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How to carry out a partial water change.

As koi keepers we are experts in keeping fish in an enclosed artificial environment that is stocked with an unnaturally high stocking level and fed a relatively large quantity of food. Consequently, there will come a time when the pond's ecosystem becomes unbalanced, requiring our input and intervention (yet again).

  • Yet over a longer time frame, (weeks and months), our pond water will naturally start to accumulate a multitude of other processed by-products that if our pond was natural, would simply be processed further and taken up by other living organisms in and around the pond.
  • These intermediary compounds are quite safe at specific concentrations in a pond (usually measured in parts per million) but over time, could accumulate to levels that would begin to adversely affect our koi directly, or indirectly by unbalancing the pond environment.
  • Another reason for carrying out a partial water change is to add minerals to a pond that may not have had the benefit of regular clay treatments.
  • You can use a combination of information gained both visually and by your test kit to determine whether your pond would benefit from a partial water change.
  • This is the 'bank' where the nitrogen from the ammonia is ultimately deposited, increasing in concentration as more nitrite is oxidised into nitrate by bacteria in the biofilter.
  • Other cumulative compounds (sulphates, phosphates etc) will have a tendency to accumulate but rather than test these individually, use the nitrate test as a useful benchmark (i.e. if the nitrate levels are increasing then it is highly likely that the others will be also).
  • The water purifier will intercept and retain any undesirable contaminants in tap water that will also accumulate in your pond, causing stress to your fish.
  • The alternative to using tapwater that has been passed through a purifier is to add a quality tapwater conditioner to raw tapwater.

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