What Are The Best Pond Filters?

Although a natural pond does not require the use of a pond filter a man made pond can only benefit from its use. Pond filters are designed to break down toxins within the water usually caused by decaying organic particles, if a pond filter is not used to remove this physical dirt your pond could be at risk of having poor pond water which could result in health problems for any fish living within the pond.

Depending on the size of your pond and how many fish you have will determine the type and size of the pond filter you need. Once installed the pond filter will keep both the water free from particles that can cause the water to be murky, smelly and even toxic, your fish and pond plants will also benefit from the pond filter as they will be healthier.

Pond filters not only optimise the viewing of your pond by cleaning the water for enhanced viewing of the fish, plants and inhabitants pond filters also conserve water by cleaning and recycling the ponds original water, When the water is pumped back into your pond it keeps the pond water which also helps to reduce the risk of the pond becoming stagnant.

There are several different types of pond filters to choose from all of which will produce a noticeable difference to any garden pond.

External Filters

External pond filters are usually the largest type of pond filter available. They are situated outside of the pond but close to it. They are usually filled with large sheets of foam with porous or plastic stone biological media underneath.

The biggest advantage of external pond filters is the improvement of the water quality it is also possible to add different filer media to serve other purposes should you have a specific problem with your pond. Having the pond filter outside of the pond makes the unit a lot easier to clean also the external pond filter supports the largest fish load.

The only disadvantage is the size and visibility however it is quite easy to disguise the pond filter behind pond plants making it less visible.

Submersed Filters

These pond filters are extremely versatile and are filled with a mixture of filter media for different types of filtration including chemical, mechanical and biological filtration. The advantages of this type of pond filter is not only the cleanliness of the water but the pond filter can also be used for other purposes such as water fountains, pond spitters and many other water based pond feature.

The only disadvantage is this type of pond filter is submersed in the water which may mean that you will need to stand in the pond to retrieve it depending on where it is situated when you decide to clean it.

When purchasing pond filters you will find that pet shops are always happy to help you chooses the right filter to suit your pond, take the time to ask someone in the shop and explain what sort of pond you have it is also wise to have a rough idea of the size and how many fish reside with it to make sure the best pond filter is selected.

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Koi Pond: is Ph Important?

It can mean the difference between life and death of your koi fish!

Alkaline Koi Ponds

Generally speaking, alkaline conditions are more common than acidic in ponds, especially the newer ones. If the pH remains over 8.5 for any length of time, the koi fish will become stressed or diseased. Here are some helpful examples:

Symptoms

• Lethargic or listless fish due to damaged mucus coating; prone to fungal

infection and other disease

• Plants chalky in appearance due to calcium deposits

• Prominence of waste chemicals which harm pond life

• Biological filter loses effectiveness

Reasons

• Introducing fish too soon into a newly constructed pond that was not properly sealed; the lime or alkali from the cement will raise the pH to the top of the scale. Even a shovel full of concrete or mortar can cause serious problems.

• Lime leaching from cement products such as blocks, stepping stones and

similar materials over a period of time.

• Lime in stone products subject to erosion

• Excessive growth of algae.

Solutions

• If the pond alkalinity is from the koi pond being new, allow adequate time for the pond to age. To speed up this process introduce bacteria found in a koi pond starter solution.

• Institute a partial pond water change to dilute the alkalis

• If high alkalinity is due to an over-abundance of algae, remove excessive growths of thread algae.

• If these steps do not result in a lower pH, use acidifying compounds or pond

pH buffers.

Acidic Koi Ponds

Low pH conditions occur less often than alkalinity in koi ponds.

Symptoms

• Fish become stressed, resulting in sickness; they may start dying off.

• Oxygenating plants such as hyacinths, water lettuce, Elodea and Anacharis

become discolored and wilted.

• Biological filtration ceases to operate correctly.

Reasons

• Pond water may have lost its buffers due to excessive amounts of rain,

which is soft and very acidic in many areas due to pollution. Loss or

decrease in buffering agents can create drastic fluctuation in pH.

• There may be high levels of humic acid or other organic acids produced

by build-up of decomposing plants and leaves.

Solutions

• Regular partial water changes

• Adding buffers to pond by placing a mesh bag of oyster shell gravel,

dolomite or crushed coral gravel in filter or waterfall. Water passing

through the material will pull out the calcium carbonate and raise pH.

• Using pond-buffer salts (sold in pond supply stores)

Partial Water Changes

Wastes and toxins tend to build up in most ponds, despite use of a biological filter. As water evaporates, pollutants remain and build up over time, becoming dangerously concentrated. For this reason it is highly recommended for smaller koi ponds that you drain and replace 20 percent of the koi pond a couple of times a year. Larger koi ponds are generally much more stable and the water chemistry does not fluctuate radically. This water should be siphoned or pumped from the bottom of the koi pond, where the majority of pollutants collect.

No more than 20 percent should be replaced since larger amounts could easily upset the balance of the koi pond. This is especially true if the replacement water is softer or contains high levels of chlorine or chloramines. It would also be advantageous to keep most of the rotting debris cleared from the bottom. Decaying fish and pond waste produce ammonia, methane and other toxins which can be fatal to the koi pond family.

If you are adding water with a garden hose, it is best to adjust to low volume and a mist that sprays gently through the air before entering the pond. This will allow some of the chlorine to evaporate. If you add the water quickly, add a dechlorinating product to the koi pond to neutralize the chlorine and chloramines. Unless you are adding water to your koi pond by means of an electronic aquafill water leveling system, always use some type of a timer or alarm to remind you to turn off the water! If left unattended for an extended period of time, you could find your pond overflowing and your koi fish dying from chlorine poisoning. It happened to me… several hundred dollars worth!

Happy koi, peace & joy.

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Heating your Koi Pond

There are many reasons for heating your koi pond,maybe you just want to see your enjoy your pond in all seasons.Whatever your reason we just want to give you some insight to make it easy to accomplish. There is now new technology,enery efficient heaters being developed for pond heating.Therefore we recommend electric koi pond heaters,submersible heaters,heat exchangers and floating pond heaters.Pond heating Considerations: First you must determine whether you want to de-ice or actually heat your pond to a specific temperature .Deicers melt the ice to provide an opening for harmful gas exchange only. Heating your pond to obtain a specific temperature can be a bit technical, so if your not sure about the heater sizing we recommend that you contact our koi pond heating specialists. The outside low temperature is the key to your kilowatt requirements and unfortunately it can vary. Your heater output kilowatts are calculated based on your low ambient temperature and if your geographical area drops far below that normal low temperature a safety factor should be included in the calculations.We recommend submersible pond heaters for small to medium size ponds and energy efficient heat exchangers for large ponds.

* Pond Heating: There are conditions that effect pond heaters and make it more difficult controlling pond temperature.

* Pond Waterfalls are used for aeration and beauty,but they cool the water and work against the heating process.

* Pond Water Depth a good designed koi pond should be at least three foot in depth,shallow large exposed surface area ponds are easily effected by wind chill factors and require larger pond heaters to maintain temperature.

Koi Pond Information: One period when koi keepers traditionally have their most difficult time with health problems is during the transition from winter to spring. As waters begin to warm up, pathogens are able to multiply at a more rapid rate than koi can defend themselves leading to an increase in the likelihood of disease. If a pond is heated over winter, then this risky period is removed from the koi owners.

Do not raise the koi’s water temperature too fast. Parasites and bacteria can also grow more quickly in warm water. The fishes system takes time to adjust but the disease organisms do not. Raise the temperature from ambient at 3 – 5 degree intervals every 24 hours to 80 – 84 degrees Fahrenheit. Maintain a stable temperature with less than 2 degrees variable per day Treat with 0.3% salt and parasiticides or antibiotics during the adjustment period, and continue with medication if necessary until cure is affected. Maintain temp. for 4 – 6 weeks after cure, then slowly drop the temperature to match that of the pond water. This will ensure a stronger Koi and ease the fishes transition back to the pond.

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