Mike’s Fish Tank – Healthy Pond for Spring

Posted by  //  October 18, 2013  //  Articles, Mike's Fish Tank

Important steps to provide a healthy spring for your pond. Getting your pond ready for winter really begins in the fall. Water temperature,  rather than air temperature, is the important indicator of when it’s best to make changes to your pond. To prepare your fish and pond for a  healthy spring, the first tool you will need is a thermometer. Tie a string to one end of the thermometer, then tie the other end of the string to a rock on the side of the pond for easy retrieval.

When the water temperature in the pond decreases to the lower 70s (°F), it’s a good time to switch your fish food to a wheat germ base that is more easily digested. As the temperatures cool, it is harder for fish to digest food properly. Even though your fish need to bulk up for winter, be careful not to overfeed. You can feed 2-3 times a day what they’ll eat in 5 minutes or less, then remove any excess food. Once the water temperature falls to 50°F, the bacteria in a fish’s digestive system are no longer able to process food efficiently. Switch to a wheat germ food and stop feeding when the temperature reaches 40°F.

Do you Need a Heater? In cooler climates leave the netting on until the pond surface starts to freeze over. Then when you remove the net, you can set in the heater. A pond heater does not actually heat the pond but instead keeps its immediate area from freezing. This allows for toxic  gasses to be released and oxygen to enter the pond. In warmer climates where ponds don’t freeze over, the pumps and aerators need to continue running year round.

Pump Care tip: When it gets below 40°F then the main pump can be removed, and filters thoroughly cleaned.

Do not leave the pump running on the bottom of the pond. It will lower the temperature of the entire pond too low for fish to survive and can force them to use up all their stored fat just trying to stay still. All your efforts will pay off in the spring with a healthier pond and healthier fish.

Just because it seems like the pond will be “sleeping” for a while, doesn’t mean it will look ugly. A frozen pond can be very beautiful, especially if you installed underwater lighting. The effect is awesome!

Pets A Plenty is located in the Blockbuster Video Plaza, Rte 281 Cortland, 753-9213. Open 7 days a week. We now have a website. www.petsaplety.biz. check it out. I post care sheets, coupons, new animal arrivals, contests and more. Any questions, email me at friskyy@hotmail.com

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