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    Thread: Sickness? Please help identify

    1. #1
      Jennifermariar is online now Junior Member
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      Sickness? Please help identify

      Hello,

      I recently found this forum and I am hoping someone can help. I'm pretty new to Koi keeping. I recently upgraded to a larger pond about 3 months ago. From 600 gal to 1200 gal. I have not really experienced new pond syndrome except for string alage outbreak due to this pond being in full sun unlike my other that was completely shaded. [Never had algae issue] But I transferred all the decor and pond filters to the new pond to make sure I moved over the good bacteria. My pond has been stable regarding water quality but 2 weeks ago, I had one of my koi develop lesion on both sides of its head in front of gill plates. Then a week ago the smallest of my baby koi died. Fins clamped and stopped eating. It was dead in a few days. I treated the pond with Melafix antibacterial treatment but it was too late for the younger Koi and the other Kois lesions are not getting better- but not getting worse.

      Yesterday I did a 30% water to change and added some pond salt but just 3 cups because I'm scared to kill my fish. I estimate my pond has 1200 gal but not completely sure as my water meter failed when I originally added the water and I don't think it gave a accurate reading.

      I also added stress coat in the pond.

      The koi with the lesion is not showing signs of sickness. Eating normally and zooming around the pond. It did flash a bit yesterday after I did the water change and added the salt. But it hasn't done it again.

      All my other koi and goldfish are just fine. The only other thing I can think of is if maybe this Koi got sunburn? It is so hot here in FL. And at first i had no shade but noticed the water was rising above 85 degrees. So I added some cover since then about 70 percent cover but the water temp is still around 80 even with cover.

      I am confused what these lesions are and why they don't seem to be healing [but not getting worse either]

      Water parameters:

      Ph 8
      Kh 120
      Gh 180
      Nitrite 0
      Ammonia 0
      Phosphate 0.5
      Nitrate: unknown. I just learned on this forum I should be testing for this too. Master kit did not bring this test
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    2. #2
      RichToyBox's Avatar
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      You could be right about the sunburn. The test numbers look good, but the fish has an overall reddish cast. I had to put shade sails over my ponds to give the fish some shade to keep them from having sunburn.

      At some point in the next couple of years you should get the rocks out of the pond. Rocks allow debris that the filters will remove to be trapped and with minimal flow, anaerobic digestion sets in. This results in a nasty smelling black mass to form down in the rocks. This generates hydrogen sulfide gas, (rotten egg smell) which is highly toxic. You will also gain the volume of those rocks in additional water for the fish to swim in.

      Continue testing and monitoring your water quality numbers.


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    3. #3
      Jennifermariar is online now Junior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by RichToyBox View Post
      You could be right about the sunburn. The test numbers look good, but the fish has an overall reddish cast. I had to put shade sails over my ponds to give the fish some shade to keep them from having sunburn.

      At some point in the next couple of years you should get the rocks out of the pond. Rocks allow debris that the filters will remove to be trapped and with minimal flow, anaerobic digestion sets in. This results in a nasty smelling black mass to form down in the rocks. This generates hydrogen sulfide gas, (rotten egg smell) which is highly toxic. You will also gain the volume of those rocks in additional water for the fish to swim in.

      Continue testing and monitoring your water quality numbers.
      Thank you for the feedback. So if I remove the rocks do I leave the liner bare or add something else as ground cover?

      Also Is there anything I can do to help heal the sunburn? I did add a shade sail like you. And covered another part of the pond with a beach umbrella. It's been like 2 weeks since then. But sun still gets in during early morning. But at high sun there's plenty of cover. It's so hot here. Like hitting high 90s and feels like 105. I had sludge issues in my previous pond because it was right below an oak tree so I had leaves falling in all the time. But now that there's no trees I have this issue 😔
      Last edited by Jennifermariar; 07-29-2022 at 11:21 PM.

    4. #4
      Noahsnana's Avatar
      Noahsnana is offline Koiphen Admin - WWKC
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      You don't mention air Do you have aeration/oxygen going in the pond? It is a necessity especially in these high temps
      The will of God will not take you where the grace of God cannot keep you. .....
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    5. #5
      Jennifermariar is online now Junior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by Noahsnana View Post
      You don't mention air Do you have aeration/oxygen going in the pond? It is a necessity especially in these high temps
      I have 3 air stones at different areas of the pond. And I have a high waterfall that churns the water and pushes it towards my other end of the pond where at the end I have a second pump that pulls water from the bottom and brings it up through a fountain. And finally I have a large clay vase that has a small pump also pulls water from the bottom and drips it in. So the water is always moving in my pond. The pond is 6 feet at its widest and almost 20 feet long. I made it 30 inches deep. I now wish I had made it deeper so maybe the water could stay cooler. But it will have to be an upgrade in the future.

      The fish use the whole pond always racing around it. I haven't seen them in any kind of distress that would indicate they need more oxygen such as hanging around the air pumps or gulping at the top
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    6. #6
      RichToyBox's Avatar
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      A bare bottom pond will grow carpet algae, providing some food source directly for the fish and hiding for small water bugs that the fish love, some illusion of additional depth, increased oxygenation during the daylight heating, though it also robs oxygen overnight, but with your waterfalls and air stones I don't see that as a problem. It usually takes two to three years for the debris in the rocks to create the problem, so it is not an immediate need, but I would be thinking about the removal within the two year time frame. You don't want to disturb the muck in the rocks with fish in the pond after the formation of the hydrogen sulfide.


      Zone 7 A/B
      Keep your words sweet. You never know when you may have to eat them.
      Richard

    7. #7
      fly4koi is offline Senior Member
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      I wouldn't put that piece of OSB Boards over the water, I don't know if it would leak out bad chemicals when wet. You might want to consider constructing a permeant bridge / crossing to provide a shaded area.

    8. #8
      KingstonKoi is offline Senior Member
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      Melafix is a tea tree oil product. Any minor antibiotic benefit is offset by the fact that oil coats the gills of Koi and it’s not worth using for that reason.

      As Richard notes, it does take a while for the muck to build up on the rocks but if you can start removing them, it will be beneficial to get them out of there. While they’re still clean they will be easier to remove. Maybe set a project to do an hour of removal of week so that it doesn’t become a huge project all at once. That’s how I got 2/3 of mine out of my pond. But the ones in the center that had been buried in muck (even though I had my pond cleaned once a year for two years) were beyond my ability to dig out. I had to get a team in to remove the rocks in the area that was 30 inches deep. Now my water stays clean and clear except when the green algae gets out of control.

      Another option for shade is to add something like water hyacinth. It is a plant that will multiply quickly, but can be controlled easily. We had a really cold weather and overcast conditions through the end of June here, and the 10 plants I bought in early May barely multiplied for two months. Once we got 3-4 weeks of sunshine, they suddenly covered 1/4 of the pond. I keep them in a couple of large feeding rings tied to the edge so they can’t drift over and block the skimmer. When they get too much I just remove them and put them in the compost pile. Koi love them. They feed on the roots like it’s an all you can eat salad bar but they don’t damage the plants. And as soon as they covered a quarter of the pond, my green algae finally disappeared.

      Keep us posted on how the little guy does with his sunburn. Sometimes letting nature takes its course allows them to heal naturally, so if it doesn’t get worse it will probably get better.

    9. #9
      Jennifermariar is online now Junior Member
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      Thanks. Yes, I am getting a bridge added in that section soon. I have removed the board. I just had it there temporarily until my sails came in. Thank you for the feedback!

    10. #10
      Jennifermariar is online now Junior Member
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      Thank you. I did buy some water hyacinth. And they are definitely multiplying. I will be taking your advice and moving out the pebbles at the bottom now before it gets harder later. The string algae is driving me crazy. I know the pond is new and I got to let it get established. I keep telling myself as long as the water parameters are stable it's what matters. But I wish I could do something about it without adding chemicals that just mask the problem. I am considering adding a bog filter. I was doing some research and they seem promising.

    11. #11
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      Update

      I noticed today my Koi with the lesions around its face is turning yellow. [I named it Pongo, by the way 😊] His face and a side of his body is turning yellow. I feed them Hakari staple diet. Heard it's a very good brand of Koi food.

      Should I be concerned?

      He's still eating and acting normal. I also feel the lesions have multiplied. I think I am going to pull him out of the pond tomorrow and get a good look, get a good picture too. Should I put him in a salt bath since im pulling him? If so what's the quanity I should add per gallon or litter? I am so afraid of killing him.

      Oh not sure if I mentioned, I did get him from Petsmart. So he's not a good quality Koi. I did not want to buy expensive Koi when the pond is so new and risk losing them to something like poor water conditions. But Pongo I got him before the pond build. I had him like 4 months in a 57 gallon outdoor tub pond. He was just 2 inches at most when I got him. Now he's like 7 or 8 inches long. He's growing quickly since I moved him to the big pond. But his black has been fading then he got the lesions and now he's turning yellow. Also he used to be stream line. Now he's getting like a curve before his tail fin. Hes filling out I THINK. But so are some of my other Koi. I read somewhere females kois tend to have wider bodies because they store eggs during breeding season. Not sure if thats true or not. But I don't think hes swollen is my point. Just getting... fatter. I think.

      Sorry for the rant, but just wanted to make sure I give any info i noticed to see if it helps solve this issue with him.

      Ill take a picture tomorrow. If someone knows how much pond salt i should use per gallon, I would appreciate it.

      Thank you all! You have been so helpful!

    12. #12
      fly4koi is offline Senior Member
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      If you can set up a nice quarantine tank you can use salt water to support it, you want 0.3% to help the fish heal. solar salt is good from hardware store, you don't need fancy salt for it, and definitely don't use cooking salt, those have additives.
      Calculator for salinity is here: https://www.koiphen.com/forums/koicalcs.php?do=calcsalt

      I don't think salt bath (meaning, bath it in high salinity and put it back) would help, if you can get your hand on tricide neo, oxolinic acid, or kanamycin in combination with a good size hospital tank, it can help controlling the bacterial infection if that's the situation you are dealing with.
      Otherwise treating the ulcer with iodine is feasible too.

      Oxolinic acid bath / feed: https://www.koiphen.com/forums/archi...p/t-80097.html
      Last edited by fly4koi; 08-03-2022 at 04:35 AM.

    13. #13
      jasonnstephjung is offline Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by Jennifermariar View Post
      I noticed today my Koi with the lesions around its face is turning yellow. [I named it Pongo, by the way ��] His face and a side of his body is turning yellow. I feed them Hakari staple diet. Heard it's a very good brand of Koi food.

      Should I be concerned?

      He's still eating and acting normal. I also feel the lesions have multiplied. I think I am going to pull him out of the pond tomorrow and get a good look, get a good picture too. Should I put him in a salt bath since im pulling him? If so what's the quanity I should add per gallon or litter? I am so afraid of killing him.

      Oh not sure if I mentioned, I did get him from Petsmart. So he's not a good quality Koi. I did not want to buy expensive Koi when the pond is so new and risk losing them to something like poor water conditions. But Pongo I got him before the pond build. I had him like 4 months in a 57 gallon outdoor tub pond. He was just 2 inches at most when I got him. Now he's like 7 or 8 inches long. He's growing quickly since I moved him to the big pond. But his black has been fading then he got the lesions and now he's turning yellow. Also he used to be stream line. Now he's getting like a curve before his tail fin. Hes filling out I THINK. But so are some of my other Koi. I read somewhere females kois tend to have wider bodies because they store eggs during breeding season. Not sure if thats true or not. But I don't think hes swollen is my point. Just getting... fatter. I think.

      Sorry for the rant, but just wanted to make sure I give any info i noticed to see if it helps solve this issue with him.

      Ill take a picture tomorrow. If someone knows how much pond salt i should use per gallon, I would appreciate it.

      Thank you all! You have been so helpful!
      I would not worry about Pongo turning yellow. I have two all white koi that I bought at Petco and one's face turned yellow and the other is snow white. I figured the yellow was just genetics and we lucked out with the other since they are cheap koi who are not known for their color stability. When we first started out we also used Hikari- Hikari Gold. After a while we noticed how much the food was dirtying (clouding) the water at meal time so we opted to switch to something better. Now we feed a blend foods to ensure that the koi are getting all the nutrients they need. That's just our preference. I would personally go for a higher protein food for young koi. But that would depend on other factors too, like budget, etc.

    14. #14
      Jennifermariar is online now Junior Member
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      Ah I see. You know I have noticed since i switched, the water has beeb cloudy. What brand are you using right now or what blend? I was feeding a koi food I bought at petsmart before and had no issues with cloudy water. But I wanted to feed a higher quality Koi food so its why I switched

    15. #15
      Jennifermariar is online now Junior Member
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      Thank you. Where would i typically buy these meds? Where do you get your supplies? I have my old 57 gal tube they were in previously. I kept it thinking of using it as a medical and or quartine pond in the future. So I can use that. I read somewhere you shouldnt keep Koi in salt water for too long because it is stressful to their system and can burn their skin. If I try the salt first, how long would you recommend i keep them in salted water?

    16. #16
      fly4koi is offline Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by Jennifermariar View Post
      Thank you. Where would i typically buy these meds? Where do you get your supplies? I have my old 57 gal tube they were in previously. I kept it thinking of using it as a medical and or quartine pond in the future. So I can use that. I read somewhere you shouldnt keep Koi in salt water for too long because it is stressful to their system and can burn their skin. If I try the salt first, how long would you recommend i keep them in salted water?
      Cascade Pond Supply is a source you can place order online. I think 0.3% salinity is okay for the fish to stay for long term, I'd probably start with that. You would need to have good biofilter on the tank, or do water exchange (dechlorinated), and you should do water monitoring on a daily basis to avoid stressing the fish. Pictures of the ulcer would help.

    17. #17
      Jennifermariar is online now Junior Member
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      Hello! Update.
      So Pongo is still doing well. His ulcers-- I guess its what they are are the same. No change. But he is happy and loves to eat. I finally managed to trap him. He's fiesty and sneaky little thing.
      I measured him though and managed to get a good picture of his red spots. He is 6 inches long. Got him when he was 2 inches. He is under a year old. Like 8 months now. Not sure if thats a normal growth rate. Please let me know what you guys think. Should i leave it alone at this point and watch him. Is it possible they are just scares from previous sun burn?
      Thank you. I cannot express how much i appreciate everyone's feedback and willingness to help out!
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    18. #18
      kdh is offline Senior Member
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      How about a couple of pics of the 4 legged snowball you have

    19. #19
      RichToyBox's Avatar
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      I could be wrong, but I think the red areas on the head are just thin skin areas that are letting vascularity show through. There are no scales to hide this area. Just keep an eye on it and over time, it should whiten up.


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    20. #20
      Jennifermariar is online now Junior Member
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      Lol. Here you go! Her name is Bella. Shes a maltese who wishes she was a fish 😄
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