How much water should I Leave?

Discussion in 'Winterizing Your Pond' started by GinoLicious, Oct 30, 2016.

  1. GinoLicious

    GinoLicious

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    I have been trying to grab my koi out of my ponds. Turns out I have so many babies. I have a huge tub in my basement that I'm going to keep them there.

    I have two large koi fish still in the pond. They are becoming a pain to find and pull out. I am thinking about emptying the pond to just under half. If I do this do I need to refill it or can I leave that much water in it for winter? My pump is out. I don't intend to keep anything over winter and it will probably freeze out here.
     
    GinoLicious, Oct 30, 2016
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  2. GinoLicious

    morewater President, Raccoon Haters International

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    If it's deep enough, why bother bringing them in?

    More information is required. Depth, total volume, winter equipment, etc.
     
    morewater, Oct 30, 2016
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  3. GinoLicious

    sissy sissy

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    colleen keeps hers in with great success
     
    sissy, Oct 30, 2016
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  4. GinoLicious

    j.w I Love my Goldies

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    j.w, Oct 30, 2016
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  5. GinoLicious

    GinoLicious

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    Yeah it's about 4 feet deep. But I drained it for winter and brought in my huge koi. I heard of people leaving them to freeze. I personally didn't want to risk.
     
    GinoLicious, Oct 31, 2016
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  6. GinoLicious

    addy1 water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins Moderator

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    mine is from 1 foot to 5 foot deep. I leave my goldfish out. A neighbor has koi, his is 4 feet deep, he never brings his fish in.
     
    addy1, Oct 31, 2016
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  7. GinoLicious

    mgmine

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    If it's 4 feet deep there is no need to bring the fish in. Koi are carp and carp live all winter in nature. Why drain the pond?
     
    mgmine, Oct 31, 2016
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  8. GinoLicious

    Mmathis TurtleMommy

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    Sounds like your pond is deep enough not to have to take the koi inside. I've read where some people use solar blankets or covers on their ponds if they expect really bad, deep-water freezes. And then there are pond breathers to keep a hole open if there is ice.

    Personally, I would be more concerned about the stress the fish are going through by your efforts to catch them.
     
    Mmathis, Oct 31, 2016
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  9. GinoLicious

    morewater President, Raccoon Haters International

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    Here in southwestern Ontario (north of Toronto), bringing in large koi from a 4' deep pond is rather an exercise in futility.
    Four feet is more than enough to sustain large koi over the winter.

    You create more stress in the capture, moving, water change, temperature change than would ever be produced by simply leaving them alone over the winter.

    A couple of pond breathers or a large aerator would be more than sufficient. But, to each his own.

    Additionally, you didn't answer one of my original question as to total pond volume, not that it matters at this point.

    Pumps can be left in a pond to overwinter, providing that they're in a depth greater than 2.5' (again, you didn't mention a location, simply "Canada", which could be anywhere from Kupuskasing to Kitchener to Kamloops).

    For that matter, if you're going to go to the trouble of unnecessarily bring in your Koi for the winter and draining the entire pond, why not simply bring in the pump as well? Stick it in a bucket of water so that the seals don't dry out over the winter.
     
    morewater, Oct 31, 2016
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  10. GinoLicious

    GinoLicious

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    Next year I will leave the fish in the pond and allow it to freeze over. This year I drained the pond and brought them all inside.

    I just didn't want to put holes in the ice for the fish and so forth. Seemed to be a lot of work oppose to bringing them inside. I also had a shit ton of baby fish that I wanted to keep growing in the winter in the indoor pond I have constructed.

    @morewater I am not sure how big my pond is. I have been asked that several times here. It was a custom built pond by previous owner. Basically a whole and a pond liner. My aeration machine broke in the summer from a power surge. So kinda poor right now and not really interested in running a machine all winter as that will hike my bills.

    I am just south of Hamilton in Ontario. And how can you run a pump year round if the water is frozen?
     
    GinoLicious, Oct 31, 2016
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  11. GinoLicious

    morewater President, Raccoon Haters International

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    Well G, looks like I've brought you over to the dark side. Leaving the fish in the pond over the winter is not a big deal here. I've several clients with large, large, large Koi (25lbs+) that I've successfully overwintered for many a winter.

    You don't need to "put holes in the ice", you simply need to put an aerator in your pond for the winter months. An aerator (PondMaster AP20) will draw considerable less electricity over the winter than your summer pumps ever did. Additionally, you're going to be sucking juice running your re-circulatory filtration set-up in your basement, anyway (you are running a re-circulatory filtration system in your basement, right?). Pond breathers are another option that I've converted many a client to over the past couple of years. Also, you do know that filling up your pond with say, 4000 gallons of municipal water (less if you're on a well, but your well pump still uses electricity), costs loonies, right?

    For a rough calculation of your pond, simply measure it's width and length (in feet), come up with a figure for it's average depth (in feet) and do the calculation (length x width x average depth) x 7.43. That'll give you your total volume. It's important to know your total volume if you're going to be adding anything to the pond that calls for specific dosing (ie. x mL/1000gallons).

    If you've almost drained the sucker out already, then I would suggest the following: pull the pump and stash it for the winter. Ensure that you've drained the water from any pressure filters, etc. Come Spring, get in there and pump that puppy out right down to bare liner. Order yourself a garden hose water meter (Lowes has 'em, so does Lee Valley Tools), hook up the meter and start filling. When it's full, your water meter will tell you exactly how much water it took to fill your pond. Bang.......total volume.

    Before you go tossing your fish into that freshly-filled pond (full of wonderfully cold municipal water), dechlorinate (you'll know the dosing because you now know the total volume), let it warm up for a couple or three days (don't want temperature shock). Abrupt temperature changes are one of the things that fish really don't like and will react to rather badly.
     

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    Last edited: Oct 31, 2016
    morewater, Oct 31, 2016
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  12. GinoLicious

    GinoLicious

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    I will measure this sucker tonight for the peace of mind.

    The municipal water I used did sit for a few days and was decloroinated.

    The pump is also in the basement too. A nice tertra pump with a huge filter box with two filters in it. Those boys are being cleaned today.

    So I guess next year I will need to buy the aeration or the breather. Will the aeration you recommended be efficient for summer as well? Cause I know I need another one since mine blew.
     
    GinoLicious, Oct 31, 2016
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  13. GinoLicious

    morewater President, Raccoon Haters International

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    I've made some changes to my post while you were responding, so go over it.

    The AP20 aerator is a good unit. I've used several of them over the years. I always recommend buying the 3/8" black, sinking air line and replacing the supplied aerator "head" with a composite unit. Total cost for the entire system is about $260. I have a great supplier here in the GTA, fire me off a private note (on this forum), and I'll provide you with the information. The aerator can be used year-round, not only for the summer months but also for maintaining a hole for gas-exchange over the winter months.

    Only buy top-quality equipment. Buying cheap stuff means that the cheap stuff will croak, you'll feel compelled to replace it with cheap stuff, that cheap stuff will croak and then you'll finally buy good stuff, which inevitably will be less than what you paid for two cheap croakers.
     
    morewater, Oct 31, 2016
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  14. GinoLicious

    GinoLicious

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    Tried to send a PM. Did not work for me for some reason.

    I probably will look into such a unit come spring time. I am also looking into getting a UV light for clarity. Had some Algea issues this summer that were very difficult to deal with.

    I had a aquascape air 2 as an aeration machine that gave out. You feel that this machine is not worth it by any means?

    In theory based on what I gathered from you what I really need is the ap20 and just run my pump and soon to be purchased UV light? Don't even bother with an aquascape? Let the ap20 pick up that slack?
     
    GinoLicious, Oct 31, 2016
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  15. GinoLicious

    morewater President, Raccoon Haters International

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    The AquaScape two-stone unit is really designed for smaller ponds. The four-stone unit is just a beefed-up version of the two-stone unit.

    The AP20, although it costs more, is a more robust beast. As I said, splurge on the sinking, black airline and a composite airstone.

    As to sending the PM, simply click on my icon (to the left), and take it from there.

    What are you running for a filtration unit now? I'll leave the UV issue alone until you provide the filtration information.
     
    morewater, Oct 31, 2016
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  16. GinoLicious

    morewater President, Raccoon Haters International

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    Maybe nobody picked up on my typo, but I typed 25lb rather than 15lb.
     
    morewater, Oct 31, 2016
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  17. GinoLicious

    peter hillman Let me think for minute....

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    I saw it but just figured you got a really big fish.
     
    peter hillman, Oct 31, 2016
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