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  • Help!

    Something's been eating the koi in my pond... But just the ones 8 inches and under. I lost the half-carp and a butterfly I had bought after this disaster of a winter, and last year I lost another juvenile koi. I don't want to go to netting because the pond is home to a friendly hognose (they prefer amphibians and rodents, and I've got a lot of those), and netting could kill him.

    Both the butterfly and the fish I lost last year were gold-yellow, but the half-carp was splotchy blue and white. However, the half-carp was prone to making a scene whenever someone walked out to the pond.
  • #2

    Without more information it is tough to give you any advice for your situation. Different predators require different tactics, and there is not much that works long-term if there are otters involved.


    • #3

      What sort of more information?

      The pond is around 3 feet deep, and the main koi house (a pit with a ledge over it) is a foot below that. The sides are steep, maybe a 75 degree angle? It goes pretty swiftly from maybe 3 inches deep with water plants to 3 feet deep with gravel. There are trees over the pond, but I lost the koi last fall and this spring (the little butterfly is actually alive, despite having vanished for an entire week). The pond is right next to the house, but it gets a lot of frogs (and snakes, but I remove all but the hognoses).

      I live right next to a 1/2 mile-mile long stretch of forest bordering a reservoir. There's foxes, raccoons, turtles, herons, eagles, and mink (but mink leave the heads of fish they eat, and would kill an entire pond for fun, so it's not that). Weirdly, the predation has started now, instead of any time within the 10 years I've had the koi pond. It's also only the small fish, which is strange as the koi breed every year. While the koi tend to throw black babies thanks to the oldest of the females, there have still been orange, red, and white koi born into the pond which weren't eaten by predators.

      The yellow koi had a deep wound like someone ran a knife down his side. The half-carp just vanished, and was not found when cleaning the pond.


      • #4

        Herons are migrating now, such a cut is from the beak. Using fishing line which is place 1 ft away from the pond edge and strung to stakes which you place 4 to 5 ft apart will help. Run 2 rows of line, at 12 & 24". Remove is a few weeks when the birds are gone.
        Keeping 1 ft away from the edge of the pond will prevent the bird from leaning over & down.


        • #5

          Based on the predators seen in the area, I agree that a Heron seems most likely.


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