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Recommend litres & pond plan

Joined
12 Jul 2021
Messages
33
Location
Bristol
Hi everybody considering building a raised pond but a bit out of depth here no pun intended 😅. I want to potentially get two butterfly koi. The pound filter being gravity fed fingers crossed with a pontential solar pump with battery back up kit (if I can find one) the pond itself having a overflow waste system to the drain and and auto top up with a water butt. I was potentially going to go with 3ft length x 3ft wide x 4 maybe 5 feet deep. But after going on all pond solutions website they advised the that I would want 10 square feet per koi. Which if I'm correct in thinking will make my original pond plan a bit harder
 

zozo

Member
Joined
16 Apr 2015
Messages
8,323
Location
Netherlands
You can forget about solar power as a constant power supply, most batteries won't make it through the night. Or you need quite a large installation that will exceed in installing costs and takes decades to break even.

Koi are very beautiful fish, but they are real carp and can grow up to 4 feet and over 30 pounds in weight. They can outlive a human in age. :)
This also makes them extremely hungry and actually rather dirty fish, aquatic plants are about impossible to keep with koi, they will eat and or destroy them. This all requires a massive and well-maintained filtering system to keep the water quality pristine. Next to this, because koi are cultivars they are a tad more susceptible to diseases etc. compared to their natural living counterparts. Cultivars have a significantly less natural resistance to infections because they come from well-maintained farms. Buying and keeping koi is a rather expensive hobby, especially when there are health problems, you would need a vet.

With your planned dimensions I would rather go with Goldfish, also a carp species but smaller and less demanding... These also come in many fancy varieties and also can live up to 30 years old and grow up to 40 cm in size.

You might want to read in Fred's new pond thread... Unfortunately, Fred is no longer among us. But he was a very knowledgeable Koi keeper. His thread contains loads of valuable information about it.
 
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Mrs S.Shrimply

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Thread starter
Joined
12 Jul 2021
Messages
33
Location
Bristol
You can forget about solar power as a constant power supply, most batteries won't make it through the night. Or you need quite a large installation that will exceed in installing costs and takes decades to break even.

Koi are very beautiful fish, but they are real carp and can grow up to 4 feet and over 30 pounds in weight. They can outlive a human in age. :)
This also makes them extremely hungry and actually rather dirty fish, aquatic plants are about impossible to keep with koi, they will eat and or destroy them. This all requires a massive and well-maintained filtering system to keep the water quality pristine. Next to this, because koi are cultivars they are a tad more susceptible to diseases etc. compared to their natural living counterparts. Cultivars have a significantly less natural resistance to infections because they come from well-maintained farms. Buying and keeping koi is a rather expensive hobby, especially when there are health problems, you would need a vet.

With your planned dimensions I would rather go with Goldfish, also a carp species but smaller and less demanding... These also come in many fancy varieties and also can live up to 30 years old and grow up to 40 cm in size.

You might want to read in Fred's new pond thread... Unfortunately, Fred is no longer among us. But he was a very knowledgeable Koi keeper. His thread contains loads of valuable information about it.
Thank you for your feedback on this I was contemplating going for gold fish if the above is not feasible and safety of fish always comes first with me. I will still read Freds journal as I find koi very intriguing but taking all things into consideration Bristol Shubunkin will now be my focus I think reading up about they seem more hardy, easy to care for & and I can have a much smaller pond. A shame about the solar pump systems given Especially on a smaller pond would of thought that technology has come a long way since.
 

zozo

Member
Joined
16 Apr 2015
Messages
8,323
Location
Netherlands
If you like to save on the energy bill have a look at the David Pagan Butler Youtube channel. He explains how to implement an Under gravel airlift filter for planted ponds. This is an extremely sufficient and maintenance-free filtering method. It's actually a large version of the under gravel filters used in aquariums suitable for ponds, the functional principle is exactly the same... They are very easy to DIY and very cost-effective to run with a simple low wattage air pump.

And you might have a laugh as well, he's a funny guy.

It is about swimming pools, but you can size it down to your own needs to fit the dimensions of your pond.
 
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martin-green

Member
Joined
8 Aug 2011
Messages
247
Hello, not sure if you already know, but just adding to what zozo said, a fish pond also needs a filter, the "all in one" filters are a waste of money and they have high failure rate. So you would be better off with an external filter. The pond water should flow through the filter at least once every six hours (24 hours a day) Using your 3x3x4 pond as an example, your pond can hold around 1,200 litres. So to move 12,000 litres every 6 hours you are going to need a pump that can pump at least 200 litres/hour. There is no solar pump that can achieve that* also what happens when there is no sunshine? If your answer was going to be batteries, my question would have to be, but what charges the batteries? It can't be the solar panel that is running the pump because there is not enough sunshine to run the pump.

Technology has come a long way, but not far enough, *it can be done with solar panels and a solar pump but you would be looking at around £5k (Enough solar panels, inverter, batteries)

I thought you may also like to see

Good luck with your pond, any questions please ask first, it can save a lot of heartache and money, one of will be able to help.
 

Mrs S.Shrimply

Member
Thread starter
Joined
12 Jul 2021
Messages
33
Location
Bristol
If you like to save on the energy bill have a look at the David Pagan Butler Youtube channel. He explains how to implement an Under gravel airlift filter for planted ponds. This is an extremely sufficient and maintenance-free filtering method. It's actually a large version of the under gravel filters used in aquariums suitable for ponds, the functional principle is exactly the same... They are very easy to DIY and very cost-effective to run with a simple low wattage air pump.

And you might have a laugh as well, he's a funny guy.

It is about swimming pools, but you can size it down to your own needs to fit the dimensions of your pond.

He is actually quite funny 😄 especially towards the end. Thanks for showing me this you guys have been so helpful on thus forum since I joined I will keep a close eye on this.
 

Mrs S.Shrimply

Member
Thread starter
Joined
12 Jul 2021
Messages
33
Location
Bristol
Hello, not sure if you already know, but just adding to what zozo said, a fish pond also needs a filter, the "all in one" filters are a waste of money and they have high failure rate. So you would be better off with an external filter. The pond water should flow through the filter at least once every six hours (24 hours a day) Using your 3x3x4 pond as an example, your pond can hold around 1,200 litres. So to move 12,000 litres every 6 hours you are going to need a pump that can pump at least 200 litres/hour. There is no solar pump that can achieve that* also what happens when there is no sunshine? If your answer was going to be batteries, my question would have to be, but what charges the batteries? It can't be the solar panel that is running the pump because there is not enough sunshine to run the pump.

Technology has come a long way, but not far enough, *it can be done with solar panels and a solar pump but you would be looking at around £5k (Enough solar panels, inverter, batteries)

I thought you may also like to see

Good luck with your pond, any questions please ask first, it can save a lot of heartache and money, one of will be able to help.

After consideration of the care needed for koi & the potential pond size needed I think I will resort to plan B and consider Bristol Shubunkin (gold fish) which share the same resemblance as koi & a bit more is a bit more easy to care for. In turn with this I can go down half the size in litres to cater for 400 - 600 litres just a rough estimate. The theory behind the solar panels is mainly because I don't have a plug outside but you are right with lph needed is unfeasible unless you are willing to in the region of 5k.
 
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