Well, we had a bad algae bloom this spring - a combination of weird weather, no bog filter, and the dogs deciding to munch on my water lettuce and water hyacinths. For almost two months we patiently treated it with $50+ worth of organic algae products (Microbe-lift and another brand, and a barley straw bale), got the bog filter installed and working, and still no luck with the algae problem.
I was ready to order Algae-fix when my neighbor mentioned a product available locally that was safe for fish ponds, similar to Algae-fix. So we bought a jug. The directions use surface acres as the measurement baseline (that should have been enough warning for us); after some headscratching, DH calculated we should add 9 ounces of product to the pond. Within minutes our poor fish were gasping for air. We got a few moved to the small pond, but most of them didn't make it. Which was sad, but they WERE just plain ole goldfish.
That was two weeks ago - the pond is MUCH clearer now (so something we did worked, lol.) We moved the remaining fish back, and they seemed to do okay, so we went on a "fishing expedition" today. Came home with three shubunkins, two white mosquito-eaters (can't think of their names), and a couple nice snails. (And a few more floating plants.)
Everybody seems happy in their new home, and now we have some prettily-patterned and colored fish to feed! A happy ending to a sad tale :)
Boy can I relate. I'm glad it's getting better for you but it sure can be frustrating. Have you had shubunkins before? I love mine. I only have one but he/she seems the happiest of all my fish. I hope it stays clear for you. "T" :)
Hey Sledder...we have a BABY shubunkin. We have 4 and they have had babies and it's so cute. Actually we have several new babies...Not sure what we're going to do with them. I'm thinking of putting the goldfish in the creek but will keep the baby koi's and shubunkin's for the fish store. Terry, we used some algae stuff once that did that too. We didn't lose any only bc dh ran two pumps full blast and put the compressor hose into the pond and kept pumping fresh air and we did this until they stopped gasping. Scared the heck out of us. We purchased an additional uv light this spring and it has worked wonders. I'm really skitzy about using chemicals in the pond ever since that episode. Enjoy your new fish.
Thanks, Sledder. The algae problem was really frustrating - we had pea-soup water for weeks on end. I'm hoping it will stay clear now; in the past we've had small gravel filters running and kept it clear; the new permanent bog filter is 3'x4' filled with pea gravel, so I'm hoping it'll do an even better job than the small plastic filters did - it sure looks nicer! (Here's a link to our "step by step": http://davesgarden.com/editgj/viewentry.php?rid=17399 )
We had a shubunkin in the pond when we bought the place two years ago. That first December, our temps didn't get above freezing the whole month (which is extremely abnormal for here), and the pond got a thick covering of ice. By the time we braved the temps long enough to chip a decent hole in it, we'd lost a few fish including the shubunkin. (Our ponds have been a learning experience, for sure!)
We had a lot of baby goldfish last summer, and I didn't feel a pressing need to buy more fish since there were plenty in there. But since the most recent debacle, it seemed like a good excuse to start over with some fish of our choosing. The white fish I bought are 'Orfe' (?) - they're not terribly ornamental, but according to the salesperson, they will eat their share of 'skeeters. Definitely a good attribute, IMO!
From what I've learned certain fish eat more skeeters than others. So far I haven't been fighting them too bad. And I've also learned that the shubunkins don't like cold water at all..matter of fact they don't like drastic water temperature changes either. Mine made it through winter just fine but then again I had one of those heavy duty heaters going too. I'm fortunate that I have a fish store here in our town that I can rely on quite well. They see me enough to even ask how my family is doing. Anyway they keep their new fish in an area not seen by the public for a couple weeks before they put them in the area to sell. They make sure the fish are okay before they sell them. Vic, why not another little pond? Don't put fish in a creek. Why not give them to a fish store. At least they have a chance of a good home. "T" :)
Vic you cold put a sign in your yard or a note on the grocery store/WalMart bulletin board. Charge $1 apiece and sell 'em to another ponder who would LOVE to have some fishies for their pond.
Sledder, I think we're going to go the heater route this year. Last winter we lucked out and the weather was really quite nice. But that first winter taught us some lessons about how cold it can get, and what a pain it is to slip and slide around trying to keep an open hole. (Of course, I can't even think about winter yet, with these sweltering temps and high humidity :)
Thanks for the tip tiG and dsil already told us NO - Lord, what would we do without all your help. dsil said he would take them to the fish store where he goes all the time if need be. He raises African Cichlads and even came up with a hybrid so they would take good care of the fishes until someone bought them. I promise, I will not put them in the creek. Thanks for letting me know...vic
tiG, I didn't think you were fussing but you can fuss at me anytime I want. How else will I learn. The last thing I want to do is mess up the eco system. Now that would be a kettle of fish - excuse the pun - ROFLOL