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Transporting koi and how to go about it

Val and I have been showing koi for many years now travelling in some cases 175 miles on a round trip.

We've done this safely and have never lost one of our koi, though we have had bleeds [see article].

So here is what you need to know and how to do it as safely as possible avoiding stress to your koi.

1) You'll need to purchase industrial strength plastic bags.
2) You'll need heavy duty elastic bands
3) You'll need a 22" Circular catch net
4) You'll need a sock net
5) You'll need a black bin bag
6) You'll need Oxygen*** note
7) You'll need a Fish sedative called Elbagin****note
8) You'll need a polystyrene box/s

We've got all the equipment we need so we place one plastic bag into another then fill with enough water to cover the koi about 1/4 of the bag.

Next we need to catch the koi in as stress free a way as we possibly can, so we do this by very slowly and gently towards the surface of the pond or Vat once near the surface still without touching the koi bring the leading the koi to the surface without touching it, you'll need a 22" circular net to do this sock net into play.

You need first pre-wet the sock net then you'll need to catch the koi head first and via the sock net place it in the doubled up plastic bags.

Put your hands around the top of the inner of the two bags about 6" down, then draw the neck together leaving just enough of a gap as to pass an Air pipe into the bag.

Once you have done this open up the Oxygen bottle and blow the bag up till it touches the bottom part of your hand.

Withdraw the air hose then keeping the air in twist the neck of the bag tightly, then bend the neck of the bag double before winding an elastic band as tightly as you can around the double up neck [this is the inner bag done].

Next gather the neck of the outer bag together and do the same again. This effectively seals the inner bag inside of the outermost bag.

Next grasping the top of the neck of the bag gently into the black bag tie it together and place the now darkened bags into a polystyrene box.

Place the bag into your cars boot/trunk making sure the bag is place across the axle so that your koi will be across the car rather than fore and aft *****note
Driving slowly try to avoid turning sharply take it easy, its not a race and you'll get no prizes for winning you'll just start to freak your koi out.

Once at home/show lift the three bags all together and place them in the pond/vat.

Check the temperature of the bag every 5 minutes with an infrared hand held thermometer.

Once the temperature has equalized remove the black bin liner the out bags elastic band then the inner bags.

You'll need to roll the two bags towards the water then with your hands first twist the fish in circles prior to lifting it out , the disorientates the koi which can then be lifted out over the bag and be placed in your pond/vat.

Lastly lift the bags the water therein and empty the bag over a drain. If you follow this to the letter your fish will be transported safely.

*** if your journey is less than an hour and a half you could replace the oxygen with air from your air pump but you'll need to fit a hose pipe over the end.
**** If you are well versed with transporting koi a good sedative to use would be Elbagin.
However if it's your first time a few drops of stress coat will do because if you overdose with the Elbagin your koi will die see link:-


***** If you place the fish fore and aft in the car and have to break sharply the koi will get a nose burn which if not treated can quickly turn into an ulcer, nose burns are hard to treat.
Should your fish bleed during transport, don't panic this is Stress [they bleed from the gills], so upon reaching your destination you forgo the usual float and release the koi straight way into its pond/vat . see link:-

I've also linked in the correct way to net fish see link :-

All in all if you follow all thse steps your ki will arrive safely at its destination be that a show Vat or your home pond.Lastly and importantly I've linked into my article about the quarentining of your fish something that many people see to ignore nowadays.