You have probably heard the phrase “Location, location, location”, often quoted by real estate agents.
In the Koi world, we say “Quarantine, quarantine, quarantine.” This should be rule #1, but it is often the most overlooked by koi owners. We want to stress the importance of good quarantine skills and will be covering how to setup your koi quarantining tank. We we’ll cover these essential koi quarantine questions:
• Why do I need to quarantine Koi?
In short, the purposes of quarantining are to:
1. protect your current Koi in the main pond
2. nurse any new Koi that has traveled overnight back to full health before it gets put into your main pond
3. Separate any sick koi from the heard so that the others don’t become sick.
• What might happen if I do not quarantine?
It is critical to quarantine any new Koi from your pond because the newly purchased Koi may carry parasites, bacteria, fungi, or viruses. All it takes is to overlook 1 unhatched egg of a parasite, which is microscopic. You do not want it to break out in your
main pond and make all of your other Koi sick. If it hatches in your main pond, the other Koi will start scratching themselves. If you don’t catch the symptoms early enough, it may get too late to react, it will worsen into a secondary bacterial infection from the scratching. And this new infection will spread to other Koi.
Whether a secondary infection or not, once infections spread, not only will it be more difficult to treat, but it may also damage your Koi’s beauty. The worst is if a Koi should happen to carry KHV (Koi Herpes Virus), you might potentially lose your whole collection of Koi.
• How do I setup a koi quarantine tank?
- Set up a holding tank of at least 100 gallons, anything less than that can cause the water parameters (Ammonia
& Nitrite) to change very quickly,
- Use an Air pump and Air stone for Oxygen (remember the importance of O2 from our last meeting)
- Use A Filter (its better if it can be pre-cycled by adding Ammonia to the tank before the koi’s arrival).
• What are important tips for koi quarantine procedures?
1. Check water parameters constantly
Quarantine tanks are usually much smaller than your regular ponds and therefore water parameters can change very quickly, especially if you use a temporary version with no filter. It is recommended that you feed very little or no food at all. Feeding will increase ammonia and nitrite level and you will be forced to change water very often.
2. Manage water temperature
Keeping water temperature warm is another important quarantine tip.
Your Koi’s immune system works the best when water is over 70° F. At this temperature, they can more quickly recover from stress and exhaustion of the journey to a new environment. It is also important because the most dangerous disease in Koi hobby, KHV (Koi Herpes Virus), appears only in warm water temperatures. And it takes about 2 weeks to break out if there is any.
3. Add a small Koi from your pond
If a new Koi carries any bugs, it could affect your existing Koi. Or vice versa. Koi in your pond may carry something but are already immune to it. So, you will see this any problems play out in the quarantine tank. Koi are social animal. They always do better when they have a companion with them. It will help the new Koi adapt and keep stress levels down.
• What is the Procedure to Quarantine a Koi in a Holding Tank?
• Clove Oil- Used for Sedation of koi 1214 drops per gallon of water. 30 drops to Euthanize a koi.
• Salt- Use 0.3% for Quarantine and 0.6% for sick fish. 3lb/100 gal =.03% 6lb/ 100 gal = .06%. Use a Salt Meter. It takes a very long time to remove salt from a pond though water changes. Salt helps the koi breathe easier during times of stress and sickness. It is also a mild irritant and should not be used for a prolonged period of time.
• Elbagin Used to Reduce Stress after shipping and as an AntiBacterial. Should be used in combination with salt. 4 grams every 100 Gallon.
• Oxolinic Acid Used as a Powerful Bacterial infection fighter when the koi has an Ulcer. Best used as a DIP as it will wipe out all good bacteria in pond. Use 1Gram per 10 Gallons of water and dip for 1 hour every day for 5 days (with an air stone). Good to use when injections are not possible.
• Potassium Permanganate ( PP ) – Controls Algae, Organic build up and Parasites (flukes , ich, costia, cotton mouth, fungus and many types of bacteria) Must be used with Extra Oxygen. THIS IS HIGHLY TOXIC. You must know your Exact Gallonage of the pond. Use 7.5 Grams Per 1000 Gallons (2ppm). For tough Parasites you can go up to 4ppm (15 gram). Best to use early morning before the hot sun or when cloudy. Mix it in a bucket and pour slowly around the pond. Never throw the PP crystals directly into the pond. Let it sit until the purple color turns brown (about 90120 min) and then Neutralize it using Hydrogen Peroxide at 1 Quart (32 oz) Per 1000 Gallons. Use 3 days in a row. DON’T USE a Dechlorinator in the past 2 days, it will neutralize the affects. Bipass your bio filter if at all possible. If fish look stressed, then neutralize right away. Do not use just after using other O2 consuming chemicals. Use 20ppm as a Sterilization for new plants before putting them into the pond. Salt Below 0.6% is ok. Any pond temp below 82 degrees is ok.
• Chloramine T - Used as a Pond Wide treatment for Bacterial Infections, ulcers, Fin and Tail Rot and Gill Di sease, Fungus. Use in Water temps above 54 degrees and a KH over 6 and a PH above 7.2. salt below .06%
To treat bacterial infections: 15g per 1000 gallons (4546 litres). Add daily for 3 days. To treat parasitic infections: 20g per 1000 gallons. Add daily for 4 days. best used in Late Afternoon. NO UV light. Do a 25% water change 5days after last treatment and use Declor. Don’t use Declor before or during treatment.
• Broad S pectrum Disease treatment (AKA BSD) AKA FMG (Formaldehyde and malachite green) BSD is formulated to treat and control fish diseases caused by Ich, Chilodonella, Costia, Oodinium, Trichodina and fungal infections. It is intended to be used for all kinds of ornamental pond fish. Before adding the treatment, change at least 25 percent of the water. Add 3.5 fluid ounces of BSDT for every 1,000 gallons of water to be treated. The treatment should be repeated daily for 3 days, with at least a 25 percent water change in between each treatment. On the last day add a fluke treatment and let it sit for 7 days. In tough cases, depending on the response of the fish, the treatment may be repeated every 12 hours. This treatment is not to be used with salt over 0.15 percent salinity.
• FLUKE Treatments Fluke M, Praziquantel, Fluke Solve Used to kill body and gill fluke. This treatment is safe to use without destroying the bacteria in the filter and can be used at any temperature but best over 60 degrees. If the mucus layer is excessive, we advise dosing with Chloramine T at 15g per 1000 gallons, 24 hours before using a Fluke Treatment, this will assist in reducing the mucus membrane where body flukes can sometimes get trapped. Use Fluke Treatments as suggested on each package. It is Suggested to use a Fluke Treatment on the last day of BSD treatment and let it sit for 7 days, then Redose after 7 days to kill the eggs.
• Dimilin powder- treatment for fish lice and anchor worms in Koi. It can also work great to destroy mosquito and midges that hatch in the pond and filters. treat at a dose rate of 4 grams of Dimilin per 1000 gallons of water for four days. It will destroy all stages of these bugs in four days! This is a 1PPM dose rate. After 4 days do a 25% 50% water change when complete. Usually only one treatment will do the job, but sometimes a second treatment one week later is called for for heavy infestations of lice and anchor worms.
• Tricide Neo- This is an Antibiotic and used when injections can't be used. It is the most effective remedy for bacterial infections like ulcer disease, fin rot, tail rot and mouth rot in pond fish. Best used on a Q-tip, mix with the koi’s mucus and rubbed into the wound. It can also be used as a Dip or in a spray bottle and sprayed.