Koi For Dummies [NOOK Book]


Known throughout the world for its beauty and personality, koi is one of the most carefully bred fish species around. Raising koi is especially time-consuming and requires more than just sprinkling little flakes in the fish bowl. But thankfully, you don’t have to be an expert to maintain your own koi pond.

Koi For Dummies shows you how easy and fun it can be to own and care for these delicate fish. Whether building a pond or aquarium for the indoors or outdoors, this ...

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Koi For Dummies

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Known throughout the world for its beauty and personality, koi is one of the most carefully bred fish species around. Raising koi is especially time-consuming and requires more than just sprinkling little flakes in the fish bowl. But thankfully, you don’t have to be an expert to maintain your own koi pond.

Koi For Dummies shows you how easy and fun it can be to own and care for these delicate fish. Whether building a pond or aquarium for the indoors or outdoors, this easy-to-understand guide explores all of your options. Clear, concise advice helps you:

  • Appreciate your koi’s beauty
  • Build, design, and maintain your koi pond or aquarium
  • Find and select koi and the proper supplies
  • Keep your koi happy and healthy
  • Treat your koi for parasites, bacterial infections, and viruses
  • Breed and care for baby koi
  • Show off your koi to other koi enthusiasts

This fun, friendly guide also explains what to do during a power outage and how to check your koi for illness. Featuring 8 pages of full-color photos, Koi for Dummies is all you need to get started raising your very own koi. No matter where you live, you’ll be able to care for and breed this beautiful fish!

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781118068175
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 5/4/2011
  • Series: For Dummies Series
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 680,385
  • File size: 9 MB

Meet the Author

R. D. Bartlett began his pet fish-keeping when he netted minnows out of the brooks near Springfield, Massachusetts. He moved to Florida and began working as the general manager for Aquarium Supply, a tropical fish, goldfish, and koi wholesaler, and then opened his own pet shop.

Patricia Bartlett grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and began keeping fish at age 10. She has journeyed to Costa Rica and Peru to net and write about angelfish, discus, and knife fish. She is a recent convert to the wonderful world of koi.
The Bartletts have co-authored numerous pet care books, mostly centering on reptiles and amphibians.

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Table of Contents

Introduction     7
About This Book     1
Conventions Used in This Book     2
What You're Not to Read     2
Foolish Assumptions     3
How This Book Is Organized     3
Koi Basics     3
Living with Koi, Inside and Out     3
Caring for Koi and Keeping Them Healthy     4
The Big Leagues: Koi Breeding and Showing     4
The Part of Tens     4
Icons Used in This Book     5
Where to Go from Here     5
Koi Basics     7
Going "Koi Kichi" - Crazy for Koi     9
Appreciating the Beauty of Koi: The Underground Fad     10
The Three Types of Koi-Keepers     10
Knowing the Essentials for Any Koi-Keeper     11
The winner for "Most Obvious": Koi     11
A transitional home for your koi     11
A permanent home for your koi (most likely a pond)     12
Pond gadgets: The filter and pump     12
Understanding the Demands of a Koi Pond     13
Keeping Koi Healthy: A Brief How-To     14
Joining a Koi Club: What It Can Do for You; What You Can Do for It     15
Magnifying Your Pleasure: The Many Ways to Enjoy Your Koi     16
Knowing Your Koi     17
In the Beginning: A Brief History of Koi     17
Taming of the carp: Koi's grand pappy     17
Moving from food to art     18
Launching a hobby     19
Assessing the Beauty Marks of a Koi Today     19
First things first: Understanding the difference between goldfish and koi     20
The anatomy of a koi     22
How big are we talking? The size of koi     22
Recognizing the finer points of koi     23
The Confusing Part (Made Simple): Koi Varieties     26
Color me koi: The rainbow of many shades     27
Simply brilliant! The divisions of metallic and nonmetallic koi     28
The Popularity Contest: Which Varieties Take the Trophy?     31
The Karate Kids of Koi: Tategoi and Their Potential     32
Making Sure Koi Are Right for You     35
Do You Have the Space It Takes?     36
Calculating a koi's fin-flippin' space     36
Estimating the space your koi's habitat requires     37
Is Time on Your Side?     38
Keeping up a koi pond     38
Being prepared for a lifelong commitment     39
Do You Have the Bread to Buy, House, and Care for Koi?      40
The cost of the fish alone     40
The equipment that gives your koi a home     41
The necessary funds for koi maintenance     42
Building a Pond? Construction Costs to Consider     43
Securing the necessary permits     43
Digging the hole     43
Buying a preformed pond     44
Installing a pond liner     44
Pouring a cement pond     45
Accounting for Your Climate     46
A Koi Buyer's Guide     47
Oh Where, Oh Where to Buy My Koi?     47
Recognizing the major markets: Japan, Israel, and the United States     48
Visiting your local garden store (or pet store or aquarium shop)     50
Heading straight for the source: Local breeders     51
Going once, going twice, sold at a local koi auction     51
Surfing (online) for koi     53
Going "away" for your koi     53
Determining What You See and What You Get     55
Choosing colors and patterns to suit your style     55
Considering size: What's right for you?     56
Selecting healthy koi     57
Best bets for the indecisive: Advice from yours truly     59
Buying Koi "To Go"     60
Living with Koi, Inside and Out     61
Preparing for Your Koi's Homecoming     63
Deciding Where Your Koi Will Live (Temporarily or For Always)     63
Taking Necessary Precautions: Preparing the Quarantine Tub     64
What you need for the job     65
Rub-a-dub-dub, setting up the tub     66
Shopping for Initial Supplies     68
Getting Your Koi Home     69
Bringing home local koi     69
Shipping your koi     70
After You Get Home-Sweet-Home     72
Easing your fish from bag to quarantine tub     12
Let the quarantine begin!     74
Transferring koi into the aquarium or pond     75
Planning Your Koi Pond     77
Considerations to Toss Around Before You Dig     77
Avoiding potential problems     78
Cutting your way through the red tape     79
What if you already have a pond (or pool)?     80
Deciding to take it indoors: Knowing what you're taking on     81
Planning for weather changes with an outdoor pond     82
Looking at Your Pond Options     82
Choosing your material     82
A good design now makes a difference down the road     84
Where to Dig Your Pond - Location, Location, Location     86
Finding the Right Filtration System     87
How a filtration system works     88
Choosing the right features for your system     90
The cost factor: What does a pump cost to run?     92
Building Your Pond     93
Who Will Dig (And Build) Your Pond?     94
Doing it yourself     94
Hiring a professional for the entire project     95
Converting a Swimming Pool into a Koi Pond     97
Selecting the Building Materials for Your Spanking New Pond     100
Going with a Liner-Alone Pond     101
Starting with a pond wall ring     101
Excavating and adding the drains     103
Inserting the liner     104
Creating a Pond with a Liner and Concrete-Block Walls     106
Shoveling dirt: Dig time     106
Laying the block walls     107
Aligning the drains     109
Adding the liner     110
The all-concrete-block pond     110
Identifying (And Adding) Other Construction Components     112
Installing the filtration unit     112
Adding lighting     113
Skimmer units, protein and otherwise      114
Finishing work     114
New Pond Syndrome and What to Do about It     117
Aging the pond water and the biological filter     117
Making It Pretty: Landscaping the Pond     119
A Habitat Fit for Your Koi: Furnishing Their Digs     119
Avoiding the holey-plant problem     120
Opting for plastic to avoid the hassle     123
Stepping over the edge (of your pond)     123
Creating the Landscape of Your Heart's Desire     124
The two popular styles: Japanese and just plain wild     124
Putting fish first and landscape second: Controlling the sunlight     125
Finding plants that suit your fancy     126
Pond-edge plantings: Balancing heights, textures, and colors     126
Setting the Mood with Lighting     129
Lighting up from down below: Submersible lights     129
Lighting your koi from above: Accent lights     129
Adding the Finishing Touches: Garden Accessories     130
Planting a statue     130
Positioning a bench     131
Going the Extra Mile: Adding a Patio or Deck     131
Patios - Simply beautiful     131
Decks - Naturally versatile     132
Maintaining Your Pond      133
Maintaining Your Equipment     133
Testing for Proper Water Chemistry     134
Ammonia     135
pH     136
Nitrites     136
Dissolved oxygen     137
When You Need to Change the Water     138
Maintaining a Stable Temperature     139
When the weather gets cold     140
Dealing with hotter temps     143
Keeping Predators Away     144
Caring for the Pond through the Four Seasons     146
Falling into a slower routine     146
Settling into winter     146
Spring into (careful) action     147
Easing into summer     148
Keeping Koi Inside     151
Addressing Humidity and Its Effect on Your Home     152
Planning Ahead for Your Indoor Spectacle     153
Considering the aquarium option     155
Deciding on the setup type     155
Figuring out how big to make it     155
Buying the necessary indoor pond equipment     156
Getting Down to Business: Setting Up Your Indoor Pond     159
Starting out simple with an aquarium     160
Setting up a preformed pond     161
Building and setting up a timber-and-liner pond     162
Monitoring Water Quality     165
Adding the Finishing Touch: Releasing the Koi     167
How to Tell When Something's Wrong (And How to Fix It)     167
Caring for Koi and Keeping Them Healthy     169
Koi Nutrition 101     171
Eating Right: It's All about Variety     171
Making the Best Commercial Food Choices     172
What to look for in koi food     172
Sinking versus floating food     175
Adding Some Simple (And Lively) Treats     176
Avoiding Foods that Do No Good     177
Supplying Supplements     179
Feeding Koi through the Seasons     180
Establishing the Timing and Right Amounts for Feedings     181
Feeding times     182
Hand feeding     182
Using automatic feeders     182
Diffusing Koi Stress     183
How Can a Fish Possibly Feel Stress?     183
Signs Your Koi Are Stressing Out     184
Sources of Stress and How to Fix Them     185
Water quality     186
Low oxygen levels     186
Crowding     187
Moving your fish     187
Temperature extremes      189
Other potential causes     190
Spotting and Treating Common Koi Ailments     191
Empowering You, Because Koi Vets Are Few     192
Taking a Close Look: The Do-It-Yourself Koi Exam     193
Catching your koi     193
Examining your sickly fish     193
Dealing with Mild Traumatic Injuries     195
The Most Famous Parasites of All     196
Anchor worms     197
Apiosoma     198
Chilodonella     199
Costia     200
Fish lice     200
Flukes     201
Ich     202
Bacterial Infections: Bad News Anywhere     203
The exterior attack     203
The inside attack: Internal infections     205
Preventing bacterial infection     205
Swimmer's Gill (Or Skin): Fungal Infections     206
Got fungus on the gills?     207
Fluffy white fur isn't always a good thing     207
The Three Greatest Viral Threats: Pox, SVK, and KHV     208
Forget the chicken - koi get carp pox     209
Spring viremia of carp: Predator of koi at their most vulnerable     209
The quick, sneaky killer: Koi herpes virus      210
Keeping your old koi safe from viral infection     211
Setting up the Hospital Tank     211
Sedating Your Koi, Giving Injections, and Other First-Aid Tasks     212
The Big Leagues: Koi Breeding and Showing     215
Breeding Koi     217
To Breed or Not to Breed: That Is the Question     217
Predictions You Can Make (And Those You Can't)     218
Preparing for the Dirty Deed     220
Gathering the necessary tools     220
Getting the breeding grounds ready for showtime     221
Casting the stars of the show     222
Grooming your koi for the rendezvous     224
Getting Down to Business     225
Beginning the breeding     225
Letting your koi have at it     225
Reaping Your Reward: Parenting the Eggs Till They Hatch     226
In the beginning     227
Moving on up     228
Low-Maintenance Breeding: The All-Natural Love Pond     229
Sectioning off the in-pond romping grounds     229
Preparing your pond for babies     230
The Small Fry: Bringing Up Baby Koi     231
Feeding Fry     231
A fry's feeding schedule     233
Hatching brine shrimp      236
Culling: It Ain't Easy, but Somebody Has To Do It     237
What to cull     238
How much to cull     239
Evaluating Your Young Koi     239
Koi Shows: Your All-Access Pass to Koi Kichi-dom     241
Showing Your Koi - Why Bother?     242
You win gold in terms of knowledge     242
You get to know your koi better     242
You see what you're up against and what's in vogue     243
Finding a Show Near You (Or Even Far Away)     243
Showing Off Your Pride and Joy     244
Registering for a show     244
A brief rundown of the affair     245
Surveying the many ways to win     246
The judging process     247
After the show: Packing up and heading out     249
Attending a Show Just for Kicks and Giggles     250
Playing Host: Setting Up Your Own Show     250
House-to-house shows     250
Regional shows     251
The Part of Tens     255
Ten Things to Do When the Power Goes Out     257
Lower the Fish Load in Your Pond     257
Stop Feeding Your Fish     258
Do a 30-Percent Water Change     258
Test Your Water Daily for Ammonia and Nitrites     258
Add Salt or Zeolite     259
Use an Inverter to Power Your Air Pump     259
Let ol'Sol Power Your Pond     259
Mist Your Pond     260
Use Compressed Air     260
Use a Portable Battery System to Power Your Filter     260
Ten Things to Check If Your Koi Seem Sick     261
The Pond's Water Quality     261
The Pond's Water Temperature     261
Your Koi's Scales     262
Your Koi's Gills     262
Your Koi's Finny-Fin-Fins     262
Your Koi's Underside     263
Your Koi's Body     263
Your Koi's Belly-Side Behavior (Are You Being Flashed?)     264
Your Koi's Swimming Style     264
Your Koi's Social Savvy     264
Index     265
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 4, 2009


    This book is will be most useful to someone who is thinking about putting in a pond and getting some Koi. If you already have a pond and are thinking about adding Koi look for another book. Much of this one is taken up by the basics of pond installation, aquatic plants etc. These topics are related to Koi keeping but are not what you may be looking for in a book about Koi.

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