Spring

Fish ponds, together with koi ponds, come awake in the spring after a winter of semi-hibernation. As soon as the temperature goes above 10C (50F), your fish become more lively and your plants will start growing again. This means that it is a great opportunity to do some upkeep – a spring clean – because you will not shock or stress your inactive fish. If you try it any earlier, you will upset your fish in their slumber and any later and you may disturb breeding.

You ought to take out any leaves that has fallen into the pond and dredge for some of the algae. Then clean your pond filter and turn your filtration system back on, if you switched it off for the winter. Test the water for any chemical imbalance and treat any problems.

You ought to also add a broad spectrum medication for common fish ailments. Depending on the treatment you use, you may have to repeat this procedure a week later or when the temperature rises above a certain degree.

Summer

This is when your pond is in full swing. Your aquatic plants will be flourishing as will the algae. You must keep the algae under control, which means dredging, netting and scraping. You will have to clean your pond filter more often as well. Check it daily and keep it working at full tilt. The cleaner you can keep your koi pond now, the less work you will have to do afterward.

Aeration of the water is a major priority in the summer, because warm water is able to hold less oxygen than cold water. Therefore, you will have to keep your fountain working and your bubbler bubbling, if you have one.

If you do not have one, consider buying one. You fish and the blooming algae will be competing for the oxygen in the pond water. You can tell if the water is short of oxygen, because the fish will be gulping air at the surface.

The warm water will not only awaken your fish and your plants, it will also bring parasites to life, so keep a keen eye on your fish’ health and treat anything suspicious immediately. Look out for fish rubbing against the sides or each other – scratching themselves, in other words.

Feed frequently. Your fish will have eaten very little in the winter and now they have to rebuild their fat for breeding and next winter.

Autumn

Autumn is variable, but the first half may be like the summer and the second half more like winter. Continue to feed well. As the trees start to lose their leaves, you must remove them from your pond water.

Drag the leaves off at least once a day or sling a net over the pond and skim for leaves weekly. If you have any pond plants that will not outlast the winter, either take them indoors or throw them away; you do not want them rotting in your pond.

Winter

Life in your pond will slow down as winter progresses. You should feed less often, maybe only once a day until the temperature gets to 10C (50F) and then stop feeding – your fish will be in semi-hibernation at this point. Remove your filtration pumps and your fountain and switch all electrical equipment off.

Put a pond heater in the water. This is a floating device that keeps a small surface area from freezing. If you allow all your pond to freeze over gases will build up, oxygen will vanish and your fish will die.

Owen Jones, the author of this piece, writes on many topics, but is at present involved with the fish pond filter. If you are interested in a Solar Powered Pond Pump, please go to our web site now for a special deal.

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