Get ready for an exciting fish rescue mission! In this blog post, we'll dive into the details of an epic adventure to save some beautiful fish from a neglected pond. Armed with our trusty equipment, pumps, and determination, we'll demonstrate the step-by-step process of saving these fish and giving them a fresh start in a new home. So grab your snorkel (or not, in my case) and let's get started!
KGTropicals to The Rescue:
If you've checked out our previous post, you'll know we recently had the opportunity to build a breathtaking backyard pond for our new friends, John and Lisa of KGTropicals. Now, let's talk about KGTropicals, which got its start back in 2011 as a fish breeding and retail company. Since then, it has blossomed into a one-stop shop for all things fish keeping. Their mission, as they put it in their own words, has always remained consistent - to provide the fish keeping community with no-nonsense, common-sense advice, and products that will help them thrive in this beautiful and rewarding hobby.
Not only do John and Lisa have a wealth of knowledge and experience when it comes to the fish-keeping hobby, they also just LOVE fish! When the time came to stock their new pond, they knew they wanted to do something special. Instead of going out and buying brand new koi and goldfish, they wanted to find fish that needed rescuing. We often receive calls from homeowners and pond owners asking if we'll take fish that are no longer wanted, and John and Lisa knew this would be the perfect opportunity to give some unwanted - and in this case, severely neglected - fish a brand new home.
The Neglected Pond:
We were called to rescue the fish from a pond that simply didn't fit the new homeowner's lifestyle. The water was murky and resembled pea green soup. The equipment was falling apart and the pond was overgrown with plants. It was clear that these fish were not receiving the care and love they deserved from the previous owners. But fear not, our hero, John, was ready to take on the challenge.
A Surprise (for John):
As we were about to embark on this fish-saving mission, we realized I conveniently forgot to bring waders that fit me. Looks like John, our brave friend, will be diving into the pond alone! The excitement and anticipation were building as we prepared to begin.
The Guessing Game:
Before diving into the pond, we played a little guessing game. We asked everyone to estimate the number of fish in the pond, with a twist. The fish had to be at least an inch long and be a carp (goldfish or koi) to be counted. Danny, our cameraman, guessed a modest five fish, John went with 21, and Julia, the homeowner, guessed 24. As for me, I dared to dream big and guessed 35 fish. Cast your guess in the comments, and let's see who gets it right!
Draining the Pond and Saving the Fish
With the water quality posing a challenge for visibility, we wasted no time in deploying the pump to drain the pond. Initially, we found ourselves scooping up debris, mud, and small fry and minnow. However, after a few heart-pounding moments, we finally captured our first huge koi! The incredible determination exhibited by this fish makes me think that it had encountered predators before. Its repeated attempts to escape the bucket had us covering it to ensure its safety. It’s very likely that a bird or raccoon has attempted to grab some of these fish. Sometimes I’ll even see a heron grab one, hold it in his mouth and try to take off, and he can’t so he just drops them right back into the pond!
Challenges and Discoveries:
Navigating through the pond presented its own set of obstacles. Large rocks lining the pond bed made it difficult to scoop the net across the bottom. However, our perseverance paid off when we discovered a colossal goldfish with a slight eye injury. Its battle scars told a story of survival against predatory attacks. The tally of rescued fish reached 12, but we knew there were still several more big fish swimming around, just waiting to be caught!
Preparing for the Journey
As the rescue mission took slightly longer than anticipated, we took precautions to ensure the comfort and well-being of the fish before transportation. Aerators were added to the tanks to provide oxygen, and a special product from Aquascape called Pond Detoxifier was added to the water. The detox chemical helps remove toxins from the water, as well as protect and repair the slime coat of the fish, which reduces the risk of disease and stress while handling. While the transfer was a significant change for the fish, we aimed to make it as smooth and safe as possible.
The Final Load and Road Trip
With all the fish secure in the tanks, it was time to load them onto the truck and begin the journey back to John and Lisa’s home in North Carolina. The aerators were in full swing, ensuring the fish had sufficient oxygen throughout the drive. Transporting fish over long distances can be stressful, but our team has previously managed similar journeys without any casualties. Still, we took every precaution to minimize any unnecessary complications during transit.
Our fish rescue adventure turned out to be even more challenging and rewarding than expected. John realized that it was a true rescue mission, diving into an abandoned pond to save these neglected fish. Stay tuned for our follow-up post about the grand delivery of these resilient fish to their new pond. Before you go, don't forget to let us know in the comments section how many fish you think were rescued and join in on the excitement!
About Easton Outdoors
We started out as the neighborhood lawn boys – a group of high school friends trying to make some pocket change. It soon became more. We realized how much we enjoyed landscaping. Over the years, we've transformed hundreds of properties, beautified countless landscapes, and made many homeowners proud. This has become our passion!