How do you introduce new koi to your pond?


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Seeking thoughts/procedures of how to introduce new koi to ones pond.

I received some new special grade butterfly koi last week from a reputable Koi farm. Was looking forward to new pets. I floated to acclimate to pond temp. Placed in 5 gallon bucket with the shipping water. Added some pond water. Swapped water for the next couple of hours to acclimate, then placed in pond (via net) since i didnt have a quarantine system. Same procedure i've done many times over. 2 of the fish were gone in a couple days, and havent seen the remaining 2. I contacted the vender and informed me that the fish should go directly into the pond after temperature acclimation so they are not exposed to extra ammonia in the bucket and PH change of the shipping water.

Just curious of other procedures of acclimation and new fish introduction? Thanks much for your time and thoughts.
 
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Hi I’m sorry to hear about the loss of your fish. I kinda agree about the bagged water probably having a lot of ammonia. Were they shipped from a distance? That’s why I don’t really buy fish from Hawaii anymore because the shipping to the Midwest takes too long. As you know fish can get stressed out during shipping so you need to minimize the detrimental effects on them. If your fish were not stressed at all your procedure wouldn’t have hurt them but if they were stressed somewhat that might have put them over the edge. I never heard of the 5 gallon bucket procedure you use. I just float the bag for about 15-20 minutes and slowly add pond water during that process. It also gives my current fish a chance to see the new additions! Then I gently cup my hand under them to lift them out and let them swim away. I always dump the bagged water someplace else so I’m not adding extra waste in my pond. It’s not unusual for a new fish to disappear for a day or two until they get acclimated. I know this is after the fact but I generally stay with the same vendors that I have the best results with both shipping and long term health and growth in my pond. It sometimes limits what I can buy, but typically I have too many already so getting a few less won’t hurt me!
 

Jhn

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Acclimation for fish shipped overnight, should be as the vendor suggested, just temperatur acclimate and let the fish loose. As they said the bag water is going to have ammonia in it, but the ph will be low as the co2 that builds up in the bag will cause the ph to lower. The good thing is ammonia is less toxic at a lower ph, problem acclimating them slowly is you open the bag introducing o2 now the ph will start to rise making the ammonia much more toxic.

so best bet is to get the fish in fresh clean water as quick as possible and let them adjust or osmoregulate in the pond or qt tank.

Also, if the fish arrives in rough shape I would add them directly to a qt tank without temp acclimateing them, lesser of two evils at that point, get them out of the shipping water full of ammonia as quickly as possible is always the best idea.
 
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Oh, how disappointing, after all your time and attention. As a retired veterinarian, I can’t pass up the opportunity to stress the importance of quarantining new animals. I’ve seen lots of heartache and financial loss from the introduction of infectious and contagious diseases. Okay, I’m off my soapbox now. I hope the missing ones show up soon!
 

Mmathis

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When you say “they were gone,” do mean they died, or they disappeared?

Also, how big is your pond and what is your filtration like?
 
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Wait. Are the fish dead or you just don't see them?
Many times new fish will hide for a while.
It could be a couple weeks before they get comfortable in their new environment.

Tell us about your pond.
How big is it and are there places where the fish may be hiding?
 

Abby

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If you haven’t seen your fish floating or sickly Then they are probably still alive in the pond and and the way that you introduced them was probably fine… They are probably just hiding somewhere… Acclimating to a new environment and adjusting to the possible stress associated with moving to a new home…

If your fish were found dead… That would take us back to the original line of questioning that was posed in response to your post

Fingers crossed that your response will be that they haven’t been found floating or sickly… They’re probably just hiding. The other possibility is if they were significantly smaller than your other fish, they could have fallen prey to a snake or other predator… Which honestly there’s really nothing you can do about it unfortunately… But truly hoping that they are just hiding and acclimating… And that they’ll come out soon to and show you they’re just fine ;) ❤️
 
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Thanks much for the thoughts and recommendations, and time. Always more to learn, as in any hobby. Pond is approx. 2500 gal with a waterfall and has been going for about 20+ years, but improving recently. Filtration is newer Aquadyne bead filter and smaller bog garden, as well a homemade gravity filter since the start. Water parameters seem all to be in normal qualities. Have some golden orfe that have been in there 10+ years. Various koi have been there 5+ years. Plan is to eventually swap out the Orfe and have mostly koi. All fun to watch and grow, and survive our Vermont winters (with care). Have some hiding places at shelfs and around the plants. Like to add some new koi every now and then for variety. Two of the new ones were floating (dead) in a couple days after arrival, and no signs of the two others yet to be seen. They were special grade so some monetary value was lost, as well as that ugly feeling of losing something new. As i look back, this seems fall in line with the ammonia poisoning of the gills from me trying to have them adjust to the pond water. Also a larger size probably would have been more enabling for survival.

Thanks again.
 

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Seeking thoughts/procedures of how to introduce new koi to ones pond.

I received some new special grade butterfly koi last week from a reputable Koi farm. Was looking forward to new pets. I floated to acclimate to pond temp. Placed in 5 gallon bucket with the shipping water. Added some pond water. Swapped water for the next couple of hours to acclimate, then placed in pond (via net) since i didnt have a quarantine system. Same procedure i've done many times over. 2 of the fish were gone in a couple days, and havent seen the remaining 2. I contacted the vender and informed me that the fish should go directly into the pond after temperature acclimation so they are not exposed to extra ammonia in the bucket and PH change of the shipping water.

Just curious of other procedures of acclimation and new fish introduction? Thanks much for your time and thoughts.
Could they be hiding? I had a fish I didn’t see for over 6 months. I thought it was gone too. Now it is over a foot long.
 
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Mmathis

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@hobie61 Do you test your water? What are your levels for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, pH, and KH? If you don’t test, why not get a liquid test kit (like API — and you have to buy the KH as a separate test), and see where you stand with that.

Sounds like your pond is well established, but it’s possible that adding those few extra fish has tipped the balance. There is really no way for us to know what happened, so let’s start at the beginning with some test results (either tell us the actual numbers, or take pics of the cards/tubes — this information is more helpful than if you say the results were “good,” or were “normal”). Also, where do you live and what is your weather like…..what is the water temperature of the pond?

Keep in mind that no matter how “reputable” a dealer is, fish can still be carrying diseases, parasites that can show up if the fish is stressed. I’m so sorry about your fish, and I’m hoping that the remaining fish are simply hiding. My 20 or so goldfish “disappeared” for over a week once after we watched a great egret [beautiful bird!] scoping out the pond. Then, as suddenly as they were gone, the goldies reappeared — they were hiding in the carpet on oxygenator plants.
 

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