Moving to the lower pond for winter

IMG_3245It’s been getting a little cold in Minnesota (as it should be) and the koi have been slowing down. I feed them a little bit every few days but they aren’t too interested. All the koi still enjoy swimming together and some of the little pond mutts can be seen with them. Since we noticed the water spray on our nets was turning into ice overnight and the temperature forecast is heading south, we decided to move the pack to their winter home. We had a lot of debate about making the upper pond the winter home or the lower pond or maybe setting something up in the garage. In the end we decided to bring them to the lower pond and we plan to do a partial cover. Last year with no cover, no water changes, no filtration, etc. the koi came out just fine. So we’re gambling that adding a little filtration, using some covering to keep the water warm (and not a heater…) and aeration should work. The lower pond is also nice because it’s right outside our dining room window and I can see the koi constantly. Even though the upper pond is visible from my bedroom windows, the lower koi pond is much closer to the house.

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So we spent a chilly afternoon moving the koi. The pond digger felt that his fingers wimageere getting a slight case of frostbite by the time we were done. The koi seemed to enjoy exploring their new home. Now all of them have spent time in this pond before but I’m sure their memory is limited. They do hover at the old feeding spot though, so maybe they aren’t that stupid.

Early this morning, I woke up around 3:00 am and realized that I did not remember moving Byakko to the lower pond. I woke up my husband who offered to go out and check the skimmers but I told him it wasn’t necessary. First thing this morning he checked the skimmers and looked around for about 30 minutes until he spied a little white tail in the rocks. Of course the koi wasn’t about to be caught and we had to leave for church. Later in the morning we ended up draining about 4000 gallons of water to flush him out of his hiding space. Byakko is back with the pack and doing fine.

Summer is over and our last project with the koi is improving their winter quarters. I’ll be posting photos of what we end up doing next weekend.

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