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The Goldfish Gazette, Issue #016 -- Goldfish Pond Maintenance
April 28, 2015

Goldfish Care Tips and Guidelines

A Free Monthly Resource For Goldfish Enthusiasts
April 2015
Issue #016

In this issue
Goldfish Pond Maintenance
What's new on the Website

Think of a Goldfish pond as just a large outdoor aquarium. The same rules regarding maintenance apply to both, but ponds are more affected by seasonal changes than an aquarium.

Goldfish Pond Maintenance

I don't know anyone who enjoys maintaining an aquarium, but I'll bet even fewer enjoy having to completely strip down their goldfish pond.

Everything is on a larger scale, water volume, size and number of fish. It all makes the job that much harder.

If you have read my web page Goldfish Ponds I emphasize the importance of pond location and how it affects the amount of maintenance your pond will need.

Location will also affect how easy it will be to clean your pond. As an example, if your pond is low lying, the water may have to be pumped out instead of being able to use a siphon.

Best Season To Clean a Pond

I find autumn is the best time to clean my ponds, but if you need to clean your pond at another time each season has advantages and disadvantages.

Winter: Your fish are at their most inactive state during winter. They are eating little or have stopped feeding altogether. They are using fat reserves built up during autumn.

If you disturb them, they are going to use up precious fat reserves. This could affect spawning in the spring or in extreme cases lead to death. Fish will often survive the winter, but come spring they start to have health problems.

Summer: The high temperatures, or more importantly, the strong sunlight puts fish at higher risk when they are placed in small temporary containers. Aeration should always be provided.

Strong sunlight also quickly dries out water plants and any algae attached to the pond walls. This can cause an ammonia spike several days later from rotting vegetation.

Spring: Spring does avoid the temperature extremes of winter and summer, but if you are planning on breeding your Goldfish, a change of water could be enough to trigger an early spawning you aren't prepared for.

Autumn: I find autumn is an ideal time to clean out ponds because temperatures are mild, the parent fish have stopped breeding and it prepares the ponds for winter by removing any build-up of dead or waste matter in the bottom of the pond that could cause an ammonia build up.

Goldfish In Temporary Containers

One of the riskiest parts of cleaning a pond is ensuring your fish are safe while they are out of the pond.

Pond fish are usually larger than aquarium fish and require extra care when kept in confined spaces.
I always ensure they have aeration, are out of direct sunlight and are covered. Single tailed fish will jump if stressed, and a cover also provides protection from other curious family pets.

Check them often!

Substrates and Planting In Pots

The first time you have to clean out a pond with substrate (sand or gravel in the bottom) it is usually the last.

I don't put substrate in any of my ponds, and any plants are planted in pots or baskets. This makes the job so much quicker.

Test The Water

Make sure the pH readings of the existing pond water and the new water are close before re-introducing the fish to their pond. Pond water over time can become quite acidic or alkaline if it isn't being refreshed with rain water.

To read more on how to set up a pond to make maintenance easier click here...

What's New On The Website

Swim Bladder disease

I have added a new page on swim bladder disorders.

I cover the topic somewhat under the indigestion/constipation page, but this page covers all the possible causes, not the most likely, which is poor quality food and/or a lack of live food.

Comments? Ideas? Feedback? I'd love to hear from you. Just reply to this e-zine and tell me what you think, or what topics you want covered.

Next Month's Topic

How long do Goldfish live?

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