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I found what looks like a sore on my koi. What should I do? Could this have happened over winter? – Decorative Ponds & Water Gardens Q & A


Dyed PondQ: I found what looks like a sore on my koi. What should I do? Could this of happened over winter? – Fred in Kentucky

A: As we close in on spring and the ice melts off of our water gardens, our koi start to become lively again. This is a very crucial time for koi. When koi begin to awaken from their winter dormancy, they can show signs of weakness. This is because during the winter, not only do their metabolisms slow down, but also their immune systems can be affected.

As the temperatures outside begin to rise above 40ºF begin a Spring/Summer Prep bacterial application, like Seasonal Defense, and start to feed them Spring and Fall Fish Food. Keep an eye on the koi for any signs of excess slime, sores or lesions. Weakened fish are much more susceptible to bacterial and parasitic infections when the temps are just beginning to rise.

Here are few products to use if your koi happen to be sick:

Using the products mentioned above you can be assured your fish will be lively again in no time. To help prevent koi sickness during the early spring, be proactive and ensure your koi are healthy in the fall time.

POND TALK: What do you do to keep your koi healthy?

5 Responses

  1. When do koi start spawing and what should I put in my pond to help the koi spawn – my pond is l5 feet wide and approxiately 6 feet deep – Someone suggested using spawing rope (?)

  2. Your article states to start feeding the Koi Spring and Fall fish food once the temperature gets above 40 degrees…I have always been advised that Koi cannot digest food until the pond temperature is steady over 50 degrees and feeding them under this temperature could kill them. Please advise.

    • Hi Jerry,

      In reading the article I can see how there would be some confusion. Bacteria treatments can begin when temp is growing above 40 degrees but generally Spring and Fall Fish Food can be given to fish if water temp is above 50 degrees consistently. Spring and Fall food uses wheatgerm which is easier and quicker for fish to digest. Once water temp is closer to 60 degrees then you can use your regular fish food. The best way to determine if your fish should be fed is to watch your fish, they will let you know if they are ready to eat. If they are just beginning to move slowly wait a little longer. If your fish are actively swimming around the pond and come to the surface when you arrive then chances are they are ready to feed. Always begin with a wheatgerm based food however to ensure easy digestion for those first feedings.

  3. I have koi and goldfish in my pond, but my pond is 60 feet in diameter and 6 feet deep. If a koi has something wrong with it do you use what you recommend and how much?

    • Hi Robert,

      It is a little tougher to do fish treatments in a larger pond. If only 1 or a few fish are affected it would be best to isolate those fish in another tank and treat the tank rather then your pond. Remember treatment is only a temporary fix. You may need to consider what else you can do to prevent infections. Make sure you have proper filtration and use natural bacteria to help breakdown additional organic matter that can build up in the pond. Also if you are feeding fish everyday or few days you may need to cut back on feedings in order to help maintain a happy and healthy living environment for your fish.

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