but the koi will stay in the garage a few more weeks. They are all doing very well this winter. The garage itself is about 63-65 degrees and the water is usually around 54 to 56 degrees. No one has gotten sick this winter, no one has tried jumping through the net. The pond digger has been doing water changes faithfully and the three bead filters and RDF seem to be keeping the pond in good shape. I rarely check the water parameters but on the occasion that I do, they are perfect. The pond digger is already thinking about what he might do next winter for the koi.
Our pool develops a thick layer of blackish algae which is very unattractive. I think the koi might eat a little of it but I find it annoying. I swept away most of the algae and the koi seemed excited to swim around the brooms. Perhaps they are bored. I also swept the algae away just to see if they might be hungrier if it’s missing. About three weeks ago, they reduced the quantity of food that they would eat on their own. I have taken the auto feeder off line and decided to just let them take a feeding break. We’re still on JPD Fuyufuji and I’m not planning to switch to JPD Fujizakara until they go outside. They are nibbling a little on Manda Fu (what koi doesn’t like that pink stuff.)
Looking at the koi indoors, I’m planning to put the shiro utsuris, asagi and budo goromos in the lower pond this year. Everyone else will go in the upper pond and it will make it easier to feed the food with color enhancers.
I have 29 koi swimming around the pool and the ugliest ones seemed to avoid the camera. Maybe they know that if I look at them too closely they might meet Mr. Shovel. Ha ha actually I tend to rehome most of them… they just go away to a friend’s pond. I really should get over there to see how some of the other koi I have given him look. Patience is not my strong suit and some of the koi may have improved over time.
So here is Firecracker who showed well at ZNA NorCal last year (Best in Size 2), came home and promptly jumped through a hole on top of the net. Thrashed around and really shredded up one of his pectoral fins. The fin has been growing but I’m not sure if it will ever come back to 100%. I’ll try to be patient and see how Firecracker pans out.
While my koi at home seem okay, I do worry a little about a two year old koi that I have in Japan. She lives on a koi farm that was recently found to be positive for KHV (koi herpes virus). Many of the larger koi had to be euthanized and one of my koi club friends had two large koi in the greenhouses that were affected. I spoke with my dealer and for now, my koi seems to be in a greenhouse that has tested negative. I am sure it is devastating for the koi breeder to have an outbreak. Between the financial loss and then having to destroy the beautiful koi that have been cared for longer – I don’t know how they have the heart to keep going.
It does make you think twice about buying koi. More US dealers are building facilities to provide better quarantine, selling quarantine equipment and stressing to buyers to follow good quarantine practice with their purchases. If you are not careful you could just wipe out your entire collection. It’s not hard to quarantine and even if it’s not KHV, quarantining will keep some of the heebie jeebies away that might be hiding in your “cute little new koi.”
Let’s hope the breeders in Japan will able to get through the latest KHV outbreak.
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