New Pond Syndrome
  • ShukriShukri October 2010
    Posts: 4,881
    This is one dreaded problem that everyone (beginners, intermediate and experts alike) will face this, sometimes unavoidable and a painful phase. Many people have their own way of dealing the NPS. Based on my experience of having to deal with 2 such occasions, let me share with you my observations.

    1. For those ponds made out of concrete and cement, it is awfully important to treat and neutralize the toxic materials that are in the concrete and cement. Once leached into the water, these are very potent to your kois and will kill them in no time. From my observations, these toxic stuffs will make the water more alkaline than it should be.

    Solution:-
    You would need an acidic medium to combat these nasty stuffs. I will recommend several bottles of rice vinegar to be put into the water and let it soak for a week. In addition to this, you can always buy several pineapples, cut in half and rub them to the walls and the pond bottom. In addition, you can also cut a banana tree trunks into 1 foot pieces and put them into the pond and let it soak for at least a week. If you want to be doubly sure that all the toxic stuffs are all gone, you can always do a second treatment i.e. a second dose. During this process, please do not put your filter materials into
    your filter chamber and no UV lamp either. After the stipulated timeframe, get rid of the water and all, thoroughly rinse the pond, and put in new water. Make sure you put the antichlorine, aerates your pond and put in the filter material in your filter chamber. Let the system sits for 24 hours. By now, you can introduce 1 to 3 kois that you do not care losing. These are the guinea pigs for your pond.

    2. Watch the guinea pig kois closely, how they behave and the way they swim. After observing them for a while, and if there are no weird behaviors (i.e. the norm), then you can start feeding the kois. We need the fish 'POO' to jump start the 'Biological Filtration system.' We need to get the Nitrogen Cycle going. To speed this up, you can use the Bacteria starter pack etc. The fish wastes will be converted to Ammonia, and you need the NITROSOMONAS bacteria to quickly culture and to colonize the filter chambers. These bacteria will convert AMMONIA to NITRITE. At this point, you need the NITROBACTER to be cultured and colonize the filter chambers. These will convert NITRITE to NITRATE. Presence of large quantity of AMMONIA, NITRITE and NITRATE are hazadous to your kois. These least lethal of the three is NITRATE. Plants (including Algaes) will consume NITRATES. For those that do not have plants in their ponds, regular water changes is a necessity.

    Solution:- During this critical period, regular pH, AMMONIA, NITRITE and NITRATE level testing is very key. At this point, it is highly advisable that SALT to the pond at 0.1% to 0.3%. When you add 1kg of salt to 1,000 liters of water, this is 0.1%. The salt will act as a buffer to NITRITE SPIKE which is very dangerous to the kois. With the salt, the kois' gills will not be damaged by the excessive levels of NITRITE.

    Once the Nitrogen Cycle is in placed, the NPS is over. You can start putting your beloved kois in your new pond now. But please remember, feed your fishes sparringly at this point. Only gradually increase the feeding over time. You will have to continue doing the testing as per above on a regular basis until there is a balance in the Nitrogen Cycle.

    Regards,
    Shukri
    In Koianswers Forum, no one individual is above the rest. This is the Forum for the Koi Community.
    Post edited by andy at 2010-10-04 11:42:45 am
  • AndySittAndySitt October 2010
    Posts: 560
    This was a version by veteran Paul Hooi when he revamped his pond.

    1. Handover Date.
    2. Water filled to full, all pumps running and all filter media added in.
    3. Air blowers not switched on.
    4. Chillers switched on to test.
    5. Observe water level to see if there is any leakage.

    T+2days
    1. Drain the entire pond and rinse the fiberglass walls and bottom with clean water, then refill
    2. Air blowers will be switched on to start oxygenating the water.
    3. Chillers set to 26C and switched on.
    4. Add Refresh powder.
    5. Start flushing to clear the drainage pipes after confirming no leak in the pond over 1st 2 days.

    T+3days
    1. Salt pond to 0.3%.
    2. Anti-chlorine/anti-chloramine solution added for entire pond volume.
    3. Ensure the temporary housing pond has same salt level of 0.3%.
    4. Continue flushing.
    5. Switch on UV lights.

    T+5days
    1. Fish return to pond.
    2. Continue flushing.

    T+8*days
    1. Start feeding moderately twice a day.
    2. Reduce chiller's set temperature by 1C per day until 23C is achieved.
    3. Continue flushing.

    T+9days
    1. Add Aquazyn 1000 (bacteria culture) 1g/ton

    Note that ponds which are not fiberglass cannot follow this programmed as more time would be needed to leach the concrete/cement. Maybe a week more. Also, time is needed to "season" new J-mats if these are being used.
  • StevieStevie October 2010
    Posts: 323
    Hi Shukri,

    What is the PH of a new cement/concrete (pond)?

    In theory, if we try to neutralise a new cement with acid base substances (like banana trunk or what ever that is acidic) it weaken the cement? I am not sure but I am sure acid can eat into cement old or new.

    Cement concrete takes 28 days to dry (for most of the water to be evaporated unless the thickness is in meters) and the chemical reaction continues slowly for 10 years and the concrete get harder and harder.

    I suggest it is best to leave the new concrete alone submerge in water for a month. As we are too eager to put fish in once the pond is constructed I suggest for bare concrete pond apply a coat or two coats of acrylic paint after a month to seal the concrete away from pond water. Acrylic paint is so easy to apply just like painting walls. The 2nd coat can be applied in 30 minutes from 1st coat. It takes 24 hours to be completely dry and hard. Then we can introduce our beloved koi or guinea pig if still worry. Never apply the acrylic paint on both sides of the walls. It sealed the water in. That sounds troble.
  • lautslauts October 2010
    Posts: 1,248
    Stevie,

    Instead of acrylic paint which would likely peel when it reacts with the alkaline base of new cement, better option is use cement base waterproofing like Brushbond. With this and a soak of vinegar acid , pond is ready in a week. No need to banana trunk ( you mean pineapple skin?) and one month soaking :)

    rgd
    ts
  • StevieStevie October 2010
    Posts: 323
    I thought Shukri said banana trunk? How about coconut hust or shell? We got plenty and it is free excecpt for transportation.
  • koikitkoikit October 2010
    Posts: 120
    I use coconut husk... Quiet good n cheap
  • StevieStevie October 2010
    Posts: 323
    The young husk not the old one right?. you can carry it with your car. Banana trunk you got to have van and it leaks juices, stain and messy but faster?
  • ShukriShukri October 2010
    Posts: 4,881
    Stevie, good stuff are always leaking, messy, wet, oily and sometimes good aroma.......
    In Koianswers Forum, no one individual is above the rest. This is the Forum for the Koi Community.
  • StevieStevie October 2010
    Posts: 323
    Hahahah you like banana don't you! I can never use pinapples we will eat it instead.
  • lautslauts October 2010
    Posts: 1,248
    Eat the pineapple skin as well? No need then throw into pond. Forget all those coconut, banana, pineapple, use light acid like vinegar . Keep adding daily until to see the pH stablize, then change water and monitor pH . Can try with some tester kois , kau tim. No need to clean up smelly pond thereafter.

    rgd
    ts
  • AndySittAndySitt October 2010
    Posts: 560
    well few bottles of ph up will settle the problem. I think it's rm8 each from Atari. no smell, no color and fish friendly ... I used just 1 bottle for my 10 ton pond and it's done.. best of all no cleaning required and can be added after fish goes in..
  • StevieStevie October 2010
    Posts: 323
    Artificial vinegar RM2 per bottle (270ml). But smell vinegar la the whole compound.

    If only 1 bottle is enough then use ph up, safe water.
  • ShukriShukri October 2010
    Posts: 4,881
    Stevie, how many oso can ma...........after a few days, you drain the water. The smell will go away rather quickly.........
    In Koianswers Forum, no one individual is above the rest. This is the Forum for the Koi Community.
  • koikitkoikit October 2010
    Posts: 120
  • ShukriShukri October 2010
    Posts: 4,881
    I was told that old coconut husks are good too, but never had a chance to try them.
    In Koianswers Forum, no one individual is above the rest. This is the Forum for the Koi Community.
  • koikitkoikit October 2010
    Posts: 120
    just abit dusty from the husk after soak for sometime, usually water turn to brown after a few days...
    i can get here for free sometime when the people who throw them coz they only need the meat inside coconut for 'santan' or coconut milk..
  • StevieStevie October 2010
    Posts: 323
    Can get it anywhere in Klang Valley roadside from those selling coconut joice usually cut into half.
  • ltayltay March 2011
    Posts: 1
    hi all, may i seek your experienced advices? I am a first-timer in koi and just had a new concrete pond. for 2-3 weeks I have soaked the pond and PH was monitored daily @ 8.4 -8.5. is it advisable to start putting the koi in?
  • JoshuaChinJoshuaChin March 2011
    Posts: 371
    i would suggest u change the whole pond water 1st before u introduce koi into the pond :) just sharing my experience
  • WanWan January 2014
    Posts: 16
    I am experiencing nitrite spike now (5 ppm) for the last 4 days. In your experiences how long does it last ? I have done salt and two times daily of water change but to no avail.
    Appreciate your comments and suggestions on this. Are there any chemicals that I can use to counter this?
  • ikankoikauikankoikau January 2014
    Posts: 1,053
    Hi Wan.
    Many factors involved to stabilize a pond. To name some, feeding rate, amount of water change, filtration system, no of koi, pond/filter size and last but not least the method applied in maturing the pond. Some pond took more than 6 weeks and some even less than 2 weeks.

    To indicate a progress, nitrate NO3 should increase. It will come a time when NO3 keep on incresing while nitrite is decreasing. Ammonia should be zero by this time. Your pond will be mature once Ammonia and nitrite are zero. Nitrate will always present.

    If your pond ammonia is zero and your pond salinity is around 0.3% with partial water change daily, it should be fine. Hang on there bro. Increase partial water change to 15-20% daily will be a good idea to dilute Ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pheromone.

    Regards
  • ikankoikauikankoikau January 2014
    Posts: 1,053
    Hi Wan.
    Many factors involved to stabilize a pond. To name some, feeding rate, amount of water change, filtration system, no of koi, pond/filter size and last but not least the method applied in maturing the pond. Some pond took more than 6 weeks and some even less than 2 weeks.

    To indicate a progress, nitrate NO3 should increase. It will come a time when NO3 keep on incresing while nitrite is decreasing. Ammonia should be zero by this time. Your pond will be mature once Ammonia and nitrite are zero. Nitrate will always present.

    If your pond ammonia is zero and your pond salinity is around 0.3% with partial water change daily, it should be fine. Hang on there bro. Increase partial water change to 15-20% daily will be a good idea to dilute Ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pheromone.

    Regards
  • MfwleeMfwlee January 2014
    Posts: 355
    " well few bottles of ph up will settle the problem. I think it's rm8 each from Atari. no smell, no color and fish friendly ... I used just 1 bottle for my 10 ton pond and it's done.. best of all no cleaning required and can be added after fish goes in.. "

    Yes, I also bought the pond seasoning chemicals from Andrew - but I bought enough to season the pond in a few weeks where I then emptied the pond, washed the sides, then I refilled with fresh dechlorinated water. My fish went in only when I was satisfied that I had achieved stability of ph.
    Never do your pond seasoning with fish inside - this is very dangerous as you try to balance the leaching effect of the cement with chemicals. Any mistakes can be disastrous, and even if you are lucky, koi do not do well if the ph keeps on bouncing around.
    Better to complete your seasoning first like what is being advised. :)
    Mike Lee


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