Pond size & fish health from The Ponddigger


Mmathis

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Meyer Jordan

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This is a good subject for discussion, the ratio of fish mass to pond capacity that is.
Pheromones controlling growth.......an entirely different subject.
I know Eric Triplett professionally, We always do not agree on everything. This is one subject, however, that, quite frankly, I am surprised to see that he is supporting. He is actually attempting to dispel one myth by presenting another.
Pheromones are typically used by animals as sexual attractants. There is some evidence that they may affect animals in other ways. However, there is absolutely no hard scientific data that in any way supports the existence of a growth reduction pheromone. There are many factors that will affect the growth of a fish - genetics, water quality, nutrition and others.
There has been only one scientific paper published that supports this idea and even in this paper the author admits that the theorized pheromone has never been isolated or named. If it can not be isolated and named then logically it likely does not exist.
 

sissy

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People that start new ponds never think ahead when it comes to fish breeding .They buy 10 or 15 fish and then end up with 30 or 40 fish after babies .I bought 4 fish for my preformed until I could get the front porch finished .Then the 1000 gallon pond went in a bought 1 fancy tail and 2 fat fantails .I bought 2 shubbies but rid of them fast .They jumped out way to many times
 
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People that start new ponds never think ahead when it comes to fish breeding .They buy 10 or 15 fish and then end up with 30 or 40 fish after babies .I bought 4 fish for my preformed until I could get the front porch finished .Then the 1000 gallon pond went in a bought 1 fancy tail and 2 fat fantails .I bought 2 shubbies but rid of them fast .They jumped out way to many times
Shubbies and comets... breed way too much.
 

sissy

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so far my fat fantails have not had any babies and my koi that I know have had none .The only babies I have gotten are from the fancy tails and I got another from my neighbor and that was when he breeding of them started .He gave up ponding ,he said it was to expensive for him since he kept loosing fish .Not sure why I have had no babies from the fantails ,unless they get eaten .
 
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@Meyer Jordan - what would explain 10 year old fish in a 100 gallon pond that are way undersized? Is it a water quality issue? We walked into a Chinese restaurant once that had a koi in a 20 gallon fish tank. They had a sign on the front saying it was 25 years old. The fish couldn't turn around in the tank, but it was no where near the size that you would expect of a fish that age.

P.S. I asked the owner if I could have the fish after explaining to him that he was mistreating the poor thing terribly. I offered to trade him for a nice goldfish. He declined. We walked out. Unfortunately there's no SPCA for fish.
 

Meyer Jordan

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@Meyer Jordan - what would explain 10 year old fish in a 100 gallon pond that are way undersized? Is it a water quality issue? We walked into a Chinese restaurant once that had a koi in a 20 gallon fish tank. They had a sign on the front saying it was 25 years old. The fish couldn't turn around in the tank, but it was no where near the size that you would expect of a fish that age.

P.S. I asked the owner if I could have the fish after explaining to him that he was mistreating the poor thing terribly. I offered to trade him for a nice goldfish. He declined. We walked out. Unfortunately there's no SPCA for fish.
Fish can retard their own growth if the required external environmental factors are in place. Lack of space is one of these factors. Growth is primarily controlled by the endocrine system - in particular the pituitary.
The example fish that you mentioned apparently grew to the size of the tank at which time the production of growth hormone was severely depressed. If food was restricted then an insulin induced hormone, which can also retard growth, may have been a factor This all occurred within the fish and was not prompted by any external organic compounds secreted by other fish.
For every overstocked pond that has stunted fish there is at least one comparable pond where the fish are all the correct size.
All of these reports are anecdotal where many different factors are in play influencing the growth rate of each fish. In the last pond that I had (4000 gallons with 35 adult Koi) though not particularly overcrowded or overstocked (more than ample surface area, flow rate and biofiltration), of the survivors of the last spawn there was a wide range in size considering they were all the same age. The smallest was about 8 inches in length and the largest about 14 inches in length. This is quite a disparity in size. Available space, water conditions and food supply was the same for all yet some grew faster than others. If a mystery pheromone had been present, all of this spawn would have been stunted, at least to some extent. Yet only certain ones had retarded growth. I suspect that genetics was the prime influencing factor as the male parents not only came from genetically different lineage but also were different varieties (standard and longfin).
 
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Pheromones are typically used by animals as sexual attractants. There is some evidence that they may affect animals in other ways. However, there is absolutely no hard scientific data that in any way supports the existence of a growth reduction pheromone.
Very interesting, the growth reduction pheromone is something that just seems plausible and would answer anecdotal observations, so it's just accepted without supporting evidence. It does seem like an experiment to eliminate the existance of a growth reduction pheromone would be almost trivial. An interconnected set of ponds, where the totality of one set ponds would be populated enough to induce growth inhibition, but one would be grossly overstocked and it's connected pond would be understocked; if there was a communication phenomenally between the ponds you would expect fish in the understocked pond to be inhibited to a similar degree as the overstocked pond. A control would be a identical set of pond stocked homogeneously.

Seems if there is growth reduction pheromone, there may also be a growth reduction pheromone blocker, which would have economic potential for aquaculturists.
 

Meyer Jordan

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Very interesting, the growth reduction pheromone is something that just seems plausible and would answer anecdotal observations, so it's just accepted without supporting evidence. It does seem like an experiment to eliminate the existance of a growth reduction pheromone would be almost trivial. An interconnected set of ponds, where the totality of one set ponds would be populated enough to induce growth inhibition, but one would be grossly overstocked and it's connected pond would be understocked; if there was a communication phenomenally between the ponds you would expect fish in the understocked pond to be inhibited to a similar degree as the overstocked pond. A control would be a identical set of pond stocked homogeneously.

Seems if there is growth reduction pheromone, there may also be a growth reduction pheromone blocker, which would have economic potential for aquaculturists.
If such a pheromone did indeed exist, intensive aquaculture such as is practiced today, would not be possible, most notably RAS systems. BUT, they do exist and are quite efficient with low mortalities and a uniform growth rate in the fish stock. That is strong anecdotal evidence that such a pheromone is purely conjecture.
 
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addy1

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Shubbies and comets... breed way too much.
Mine chase a lot, I am sure they are dropping a ton of eggs, but do not see many surviving fry. I do stop feeding when I see chasing, they are hungry and inhale the eggs. That is my population control. All summer I tend to feed lightly and not very often.

I have a lot of water room for a lot more fish, prefer they fill the space slowly!
 
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I have 2 shubunkin and 10 koi in 3000gl pond...if most of them turn out to be males (only 1 known female) I should be ok then, right?
 

cas

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if most of them turn out to be males (only 1 known female)
If you have only one female, it will get beat up pretty bad by all the males chasing her. My females (goldfish) all end up with split fins after spawning. I have 4 males and 3 females.
 
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Depends on-
1. Age of fish
2. Level of biofiltration
3 koi are 3 and 1/2yrs old, all the rest are babies bought last Spring

I will for sure want to add filtration later on, but I have no idea how/what
right now I have 1 skimmer box going to 2 separate waterfalls and of course the plants but because I live in zone 5, I cannot rely on plants since I don't have them for several months out of the year
I also don't have much room around the pond, just enough to plant a few annuals and walk around it
 
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Meyer Jordan

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3 koi are 3 and 1/2yrs old, all the rest are babies bought last Spring

I will for sure want to add filtration later on, but I have no idea how/what
right now I have 1 skimmer box going to 2 separate waterfalls and of course the plants but because I live in zone 5, I cannot rely on plants since I don't have them for several months out of the year
I also don't have much room around the pond, just enough to plant a few annuals and walk around it
Are the waterfalls also biofiters?
 
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If you have only one female, it will get beat up pretty bad by all the males chasing her. My females (goldfish) all end up with split fins after spawning. I have 4 males and 3 females.
yup! I posted about this last Fall when I realized I might end up having this issue. ...but there's still hope that some of the fish were just too young to be chased and that's why only one was
 
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