View Full Version : Ray Abell's Mud Pond Pull Heavy on pictures.

11-14-2009, 08:25 PM
Today we went over to watch the 3rd pond be pulled. This is the pond with the big ladies in it. They pulled the first pond with the smallest koi on Thursday in the very cold, very wet, very windy aftereffects of Ida. Just about 6 inches of rain that day. They pulled the second pond yesterday.

You can see how he calls the fish to him, reaches into the muddy water and comes out with a koi, picks them up and puts them in the boat to await the bag to go up the bank, pics them up from the transport tank and carries them across the yard to the holding tank. 30 fish and none got away or dropped.

11-15-2009, 08:30 AM
great pictures..thanks for sharing. Ray is the only person I know of that can get away with rocks in his mud ponds.:eek1: Keeps the koi from digging out the sides.

11-16-2009, 01:39 PM
This was my 4th year attending Ray's 'Pond Pull', as he likes to call his fall harvest. With all the high wind and rain hitting the coast of Virginia, we were far enough inland to only get a lot of rain the first two days on Thursday and Friday. Saturday was pretty nice.

Here is Ray getting started to take the fish out of his pond #2 on Friday. The water level was pumped down to the point that you could see the backs of some of the big females that got in shallow water.

11-16-2009, 01:53 PM
Ray Abell has the touch..... over and over you see him walk over to where he sees a koi in the muddy water, reaches down and picks it up, walks back over to the rubber raft with water in it and puts it inside until he has 4 or 5 fish. I've never seen him drop one. Unbelievable how good he is when handling these large koi. There's a man in the pictures with a net, but I don't think I ever saw it used..... Ray just walks up to the koi and picks it up from the water. You almost have to see it to believe it.

Once several fish are in the floating raft, he slips them in a plastic bag and hands the bag to a series of people who hand the fish up the bank to a big blue tub on a trailer that is pulled by a golf cart.

11-16-2009, 02:03 PM
Once the tub on the trailer is full, the golf cart pulls up to the area where he has holding tanks to put the fish in. Many of these fish belong to his customers who have had Ray put them out in one of his three mud ponds this spring for a growing season. A lot of the people you see have traveled to Ray's to watch their fish come out of the pond and to see how much they have grown and developed. About half of the fish harvested are in Ray's inventory for sale.

The master fish handler picks the fish up and walks around deciding which tank to put it in before dropping it in a holding tank.

11-16-2009, 02:11 PM
Some of the fish harvested this past weekend.....

11-16-2009, 02:16 PM
It looks like his pond is lined with rocks? How does he keep the Koi from getting beat up?

11-16-2009, 02:28 PM
It looks like his pond is lined with rocks? How does he keep the Koi from getting beat up?

The side walls of his ponds were lined with large limestone rock several years ago. As I understand it, it was to prevent the koi from digging out the side walls and causing them to collapse and fill up the bottom with mud. The rocks must be covered with algae or something that prevents sharp edges because I've watched big koi come out of these ponds for several years without any injuries.

Jeff Speck
11-16-2009, 02:30 PM
Thank you for the pictures. This is a delight to see.

11-16-2009, 02:41 PM
wow- thanks for posting the pictures. I especially liked the shots of the koi that were harvested.

11-16-2009, 04:06 PM
Some random shots taken during the four days I was there. Lots of beautiful, unique stone on the property and many different types of Japanese maples.

11-16-2009, 04:20 PM
Here's a site with more of Ray's Monsters:eek1::eek1::eek1::eek1:


11-16-2009, 07:25 PM
Some pictures from last year's (2008) Ikeage.....................

11-17-2009, 09:37 AM
If you have ever wondered what Ray's personal pond is like at his home, here are a few pictures. The crossed bridges are really neat and allow you to walk out over the water for great viewing of his fish.