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Well, not exactly a pond. I'm totally new to the fish scene, so please bear with me.

I would like to get a half-barrel sized 'pond' to start that I could use for a baby koi and put it outside on my patio. I live near the beach and the weather's been pretty cold lately (dropping to 45.F at night) So I'm worried that it would get *too* cold for a baby koi.

I'm sure it would be okay and all, just want to make sure before I go out and accidentally kill a sweet fish b/c of my stupidity.
 

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I tried to ascertain where Monster lived, but was unable to do so. Where Jarred (Mediahound) lives, it is not too important. Where I live, a half whisky barrel would freeze solid, at some time, during the winter. Koi and Goldfish (both are carp) are, basically, cold water fish, and they can live under ice in a pond, but they cannot survive if the container freezes solid, to the bottom. In south Florida, the problem might be that the water gets too warm. Cold water fish, like trout, carp, etc., have a higher oxygen requirement than tropical fish, and warm water cannot hold as much dissolved oxygen, as cold water.
 

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We had baby koi outside and the water froze the surface. We would go out every morning and afternoon and break a good junk of it open. Never used a heater and never had a problem.
The only concern I would have, is if the fish are sold indoors in a heated environment and then placed outside in this weather, it might shock them.
*45 is not that bad...I would be more concerned with under *40
 

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Must remember that a baby koi will become an adult koi! They grow up to 2 ft. in length, so you must plan accordingly. My backyard pond is about 800 gallons, and it is too small for koi. They need a depth of 3-4 ft. Maybe you should plan on a small goldfish instead. Some of the sarassa and shubunkins are gorgeous.
 

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April 2008 Issue of TropicalFish Hobbyist has a great article in it about barrel pond what plnats to use for filtration and about you snow people, and what to do. I do belaeve it was a 2 part atricle. Was full of great info....
 

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I live in Atlanta and i have 3 Koi ponds outside... the first is for babies under 1 year, the second is for baies 1-3 years and then i have a main pond for my rare Koi... last winter we got snow and none of them died...3 winters ago the pond froze 5inches on the top... i have a picture somewhere.. but you can always use a heater if you think the babies will have a problem... also i Really recommend using a modified pool filter with a uv sterilizer and a powerflo. with an inlet at the bottom of the pond.. and at the top where the water flows down i would use a bio filter... i have 15 4+ inch koi in my appr. 2500 gallon pond...
 
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We had baby koi outside and the water froze the surface. We would go out every morning and afternoon and break a good junk of it open. Never used a heater and never had a problem.
The only concern I would have, is if the fish are sold indoors in a heated environment and then placed outside in this weather, it might shock them.
*45 is not that bad...I would be more concerned with under *40
You know, we consistently read in pond articles not to break the ice (or do it gently) as it can injure/kill the fish via shock waves. I've never seen any scientific evidence for this, however. I assume all your fish lived?
 

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Interestingly, I had some black mollies and a pleco in the pond since the spring. The mollies even reproduced. When it started getting cold, I was able to net out about 5 of the larger mollies to put into an indoor aquarium. I was also surprised to see the pleco. Neither species seemed at all adversely affected by the lower temps; water temp at that time was 50F! I was amazed. The pleco also had grown huge!
 

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Well I live at the beach too and I would say it gets about as cold as you are asking about.............Koi can survive very cold water but they're digestive systems shut down when the water reaches 55 degree's and colder. You have to not feed them at these temp's. Koi require a lot of gallons per fish and really good filtration as they are heavy waste producers (when they are feeding). Water quality is very important for they're health. IMO a half barrel is much to small for KOI. As one poster said earlier goldfish would be a better choice if your heart is set on that set up.

Rick
 
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How about Mosquitofish (Gambusa affinis)? They probably couldn't winter over if you get real cold, but they can live with water temps in the 30's. As a bonus, they eat a lot of mosquito larva.
 

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I've kept Koi, shubunkin and comets in this pond for about 10 yrs now..
I Have kept the pump running almost nonstop since I installed the pond.. including winter.. when the ice forms over and starts to clog the fountain I pour warm water over it to melt the ice enough to keep it open..
this photo was taken in Dec 06...



I've replaced the pump once in the 10 yrs. and never used a heater..
I've read lots of places that say "winterize" your pond.. But I do not have to deal with Stinky water come spring.. and my fish are happy and healthy..
I still have to brave the freezing cold water to get the filter and bring it in to clean it..
Remember moving water does not freeze as quickly as still water.. though I doubt this will be a problem for you if you live where it will not freeze..

Gina *BabyBlue*
 

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Same here, we have never completely drained and refilled our pond.

However, our pond is only 2 and a half feet deep, and we have several adult koi. We don't have any problems.
 

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We've had a number of days of subfreezing temperatures; last night was 8F. Below are pictures of my pond. You'll note that the waterfall is still running.





 
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Just a thought, depending on water clarity , thats how you have to start new water lilies. start them shallow then move them deeper as they start to grow. get bigger pots and leave them in the pots , most hardy lilies grow 10 to 12 sq ft. controlled. in pots you have to fertilze them , but you will have great flowers and plants. my buddy went to walmart bought some , planted them in his pond, now he's sorry he didn't control them , that was 3 years ago. you start them any time the water is starting to warm up, cut them back in fall , put below ice line and leave them for winter. thats why their called hardy.it's work to control them and you have nice plants, better than having a pond you can't fish.
 

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Zabel is quite right. I have 2 hardy water lilies in my pond. They are in the deep section and winter over without a problem. I also have a water lotus which is dropped into the deep area for the winter.
 
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