strange things happening this winter with my fish

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Dayle, Dec 26, 2016.

  1. Dayle


    Dec 26, 2016
    Likes Received:
    I have had my small pond for over 10 years and have never had this problem before. I live in Massachusetts and I closed my pond as usual this year. Stopped feeding when temp was down put in the deicer heater. It is the end of December and there is no ice on my pond and last week I found one of my larger gold first dead and today a second one is dead. I have about 8 0r 10 small to med gold fish and they are all swimming at the top of the pond and seem to be gasping for air. I am so worried. Should I put the pump and filter back in? Should I add water to put in oxygen? I am very concerned. Why are they not hybernating???
    Dayle, Dec 26, 2016
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  2. Dayle

    Meyer Jordan Tadpole

    Oct 10, 2014
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    Pensacola, Florida
    If in closing your pond you took the biofilter off-line, then you most likely are experiencing an Ammonia spike.
    Fish do not actually 'hibernate'. What happens is that their metabolism (because they are cold-blooded) responds directly to temperature changes. As temperatures drop, their metabolism slows. In your case, water temperatures have not dropped enough to reduce the fish's activity, and with activity comes Ammonia production. One of the symptoms of excess Ammonia is 'piping' or gulping at the water's surface.
    Oxygen levels should not be the problem.
    If you have a test kit, test your pond's water including the water temperature (taken at the bottom of the pond). Or take a sample to a pond dealer for testing. I would also consider putting the pump and biofilter back on-line. In the meantime purchase some "Prime" for combating the elevated Ammonia.
    Meyer Jordan, Dec 26, 2016
    Mmathis, RobAmy and sissy like this.
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  3. Dayle

    sissy sissy

    Jan 17, 2011
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    Axton virginia
    I have not turned mine off because I look at water temps .also .I always try to keep my filters running as long as I can .When the tanks ice up they go off .I have to turn them off then because they ice up pretty bad where water does not run out of them good .That is usually just JAN . and some times FEB. I still test the water to make sure .But I put a pump in a bucket of lava rock from my filters in the pond .I usually remove 2 bags of them from each filter and put them in the bucket
    sissy, Dec 26, 2016
  4. Dayle


    Dec 21, 2015
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    Hershey, PA
    After you check the ammonia and nitrites, do a 90% water change.... That oughta fix the problem temporarily. If the temperatures go down again, your problem will get better. Everyone who shut their filters this winter is having your problem... temperature going down and then going up again.
    Faebinder, Dec 27, 2016
  5. Dayle

    Mmathis TurtleMommy

    Apr 28, 2011
    Likes Received:
    NW Louisiana -- zone 8b
    Please get back with us on your water parameter results and let us know how your fish are doing!
    Mmathis, Dec 28, 2016
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