If you are a regular reader of this blog, you might know that I keep koi fish and have a koi pond at home. And if you have been loitering in this space for more than 3-4 years, you would also know that the pond was built by these bare hands with a lot of help from Horng and other friends in 2005.
the koi pond building project in various stages
It was a lot of hard work over a period of some 3 months for the over ambitious building project that first started out as an idea to have a little blue pre-fabricated fiber glass pond in the ground.
the koi pond and garden, completed and matured in 2007
Upon completion of the koi pond, I had built up quite a bit of strength and probably lost a couple KG off the midsection too, it was well worth it.
Having a pond had been a dream of me for a long time, the idea came when we were building one for my high school’s Aquarium Society (which I eventually became the president), it was a lurve affair came true. It was an awesome! Little did I know that the pond would eventually land me in a newspaper article too.
Lurve served up by Mr. Chef
Today, other than the little time spent each month on maintaining the pond and the garden, I had all the luxury in admiring the fish and the garden sitting on the bench while munching some snacks. Since this whole koi pond thing is a rather healthy hobby, a good snack to go with today’s topic would be the healthy snack – Lurve, multigrain chips with no artificial coloring or preservatives.
Lurve – nom nom nom
That’s my lurve affair with my koi pond, do you have something (or someone) you are passionate about? You can participate in the Lurve’s “What’s Your LURVE Affair?” Contest.
The shortlisted top 3 bloggers get a 3-4 minute spot on 8TV Quickie (imagine pimping your blog there!) and Grand Prize winner walk away with MacBook Pro 2.66Ghz 13″ (GIVE ME PLEASE!). The contest runs from 23nd June 2009 till 12th July 2009, and all you have to do is:
Write a blog post titled “My LURVE Affair with XXX” in your blog.
Upon completing your blog post, kindly send an email to email@example.com with details of yourself such as your full name, IC number and the permalink of your written blog post.
It’s been a while since I posted anything regarding the home-made koi pond, so I’ve decided to take some pictures on the big fat koi fish swimming in it. It turned out that focusing fish under water isn’t exactly trivial, but I think I’ve managed to captured some decent photos anyhow.
As usual, the fatter ones are most likely female, while the more skinny and graceful kois are males. These kois are approaching 2 feet in length, and getting pretty heavy too. It’s been a little less than two years since the completion of the koi pond project and thankfully the fish are growing healthy and fat. Shouldn’t you build a pond too?
This is the 2nd video of the Koi Pond posted since it’s completion more than a year ago. Since the first video was of me and my house mate swimming in it, I thought this time it’ll be best to show you noobs the beautiful kois that lives in the now plenty matured pond.
The are six kois altogether, with the average size of 16-18 inches. They were less than 10 inches in length when I got them from the farm, with the exception of one Kohaku and the Showa donated from Mr. Lee (Thanks!) after I lost the Shiro Utsuri. With the Chagoi still being the champion, the kois are pretty friendly and not easily intimidated by people. Other than the three mentioned, there are also a Yamabuki Ogon, a not so pure Tancho, and another Kohaku from more than a year ago.
Glossary on types of koi:
Kohaku – red and white koi
Tancho – white koi with red dot on its head
Showa – red, white, and black koi, with at least some black color on the head
Yamabuki Ogon – solid yellow color koi
Chagoi – olive color koi, also usually the bravest of the pack
As I was doing the regular filter flush out in the morning over the weekend for the Koi Pond, the tap for the 3rd flush out tap busted. Luckily the knob was in the “closed” position when that happened, no panic.
the busted tap, fixed
I happened to have a spare tap on hand, however, the PVC glue that was used from the project has ran dry, so a trip to the hardware store was inevitable. I also bought a tube of silicon sealant to better seal the connection between the PVC pipe adapter and the fiberglass filter. The actual fixing didn’t take more than half an hour.
the material used
I took the opportunity to clean the filter too. While waiting for the PVC and silicon sealant to dry, I had to transfer the filter material to the spare fiberglass tank (the same one we used for the chap gor meh boat rowing.) This is essential as the filter material contains living micro organism whose job is to breakdown the harmful organic waste produced by the fish, without the bacteria, the water will quickly turn toxic. An airpump was used to airate the filter material.
dry waterfall and temporary filter material housing
For several hours, the waterfall was dry. By nightfall, the filter material was moved back to the fiberglass filter, and everything restored back to order. Happy fishes again =)
Some of the more unfortunate noobs out there who has read the koi article on Kosmo might have noticed that there were no pictures of my pond nor my fish on the paper, and there are 2 very simple reason to that.
1. for some reasons Kosmo missed the whole pond experience and decided to concentrate sole on fish, which was unfortunate
2. my fish were shy, it was hard for the reporter to take good pictures of them
very nice female Chagoi about 1 feet in length
To fix that 2nd point, I need a fearless fish to lead the pack. Now, the many varieties of Koi is akin to the different breeds of dogs, each carrying different natural traits. For example, a golden retrieval is inherintely easier to train playing catch compared to a chiwawa. Similarly, a Chagoi (olive brown colored Koi) is naturally brave and usually exhibit good leadership quality in a school of koi fish. Hence, a Chagoi can usually lead all the other fish to be friendlier and display less fright towards human.
Chagoi showing uninhibited feeding behaviour, leading the pack
I had been wanting to get a decent size Chagoi for quite some time but has always found them either difficult to find, or very expensive. When I was at Sentul Park Koi Center last week and found out that they have a tank of Chagoi selling at very very reasonable price, I was delighted, and picked a big fat female (around 30 cm) on the very same weekend morning. As adviced by Mr. Lee, always transfer koi to new pond only in the morning to allow sufficient time for the fish to get used to its surrounding
friendlier fish hanging out at the surface
Sure enough, by the 2nd day, the Chagoi was the first fish to come on the surface to feed. Naturally, the other fish follows, albiet with slightly more hesitation. A few days later, other fish are starting to get bolder too, I can only hope that they will become more playful and fearless over time.
the view from the bench overseeing the pond
Another trick that I have been using is hanging out at the pond for at least a few minutes before feeding the fish. This allows the fish to associate human with feeding, and over time can lead to bolder kois. Hope this works too.