Hi, folks.\n\nMy name is Mike. I recently moved from Traverse City, Michigan to Daytona Beach, Florida. My wife and I were visiting my cousins down here last October and she loved the ocean so much she asked me if we could live here. I've been retired for a few years and so I thought, "Why not?" Although I've lived in T.C. for 40 years after growing up in downtown Detroit, and loved being near the lakes, I have to say that winters are pretty relentless up north. All my family are gone now, except for cousins, nieces and nephews, several of whom have been in Daytona their entire lives. I've come down to visit fairly frequently over the last few years since my mom died over in Sarasota, so coming to live in Daytona Beach has not exactly been a shot in the dark.\n\nTo try to keep it short, we bought an old house beachside that has a large tiled European style courtyard. The previous owners lived here more than 30 years and landscaped it nicely, including the building of two adjoining concrete-and-tile koi ponds, each about 2-1/2 feet deep, connected by a little stream and waterfalls. Probably 10 years ago they gave up on the ponds when local wading birds ate their investment. Over time, the ponds filled in with water plants and sludge. Now I've devoted the last four months to digging out the ponds and rehabilitating them. It's been interesting to see how the pond ecology has evolved prior to and since putting the fish in: First there was a plague of local frogs/tadpoles. Then came the dragonflies and their nymphs. Then came a green algae bloom. I began adding plants. First I put in water cabbage, and then water lilies. Fresh water seaweed came totally on its own. To try and clear the water, I put in some barley bales (pictured) as well as algicide and sludge destroyer. I think the barley has worked the best, and the water cabbage's floating root systems have also acted well as filters. As the water cleared, I became concerned that predators might see the fish and so I've stopped trying to make it any easier for them to be seen. There is plenty of overhanging vegetation, and the lilies and water cabbage also provide cover.\n [ATTACH=full]103129[/ATTACH] \n\nI should probably get to the reason why I've joined this discussion group. There is a lot I need to learn about water conditions and how to manage them. It gets close to 100 degrees Fahrenheit through the summers in Daytona and it's difficult to imagine the fish having to cope with such high water temperatures. The heat also causes a lot of water loss due to evaporation and my only source of additional water is from the city's treated system. I know there are chemicals available to neutralize tap water, but I would like to discuss the best ways of treating the ponds over time so as to minimize stress on the fish.\n\nThanks, everyone. I will spend some time now reading through other members' introductions to get a feel for the group.