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crooked fish

Decatur, GA

This koi has developed what appears to be a curve in his spine over the past 2 -3 years. He is around 8 yrs old. As a male do you think he can spawn? He eats swims and otherwise seems normal. The bend does seem to be progressive.
Thanks for any input/thoughts.
Helen

Thumbnail by helenchild
(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

According to Erik L. Johnson, D.V.M, the twisted condition of the fish you show is scoliosis, which is non infectious. The most common cause if Vitamin C deficiency. There are four other causes:

Tryptophas deficiency: an amino acid protien building block that may be absent in foods due to improper formulation, hyper-extended storage, excess heat in processing or because no variation was permitted in the diet. To avoid this, always use two different hight quality staple diets and supplement periodically with earthworms or other bait worms. Mealworms and crickets may also be accepted.

Trauma: The muscles of Koi and other teleost fish are assorted in banks called 'somites.' When a somite is damaged, by Intra Muscular injection technique, for example, or a sharp blow, the somite may die, which then shrinks and kinks the fish especially when swimming. It may straighten at rest.

Organophosphates, like Fenthion, Trichlorfon or Malathion to name a few can cause kinking of the body due to hyper contraction of the muscles.

Electrocution

Vitamin C deficiences may be avoided by feeding a varied diet to include the following greens: Spinach, Turnip greens, Broccoli heads and Dark leaf lettuce. NOT PLAIN LETTUCE!! Additionally store no food longer than90 days and be sure the label has added ASCORBIC acid. Once scoliosis is noted, the fish is better removed to fresh water and better attention to diet is adivised. As a side note, the biggest, fastest growing fish are most likely to kink as they need the most Vitamin C and calcium in their diet to support their rapid growth.

All the above is quoted from Dr. Johnson's book "Koi Health and Disease"

This message was edited Apr 9, 2013 10:09 AM

Athens, PA

Sounds like if you make sure your koi eat their veggies, they should grow up big and strong! ^_^

Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

This morning I fed my koi a bag of frozen green peas! (defrosted of course) They love them and it gives them vitamin C.

Decatur, GA

Thanks for the info. I do feed them the same food. Varying the diet is probably a good suggestion. But this is the only fish with the problem so I am thinking more of a congenital type problem ie scoliosis.
Luckily he is functioning normally and will eat out of my hand! I will have to see if he spawns okay.

Athens, PA

I have one that is a bit twisted at the neck - he isn't really bad and I think I must have bought him that way. He was so small when I bought him- perhaps 3" about 6-7 years ago. None of the rest of my fish have any types of curvatures and they all eat the same food. I had always thought perhaps it was either a congenital problem or maybe when he was just a fry, there had been damage and that was he healed. He has no problem in the area of spawning.

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Oberon:
Thanks for all the info. Will add greens to my fish's diet. Green peas sounds good.

Bonnie

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

That doctor is supposed to be Mr. Koi as far as fish go. Well, probably any fish for that matter. But I agree with Carolyn. "If it ain't broke.." On the other hand, didn't you say Carolyn, that you feed your fish peas and such. That would give them the green stuff they need.

Athens, PA

MM said that about the frozen peas. I had read that before and tried it myself - my fish wouldn't eat them. They will however eat Fruit Loops - go figure.

Decatur, GA

I have tried to feed my fish fresh zucchini but they weren't too interested. I will try the peas sometimes. My pond has algae and I do feed small floating water plants that I grow in another container.. I just grab a pinch of it now and then and throw it in with the fish. It all disappears so I assume the fish eat it. One in duck weed and the other is a small floating fern. Yum...

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Per Merry Mary I have been feeding my fish cheerios the plain ones. They have them for desert if they eat all their reg. koi food. They eat them like pigs. Been using it about 3 mos. and so far haven't seen any side effects but like the idea of green also. Will try some and see what they do.

Bonnie

Athens, PA

I like the idea of the cheerios for dessert.

I know when I had bought a bag of the krill, my koi went crazy for it. The problem is it is too pricey for me to buy with any regularity.

Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

I used to toss the snails in the pond, and the koi would go into a frenzy. But a guy at the pet shop told me that's not good for them because they can't digest the shells very well, and it can cause extra ammonia to build up in their intestines, which can kill them. He said that's why they always have one goldfish in each aquarium at the pet shop, because snails come in with everything. The goldfish love the snails, but often die, so they won't ever sell the single ones in each tank that are there for snail control. Makes sense...so now I stick to earth worms and tadpoles when I want to give them a little protien treat, otherwise I stick with the veggies and whole grains!
:)

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

What about slugs. I have lots of those

Las Vegas, NV(Zone 9a)

Oh no, you feed them worms.

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