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Thread: To salt or not

  1. #1

    To salt or not

    After reading the article in this month koi talk about salting a pond and looking at other options online some say add in spring and some say add in winter what is your opinion on salting

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  2. #2
    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion RS2OOO's Avatar
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    Don't add it unless you have a specific issue or reason to.

    There are more risks to addiing it than there are for not adding it.

    The worst being that if you add it and later discover parasites the treatment for those parasites may not be compatible with salt, and salt takes a long long time to get out of your system, unless you do a 100% water change.

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  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by RS2OOO View Post
    Don't add it unless you have a specific issue or reason to.

    There are more risks to addiing it than there are for not adding it.

    The worst being that if you add it and later discover parasites the treatment for those parasites may not be compatible with salt, and salt takes a long long time to get out of your system, unless you do a 100% water change.
    Thanks I've always been on the fence with salt if I had to use it I would Go for a salt bath for a fish rather than the whole pond .
    My pond has come out of winter ok so far ,
    All fish looking happy hopefully can take cover off soon,also thinking about changing the roof over the pond to polycarb to let in more light.

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    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion davethefish1's Avatar
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    the article i read in koi talk refers to helping koi through general health and potential spring virus issues, not KHV or CEV related, and not connected to water parameters, parasitic or bacterial infections.
    by relieving osmotic pressure on the fish.

    as many Japanese hobbiests and dealers do.
    the difference is they have the ability to easily move the fish to another pond, drain and refill to remove 100% of the salt.

    for most people that would be very problematic,
    filling swimming pools for the fish draining 2000 plus gallons of water, and then refilling 2000 plus gallons of water...
    and also causing stress and stability issues it's self...

    I know lots do salt ponds, and lots don't...
    i prefer to give salt baths for fish that occasionally seem struggle, but are in good health, with no other parasite or water quality issues.

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  8. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by alex1968 View Post
    After reading the article in this month koi talk about salting a pond and looking at other options online some say add in spring and some say add in winter what is your opinion on salting

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    think of it this way, would you take an asprin in the mornings because you may get a headache later?

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  10. #6
    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion RS2OOO's Avatar
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    For those who've not seen it before, have a read of this about salt in koi ponds. Its a little dated in some areas, but the vast majority of it still holds true, and it mirrors my own thoughts:

    Salt in the koi environment

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  12. #7
    Salt is an excellent aid to healing in a bath or a quarantine/hospital tank and sometimes it can be used on a very temporary basis in a pond to address a diagnosed medical issue when the hobbyist doesn't have quarantine facilities.

    However, keeping a constant level of salt in a pond was something our grandfathers used to do because they knew no better. It should be noted that, with modern understanding, there are no people who understand koi health and/or koi physiology who would recommend keeping koi in permanent saline conditions.

    Some people add salt to their ponds because they heard somewhere that itís good for their koi but is there any proof that it does or is it the case that theyíve they heard an opinion that is unsupported by facts? Iíve never heard anyone who actually understands koi physiology support the old theory that permanently salting their ponds is beneficial. Knowledge evolves and there are many things we used to do that have now been proved to cause harm.

    In the past, ladies used cosmetics with arsenic in them. Later we used asbestos as insulation. We put lead in petrol because it gave us more mileage. Then we switched to diesel because it gave lower CO2 emissions.

    Those weren't bad decisions in their time, people were using the best knowledge they had based on what they were told by those who thought they understood what they were talking about.

    Knowledge is always evolving so hobbyists should be open minded to updated thinking and dismiss statements that can be paraphrased as "I don't care what new research shows - I used salt and my koi managed to survive so it must be the perfect way to carry on".

    Although salt interferes with osmoregulation, using it as a temporary medication at the correct concentration can be beneficial. However, hobbyists who actually understand koi physiology can't force people to give up outdated practices like keeping salt in the pond for extended periods, we can only keep repeating what new research has shown to be a more enlightened way of thinking.

    The fact that Japanese breeders salt their concrete ponds when they harvest koi or bring them in for the winter is often quoted as an argument in favour of permanently salting koi ponds. Salt reduces osmotic stress by reducing kidney function. When koi are crowded into concrete ponds, often with immature filters, they are under great stress so salt is necessary or they wouldn't survive the loss of electrolytes that stress causes. If the breeders believed that adding salt actually improved koi, they would salt mud ponds where koi growth and development is the main aim.

    I don't think what breeders have to do in order for their new harvest to survive overcrowded conditions when they are put into concrete ponds is a good model for the way we should manage a koi pond under normal stress free conditions.

    If anyone argues that permanently salting a pond is beneficial for koi, just keep asking this question ďCan you point to any authoritative and properly researched source of information that says it's better to keep koi in a saline environment than keeping them in the natural fresh water environment where they evolved?Ē

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    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Naoki Atsumi's Avatar
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    The number has been gradually increasing over the last decade or so, and now almost all Japanese KOI farmers are said to be deliberately infecting their TOSAI KOIs with sleeping disease at the fry stage and using salt to restore and immunise them before shipping them out.

    We would like to hear your opinion on the correlation between salt and the acquisition of immunity to these viral factors.

    There are also rare cases of KOI being raised in some parts of Japan using chloride springs as source water.
    In this case, they will keep KOIs in salt water whether they want to or not...
    Is there any difference between salt from the sea and salt in groundwater?
    ※Probably the difference between sodium chloride and magnesium chloride in the composition??
    Last edited by Naoki Atsumi; 29-03-2023 at 03:55 AM.

  15. #9
    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion RS2OOO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manky Sanke View Post
    Salt is an excellent aid to healing in a bath or a quarantine/hospital tank and sometimes it can be used on a very temporary basis in a pond to address a diagnosed medical issue when the hobbyist doesn't have quarantine facilities.

    However, keeping a constant level of salt in a pond was something our grandfathers used to do because they knew no better. It should be noted that, with modern understanding, there are no people who understand koi health and/or koi physiology who would recommend keeping koi in permanent saline conditions.

    Some people add salt to their ponds because they heard somewhere that it’s good for their koi but is there any proof that it does or is it the case that they’ve they heard an opinion that is unsupported by facts? I’ve never heard anyone who actually understands koi physiology support the old theory that permanently salting their ponds is beneficial. Knowledge evolves and there are many things we used to do that have now been proved to cause harm.

    In the past, ladies used cosmetics with arsenic in them. Later we used asbestos as insulation. We put lead in petrol because it gave us more mileage. Then we switched to diesel because it gave lower CO2 emissions.

    Those weren't bad decisions in their time, people were using the best knowledge they had based on what they were told by those who thought they understood what they were talking about.

    Knowledge is always evolving so hobbyists should be open minded to updated thinking and dismiss statements that can be paraphrased as "I don't care what new research shows - I used salt and my koi managed to survive so it must be the perfect way to carry on".

    Although salt interferes with osmoregulation, using it as a temporary medication at the correct concentration can be beneficial. However, hobbyists who actually understand koi physiology can't force people to give up outdated practices like keeping salt in the pond for extended periods, we can only keep repeating what new research has shown to be a more enlightened way of thinking.

    The fact that Japanese breeders salt their concrete ponds when they harvest koi or bring them in for the winter is often quoted as an argument in favour of permanently salting koi ponds. Salt reduces osmotic stress by reducing kidney function. When koi are crowded into concrete ponds, often with immature filters, they are under great stress so salt is necessary or they wouldn't survive the loss of electrolytes that stress causes. If the breeders believed that adding salt actually improved koi, they would salt mud ponds where koi growth and development is the main aim.

    I don't think what breeders have to do in order for their new harvest to survive overcrowded conditions when they are put into concrete ponds is a good model for the way we should manage a koi pond under normal stress free conditions.

    If anyone argues that permanently salting a pond is beneficial for koi, just keep asking this question “Can you point to any authoritative and properly researched source of information that says it's better to keep koi in a saline environment than keeping them in the natural fresh water environment where they evolved?”
    This post should be in one of the sticky sections.

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  17. #10
    i want to give one of my koi salt bath in a separate bowl from my pond but not knowing which salt to use and not knowing quantities please could somebody make a suggestion please

  18. #11
    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion RS2OOO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Koi country living View Post
    i want to give one of my koi salt bath in a separate bowl from my pond but not knowing which salt to use and not knowing quantities please could somebody make a suggestion please

    Have a read of the "Salt in the Koi environment" link I posted above - all the details are there.

    Generally we use PDV salt, cheap on eBay etc.

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  20. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Koi country living View Post
    i want to give one of my koi salt bath in a separate bowl from my pond but not knowing which salt to use and not knowing quantities please could somebody make a suggestion please

    With my usual caveat that I'm not in favour of adding salt to ponds as a permanent addition, itís an excellent medication as a short term dip, or as a medium term treatment in a quarantine/hospital tank or even as a very temporary addition in the pond itself to treat a diagnosed problem where salt is the recommended treatment. Therefore, the students on my Water Quality course need to be able to calculate dosages for all circumstances where salt might be used so I calculated this for them to use whatever measuring system they prefer.

    Use cooking salt or PDV (Pure Dried Vacuum). Other types of salt may contain iodine or anti caking agents which could be harmful to the fish. If youíre unsure of which salt to use, buy from a reputable koi dealer.





  21. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Naoki Atsumi View Post
    The number has been gradually increasing over the last decade or so, and now almost all Japanese KOI farmers are said to be deliberately infecting their TOSAI KOIs with sleeping disease at the fry stage and using salt to restore and immunise them before shipping them out.

    We would like to hear your opinion on the correlation between salt and the acquisition of immunity to these viral factors.

    There are also rare cases of KOI being raised in some parts of Japan using chloride springs as source water.
    In this case, they will keep KOIs in salt water whether they want to or not...
    Is there any difference between salt from the sea and salt in groundwater?
    ※Probably the difference between sodium chloride and magnesium chloride in the composition??
    Koi, like us, have two immune systems which have evolved to deal with pathogens; they are the Innate Immune System and the Acquired Immune System (aka Specific Immune System). The Innate system is the one they are born with and is a basic system that attempts to engulf and destroy anything which enters the body which isn’t “self”

    The Acquired Immune System is immunity that develops as a result of exposure to various antigens (toxins, chemicals, bacteria, viruses, or other substances that come from outside the body). It remembers that specific antigen and builds a defence against it so it can effectively combat that one if it encounters again. Therefore, apart from exposure to a vaccine (which is a deactivated replica of a disease), acquired immunity comes from exposure to an antigen not from any cure. Therefore, if salt is used to assist in curing sleeping disease, any acquired immunity will come from the exposure to the disease, not from the salt.

    As for chloride springs; chloride is a naturally occurring element that is usually found as a component of sodium chloride, calcium chloride or potassium chloride. These compounds will dissolve in water so are frequently a component of the natural salinity of ground water which is usually less than 0.5 ppt or 0.05%. Natural salinity levels of 0.05% are insignificant when compared with the 0.3% salinity added to koi ponds by those who believe that that koi do better in deliberately high salinity water than in the trace salinity levels in which freshwater fish, including carp, evolved.

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