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koi dying exposed to cold

Posted by hostahaveit 7b NW Arkansas ( on
Fri, Jan 10, 14 at 23:15

Any advice would be appreciated!

I procrastinated turning my waterfall off for the first time in 7 years of having my pond. Temps down to 2 below zero. Ice diverted my waterfall and drained my pond down to 6 inches deep for about 18 hrs. there was 2 inches of ice on top, which was broken in pieces, which were down into the water at all angles. Don't know how much of the bottom 6 inches was ice, or where fish were.When I came home and saw what happened, I immediately refilled with cold water, with dechlorinator. My pond is about 15 ft long, 5 ft wide, 40 inches deep with no plant shelves. 4 days later, temps are up in 50's and raining, so water is still turning over. My pond gets runoff rain from house, 7 yrs now, no ill effects. Ice is all melted, pond is up 4 more inches, and found 2 dead fish, one large and one small. I can see some still alive in the middle on bottom. All are butterfly koi, from 14 to 30 inches. Dead fish removed.

Anything I can do to help them at this point?

waterfall is of course off, with pump in middle again to aereate and keep hole in ice when temps go back down.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: koi dying exposed to cold

Ugh... so sad! I really have no idea, but my gut instinct is that the damage has been done. I'm not sure there's anything you can do at this point except keep your fingers crossed for your remaining fish. Maybe someone else has some better advice... good luck!

RE: koi dying exposed to cold

the best thing you could do is to leave them alone,keep your waterfall off,and put a small air bubbler in the pond to keep a hole open the ice,so you dont loose all your fish next time the weather gets cold

RE: koi dying exposed to cold

I agree with Joe, leave them alone, shut the waterfall off to avoid a replay,
and use a bubbler instead.

Good luck with the remaining fish; koi are a lot toughfer than we think they are.

This post was edited by cliff_and_joann on Tue, Jan 14, 14 at 10:01

RE: koi dying exposed to cold

You don't say how many fish there are or how big. When there is such a small volume of water there is very little oxygen for the fish. The big ones usually die first. The small one likely had other injuries from crowded conditions and panic.

There may be further deaths. I lost 14 large fish like that several years ago. Another 20 survived.

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