Water temperatures start to decrease in the fall, and that change to cold temperatures start to slow down your pond fishes’ digestive processes. Koi and other pond fish have a hard time digesting protein when it’s cold – water temperatures below 50°F. Undigested food may cause infection and can lead to other health issues resulting in death during the winter, or in the spring when their metabolism speeds up.
To avoid this from happening, keep an eye on your pond thermometer, periodically checking your water temperature to make sure you are on the proper feeding schedule.
Preparing your Koi and Pond Fish for Winter:
Once temperatures are consistently between 50°F and 70°F, switch to a Cold Weather (Wheat Germ based) Fish Food and begin feeding your pond fish less. Wheat Germ is easier for koi to digest. When your pond temperature drops below 50°F, stop feeding them entirely.
**Koi & other pond fish become dormant during the cold winter months.**
Reasons why it is important to stop feeding your koi when pond water temperatures drop below 50°F:
Your koi’s metabolism starts to slow down when pond water temperatures reach below 50° and they simply can NOT digest the fish food anymore. Koi do not have a stomach; they have a long intestinal tract where the fish food would stay and rot. This could cause death to your beloved koi and pond fish in the spring.
If you feed your pond fish and koi when your pond water is below 50°F; it will cause the ammonia levels to rise which would be deadly to your pond fish.
So, DO NOT feed your pond fish or koi, any type of food, when your pond water temperatures fall below 50°F.
Taking care of your koi and pond fish during the winter months help to ensure a healthy life for them into the spring and years to come.
REMEMBER; Once you have stopped feeding for the fall/winter season, it is very important that you DO NOT feed your koi - even if the temperature rises for a few days. It is crucial to wait for that consistently warm weather in the Spring when water temperatures are above 50°Fahrenheit. Consistency is always key.
Be sure to contact Hoffman's Water X Scapes for all of your pond and water features needs. Did we mention that we carry our pond products online? That's including our Seasonal Pond Supplies and Pond Fish Care Accessories as well as many other quality pond and lake supplies.
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