Complete novice who jumped the gun!

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Jewelee, Nov 21, 2018.

  1. Jewelee

    Jewelee

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    Hi and I'm SO glad to have found you...:arghh: I've done everything imaginably wrong so far from adding small koi to regular tap water and reading about all of this only AFTER the poor little creatures had been bought and dumped into the water.:facepalm: My sweet yet doubtful husband tried to warn me that I needed to do a little research but I just wanted him to dig the hole and not chime in as I had this! As he's wisely done throughout our marriage, he does whatever I've requested of him, shakes his head and lets me hang myself. What can I say other than I was overly enthusiastic, love all living creatures and ignorance is such beautiful bliss. After all, how hard could it be? I'd won goldfish at carnivals as a kid, brought them home in a baggy, dumped them in a bowl and occasionally fed them and refreshed their water. They'd live for quite some time, or so it seemed so in my little girls mind. They'd eventually die, we'd have a fishy funeral and that would be that. I'm finding out my youthful method of fish husbandry is in sharp contrast to the actual care of koi in a pond. This whole pond thing has become quite overwhelming,:unsure: extremely confusing(n) and frankly reminds me in many ways dreaded high school chemistry, a class I barely skidded by in with a C-.:meh: I ready to earn an A+ in middle aged pond science however, and that's where (I hope) you guys come in!:finger:.
    I'm sure you can see exactly where this is going and can anticipate the myriad of rookie questions I'm sure to ask in the coming days/weeks/months. I've already killed two fish and want, more than anything for the mayhem to end now!:arghh: (Poor little fish...I'm so sorry.) I only ask one thing of you. PLEASE be gentle and keep the following in mind when you read my posts:
    :angelic:"Forgive her, Lord for she knows not what she has done" .:angelic:
    AND...
    impulsive.jpg



    ((THE FOLLOWING IS WHERE I'M AT NOW .)))



    scared-lady.jpg
    pond 2.jpg
    Thanks, in advance, for your patience and your knowledge. Once I get this figured out, and I will... It's sure to be a joy to care for and watch it evolve over time! I can't wait!
    Jewelee:happy:
     
    Jewelee, Nov 21, 2018
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  2. Jewelee

    mrsclem mrsclem

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    Welcome to GPF Jewelee. Most of us have made mistakes when starting out. Be prepared to answer tons of questions and do a lot of reading.
    I will start off saying it is a very cute pond you have built. It looks like a preformed pond. Do you know how many gallons it holds?
    Koi are beautiful fish but ( and you will hear this over and over), grow very fast and get BIG! 12-18" in the 1st year.There are plenty of other varieties of fish to consider.
    Where are you located? Do you have a test kit to test your pond water? You mentioned tap water. Is it well water or city water? Chlorine is in most city water and is bad for fish.
    Don't beat yourself up - do some reading about pond keeping and go thru the threads on the forum. And most of all, have a Happy Thanksgiving!
     
    mrsclem, Nov 21, 2018
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  3. Jewelee

    Mmathis TurtleMommy

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    Hello and welcome!

    Tell us more about your pond..... How big is it, and what kind of goals/plans do you have?
     
    Mmathis, Nov 21, 2018
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  4. Jewelee

    Becky Administrator

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    Welcome to the forum! :)
     
    Becky, Nov 21, 2018
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  5. Jewelee

    Jewelee

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    Hi Mrsclem! Thanks for your kind words.
    Yes... it is a preformed, 40 gal. pond. Unfortunately, learning the REAL truth about koi size was one of those things that fell under the "I Found Out After I Bought the Fish" catagory! When I asked, the kid at the pet store, he actually said, "koi size is determined by pond size. The bigger the pond, the bigger the fish, and Visa versa." In other words, they only get as big as the confines of the pond allow? (Sigh...) It sounded perfectly logical at the time. Anyway, now I know. One has already died and there are three, 2"-3" beautiful little fish left. We've only had them and the finished pond for THREE DAYS!!
    Since reading and educating myself, I purchased and installed and additional box filter and dechlorinated the water following the directions on the bottle. Speaking of which: we get our water from the city, a suburb of Los Angeles where the climate is pretty mild but it can really heat up in the Summer.
    Additionally, I've purchased "beneficial bacteria" and an algae remover yesterday but haven't used either yet.
    Given what I've just described, what can you (& everybody) recommend to get us on the right track in order to save my little fish? Many, many thanks and Happy Turkey Day to all!
     
    Jewelee, Nov 21, 2018
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  6. Jewelee

    mrsclem mrsclem

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    First of all, see if the pet store will let you return the fish. Do not add any other chemicals to your pond other than the dechlor. Beneficial bacteria is really not necessary and the algae remover can actually do more harm than good. Your pond will get pea soup coloring and this is normal. Patience is your best friend.
    40 gallons is very small, maybe someone who has goldfish or other types can direct you as to what kind of fish and how many.
     
    mrsclem, Nov 21, 2018
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  7. Jewelee

    j.w I Love my Goldies

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    j.w, Nov 21, 2018
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  8. Jewelee

    Somethin' Fishy

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    Welcome @Jewelee . Sorry to hear of your ordeal, but you've found the right place to help educate yourself.

    If you haven't opened the bacteria or the algae remover, return them. Sounds like the kid at the pet store was just bucking for a sale in selling you the fish and these products to begin with.

    I'd suggest, with a decorative pond this small, and with the mild climate you have, that you may look into keeping much smaller fish later on. Perhaps rehome your remaining koi if they survive. And...for now, just take the time to learn as much as you can about setting up your pond and fish keeping.
     
    Somethin' Fishy, Nov 21, 2018
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  9. Jewelee

    JamieB

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    Welcome, and yes, many of us have been in that same predicament. See if you can return the survivors, and don’t get any other fish. Your pond needs to cycle. It will develop its own benifical bacteria. It takes time and patience. If they won’t take the fish back, you will need a test kit, and to either find them a bigger home or start planning a bigger pond! ( start planning a bigger pond anyway, we all get hooked!) Test your water for chlorine, you need that gone, it hurts their gills, think of when you breathe in bleach fumes. That’s what it does to them. Read the many threads, others intros, and learn well! 40 gallons is too small for any of the regular sized goldfish, maybe some of the decorative smaller breeds, I’m not familiar with them. You’d need good filtration for any goldfish though. Maybe look into guppies, my sister has some in her pond that are booming in population despite cold weather.
     
    JamieB, Nov 21, 2018
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  10. Jewelee

    MitchM

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    Welcome!
     
    MitchM, Nov 22, 2018
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  11. Jewelee

    Tara

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    Hello, hope you manage to work things out. Let us know how it goes.
     
    Tara, Nov 22, 2018
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  12. Jewelee

    addy1 water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins Moderator

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    For a pond that size, get some fan tails or minnows. Stick with small fish and not many.

    Welcome to our forum!
     
    addy1, Nov 24, 2018
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  13. Jewelee

    Jewelee

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    Thanks to all who've responded. It's comforting to know that I'm not alone in being a novice. :bag:
    Quick update: The three remaining fish:wideyed::wideyed::wideyed: are finally looking pretty happy. Rather than hiding under the box filter 24/7, they are swimming around and eating well. As mentioned, I de-chlorinated the pond the other day so perhaps that helped. I added the recommended amount of the beneficial bacteria yesterday before reading the above posts but I hope that is ok. Also, the pet store will not take the fish back because they are moving soon, so for now, I will give them the best care possible until I can find them a good home.
    Some questions (If the questions should have been asked in another thread, please let me know):confused:Can anyone guestimate how fast they'll grow? Right now they are only around 2" - 2 1/2". At what size would it become detrimental for them to remain in my tiny little pond? Is it safe for them to remain in the pond during the cycling process when the water gets murky? How often should I de-chlorinate the water? Oddly, it doesn't say on the bottle. I'm assuming only if I add a substantial amount of water from the hose, right? Or is it a periodic maintenance type of schedule? And finally, would it be a good idea to put other helpful critters in the pond such as snails or bottom feeding fish?
    Many thanks again! I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and I look forward to your responses! (Sorry so many questions. I tried to warn you! Ha! Ha!:LOL:)
     
    Jewelee, Nov 25, 2018
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  14. Jewelee

    Lisak1

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    Dechlor any time you add water to the pond. And adding dechlor won't reverse damage that fish may have suffered from chlorine, so if they were harmed, the damage is done. Not trying to make you feel bad - just making sure you understand how the product works. It doesn't treat the fish - it conditions the water to make it safe for the fish.

    Find your fish a new home ASAP. They could be a foot long in a year's time. I would also let them know that they were negligent in selling you koi under false pretenses, so they may want to re-think whether or not they should take them back. No reputable fish seller would allow koi to be sold to someone with a 60 gallon pond.

    And no - don't add any other animals to the pond.
     
    Lisak1, Nov 25, 2018
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  15. Jewelee

    Jewelee

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    Thanks for the info.
     
    Jewelee, Nov 25, 2018
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  16. Jewelee

    Warner1281

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    Unfortunately, a pond that small will not hold much in the way of wildlife. As others have said, a few smaller fish would be ideal but I would be hesitant to even do a couple of goldfish without a solid filtration system in place. That being said, the cycling process shouldn't hurt the fish, just keep an eye on them. Murky water is pretty typical for a while, but fish trying to jump out of the water is not.
    And as mentioned above, you only need to add dechlorinator when you add more water.
     
    Warner1281, Dec 2, 2018
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  17. Jewelee

    Gemma

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    Welcome to the forum! :)
     
    Gemma, Dec 3, 2018
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