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Thread: Winter Feeding

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    Winter Feeding

    Hi Newbie here, itís my 1st winter with Koi. Iíd welcome clarity on whether I should be feeding them. Water is 6 degrees and koi are active. They were very inactive when it was much colder recently (south coast UK). I havenít fed them for 2 weeks or so now but there seem to be different schools of thought. Donít feed until the water gets above 10 degrees celcius, do feed them a high fat content foodÖ

    Best advice? Thanks.



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    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion Ajm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Petestone3 View Post
    Hi Newbie here, itís my 1st winter with Koi. Iíd welcome clarity on whether I should be feeding them. Water is 6 degrees and koi are active. They were very inactive when it was much colder recently (south coast UK). I havenít fed them for 2 weeks or so now but there seem to be different schools of thought. Donít feed until the water gets above 10 degrees celcius, do feed them a high fat content foodÖ

    Best advice? Thanks.
    Welcome mate . It's a massive ol can of worms the winter feesing question. Personally after talking to a member on here I have gone with .
    Feeding sh balance down to 8o
    Between 8o - 5o I have fed natural foods ie meal worms , mussles ect

    Then nothing lower an that

    Sent from my SM-G973F using Tapatalk
    Freddyboy the legend

    "we are water keepers first"

    Johnathan

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  5. #3
    Have you ever seen notices alongside natural lakes warning the fish not to eat when the temperatures are low? Me neither.

    It's a myth that fish are too stupid to know when the water is too cold for them to digest food. The enzymes that control the metabolism of food and the appetite are linked so that they match, regardless of the temperature. So, when the temperature falls below the point where they can digest, they have no appetite and just simply don't attempt to eat anyway.

    Fish have evolved to instinctively know what's best for them. If a fish in the wild wanted to eat, it would do so and fish have evolved quite successfully following their natural instincts. If carp continued to eat when it was too cold with the consequence that the food rotted in their gut and caused them serious health problems or death then they wouldnít have survived evolution and the species would now be extinct. So why do koi in a pond need us to impose artificial temperature limits when we stop them eating if they need to?

    My thoughts on winter feeding are on my website here:
    www.mankysanke.co.uk/html/winter_feeding.html

    It isn't just my own personal theory, Paula Reynolds has very long experience in koi health and physiology and does research for multinational companies. She is a universally recognised expert and this is what she has recently added on her website about feeding in winter:

    "The variable approach to pond management during the colder months means some Koi are unfed for too long a period. When Koi are dormant in winter, they do not need food and will sit on the pond floor conserving body resources and energy. However, some days are milder, and many ponds are naturally warmer and the Koi will be active and seeking food. If unfed yet active, they will exhaust their nutrient store, making them vulnerable. There has been concern for years that food will putrefy in the gut during winter rather than be excreted. However, stasis, the term applied when the muscles that process digestion have stopped working, is misunderstood in Koi. It is a myth that Koi should not be fed from autumn until spring. On all mild days during the colder months of the year, Koi will be looking for food and a wheat germ based food, or all season pellets should be fed."

    Read the full article on her website here:
    Feeding koi

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    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion RS2OOO's Avatar
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    Pond temp at 6C. Lifted covers and immediately the whole gang came over asking for dinner:






    So in went a few pellets just to see if they were interested, and all got gobbled up within a few minutes:





    This is actually the first year where I've fed pellets as low as 6C. Normally stop pellets at 8C and only feed live foods (Mussels / Worms) below that temp.

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    Extreme Koi Member Rank = Supreme Champion john1's Avatar
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    Basically if they ask for it give them some, that's what I've allways done anyway.

    Koi looking great Rs
    John

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    Senior Member Rank = Grand Champion davethefish1's Avatar
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    Jim Shelly busted this no feeding myth on horton years ago...
    fed hundreds of kilos of pellets though the winter when all the anglers were using single hookbaits or tiny pva bags.
    the fish fed consistently, though not every single day.
    all the way through winter, and he caught shed loads.

    biggest thing to kill a carps appetite is sudden temperature drops...

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    Quote Originally Posted by davethefish1 View Post
    Jim Shelly busted this no feeding myth on horton years ago...
    fed hundreds of kilos of pellets though the winter when all the anglers were using single hookbaits or tiny pva bags.
    the fish fed consistently, though not every single day.
    all the way through winter, and he caught shed loads.

    biggest thing to kill a carps appetite is sudden temperature drops...
    Yup, as the water cools they get more dopy but they will still eat. I feed them wheatgerm whilst the temps are low.

    I should put a water and air temperature logger on the pond.

    The pond hasn't frozen this year although the drum water supply has and is now wrapped in insulation which helps. Having airlifts means that if the drum blocks the circulation stops but there's no water pump to run dry.
    Eco Pond: 13,000 litres, 20K+ lph Airlifts, 1300l anoxic, Solum 16. No pump. 58W total.

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    Senior Member Rank = Jussai Tom Koi's Avatar
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    I haven't stopped feeding, I have cut the amount of feeds to three times a day and reduced the amount of feed they get and I will give them extra feed if when i go up to check on them, but I have maintained a temp of 12.6 to 13 degrees throughout this period.

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