I need help and advice


Joined
Nov 13, 2017
Messages
193
Reaction score
168
Hardiness Zone
7a/7b depending on the map
Country
United States
The only "filter" that I have that requires regular cleaning is the skimmer, and the pre-filter for the barrel in the middle of the pond. Other than that, I don't change water, unless it rains, leaks, or evaporates. I've spent too much time allowing this little ecosystem to get established, to screw it up, and make more work for me.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Jan 2, 2020
Messages
66
Reaction score
20
Location
outside st.louis mo
Country
United States
im gonna chime in on this, first if water is good as you say why change it and stress fish? keep up with testing water, if it is stable no water changes are needed.just top it off..keep testing..why change good water? depending on your water source, it may contain things that can harm fish, and the stress starts.only do major changes if you got issues.... the filter what kind ? some bead filters do require a weekly flush.all most all home made bio filters . will suffer .it will take 4-6 weeks to get it cycle...you should never clean a filter with a hose from city water source, it will kill off all of the bacteria..put the media in a container that is treated water not to destroy the colony...1clean out of filter every other mo. takes care of most depending on fish load etc.again watch the testing close..on the feeding ..if you have fish other than koi disregard this , if the water drops below 50.. and stays there for a long time..NO food 50-60 deg wheat germ ...the fish do not need food and will be fine. first winter will have you on edge watch the pond at your location this time of the year for herons.....they can clean out a pond in minutes.....hope this helps mike
 
Last edited:
Joined
Oct 4, 2019
Messages
68
Reaction score
32
Location
Winchester, VA
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
I have never witnessed any stress to my fish from water changes. In fact, they seem to enjoy them, playing in the water splashing from the hose into the pond. I do have good well water, so nothing bad is being introduced. I realize I'm lucky that way and it's not the case for everyone.

I don't understand how giving fish some fresh water is seen as a bad thing. Some people think the beneficial bacteria lives in the water, but that is not the case. That bacteria lives in the filter media and on surfaces in the pond, not the water itself. 100% of the water could be changed with no negative effect on the cycle.

Just my opinion, and I seem to be in the minority here. This is what I was taught to do by some of the most respected fish keepers in the business. But every person has their own beliefs and practices and we all have to do what we feel works best for each of us.
 

addy1

water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins
Moderator
Joined
Jun 23, 2010
Messages
36,334
Reaction score
20,914
Location
Frederick, Maryland
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Mine get added water, rain, topping off via well in the summer. But our well water is so acidic I can never do a big water change, it would kill the fish. I killed the first fish I put in the pond, they all died within a hour. That is when I found out our well water has a ph of 5.3 and is very soft barely reads a color.
I let the pond sit until the next summer, buffering it up with oyster shells, plants, time. Finally got the ph up to 7.8 or so and the water hardness up to around 100.

The next fish added survived.
 
Joined
Oct 4, 2019
Messages
68
Reaction score
32
Location
Winchester, VA
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Your water is definitely a problem and I'm glad you solved that.

It's very easy to raise the pH safely with baking soda. That would also raise the KH and keep the pH stable so that isn't an insurmountable problem for doing a water change. That's only my opinion for whatever it's worth!
 

addy1

water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins
Moderator
Joined
Jun 23, 2010
Messages
36,334
Reaction score
20,914
Location
Frederick, Maryland
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
I tried baking soda, it made the ph bounce. I used huge bags of the stuff. Time and crushed oyster shells fixed the water.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Oct 4, 2019
Messages
68
Reaction score
32
Location
Winchester, VA
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Glad you found something that worked for you. Every pond is different, so I suppose there will always be an exception to every "rule".

I have a friend whose water sounds like yours. She has found no way to fix hers and often loses her fish to pH crashes. I don't know how she keeps doing this. I would have either moved or given up long ago.
 

addy1

water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins
Moderator
Joined
Jun 23, 2010
Messages
36,334
Reaction score
20,914
Location
Frederick, Maryland
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Tell her to go to Tractor supply buy 100 lbs of crushed oyster shells, chicken grit, put it where water flows over it. That is what finally fixed mine. I actually put 100lbs in every spring for around 4 years. Then quit doing it.

I used a old hot tub to make another pond, I hung a bag of the crushed oyster shells in the water, after running the pond for around 2 months the water ph and hardness stabilized. Only around 350-400 gallons, has fan tail gold fish in it.
 
Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
1,789
Reaction score
1,928
Location
Ct
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Any water that has organics LIVING BEINGS in it that does not have any circulation, filtering, and growth will have deteriorating water quality . Observations of my pond says the algae has changed the outter edges have died off. In just a months time since i last vacuumed the pond theres a clear deterioration from the water temp dropping. The water remains crystal clear, but as most know rotting decaying anything in the pond will lead to issue if not now it will once the water warms. The fish though slowed way down due to the temps have breathing slowed as well as excrement's but look at it this way. if you just sit around the house and do little but watch tv the need for a shower is so much less then if you had gone out and played basket ball. While the shower is still needed in both cases one is not needed as quickly. A water change at any time is not a bad thing IF IT IS DONE CORRECTLY. As Watergardener said their pond while adding water the fish came to the source / hose and seemed to play in the new water. I have seen this in my pond and every aquarium I have ever had weather it was fresh, salt or brackish water. If you add water from your home and the water temp is in the 50's and your fish are in low 40's water.Even if they seam to enjoy the warmer water it can stress them out. Rapid water changes is probably the number one stresser of fish. It's not the clean fresh water that will stress them out. If you age the water is say clean trash cans add your declorinater if needed adjust your temps or as addy needed to your ph if need be Make the peramiters as close as possible to the existing then there should only benefits to adding water or water change. I harvest some rain water when it pours the pond has an over flow i really have not done a specific water change in a good 6 months.
 

sissy

sissy
Joined
Jan 17, 2011
Messages
32,009
Reaction score
14,899
Location
Axton virginia
Hardiness Zone
7A
Country
United States
my first house had to have the pipes replaced and I used copper but pex is so much easier to work with .Michigan had the water problems because of where the water came from and how they treated it .It caused all the old stuff in the older houses and older water lines to break down all the built up stuff in all the pipes and that is the main reason they had issue's.They still have the story on the internet .Same is happening here in Danville VA ,when the changed where the water came from and started to treat it and older homes had problems that had all the old pipes running to them and in them .I had a refrigerator line that was copper to my ice and water maker and the iron in my water caused small pinholes in it that damaged my floors .Thing is I had plastic line before that and lowes when I got new fridge put in the copper line and a year later it leaked .I now have braided steel on everything .From toilets to sinks and washer and dishwasher .I have a whole house water filter that cleans it's self every morning at 7 am and it was just replaced by a new one because the other one was damaged by a plumber .That is another reason I am scared of contractors .Reason I am doing my own floors also
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Jan 2, 2020
Messages
66
Reaction score
20
Location
outside st.louis mo
Country
United States
I have never witnessed any stress to my fish from water changes. In fact, they seem to enjoy them, playing in the water splashing from the hose into the pond. I do have good well water, so nothing bad is being introduced. I realize I'm lucky that way and it's not the case for everyone.

I don't understand how giving fish some fresh water is seen as a bad thing. Some people think the beneficial bacteria lives in the water, but that is not the case. That bacteria lives in the filter media and on surfaces in the pond, not the water itself. 100% of the water could be changed with no negative effect on the cycle.

Just my opinion, and I seem to be in the minority here. This is what I was taught to do by some of the most respected fish keepers in the business. But every person has their own beliefs and practices and we all have to do what we feel works best for each of us.
you are correct, what i was trying to get across is not all tap water is the same.some contain chloramines, and of course chlorine. if people dont treat for these especially the chloramines which can last for weeks if you water conditioner dont kill them off you would be surprised what some places have for tap water, these left un treated will stress fish..i see a lot of pond keepers [new] that put tap water right in from hose...with no water filter in line...same people will do a water change by letting water out/ the add direct in pond with hose. then they add a conditioner to the whole pond. so if they drop the water say 500 gal to a 2000 gal pond, they. add the 500 back then treat the whole pond with a conditioner for 500 gal . i always recommend, a in line filter, and a separate tub so to treat the tub to remove what is needed. by treatments.before you add it to the pond..every year i hear of people who forget the hose is running and leave it in and boom you got dead fish.hope this makes sense. water changes are not bad at all, if done the right way. i get calls each year from people i can get rid of the ammonia in pond! i treat and treat still got it. they dont realize there is 2 different kinds of ammonia and it coming from the tap water.....nice to meet ya. mike
 

j.w

I Love my Goldies
Joined
Feb 1, 2010
Messages
26,705
Reaction score
16,055
Location
Arlington, Washington
Hardiness Zone
USDA 8a
Country
United States
So true @MIKES KOI we went to my SIL's house for Christmas dinner and I got some water to drink from her faucet. Took one drink and that's it. It smelled and tasted like strong and I mean strong swimming pool water. Asked my nephew to taste it too and he agreed. Bad tasting stuff! We have well water and I use that for my pond w/no issues.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2020
Messages
66
Reaction score
20
Location
outside st.louis mo
Country
United States
thanks for the kind words. well water has some issues also. i will explain . #1 cold extreme cold water, #2 ph you gotta watch it close.#3 OXYGEN every well i ever saw has none .#4 minerals . depends on where you live. these 4 things i see a lot..but it does have a lot of benefits.
 
  • Like
Reactions: j.w
Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
1,789
Reaction score
1,928
Location
Ct
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Looks like we are wasting our breath the author of the post has not added any further posts
 

j.w

I Love my Goldies
Joined
Feb 1, 2010
Messages
26,705
Reaction score
16,055
Location
Arlington, Washington
Hardiness Zone
USDA 8a
Country
United States
That's ok @GBBUDD cuz we don't mind talking to ourselves and I know you of all people will understand @Gbbudd2 :smuggrin:

@MIKES KOI I never add any water to my pond in winter. Whenever I do add any water I raise the hose up high so it splashes and agitates so as to work up the oxygen. Never had a bad ph in all my 16 yrs or so when testing so far on our well water here. I must confess I don't test anything anymore. That doesn't mean new pond owners shouldn't test. Maybe after 10 yrs or so you'd be ok tho unless you are having fish issues.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
1,789
Reaction score
1,928
Location
Ct
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
With 30 koi some 3 years old now if not 4 . in other words some larger koi even with my 5'-6" deep 10,000 gallons i am not willing to just shut down the pond and have a small heater to keep an air exchange open. i am running a 120 which i way over kill to two 9" rubber bladders but i do two things i feel are key . 1.1 i do not allow the bottom of the pond to be disturbed the air bladder is in a foot and a half deep. And 2 the air source in inside a walk out basement enclosure while it is not heated it is not freezing either. the o2 levels are not a concern over the 4 to 5 months it's shut down and co2 build up in mute as well.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jhn

Jhn

Joined
Jul 3, 2017
Messages
736
Reaction score
726
Location
Maryland
Hardiness Zone
7b
Country
United States
With 30 koi some 3 years old now if not 4 . in other words some larger koi even with my 5'-6" deep 10,000 gallons i am not willing to just shut down the pond and have a small heater to keep an air exchange open. i am running a 120 which i way over kill to two 9" rubber bladders but i do two things i feel are key . 1.1 i do not allow the bottom of the pond to be disturbed the air bladder is in a foot and a half deep. And 2 the air source in inside a walk out basement enclosure while it is not heated it is not freezing either. the o2 levels are not a concern over the 4 to 5 months it's shut down and co2 build up in mute as well.
I agree, have never shut my ponds down in all the years, I have kept a pond. Except the very first year I built my first pond roughly 30 years ago, I shut it down except for the floating heater, of course lost the couple koi I had. Why, because everyone I talked to that had more “experience” than me said you can’t leave your pumps running it will make the water too cold and kill your koi. Since then, I have never shut my ponds down and haven’t lost a koi over the winter since....Now Not taking a chance on all the fish and turtles that are in there being left to that little floating heater. Like you, I don’t have any pumps at the deep part of the pond disturbing the pond bottom.

On a side not last winter I put a pond breather in a 300 gallon above ground stock tank, with goldfish in it and the gold fish made it. The ice was thick in there and there was nothing around the pond to insulate it, so that water at the bottom of the stock tank had to be just above freezing. The goldfish where small only a few inches long, though. I remember reading the study either Meyer Jordan or MitchM posted about goldfish surviving being frozen, so I wasn’t too surprised they survived being in the stock tank.
 
Ad

Advertisements


Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Top