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    Thread: New pond - salt or no salt?

    1. #1
      two_wheeled is offline Senior Member
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      New pond - salt or no salt?

      Brand new pond. Is it recommended for long term koi health to add salt (0.3%), or is it better to not add salt at all? I've heard both ways.

      Thanks!

    2. #2
      dragonfly1976 is offline Senior Member
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      Koi are fresh water fish. Keeping good water quality is the key, not adding unnatural additives.

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      Rob Forbis is offline Senior Member
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      Check with the locals http://www.vskc.net.

      And I copied from Google: In its native range, the species (common carp) occurs in coastal areas of the Caspian and Aral Seas (Berg 1964; Barus et al., 2001) as well as the estuaries of large Ukrainian and Russian rivers. Crivelli (1981) reported that the common carp occurred in brackish-water marshes with salinities up to 14 ppt in southern France.

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      two_wheeled is offline Senior Member
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      Thanks Rob, I'm still a relative newbie at this, so I'm trying to educate myself. I looked up that reference and found that carp have been found in varying salinity concentrations. [reference]
      Hence the confusion. For instance, why is this page telling me to salt the new pond?
      " Adding salt to the pond (around 0.02%) also makes nitrites less toxic to koi, since their gills will tend to take up the added chloride ions instead of the nitrite ions, getting protection from the latter. "

      and here is a table showing how much salt to add to a new pond.
      http://koiandponds.com/salt_tables.htm


      Anyone know what the top breeders do in their ponds? Salt? No salt?

    5. #5
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      I'm a fan of no salt without having a specific reason. I think the quote above is not saying to flatly add salt for
      a new pond, but that it will make nitrites less toxic IF they are present. When a new pond is establishing the
      nitrification process it's not unusual to get elevated nitrite levels and salt is an excellent method to block the
      effect of those levels. But I don't think a new pond needs salt until there's a need.

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    6. #6
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      If I cant get my nitrites down then i add salt to .15. Many people keep salt at .1 and have great success. Our delta system does have some salt and carp thrive. So imo the whole koi dont like mild salt at .2 doesn't make to much sense. Last gc koi I saw the owner keeps. 1 salt all the time and he knows his stuff

    7. #7
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      I rarely use salt. I'm not opposed to using salt for a little while, for certain specific reasons. However, my experience has me thinking it is bad for koi over longer periods of time. Here's why:

      About 15 years ago my seemingly healthy pond began to have BIG problems. A koi here and there started coming down with bacterial infections. I was advised of various treatments, which I tried (and tried and tried and tried). These usually (but not always) worked on a particular fish. But for a long time, no one could help me figure out the underlying cause. After many months of fighting this very strenuous losing war, someone on Koivet suggested I lower the 0.3% salt level that I had been keeping the pond at. Thier theory was that the continuous salt burns off the slime coat and keeps it off, keeping the koi unprotected. To that point, over 14 months I had lost 16 of my 39 koi (~40%), and 37 (~95%) had gotten a bacterial infection at least once over that 14 months, and some had gotten an infection 2 or 3 different times. I began doing repeated large water changes to lower the salt level, and the bacterial infections stopped right away. In the last 15 years at basically zero salt, there have been very few infections.

    8. #8
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      The only time I use salt is with elbagin treatment and only in the q-tank. Have you got one yet?
      M.Nguyen


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      Quote Originally Posted by two_wheeled View Post
      Brand new pond. Is it recommended for long term koi health to add salt (0.3%), or is it better to not add salt at all? I've heard both ways.

      Thanks!
      There seems to be several schools of thought on long-term salt in the pond and I think (my own theory) it stems from the fact that early on salt was the "go-to" method for treating parasites, to lower osmosis pressure, for quarantine, etc.. But if fish are kept in salt over long periods of time (or on a permanent basis), it seems to render later "salt treatments" on fish in those ponds relatively ineffective. Like folks developing immunities to antibiotics. I have heard of some Koi keepers who maintain a 0.01% salinity year round.
      I don't use it unless I need it; but I'm no expert.
      Last edited by DarkStar; 10-11-2018 at 01:53 AM.
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    10. #10
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      Koi are freshwater fish.

      Salt affects the color of your fish over time

      Garfield
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    11. #11
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      Quote Originally Posted by dragonfly1976 View Post
      Koi are fresh water fish. Keeping good water quality is the key, not adding unnatural additives.
      Quote Originally Posted by coolwon View Post
      Koi are freshwater fish.

      Salt affects the color of your fish over time

      Garfield
      So, saying Koi are not salt water fish or they are fresh water fish is misleading. Salt, at the levels we use, do not even come close to the salt levels in the oceans. Salt is a very important tool in Koi health and, if used properly, is very effective whether you use it in a QT or in your whole pond. I will agree that you should NOT use it all year round but it would be better to explain that than to say "Koi are fresh water fish." Just saying that does not help ones understanding of why, and when, it should be used. The average salt concentration in the oceans is 3.5%. To give you an idea of how much that is a 2000 gallon pond would need 585lbs. of salt to achieve that whereas it would only need 50lbs. of salt to achieve 0.3% which is far from being "salt water". BTW, salt is a totally 'natural' additive.
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      people like to vehemently defend their purchases and find it incredulous that anything could be better

    12. #12
      coolwon is online now Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by two_wheeled View Post
      Brand new pond. Is it recommended for long term koi health to add salt (0.3%), or is it better to not add salt at all? I've heard both ways.

      Thanks!
      Are you any the wiser.

      Garfield
      Find more about Weather in Durban, ZA

    13. #13
      two_wheeled is offline Senior Member
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      ha ha ha YES, a little wiser each day and I appreciate all of this very helpful feedback.
      I've found it cheaper to learn from your mistakes than my own.

    14. #14
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      Quote Originally Posted by coolwon View Post
      Koi are freshwater fish.

      Salt affects the color of your fish over time

      Garfield
      How is this proven. Someone that won grand champion keeps there pond at .1 % and the beni and shiroji were stunning on this 32 inch kohaku. Why would mild salt cause a fish to loose color and where did this info even come from?

    15. #15
      coolwon is online now Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by kevin32 View Post
      How is this proven. Someone that won grand champion keeps there pond at .1 % and the beni and shiroji were stunning on this 32 inch kohaku. Why would mild salt cause a fish to loose color and where did this info even come from?


      How do you know what it would have looked like had it had not been kept in that .1% salt mix?

      It's the best fish on the day at that show.

      Maybe the other fish was squint!

      Garfield
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      kimini is offline Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by Russell Peters View Post
      ...BTW, salt is a totally 'natural' additive.
      So is sulfur, curare, and creosote; just because something's natural means nothing, it's all about context.

    17. #17
      kevin32's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by coolwon View Post
      How do you know what it would have looked like had it had not been kept in that .1% salt mix?

      It's the best fish on the day at that show.

      Maybe the other fish was squint!

      Garfield
      I still don't understand why salt would make a fish loose color over time. Maybe at .5 salt the fish will build up excessive slime coat that may take away from the color. Take the salt out and the slime coat goes back down. Some feel keeping salt at .1% helps the koi from getting the gills congested. As said .1 is a very low content and hardly measurable
      Last edited by kevin32; 10-12-2018 at 08:54 PM.

    18. #18
      Matt24's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by two_wheeled View Post
      I've found it cheaper to learn from your mistakes than my own.
      HA! Amen to that!

    19. #19
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      Quote Originally Posted by two_wheeled View Post
      ha ha ha YES, a little wiser each day and I appreciate all of this very helpful feedback.
      I've found it cheaper to learn from your mistakes than my own.
      Ah so. Words of wisdom from young grasshopper.
      Find Something You Would Die For And Live for It.



    20. #20
      DarkStar is online now Supporting Member
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      I stumbled across this publication by Duncan Griffiths (Salt in the Koi Environment) while looking for something else. Never saw it before but found it very interesting. Is anyone else familiar with it? http://www.koiquest.co.uk/salt%20but...gar%201111.htm
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