When some homeowners decide to add a water garden to their property, a koi pond featuring a variety of colorful and often expensive fish for both beauty and pleasure is a very popular choice.
Do the Smell Test
To maintain the health of the fish as well as the clarity of the water, koi ponds must be cleaned on a regular schedule. If you can detect the odor of rotting eggs while standing on the edge of the pond, you need a heavy-duty cleaning procedure for your pond. Before you get started on the cleaning project, be sure you have a washing tub or small wading pool available filled with de-chlorinated water to safely hold the koi fish until you are ready to reintroduce them to the cleaned pond.
Safe Removal of Fish During Cleaning Process
Once the fish are removed, use a net skimmer to remove all debris at the bottom of the pond, along with any debris floating on the surface of the water. Be sure to retrieve snails, dragonflies and any other aquatic animals for later placement back into the water rather than tossing them. After removing the debris, drain about one-quarter of the pond’s water and replace that with fresh water that has been de-chlorinated.
Supply Adequate Oxygen
Water pumps and air stones are helpful in providing the water in the pond with enough oxygen to safely return the fish to the water. Instead of returning the fish to the entire pond, place each of them in a large bowl with an airstone and submerse them into the newly cleaned water. Doing this allows the fish to gradually acclimate themselves to the temperature of the newly cleaned water.
Within 30 minutes of letting the fish get accustomed to the water temperature in their bowls, you can allow them to swim free into the rest of the pond.
In-Between Heavy-Duty Cleanings
In between heavy duty cleanings, you can keep the koi fish in the water and simply drain about 10 to 20% of the water and replenish it with fresh de-chlorinated water very gradually.
Using Water Vegetation
Other ways to keep pond water clean and looking fresh is to add water lilies to your pond. They float lazily on the surface of the water and look beautiful, all the while they are helping to keep the pond water free of green scum and algae.
Ask your landscaping or gardening expert for advice on the best type of both floating and submerged water plants to include in your koi pond. The installation of this vegetation will help to naturally rid the pond’s water of the build-up of organic waste materials. Adding pond salt as well as installing a waterfall can also help keep the fish and your koi pond water refreshed.