Moving a Goldfish To a Lake
(Fairfax County, Va.)
I have a small prefab outdoor pond that one of the four goldfish in that pond has outgrown.
He is 10" long & quite fat. The pond is only a couple of feet deep & is a 3x5 foot oval.
He was originally only 4" long & slim.
He is fed pond food pellets almost every day except in winter when he hibernates, He has survived 3 winters.
I was planning to put him in the lake once the warm spring days arrive.
Can I put him in a nearby lake, will he be able to survive on his own ?
I've not made comment on this subject before, but two submissions have asked exactly the same question.
The important question to be answered is not can the fish survive, but what damage will he do in a natural environment if he does survive?
Lakes and slow running rivers are the natural habitat of Goldfish. A 10" Goldfish is a large fish, and there wouldn't be many natural predators that would attack him.
I suspect your "he" is a "she" from the description. At that size she would produce around 5,000 eggs or more. If there are any other Goldfish in the lake, she would add massively to the problem.
Apart from the damage Goldfish and carp do generally to natural flora and fauna, I suspect it will be illegal to release a pest species into a natural waterway as is the case in most countries.
I applaud your concerns about over-crowding and agree that removing the largest fish will ease the problem, but I suggest an advert on eBay, Facebook or similar would help save the environment and ensure the fish went to a deserving new owner.