Daihonmei dick benbow's Avatar
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    my rule of thumb has always been select the depth you feel appropriate for
    what you want to accomplish growth wise or temperature concerns, double it to make your width, double your width to make your length. 6x12x24 is nice sized.
    If you have the room 40 feet is super! if you don't plan to stay at your present residence any length of time a good swimming pool size may be sage.

  5. #5
    Oyagoi dizzyfish's Avatar
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    Logical, however

    B.Scott, Dick I think you both make good points. I remember reading an in KOI USA a while back where the author felt horizontal swimming room was better than verticle. I forget who the author was. Any rate let me share some personal experience.

    I had many of the larger fish in the picture for 7-8 years in a small pond linked together with two other ponds tied to a large filter brush box filter. These three ponds shared common water and a common sump of 8' x 3' x 3' with a total capacity in the sump/filter of around 500-gallons. I would guess that all the ponds together were only about 2500-gallons, but there odd shapes make it difficult to be certain. The one pond most of these were in was about 10' x 8' in an "L" shape and only about 30" deep. It was one of those deals that when the fish were about 5" eveything was fine, but as they grew and grew they began to get seriously overcrowded. The formation in the first picture is pretty much how they stayed. Oh they came up and ate like crazy alright, but there was never any swimming room to speak of. IMO they look pretty decent considering the poor conditions they were given for all those years. They did get a lot of water changes due in part to a leaky stream bed from one of the small ponds.

    After I lost of couple of my herd to a fluke outbreak no doubt aided by the over crowded conditions, I decided to get busy on that large pond I always wanted. So shortly after the 27,000 gallon pond was filled with water and circulated for a couple of days I moved them into it. At first they behaved like they had in the small pond just staying in the tight circle group you see in the first photo. But then in the next 24 hours or so an amazing thing happened. They began to swim almost in formation around the large pond. (2nd picture) I was surprised they still had the muscles for the marathon swimming, but they were doing laps. I can't begin to tell you how much more of a pleasant viewing experience this was. It was similar to taking a captive reared Macaw and watching it take flight for the first time. I don't believe you will ever get to experience how fast a 25" koi can swim in 15'x10'x6' pond. I just don't believe seven body lengths is enough for them to get up to a full head of steam. This doesn't mean that they won't be very happy and healthy, and grow jumbo in that size pond at all. What it does mean is that you will not have the total experience of enjoying how athletic and graceful they can be. So from a behavioral point of view I would conclude that a larger horizontal swimming area was better. My 2 cents.
    Mitch
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Ideal pond footprint.-181_8189.jpg   Ideal pond footprint.-181_8188.jpg  

  6. #6
    Daihonmei dick benbow's Avatar
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    mitch, thanks for the photos....I have seen this change myself where the residents in a formerly smaller pond respond with the different schooling and laps. You can tell by the body lanquage they are a lot happier and i think your point is well taken

  7. #7
    Oyagoi Sangreaal's Avatar
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    Mitch, in their schooling behavior have you noticed whether they predominately swim in a clockwise or counterclockwise path around the pond? Or is it a random mix of both?

    Marie

  8. #8
    Tosai Jade Lake Girl's Avatar
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    Talking

    Imagine how much joy the fish respond with, when you release them in a 200 ft long pond. Its a thrill to see it. They wheel in big figure eights first one direction and then the other. I've seen them race up a head of steam & jump right out of the water. Fast, fast fish. Whee!

  9. #9
    Oyagoi dizzyfish's Avatar
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    Marie when I see them it is usually counterclockwise for some reason. Usually they spot me coming a mile away, stop what they are doing and they all start swimming up to the edge begging. I guess I need to get one of those feeders that lets them pull the rope and feed themselves.
    Mitch

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