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  • Results 1 to 15 of 15

    Thread: Help! New fish shipment

    1. #1
      Pluimer2 is offline Junior Member
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      Help! New fish shipment

      Help please. I am new here and fairly new to having koi.

      I ordered 100 2-3 inch imported butterfly koi 12 days ago. Since then We have lost 13 of them. They start to swim funny and slow down until they die. I am heartbroken. Ive been in touch with the place we received our koi from and they suggested adding salt to our water. We did that yesterday and still had a causality this morning. They are living in out greenhouse so they are around 72 during the day with a slight dip at night. We had a beautiful little Showa who started acting sick and I was sure we would lose it last night. I gave him a salt dip on top of adding salt to the tanks and heís holding on, to my surprise. Although heís still acting sick. The other thing is we noticed this morning after we added salt that one of the orange babies has some white spots (pictures attached) they company is telling me that it just proves that they got an infection with the stress of moving and will just need to wait and recover. Iím afraid that if I keep waiting Iím going to lose all my new fish. Iím feeling pretty hopeless. I sent all my pond info to the company these little guys came from and they just said it sounds like they got stressed in the shipping process, lost their slim coat and have become infected. Any other help or advice? Any hope I can save these guys?

      Thank you in advance for any advice. Honestly Iím feeling pretty discourage with my new found love for koi fish.

    2. #2
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      Let's start with the basics:

      How many gallons?
      How many other fish?
      Is this a new pond or existing pond?
      What is the ammonia level?
      What is the nitrite level?
      What is the pH?
      What is your KH level?

      100 koi, even in the 2-3" range could tax a filter system. That is why we need the particulars.
      There is a chance they arrived with an illness or parasites but we have to rule out that your water is not the culprit in causing fatalities. We have to rule out that the water/system is NOT the cause of the casualties. Even if there is illness/parasites, if the water is not healthy then they won't be I'm afraid.
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    3. #3
      icu2's Avatar
      icu2 is online now Administrator ~ WWKC Treasurer
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      (Sorry x-posted )

      Your picture didn't come through... here's a thread that might help if you need it:

      https://www.koiphen.com/forums/showt...tures-Tutorial
      --Steve
      Find more about Weather in Poulsbo, WA

      "I know what I have to do now. I got to keep breathing. Because tomorrow the sun will rise.
      Who knows what the tide could bring." --Tom Hanks in Cast Away

    4. #4
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      We're here to help but having the info I requested will make it easier.
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    5. #5
      Pluimer2 is offline Junior Member
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      Sorry its been a very very long day. So I had some bigger koi in this pond before I received the babies. The babies are split between two pond set-ups. My ph is 7 nitrate 5 nitrite more than 0 but less than 1. Hardness is 50 everything else 0. My older koi are running the same and doing great. I have added beneficial bacteria to my tanks as well. I have tanks that hold 240 gallons inside my greenhouse where I am holding the koi currently. I didnít have a ton of salt on hand so i dropped the water levels to 100 gallons and added 2 pounds of salt. The people I received my koi told me that i need to add 3 pounds to make the water .35. That unless i get it that high its not fighting off infection and once it gets there they should start to recover. So thatís the plan as of now. I did do a salt dip on a couple fish with some white spots. I also have a really pretty Showa I salt dipped yesterday who is still not looking perfect but it is hanging on (total shock) they usually go down pretty quickly once they get sick so I was surprises the Showa has made it 24 hours. Itís such a bummer and I just hope I can save some of these babies before its to late.Sorry the pictures isnít the easiest to see these babies are pretty small but 3 of my fish today from this pond have turn up with white spot. Hoping the make it through the night. Name:  00B13D6E-F98E-4A09-8480-CC4A7210DDFA.jpg
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      Last edited by Pluimer2; 4 Weeks Ago at 01:40 AM.

    6. #6
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      Sorry you're going through this but we'll help all we can.
      Do me a favor, it will help when you list test results if you post them like I did the questions. It makes it easier for me to see the values when they aren't in a paragraph.

      A couple of things come to mind:

      -I don't see an ammonia reading and that can be a killer. I suspect there is one since you have nitrite readings. This is a must have value.
      -How many tanks are we talking about?
      -Did you take readings on all of them?
      -Salt will protect them from the nitrite reading but it doesn't do a thing for infections. Used with another product it may help but not on its own. Salt also will keep you from using certain medications.
      -Your pH is low, especially when your filters are struggling to keep up with the biological demand of all the newbies. That means your KH (please tell me the method you used to test what you called hardness) is probably low. Your filter needs KH and it can be raised with baking soda BUT you have to bind the ammonia present or it can be very toxic.
      -Did you keep the older koi in with them? If not, when did you move them or what happened to them?

      I suspect this is largely a water quality issue. Fingerlings are very fragile in water that isn't healthy. By healthy, we need to get your ammonia to zero (when you get a value), the nitrite to zero, the KH to 120 and the pH stable around 8.0.
      I would hesitate to do any more salt dips until the water is in line.

      Any chance of posting a pic of the set up?
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    7. #7
      Pluimer2 is offline Junior Member
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      -So our test strips don’t have ammonia reading?
      - two tanks are set up in the greenhouse and yes i took reading on all of them
      - I have a bigger pond outside I had moved my bigger koi to.
      -why would the big koi company tell me the salt will help them recover from stress and heal the infection?
      -how would you bind the ammonia?
      -We have done partial water changes in this tank over the couples weeks as well because we added all the new fish.
      Long story short my sweet husband got excited and ordered all these babies. I had a small hobby pond with my older koi that were doing fantastic.. never and issue. Well mr excited bought all these koi and promised he knew what he was doing and would take care of them. Well we never imagined this would happen.
      - So my bigger koi still look amazing but unfortunately like the newbie we are, he added them to one of the tanks of babies. Now they still look amazing and that tank of babies is actually doing pretty well considering. The other tank seems to be having more of the problem. Although the Showa did come out of the better looking tank so it’s obviously having an issue as well. These guys were in my bigger tank outside until more recently. (Same filters and everything are ran in all my tanks)
      -Ive already added salt at the suggestion of the koi company.
      -would more regular water changes help?
      Thank you for all your help. And quick response
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    8. #8
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      An ammonia test is critical because koi produce ammonia simply by breathing. Ammonia then is converted to nitrite (which can be toxic and why having some salt in there is a good idea) which then is converted to nitrate. To make these conversions, alkalinity/KH is expended. That is why we suggest that koi keepers maintain a KH level of 120ppm.

      Drop kits are far more accurate than strips. When you're dealing with health issues, accuracy is important.
      My suggestion is to get drop kits for the following:
      Ammonia
      Nitrite
      pH
      KH

      You can order an API Master Freshwater kit via Amazon. It will have the ammonia, nitrite and pH tests. I think it comes with 2 pH tests, one for low and one for high. Use the high one, the low pH is useless for ponds.
      You'll have to order the KH drop kit separately but I usually toss the low range pH and put that test in the container of the Master test kit.

      Once you have the kits, test each tank and also your source water. If it is a well, then you may not have to deal with much, if any, ammonia. If you are on city water, you will likely have either chlorine or chloramines in the water. It is vital to neutralize this before you add it to the tank.

      Ammonia binders come in many fashions. What is important is finding out if it is just ammonia or if there is also chlorine or chloramines.
      For ammonia only, the cheapest and easiest to find binder is sodium thiosulfate. You can get this at most pool supply places or order it online.
      For chlorine or chloramines, Cloram-x is a good one as is Safe. Safe is inexpensive but you'll need to get the Seachem alert card so you can determine how much of the ammonia is bound.

      So, well or city water?
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    9. #9
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      One other thing I've been meaning to address is aeration. When koi are ill it's important to increase aeration.
      Also, with the fatalities, it would advantageous for you to do a quick evaluation of the koi post mortem. Any wounds on the body and how do the gills look?
      This is helpful to assess how they are being affected by what they are dealing with.
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    10. #10
      Pluimer2 is offline Junior Member
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      Yes so my husband is bringing drop testing kit home this morning. I realized that would be better last night. Also it will let us test the ammonia because I have a suspicions that might be an issue.

      We have non chlorinated well water.

      See that’s the thing that has boggled us is that the fish look fine. No visable wound or discoloring. Gills look normal. That’s what has stumped us they start acting lethargic than die. The white patches on the fish are new to yesterday. That’s the first time we have seen any physical ailment.

      My husband will be home in a bit and we will test everything and do the proper water changes is needed. Thank you for all your help! I was feeling hopeless

    11. #11
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      I'm happy to help. It's good to have others to turn to when things are looking dire.

      That is excellent news on the water. It makes things very much easier. If you have a pool supply nearby then get some sodium thiosulfate.
      I'll be interested to hear what the KH reading of your well water is. For us, we have a good amount of alkalinity in our well water. That means simply by changing more water we are raising our KH. I hope it works out that way for you too.

      The only considerations when adding water then is temperature changes and aerating it before adding it.
      Our well water is quite cool whereas our pond water is over 70. If you add too much well water quickly, you can lower the water temp in the tank. It would be better to do a series of smaller water changes instead of large ones. The body of water you're dealing with is quite small so changing a lot of water will drop the temps a lot and quickly.
      Regarding aerating the well water, just put a spray hose nozzle on the hose and add the water above the surface level.

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      Last edited by Marilyn; 4 Weeks Ago at 12:02 PM.
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    12. #12
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      So the ammonia appears to be at .25.
      Would some regular small water changes help with this until my pond has been able to properly cycle to hold the load?
      Would this cause all the issues in my tank?
      fortunately I didn’t wake up to any casualties this morning at though there is one fish with white spots that don’t look healthy.
      Thank you for all your help there are very little koi resources where we live so we really appreciate all the input. Name:  AD52D23C-6338-4874-94E4-492AC533A80F.jpg
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    13. #13
      icu2's Avatar
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      Do the same tests on the water coming from the well to know if water changes are
      helping.
      --Steve
      Find more about Weather in Poulsbo, WA

      "I know what I have to do now. I got to keep breathing. Because tomorrow the sun will rise.
      Who knows what the tide could bring." --Tom Hanks in Cast Away

    14. #14
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      Before I answer that I need you to test the source water for ammonia.
      If the well water has more ammonia (your koi tank appears to be close to .5, I think) then it's pointless to keep adding water if it is increasing the ammonia load.

      Even low levels of ammonia can be hard on koi and fingerlings are fragile. You need to get some sodium thiosulfate to bind the ammonia.
      It doesn't surprise me you are seeing secondary issues arise. This if often the case when the water is out of whack.

      Lastly, when there is ammonia present, your filters are working hard to convert that into nitrites on to nitrates. This is where the KH comes into play.
      Get a KH test kit and test the tank and your well water. If you don't have enough KH, and your pH reading indicates you do not, the bio bacteria don't have the "food" to make the conversions which create more health issues for the koi. I suspect that is why you are seeing whitish patches. Without a pic, I'm leaning toward that being excess slime coat. They produce this to protect themselves often during potential pH situations. It could also be a result of illnesses related to the water quality overall.
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    15. #15
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      Oops, my bad, someone kindly reminded me that you actually need a binder, not something that breaks a chlorine bond so sodium thiosulfate is not the right thing to use.
      I would suggest Cloram-X or Safe.
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

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