The epitome of anything zen just has to be a large pond with prosperous looking Koi fish swimming about. They make excellent pets but what you’ll definitely need is enough space and money for the upkeep of these beautiful fish. Read on to find out more about how to care for your Koi fish, the different variants of fish as well as what food to feed your Koi fish.
All about Koi fish care
While expensive, when taken care of properly, Koi fish can live for up to 30 years which make them hardy fishes compared to other types. The first thing that you should take note of is that they require ample amounts of space to fully thrive. While they’re pretty independent, it is important that their habitat is always kept at a stable condition with an appropriate filtration system. An ideal pond should be at least 3 feet deep and have steep edges to prevent predators from snatching the fish up. It is also advised as a guide to have your pond filled with 500 to 1,000 gallons of water per adult Koi, they can grow to be really big! Another important factor is that your pond MUST have a proper filtration system. This is to ensure that any fish waste is properly removed from the pond environment before it harms the fish.
As for environments, while smaller Koi fish are able to survive in proper filtered indoor aquariums. They will indeed grow quickly which is why most of them are kept in large outdoor ponds which you can decorate to your liking to create a perfect, zen environment for you to peacefully look at the fish swim around. It is also important to keep your pond area well shaded as Koi fish are sensitive to direct sunlight and may even suffer from sunburn!
Unlike other fish, while beautiful and delicate looking, Koi fishes require minimal maintenance. Depending on your quality of filtration system, you will need to check on a and clean the filter whenever required to. Expensive filters require less cleaning while cheaper ones may need more frequent maintenance. Koi fish can eat almost anything and usually require feeding twice a day. It’s best to give them sufficient food that they can finish within five minutes to prevent obesity or a clogged filter. Besides that, Koi fish can usually care for themselves so they require minimal manhandling. In fact, removing them from their ponds can often lead to stress and further complications. Just keep their environment clean and feed them twice a day and you’re good to go! Even when not fed for a few days Koi fish can survive on eating algae off the pond’s rocks and surfaces which makes them ideal pets for frequent travelers. But still, make sure to feed them nutritious food when you’re able to.
Koi fish food
If you happen to notice, there are plenty of fish food in the market especially catered for Koi fish. While this type of fish can generally eat about anything, They’re an omnivorous fish and thus can eat anything from fruits, bread, snails, insects and algae. However, to keep them healthy and to encourage their growth, it’s best to invest in specially formulated food that meets their nutritional needs. You can consult with your Koi breeder or your local pet store for recommended Koi fish food according to your Koi fish type, weight and size. Generally, fish food are made to float on the surface which will cause your fish to breach the surface to nibble on the pellets, it’s really a beautiful sight to behold if you have more than one fish.
The unique thing about owning Koi is that they are highly intelligent fish and can recognize the humans that feed them. So be prepared to see them breaching the surface the moment you approach the pond during their feeding time. Another cool thing about them is that with enough practice, they can even be trained to be hand fed! Just watch out for your fingers. As mentioned before, Koi fish are especially hardy and can go a day or two surviving on algae or surrounding insects, but definitely don’t use this as an excuse to skip out on feeding time. They require their fish food for nutritional balance to rule out obesity or any other health complications that can occur over time.
Koi Fish Types
The Koi fish generally belong to the Carp family and there are about more than 100 types of Koi fish that come in a variety of different hues, but they all belong to the same species. The standard color for Koi fish is the vibrant red and white patterned hue, however they do come in many other variants. The following are some of the more common types of Koi fish.
Kohaku, can be considered your staple Koi fish with its iconic red and white speckled scales. This is the most common and frequently found variant.
Bekko is a type of Koi that is most noted for it’s black ink-like markings speckled across its body. This type comes in red, white and yellow.
Butterfly/Hirenaga Koi are known for their elongated and elegant fins that appear delicate and almost transparent. They come in a variety of hues and patterns from gold, silver, red, and many more.
Yamabuki Ogon are gold metallic hued Koi that almost appear as if they are glowing in the pond. They are known to represent wealth and prosperity and will surely bring good luck to their owners.
So there you have it, owning a Koi fish is truly a unique experience that goes beyond serving as an ornamental purpose for your front yard. They remain as hardy and lovable pets too that will serve to be worthwhile long-term companions. Take the chance now and fall in love with Koi!