submersible pond pump & fish electrocution

Discussion in 'Garden Pond Talk' started by D&RW, Oct 17, 2012.

  1. D&RW

    D&RW

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    Hi all,

    we have a 4700 gallon/hr submersible that isn't dual use. Years ago I thought I had all the outlets GFI grounded but i missed one. One wasn't and that happened to be the one the pump was plugged into. Anyway, one day one of our young koi showed up bent in a crecent like Dr. Johnson shows in his picture. I couldn't figure out how it happened until i examined the outlets. well, the koi grew up ok and overcame the bend mostly. and i grounded the put a GFI on the lone ungrounded outlet.

    anyway, now i have another fish, a goldfish that is bent. only slightly this time, but i'm wondering if a fish can get a shock out of a submersible even when they are grounded. actually, this fish is bent, but its belly on one side appears swollen too. it's also kind of sulky. maybe it's not the electricity thing, but i do want to know whether i ought to dig up the $$ to replace that submersible pump.

    BTW, i do have a hospital tank set up, but i haven't had good luck with trying to isolate and treat a fish. catching them initally is usually quite hard and I do not have a microscope so i treat shotgun style. i know that's not best but i can't afford a good binocular microscope for the very occasional use i'd have for it.

    4500 gallon pond. water's 60 degrees. we don't get thunderstorms in this part of oregon. pH is 8. ammonia 0. nitrites 0. nitrates lowest level that is not 0. i've never been able to get the nitrates to 0. KH runs about 5. GH about 4. dont usually measure phosphates. waters clear. have two pumps and filters: ones a sequence 1000 with a AquaUV 4500 bead filter and the other is an Easy Pro 4500 running through an oxygenated Easy Pro Filter Falls filled with bead bacterial substrate. Using an Aqua UV 57 watt UV. Usually do a water change monthly for about 25%. Treat every spring with ProForm C, prazi plus, and do a 50% water change. we have lillys that cover about 3/8 of the pond in full growth.

    thanks,

    Rick
    D&RW, Oct 17, 2012
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  2. D&RW

    crsublette coyotes call me Charles

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    One interesting explanation that kind of answers you. Go to Dr. Novak's Anoxic Filtraiton Q&A Chapter 2, page 7, last paragraph. It says that all pumps, not just submersible, and other electrical devices can sometimes excrete an extremely small amount of millivolts (mV), not noticeably by humans, that can cause all sorts of fish problems and the potential mV are increases when salt is used. I am not saying this is your answers. I am just answering the part about "shock out of a submersible even when they are grounded".

    Try taking a picture of the fish and post it. You can also try to find a koi club or fish vet near you to see if anyone can help.
    crsublette, Oct 17, 2012
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  3. D&RW

    D&RW

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    interesting. i wonder how other devices leak electricity into a pond. now that i think about it i do have a second small pump that powers a spitter, but it's in a GFI outlet too.
    D&RW, Oct 18, 2012
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  4. D&RW

    Waterbug

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    All electrical devices generate electric and magnetic fields when they're running. And these fields can be harmful at some level, and some consider them harmful at all levels. Not too many people giving them up. I'm not going to stop using pumps because of extremely low fields. Just because these fields exist doesn't automatically mean they very harmful. UV from the sun is also harmful to fish.

    GFCI outlets today trip when the loss is 4-6 milliamperes, GFCI breakers trip at 30 milliamperes. A human can feel about 1 milliampere, 10 milliamperes would be a painful shock, and 60-100 milliamperes can be lethal to humans. GFCI is the best protection for a reasonable cost we have today, but it doesn't solve all issues. And many, like north of 25%, in surveys are found to not be working. I think it's best to look at GFCI as good tools, but not infallible.

    If you are concerned you can test for stray voltage using a voltage meter. Pretty cheap at Radio Shack and a pretty easy test.

    Generally stray voltage will cause all fish in the pond to act strange, frightened. Curved spine can also be several different things.

    BTW, I'm old and am used to saying GFI...but the currently accepted term is GFCI so I'm trying to use that. But GFI and GFCI are the same thing.
    Waterbug, Oct 18, 2012
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  5. D&RW

    Craig58

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    Being that you have other symptoms, I'd explore other causes first. Maybe an illness of some sort. I'd pull the fish and place them in QT. If it's an electical leakage, it would probably be a constant thing, not a one time shock type of thing. Why only one fish?

    You can pull the pump and do some testing on it if you're unsure. But I would be more inclined to go with some other cause.

    Craig
    Craig58, Oct 18, 2012
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  6. D&RW

    sissy sissy

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    All outlets should be grounde outside or in wet areas and see the biggest reason fish would get shocked is because people will pull a pump out of the water by the power cord .All pumps state you should not do that but people just say oh just this one time will not hurt .Have you had any kind of severe weather like heavy rains or thunder storms or have you added something new to the pond .My neighbor lost a fish to a wasp sting and she saw it happen and have heard about dragon flies stinging fish too ,not sure about that as I have lots of dragon flies .With in hours of the sting you could see her fish was suffering and tried treating it but not sure since it was a baby goldfish what we should do .
    sissy, Oct 18, 2012
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  7. D&RW

    Craig58

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    Craig58, Oct 18, 2012
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  8. D&RW

    callingcolleen1 mad hatter

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    Cool! That was good reading Craig58, I love dragonflies and damselflies, they are at the top of their food chain in the bug world. They are also prehistoric creatures as well and I have lots of them in the pond every year, they help keep the fish population down naturally as well. :) :)
    callingcolleen1, Oct 19, 2012
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