Q: The long, cold winter in the South has been hard on my koi pond this year. I always kept the pump running all year and I guess that was wrong. I lost most of my koi fish due to hypothermia, I’m told. Is this possible? My pond is 4’ by 8’ and about 24” deep and above ground.
A: Yes, unfortunately, this is possible. Simply stated the water got too cold for the fish. Plus, based on the dimensions of your pond and the severe cold weather your area has received it makes sense.
It's usually best to house pond fish in a pond that contains a large amount of water and is at least 9 feet deep. The reason for this is that a larger area of water is able to maintain a higher temperature for a longer period of time than a smaller body of water. Also water at the bottom of a deep pond, because it is usually a bit warmer, serves as a refuge for the fish.
One solution would be to house the fish in a larger pond, but the simple solution to this problem is to install a pond heater. Pond heaters can be easily found a most major pet stores.
- Answer from Tropical Fish Aficionado, a tropical fish expert on JustAnswer
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