Opinions on adding salt to pond


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To salt or not to salt.....if so how many pounds for approximately 5,000 gallons? And how often? Once a season, twice a season, only after a water change?
 
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I can't say with certainty, but would think not. Salt is sodium chloride, essentially chlorine, and that wouldn't be good. In fact, I think those so-called salt systems that are in-use for swimming pools...consumers often think they have a salt system, not a chlorine one where if I'm correct, the system does use salt, but the process still converts the salt to chlorine.

I hope someone else more informed about this will post to confirm, or correct me if I'm wrong.
 
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Mmathis

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There is no reason to add salt [except that some "experts" say to do so]. Koi and gold fish are fresh water, not salt water fish. Any "salts" that these fish require are provided in the source water.

Salt is best reserved as a theraputic treatment such as when quarantining or treating for specific problems. I like to think of it like the way we have abused antibiotics in medicine [people medicine]. The over use of antibiotics results in bacteria that no longer respond to the common antibiotics -- AKA, resistent strains. When that happens, you have a disease that is more difficult to cure.

People everywhere use salt in their ponds. People swear by it. But just as many people don't use salt...... I say, show me documented, scientific proof that my unsalted fish are any more or less healthy than the next guy's salted fish.

Sorry, but for some reason this has joined my list of pet peeves. I don't mean to touch nerves or start fights -- it's just my opinion.
 
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There is no reason to add salt [except that some "experts" say to do so]. Koi and gold fish are fresh water, not salt water fish. Any "salts" that these fish require are provided in the source water.

Salt is best reserved as a theraputic treatment such as when quarantining or treating for specific problems. I like to think of it like the way we have abused antibiotics in medicine [people medicine]. The over use of antibiotics results in bacteria that no longer respond to the common antibiotics -- AKA, resistent strains. When that happens, you have a disease that is more difficult to cure.

People everywhere use salt in their ponds. People swear by it. But just as many people don't use salt...... I say, show me documented, scientific proof that my unsalted fish are any more or less healthy than the next guy's salted fish.

Sorry, but for some reason this has joined my list of pet peeves. I don't mean to touch nerves or start fights -- it's just my opinion.
There isn't any fighting or nerve touching going on in here...lol. Its a public forum created to have people share information. (And its a great forum may I add). The reason for my question is because a guy who services a friend of mines pond swears by salting the pond after he does a complete drain out and pond cleaning in the spring. He advised me that in the spring after the pond is cleaned out and new water is added at least 50lbs of salt should be added to my 5,000 gallon pond. He said it keeps harmful parasites down and gives a good stress coat to the fish...
 
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I can't say with certainty, but would think not. Salt is sodium chloride, essentially chlorine, and that wouldn't be good. In fact, I think those so-called salt systems that are in-use for swimming pools...consumers often think they have a salt system, not a chlorine one where if I'm correct, the system does use salt, but the process still converts the salt to chlorine.

I hope someone else more informed about this will post to confirm, or correct me if I'm wrong.
Well, you are wrong. :)

Sodium Chloride is not the dangerous chlorine. Free chlorine is what is dangerous. In fact your dechlorinator turns (the small amount) of free chlorine into salt.

This has nothing to do with if salt is good or bad, just don't think of it as chlorine any more than thinking your pond has plenty of oxygen because water is 1/3 oxygen.
 

addy1

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I would never let anyone drain and clean my pond.
As far as salt I have never added any.
 
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Well, you are wrong. :)

Sodium Chloride is not the dangerous chlorine. Free chlorine is what is dangerous. In fact your dechlorinator turns (the small amount) of free chlorine into salt.

This has nothing to do with if salt is good or bad, just don't think of it as chlorine any more than thinking your pond has plenty of oxygen because water is 1/3 oxygen.
Thanks for the clarification. You know, as I was typing that, something made me question chloride vs. chlorine as though they mustn't be the same. Someone had told me that and I'm glad to now learn the reality about it. Thanks again!
 

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There isn't any fighting or nerve touching going on in here...lol. Its a public forum created to have people share information. (And its a great forum may I add). The reason for my question is because a guy who services a friend of mines pond swears by salting the pond after he does a complete drain out and pond cleaning in the spring. He advised me that in the spring after the pond is cleaned out and new water is added at least 50lbs of salt should be added to my 5,000 gallon pond. He said it keeps harmful parasites down and gives a good stress coat to the fish...
That 50+ lbs. of salt the guy advised you to use will never leave your system - evaporation and additional treatments in the future can result in salt levels high enough to stress your fish. The "stress coat" he referred to is actually a physiological response to the salt - it irritates the skin, resulting in excess mucus production. Just my two cents...
 
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I would never let anyone drain and clean my pond.
As far as salt I have never added any.
If your pond is located in a wooded area a pond cleanout is necessary. If thats not done once a year there would be ten tons of leaves, sticks, pine needles and other natural things that shouldnt be in there. I found dead frogs and a mouse in my pond this spring during the cleaning. Pine needles take forever to decompose by themselves and all the other stuff creates harmful ammonia gasses. The decomposing things turns to nasty muck and gets stirred up during hard rain fowling up the water. Its impossible to keep everything out of the pond even with netting when you live in a wooded area. As long as the required bacteria is added to the pond after the water change I dont find any harm in it. My fish seem to be as healthy and as happy as they can possibly be and survived the nasty winter we had last year. The much, leaves, sticks and pine needles dont worry me as much when the filters are going with the waterfall and filter return creating water disruption oxygen, it worries me when the filter and waterfall is shut off for 5 months. During those 5 months the ammonis gasses fester without any added oxygen. In my opionion keeping the pond as free from muck, sticks, leaves, pine needles and dead animals keeps the ammonia gasses down more thsn if the stuff just accumalates year after year..
 

Mmathis

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There isn't any fighting or nerve touching going on in here...lol. Its a public forum created to have people share information. (And its a great forum may I add). The reason for my question is because a guy who services a friend of mines pond swears by salting the pond after he does a complete drain out and pond cleaning in the spring. He advised me that in the spring after the pond is cleaned out and new water is added at least 50lbs of salt should be added to my 5,000 gallon pond. He said it keeps harmful parasites down and gives a good stress coat to the fish...
How does he KNOW this? See, what you [not YOU, but people in general] have to understand is the "cause and effect" mentality. There are so many factors that go into having a healthy pond, and everyone does things different. We tend to do what works for us, in our situation. And no 2 ponds are alike. So who can really say what the magic, secret ingredient is.....? Personally, I'm a fan of science -- show me studies that prove/disprove, or give me a good, scientific-based rationale . I never add salt and as far as I know, I don't have parasite problems. Yes, salt will stimulate the slime coat, but again, there should be enough "salt" in the source water [from the tap or well] to fill any needs the fish would have. If someone's water was in question, they can always have it tested for those elements.

And some people do add salt and swear by it....and they never have a problem.

In the end, you have to make that decision on your own, based on whatever "evidence" works for you [again, using the generic "you"].

The absolute best thing anyone can do for their pond is to keep it clean and maintain the best water quality possible [and always quarantine new fish!]. That's the real secret to parasite-free fish.

As to the "parasite" issue, again, think "over use of antibiotics." Let's say your fish are constantly being bathed in brine [like the "experts" recommend]. Then a problem pops up that a "salt dip" or "salt bath" would normally take care of. But, those darn little parasites that are bothering your fish are now resistent to a very simple, harmless, and inexpensive method of treatment. Which means you have to try other things.....treatments that might NOT be simple, harmless, or inexpensive. Just saying.......

And back to the "cause and effect" mentality....... Here's a story I've always liked. Grandma passes down her recipe for the most delicious post roast ever..... Grandma got it from Great-Granny, etc. So the daughters have followed the recipe religiously over the years. Step one says to cut the ends off the roast. Always been done.....never questioned.....delicious roast.....gotta do what the recipe says. One holiday all the family is together for a meal and Grandma decides to help in the kitchen. She see's Granddaughter chopping off that beautiful meat, so she asks what gives? Grandaughter says, "Well, Granny, that's what we've always done so it must be the 'secret ingredient'." Then Granny starts to laugh and tells G-daughter that the reason Great-Granny cut off the ends of the roast? Her pan wasn't big enough to hold a whole roast.......

The cooked roast was so good.....no one ever questioned the rationale......therefore, cutting off the ends of the meat is what made the roast taste so good.

Hmm, now I'm hungry! :)
 

Mmathis

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Oh, and I just saw the comment by @addy1 and I second that. There really is no reason to "drain and clean" the pond on a routine basis [well, unless it's because of a contaminant]. You're getting rid of all the good algae and bacteria that are part of a healthy pond. Just more ways the "pond" industry has of taking your money.
 

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Oh, and I just saw the comment by @addy1 and I second that. There really is no reason to "drain and clean" the pond on a routine basis [well, unless it's because of a contaminant]. You're getting rid of all the good algae and bacteria that are part of a healthy pond. Just more ways the "pond" industry has of taking your money.
They'd rather you purchase their bottled bacteria...
 

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I got too many plants in and around the pond. Tricky to ensure the salinity doesn't kill plants but helpful for the fishes... so I don't like the idea unless there's nothing but fish.
 
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I've seen koi retailers brag about how quick they can get a pond up and running using salt, then they go on about how good it is for the fish.
I think they're doing it so they can finish a project as quick as possible so the customer doesn't buy koi from someone else.
 
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My biggest problem is overthinking things and I know simplicity is sometimes best...I have 4 Koi approximately 20-24 inches long and a few of them are reaching 10lbs. I would hate to lose them. A big fear of mine are anchor worms and I was told the salt kills and prevents them...
 
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That 50+ lbs. of salt the guy advised you to use will never leave your system - evaporation and additional treatments in the future can result in salt levels high enough to stress your fish. The "stress coat" he referred to is actually a physiological response to the salt - it irritates the skin, resulting in excess mucus production. Just my two cents...
Of course it would leave the system. The pond gets drained and cleaned the beginning of spring
 
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I would add a little bit of the pond salt I use it for mine and it helpsthe fish with there colors and it's also good for the stress on the fish.
 

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