First year to winterize, Indoor Housing or leave fish outdoor. Zone 6a

Discussion in 'Winterizing Your Pond' started by TiresmokinV8, Sep 28, 2017.

  1. TiresmokinV8

    TiresmokinV8

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    This will be the first year with our 4 Shubunkins that are 2-3" long. I dont have a picture of the pond on me but Im pretty sure its this premold liner. I bought it used. https://www.lowes.com/pd/MacCourt-100-Gallon-Black-High-Density-Polyethylene-Pond-Liner/4165525

    Its not the first year for the pond but is for having fish. I thought its was atleast 24" deep when I bought it but after gettingfish and learning more about the whole fish/pond life I measured it myself and its supposed to be 18" deep but shows around 16.5" water depth which makes me leary of keeping the fish in it over winter. Now knowing this I want to dig it out deeper next year to atleast 36" and do the whole liner thing but have to get through this winter first.

    If I bring them in whats the most DIY Budget friendly way to go for a holding tank for 4ish months? water trough, storage bin? And what about filtering and water circulation?

    Thanks Im open to all opinions at this point since Im still fresh in the learning process.
     
    TiresmokinV8, Sep 28, 2017
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  2. TiresmokinV8

    IPA

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    What zone are you in?
    EDIT: NM, I see it in title
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2017
    IPA, Sep 28, 2017
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  3. TiresmokinV8

    Jhn

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    Stock tank from tractor supply. I would probably use a pump and pump into a 5 gallon bucket with bio balls or some sort of filter media sitting on top of stock tank or next to it and let it gravity feed back in to the tub. (Drill hole in bucket for return)However, I have all this stuff laying around to jury rig something up, so it would be cheap for me to do this.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2017
    Jhn, Sep 28, 2017
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  4. TiresmokinV8

    qclabrat

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    yes, you'll need to bring them in, but since the fish are small could probably could get away with using a 30-50 gallon rubbermaid type container. Are you planning to have them "hibernate" or do you intend to feed them while inside?

    The bins are a bit flexible, plan to have the sides braced with sand bags.
     
    qclabrat, Sep 28, 2017
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  5. TiresmokinV8

    MitchM

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    What are you using for filtration? A canister filter?
    If so, make sure to use it to filter the winter setup. Do not clean it first, unless it's really dirty, and then only rinse off the media with existing pond water.

    If you are not currently using a filter, get one going now on the existing pond so it has time to establish a substantial beneficial bacteria population.
     
    MitchM, Sep 28, 2017
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  6. TiresmokinV8

    TiresmokinV8

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    I could do this. I do have multiple 5gal buckets laying around and Have 5 bags of 50 bioballs in my pond filtration that I could transfer over
     
    TiresmokinV8, Sep 28, 2017
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  7. TiresmokinV8

    TiresmokinV8

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    Still too new at this. I currently dont feed them, they eat whatever they find in the pond which are the lillys water lettuce and algae. I plan on putting them on the concrete floor of my storage/utility side of the basement since the rest of the basement is finished and rather keep potential leaks on concrete near a floor drain. It might get into the low 50s ambient in that room but most likely thats the lowest itll see. I could feed them or atleast probably would have to if the water warm enough for them to be active and the environment is clean to the point that theres no real food source for them.

    But also depending on how much room the tank takes up I may put them in our attached garage but with 2 cars and the fact that I used it as a workshop theres not much large open floorspace. But the garage does get into the mid 30s at times although it is fully insulated and has a furnace for heat when Im working out there.
     
    TiresmokinV8, Sep 28, 2017
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  8. TiresmokinV8

    TiresmokinV8

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    In the pond the liner came with this filter box.
    Tetra Pond filter box
    https://www.amazon.com/TetraPond-Su...16235&sr=8-2-spons&keywords=pond+filter&psc=1

    I have that running to a submersed 1000gph pump which feeds it up to this waterfall box.

    https://www.lowes.com/pd/smartpond-Black-Pond-Waterfall-Box/999949254

    In the filter box I have a green coarse filter, to a pink fine filter to some quilt batting all on top of 3 bags of bioballs (which now I rea shouldnt be used in submerged applications). In the waterfall box I have another 2 bags of bioballs. I didnt realize the pond was only 18" deep and 100 gals I thought it was closer to 24" deep and around 250-300 gals when I spec'd out the pump and filtration.
     
    TiresmokinV8, Sep 28, 2017
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  9. TiresmokinV8

    RichardSJPonds

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    We're in Zone 5a, and we have one 6'x8' pond with half a dozen comets that is only 16" deep. They do fine over the winter. We keep the pump to the waterfall running and add an aerator for the cold season. We use a 300W de-icer if it gets cold enough to freeze over. Last year we only needed the de-icer for 5 days. The fish winter over just fine for us.
    The pond has a well-established bacteria population and about 10% plant coverage. We perform a mild cleaning and partial water change in the fall so there isn't a build-up of guck on the bottom decaying all winter. It's a very small pond, with a skimmer, a biological filter, and a 12"-high waterfall.
    The one issue has been finding fish trapped in the skimmer. There's few enough fish to easily count, but when there's ice blocking the view it is important to regularly check the skimmer so if they do find their way in there they're not stuck for too long.

    http://www.landvistaaquascapes.com/blog/what-to-do-for-your-pond-fish-over-the-winter6341950
     
    RichardSJPonds, Sep 29, 2017
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  10. TiresmokinV8

    qclabrat

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    I also propped up the bins on wood as an insulator from the cold floor, I'm in Northern NJ and my attached garage gets below 25F, but never froze
     
    qclabrat, Oct 2, 2017
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  11. TiresmokinV8

    mgmine

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    Basically you have 4 goldfish. I would leave them in the pond or give them back to where ever you bought them. If I brought them in I would get a cheap kids pool and something to pump air into it. When it got nasty I'd pull the fish out and change the water. If you have to go the whole route of buying a filter it will get expensive and cost many times more than 4 new fish would cost.
     
    mgmine, Oct 2, 2017
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  12. TiresmokinV8

    brokensword Not all those who wander are lost

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    if it gets below 25 in your garage, anything IN the garage will get below 25, given enough time at that temp. Keeping an aerator in it would probably keep the water from freezing solid. Also, without supplemental lighting, you're going to have a problem getting anything to grow (like algae and your pond plants) on the sides to help during the winter. If you have the buckets and bioballs, set up a cheap filter that way by using a pump to supply the bucket filter which will return the water to the winterized temporary setup. In that case, you probably wouldn't need the aeration but it always helps. Though, in winter, cold water holds more O2 so not an issue usually, but you want to keep a hole open for any ice that does form.

    Michael
     
    brokensword, Oct 2, 2017
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  13. TiresmokinV8

    Nyboy

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    I found a 50 gallon tank on curb, will buy a filter for it. I know I will have to do a lot of water changes all winter, but believe when you get a animal you take good care of it.
     
    Nyboy, Oct 2, 2017
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  14. TiresmokinV8

    IPA

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    @TiresmokinV8 , can you keep them somewhere protected from freezing but say between 35 and 45 degree F? (There might be a better range) If you can keep them in torpor your expenses and maintenance will be minimal.
     
    IPA, Oct 2, 2017
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  15. TiresmokinV8

    TiresmokinV8

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    If I keep them in the attached garage itll be in the low 40s upper 30s most of the time,
     
    TiresmokinV8, Oct 5, 2017
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