Koi Health and Information How to Quarantine Koi

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How to Quarantine Koi

Regular observation of your fish will allow problems to be detected early. Be familiar with your fish's normal shape, size and color as well as swimming habits.

A change in these factors may signal a problem. The problem must be identified in order to know the steps to take for treatment. Every pond owner with fish, at some time or another, will probably have to medicate their pond.

Though Koi and Goldfish are extremely hardy, it is very important to keep a watch on their environment to keep them at their healthiest.

Attention should be paid to the quality of water and balance of the pond (i.e. pH levels etc.). However, if problems do occur, the first step is to remove the individual fish or decide whether to treat the entire pond.

It is sometimes difficult to be aware of a problem with a fish until its too late. Be aware of your fish's behavior patterns so changes can be detected early. A change in your fish's behavior is usually the first sign that that your fish are stressed or ill.

It is important that you know your pond's volume. All treatments are based on the number of gallons in the pond. The wrong dosage could result in killing your fish.


Quarantining Your Koi
Why should you quarantine your new fish?

New fish can be carrying parasites, and in rare cases systemic infections (internal problems) and although the Japanese breeders and Koi dealers normally treat fish when they first arrive, there is no guarantee that problems will not occur after you have purchased your Koi.

However, bear in mind that the vast majority of Koi are strong and healthy when they are first harvested in Japan, and are not riddled with parasites or infection.

Most problems occur because of the induced stress of up to 24 hours in a plastic bag during transit, and because of substantially differing water conditions, in particular pH and general hardness.

The induced stress of their long journey and radically different water quality can inhibit the immune system response in new Koi. This can lead to parasite attacks, and ultimately bacterial infections. During the journey, your new Koi has almost certainly been subjected to water temperature changes of 15 deg. C over a 24 hour period which adds to the stress problem.

Therefore, rather than treating problems after they occur, we need to get the Koi 'comfortable' in their new environment as quickly as possible, to ensure that their own immune system is working properly, so that they can fight of any potential problems without human intervention.

The most important thing that new Koi need when they first arrive is prime quality water and a few days rest to settle in to their new environment.

The last thing Koi need having spent up to 30 hours in a plastic bag and in a stressed state is to be dumped in potassium permanganate, malachite or anything else nasty.

The only 'additive' you may want to consider is salt at 0.5 oz per gallon with Elbagin as a supportive treatment in the pond to overcome stress and get them get used to the new water conditions.

Other than this all they need is good water, and plenty of it. Many people run into problems quarantining fish in a vat or pond which is too small.

Your quarantine facility should be minimum 1000 gallons with temperature control and a mature filter. Setting up you quarantine facility 3 weeks before the fish are due to arrive is asking for trouble.