Temporary Koi Housing


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I may need to keep some Koi in a temporary situation whilst we build a pond for them. I have been given the contents of a pond and the filters and pumps, but I have to move them by the end of September.

The plan is to move the water, or most of from the existing pond as well.

However, the more I look into it the more I realise that a good pond should not be built in a rush.

There a 7 large Koi 16-17" and another 100 or so fish from 6-8" down to a few inches.

So if I have to put them in a temporary what advice can anyone give me.

I have a big garage and I was thinking of getting a 8ft circular Intex pool which is about 3 feet deep. Use the original pond water and filter etc......

Is this feasible?

Help please!!
 
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sissy

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swimming pool one of those intex should work but put a net over it and if you have city water it needs treated first
 

sissy

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I have seen alot of people use them and they do work great and they are cheap /
 
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Thanks Sissy, I was planning to use Water from the original pond. It will be a pain to transport 12 miles, but I think it will be worth it.
 

addy1

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Or just move some of the water and add some fresh, just treat like sissy says if it is city water.
 

sissy

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garbage cans work as long as there clean .I transported water that way .Even used my truck one time put a rubber liner in the back and pumped the water straight into the back of the truck and put the 3 fish right back in .I did not have far to go and took it slow and put a net on top .
 
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Totally agree with you sissy.Pool is the best option what i am also looking at.
 
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As far as water quality goes, if you could get half or so of the pond water transferred and don't let the filter be down for too long you should be fine. The good bacteria will take over quickly.
 
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JasonRichards, what you are about to do is really serious depending on the size of all those fish and the size of the temp tank. In many cases, especially with water gardens, a keeper is free to do whatever they like as these ponds are almost bulletproof. A keeper can get away with making mistakes. You're not going to have that option.

I can't see the future. I'm just talking about risks and how to reduce them.

Source water, forget about it.
The concept of moving source water is flawed. There is nothing in that water the fish need that your on site water can't provide. There is an absolute bottom line here...you have to be comfortable testing water, understanding the basics and adjusting parameters. For example, you could go to all the trouble of moving pond water and 3 days later have a high ammonia level and have to dump 1/2 that water and replace it it. If you don't have a good understanding of how to make your source water safe you are going to be in trouble fast. And BTW, 3 days later you may have to dump 1/2 your water again.

Where the beneficial bacteria actually live.
Bringing over the original bio filter if there is one and it actually is a bio filter, not just called one, the liner, and pipes, that's where the beneficial is located.Source water is what holds parasites, harmful bacteria and viruses. Not really something you want.

You need to be serious about a bio filter. Consider a moving bed filter or Bakki shower, something serious.

If possible consider setting up the tank, water, pumps, filters, before moving any fish. Treat the water to remove chlorine. Add regular plain ammonia from the store. Like maybe a quart. Make sure KH level is up, maybe 300 ppm by adding baking soda...and keep it up. You can adjust GH too, but that's more than I want to get into here and maybe not needed to keep fish alive. Keep the air pumps and water pumps running. Measure ammonia and the following nitrite level to make sure your bio filter can handle the load. Waaaay better to find this out before the fish arrive imo. When nitrite drops to zero you know you're ready for fish. Should take about 2 weeks total.

I've written a few hundred times that bottled bacteria is worthless...but in this case it might help. When viable product is used it can shorten the period it takes for the bio filter to come up to speed by a day or two. If you don't need those couple of extra days you can skip this and just grow your own.

Consider adding a good product from a good dealer as soon as the chlorine is treated. It's a long shot, many of these products don't contain any beneficial bacteria, depends on how it was bottled and more importantly its age and how it's been stored. I would buy products made for aquariums and sold by an aquarium shop. Much higher standard than pond products and sellers.

But bringing any clean object, not "cleaned" but anything that was already not covered in muck, from the source pond can also do the same thing only much better. Pipes and hoses are the best...better than most bio filters unless this is from a keeper who really knew what they were doing.

Consider moving a lot of the small fish first if possible.

O2
IMO two air pumps, on two separate electric circuits is a requirement.

Moving fish
Bag the bigger fish individually for transport so they don't bang into each other.

Parasites
Consider treating the entire batch for parasites. In a high density tank and some transport injuries to scales, slime coat and even flesh wounds, parasites that may not have been a problem can become a big problem and lead the way to ulcers and then aeromonas infections.

Water temperature.
Understand the effects of water temp on the bio filter bacteria and on the immune system of fish. From your location and time of year you could have problems.

Below 65F the fish immune system starts to decline but aeromonas bacteria keep going down to about 42F. So keeping water in the 45-60F range can be a problem for transported (injured) fish in a high density tank. Also why keeping the tank cleaned daily is important. Aeromonas bacteria feed and reproduce on fish poo best.

Below 77F nitrifying bacteria start to slow down. At 64F they convert half as much ammonia and nitrite. I assume you're going to be well below 77F. That is why a serious bio filter is important. At 64F you'll need twice the size you would at 77F. At 48F you'll need 4 times the bio. Well, sort of. The ammonia output of the fish will also go down with temp. I'm just making a general point to alert you to something you need to consider imo.

Given that info if your tank temp is going to be starting in the 50-60F range you can see how it would take a lot longer to get a bio filter running. Here's a trick. Make a tiny pond, heat the water, and connect the bio filter to that. Keep the water 77-86F and you'll be growing nitrifying bacteria in no time. For example, a moving bed filter can be the entire "pond'. Hook a pump to the filter out flow and pump directly back into the filter. You can add the ammonia directly to the filter. It doesn't matter if you add the whole amount of ammonia all at once, but your ammonia test will be off the scale for a while. So you could just keep adding smaller amounts of ammonia to keep the level up for a few days, measuring along the way, watching levels drop, bring it back up, etc. Can be less stressful seeing results sooner.

Match pH and temp.
Know the pH and temp of both pond and tank and try to get those close before the move.

Clean the tank often.
Keeping the tank clean will greatly reduce risk. Have some system for cleaning ready, be it a swimming pool leaf rake or a vacuum. The tank needs to be cleaned daily, before the waste decomposes too much. This isn't like a water garden where muck can pile up and be OK. Don't feed the fish much.

Yes, net the tank top to stop jumpers.

This whole move deal is going to be stressful. Adding the transport of large amounts of source water is just going to make it worst. Instead spend your time and effort doing things that have a bigger payoff. First on that list is learning a lot more imo.
 
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Waterbug,

Thank you for taking the time to respond to my question so comprehensively. I really appreciate it. I have seen your post elsewhere here and you have a wealth of knowledge to share!

I have done quite a lot of research since my wife decided to take on these 'Free' fish!

Source Water:

I have come to the conclusion that moving the water, albeit just 12 miles is going to be a big problem. The current pond is about 15 feet X 8 feet and 4 feet deep, so that is a lot of water! I have looked into hiring a water bowser and all the ones available are not suitable....

Secondly I have read elsewhere of the risks of bringing disease with the water and that starting afresh is possible.

The fish come with a pump, filter, UV lights and a pressure filter, a big one (I know that you are not at all a fan of pressure filters). However, in this case it carries some useful bacteria to start my pond.

My pond is still being excavated, but it is bigger than the existing pond and will need more filtration and a bigger pump. Therefore, I could buy a new system and bring the existing kit to start things off and act as a secondary system in the long term.

I am in the UK so I am not sure what pumps and filters are available from the US and the variety is confusing!

Beneficial Bacteria

I need to find a good UK source. I had already decided to move the small fish forts, as they are easier and I thought the big fish would settle more easily if they found their familiar friends around the new pond.

O2

The fish come with an air pump and I will source a new one to augment that.

Moving Fish

Moving the big fish has been a big concern for me, I have found a thing called a sock net which is a long tubular net that is open ended. This enables you to net the fish holding the open end closed, the fish is safely handled and you just have to release the closed end to set them free:-

I reckon a round KOI bowl and sock net is the way for me to move them.

Parasites

Good advice, I will do a pre-emptive dose as a precaution.


Water Temperature

Fortunately, we are having an Indian Summer and the weather is good. It is getting colder at night. I am going to look into bio filters available here and post my findings here.

We are working all spare hours to build a new home for the fish and move them straight into the new pond. The staging pond is a backup, but may server the purpose of a quarantine.....

Is it better to move them once?

Match pH and temp.

Good advice. This should be straight forward. My sister in law is a bio chemist so I will get her on the case!

Clean the tank often

Good advice again


Finally, your last line about spending time, money and effort on the best pay offs

My Homework:
  1. Source the bset pump, bio and air filters in the UK
  2. Learn about the chemisrty required to maintain the balance.
  3. Get the right nets and transport containers.
  4. Understand the best all round medication to prevent/ deal with any parasites.
  5. Balance the ph and temperature
  6. Start a new water supply forget the old water

PS

These fish are located in the beer garden of a lively Hotel and are used to having all manner of things chucked in the pond, they are currently disease free and healthy and therefore hardy with tough immune systems, so maybe i am in with a chance of success.
 
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Wow! You're on top on this. I think you have every chance of a good result.

The fish come with a pump, filter, UV lights and a pressure filter, a big one (I know that you are not at all a fan of pressure filters). However, in this case it carries some useful bacteria to start my pond.
The less muck inside the better the chance. But yeah, any surface could have the bacteria you want. While I'm not a fan of pressurized filters I am a fan of free pressurized filters. Paying $200-500 for a filter that may not work is one things. For free you can get some use out of it. They can often be converted to moving bed pretty easy.

I am in the UK so I am not sure what pumps and filters are available from the US and the variety is confusing!
Confusing is right. I do think the best bio filters available are the DIY filters. Moving bed, Bakki shower, Trickle Tower can't be beat by any manufactured bio filter I know off. And it limits the choices which is nice. For mechanical filters there are more choices, but some good DIY choices too.

I wouldn't worry too much about pump brands. They're all pretty similar in cost to run, how long they last, etc. I mean if every 4000 GPH pump you see is $250 and one is $100, well, you know the deal. Which seller is important price wise. Here Ebay, Amazon and CraigsList are great sources.

Focus on the number of pumps, GPH and head need for your design. That's complex enough.

Moving the big fish has been a big concern for me, I have found a thing called a sock net which is a long tubular net that is open ended. This enables you to net the fish holding the open end closed, the fish is safely handled and you just have to release the closed end to set them free
Normally the problem is getting them into the tub. If you plan on transporting them in tubs, that's difficult. I transported a large Goldfish in a 5 gal bucket once...didn't go well, but the fish did make it. Plastic bags are the tried and true method.

Is it better to move them once?
Sure. But if you watch how professionals handle fish you'll see the fish can take a lot. Part is experience. Professionals kind of know to glance at fish and can spot trouble before it becomes a big problem. If a fish gets damaged they can treat the wound. They're going to have the destination pond in good shape ready for fish so the fish can recover well. Less experience keepers can get into trouble by missing the small things which can pile up, not be ready for problems and often the destination pond is messed up, or soon after gets messed up.

You sound like you will be ready to do a good job. I wouldn't worry too much about multiple moves. Do what's most comfortable for you and the fish will probably benefit.

Match pH and temp.
Good advice. This should be straight forward. My sister in law is a bio chemist so I will get her on the case!
Just try and keep things in the ball park. pH within 1 or 2. For temp it's safer to move from colder to warmer. It's more you don't want to be going from like 75F to 50F. They can take it but it's just one more thing and these can add up.

Source the bset pump, bio and air filters in the UK
Not sure anyone agrees what these would be.

These fish are located in the beer garden of a lively Hotel and are used to having all manner of things chucked in the pond, they are currently disease free and healthy and therefore hardy with tough immune systems, so maybe i am in with a chance of success.
To me fish coming from poor water conditions would be fish already in trouble even if they look healthy. Just a kind of rule I have.

so maybe i am in with a chance of success.
I'd be betting on you.

Hopefully you can provide pictures of even the most mundane aspects of the project. Pond keeping is a sickness and pictures help those of us infected, especially people like me who are pondless at the moment.
 
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HI Waterbug,

It is kinda addictive and something that will be good for me to take my mind of work. I have been posting pictures here: - https://www.gardenpondforum.com/gallery/album/290-the-site-sept-2012/

I have to rush to go to work now.... but I like the idea of building my own filter....... I will have to do it later on as I have too much to do to just get the pond done and the fish in.


I will use what comes free and then start to build in a more resilient system.

I also intend to put in an automation system that will allow me to control the pond when I am away, controlled through software (my day job)

Lot's of plans here. More than anything the bottom corner of my garden is going to become a place to relax..... or am I dreaming?



https://www.gardenpondforum.com/gallery/album/290-the-site-sept-2012/

Album: The Site Sept 2012
26 images
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Thanks for the pictures. Why I never tire of seeing holes in dirt I'll never understand. Maybe just the excitement of what's to come.

I'm a programmer and thinking of writing a pond design app. I'll be interest to read about your automation system. Maybe a feature I could add to the app,

Relaxing around a pond? You mean like pulling algae, raking leaves, weeding, dead heading flowers, vacuuming, cleaning filters...yes there's nothing but relaxing around a pond. At least for me. All fun.
 
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Hey Waterbug,

Another geek! My automation is very simple really, I found a UK company that produces a clever relay board with an Ethernet port on 8 relays too for $160. I have used it to open my gates when via a desktop app and browser. I thought i could use this as the basis to control the pond kit/lights/pumps.............and monitor the status etc.

I wrote it in Delphi, but the relays can be controlled by asp .net, C#......

An application for pond design and management would be very cool, How about PondIQ!
 
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a clever relay board with an Ethernet port on 8 relays too for $160. I have used it to open my gates when via a desktop app and browser.
I don't know much about hardware, but will look forward to learning hopefully.

An application for pond design and management would be very cool, How about PondIQ!
Holy crap that's a great name. Short, easy to spell, descriptive...no way could PondIQ.com be available...but I checked anyways...it was available! And I do mean WAS, I have it now. Thanks. Can you do all my marketing?
 
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I don't know much about hardware, but will look forward to learning hopefully.


Holy crap that's a great name. Short, easy to spell, descriptive...no way could PondIQ.com be available...but I checked anyways...it was available! And I do mean WAS, I have it now. Thanks. Can you do all my marketing?
With your knowledge and willingness to share information here, you are most welcome! I will dig out the relay board details I would be very interested in looking at other sensors that could be used for this type of automation......
 
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I also got "WoodshopIQ.com" for the first app which is for designing furniture. The IQ thing is perfect for related products.
 
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Just a quick update. The weather & work & the fact that the pond where my fish were was being targeted by thieves meant that on Sunday, I had to act quickly.

So with a 10ft wide Intex pool in my garage I prepared it with 2000 litres of water, treated the chlorine, checked the ph and in the pouring rain and with the help of a 110 litre an hour pump I managed to drain enough of the pond to catch the fish and transport them. The pond was 7.6" at the deepest.

I opted for some 90cm x 60cm deep canvas Koi bowl/tanks. I put one in the back of my Land Rover with a third full of water from the temporary pond and headed off the 12 miles to get the fish.

It was a bit scary once when I had to heat the breaks, thankfully the self leveling suspension reacted fast enough to stop a big slop off water! In fact not a drop came out! :goldfish:



It was no fun in the rain, the fish all went to the bottom and draining was the only way, once started I could not stop so I worked on m own from 11:00 am to 1:00 am transporting fish.

The thieves had managed to pilfer 2 of the biggest Koi, but the bulk were to difficult to catch, which was tough on me!


https://www.gardenpondforum.com/gallery/image/2590-intex-temporary-pool-in-my-garage/



https://www.gardenpondforum.com/gallery/image/2595-fish-5/



https://www.gardenpondforum.com/gallery/image/2594-fish-4/



https://www.gardenpondforum.com/gallery/image/2593-fish-3/



https://www.gardenpondforum.com/gallery/image/2592-fish-2/



https://www.gardenpondforum.com/gallery/image/2591-fish-1/



So far there was one Goldfish with a lot white fungus around the eyes, which I destroyed rather than risk further outbreaks.

One of the large Koi has a small wound behind the dorsal, but it is beetr today than yesterday and I have some treatment arriving in the morning.

The fish were a bit shy for the first 48 hours, but are now feeding easily twice a day and swimming a lot.

One white Goldfish looks quite ill tonight swimming along the surface gulping air, in spite of the 6,600 liters an hour pump in a 4,000 litre tank and aerators.

I am monitoring ph and amonia daily and it is stable and acceptable.

this evening I decided to isolate the gulping fish and put it in a holding tank with a small pump and filter. None of the other fish are doing this.

In the morning I will post a picture
 

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