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15a. The Fish

No pond would be complete without the addition of fish. Not only do they provide a dash of color under the water but they add to the enjoyment of your pond and quickly become favorite and beloved pets. Fish and scavengers also play an important role in ecological balance and control of insects and algae in the pond.

Great care should be taken when selecting any pond fish and a reputable, responsible dealer is a must. All fish should be held in advanced quarantine systems with state-of-the-art filtration for at least two weeks. During this period all fish should be treated for disease and damage to fins and bodies that may have resulted from shipping. Quarantined fish should be fed high quality foods then the fullest and most robust fish are transferred to smaller outdoor ponds for observation. Once the fish appear disease free they are offered for sale. Observe fish carefully for soundness and overall health at the dealer and watch them carefully once you take them to your pond. Awareness of their normal appearance and behavior combined with good nutrition and good water quality will keep your fish healthy and happy for many, many years.


Koi
Koi are one of the best fish for the conventional garden pond. These graceful beauties are very colorful and easily tamed. Nothing compares to the pleasure of hand feeding these wonderful pets. These magnificent fish can grow to lengths of 36". Monsters of this size are rarely seen in home ponds, but 24" is not unusual. Start with small domestic or imported Koi in relation to the size of your pond. Further, large numbers of Koi require heavily filtered ponds designed from the start to support Koi.
(See the Solution 4 on filtration.)

Koi are true scavengers and when larger can uproot and eat plants. If your Koi are eating leaves and stems, protective netting may be necessary to keep them away from oxygenating plants and lilies. Digging and rooting in the plants also stirs up a good deal of silt. A deep layer of heavy gravel in pots helps reduce silt.

Shubunkins
These fish have the shape of traditional goldfish but with shades of red, yellow, blue, orange and black. They are graceful fish with lovely long tails.
Fantails
This hardy fish has a slightly shorter body relative to total length and a very outstanding double tail. Fantails range in color from solid orange to red with white and calico. They are slow swimmers and are very tame and friendly.
Comets
These traditional pond fish range in color from orange to bright red. Sarrassa comets are bright red with splashes of white. All comets are extremely hardy and are great scavengers.


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