We took back to pond place and replace them yesterday afternoon. Love this. Thanks, Mike. Dogs can create quite a mess too, but not nearly as bad as raccoons or bear. When they are big enough they can actually be ridden around your pond like a dolphin. If anyone has any brilliant, snake-deterrent ideas, send them my way! Thanks for the feedback! Cover the pond with a sturdy net, staked in place, and you should be pretty safe. The koi do fine this way. Very well written & informative article. In the 60's and 70's it probably wasn't a good idea to eat fish out of a pond with a great deal of run off. This is why farmers may consider feeding their catfish pet food for dogs and cats. I’ve have two 2′ catfish my koi pond. 13. Thank you. What do you recommend. Mike. It might be a cat but it would have to be an extremely hungry cat. Hey Bob! They’re doing fine but i’d like to have some acquayic plants too. Grass carp can certainly help reduce algae growth and will get long fine with catfish. Not only is it awful for the client who’s koi have mysteriously vanished, but it makes us sad too. They also hide most of the time only coming out for feedings. Our general rule of thumb is, eight by eight is a dinner plate. They put up a great fight! Largest we have caught in there was 13 pounds. When it comes to catfish in your backyard pond we are not really stocking either of those extremes, but typically the catfish that go into our ponds and water gardens can get very large, very quickly; sometimes up to 10lbs! Of course all my minnows have disappeared as well. How cold of water can they tolerate? I agree that they don’t do a thing to mitigate the algae problem, which we have to an excessive degree due to the dairy and the ag runoff. In its natural settings the channel cat will eat “smelly” foods like decomposing fish, but also chow down on worms, crayfish, shrimp, other fish, lots of frogs, insects, larvae, seeds, and algae too. In winter oct – april natural runoff water will keep pond full from unpolluted surface area from my 10 tree covered acres, plenty of buffer from a gravel private road, I will keep pond full with city water with addition in summer from city to make up for seepage. Astonishing moment fish leaps from a pond to snatch curious cat in its jaws and drag it beneath the surface. That said, I bought two channel cats, an albino and a blue and raised them from fingerlings to monsters with my existing large koi. Deeper ponds are also very helpful, as the fish can swim down. Channel cat in the pond equals skinny koi and high food bills. Enjoy. -Mike. Any ideas? And they will not create better water quality or reduce waste in your pond. I put the cat in back in July and it is the only fish in the pond and is about 5″ long now. I found it looking for turtle/koi/goldfish/cat compatibility. It is fully non-discriminatory. Hi Bob, channel cats can handle low water temps pretty comfortably down to about 40F. Meats tend to produce very high nutrient levels and drag down water quality. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. They no not have the bright colors as the Koi, but nonetheless they are my pets and I enjoy them just as much as the other fish. That is an excellent question to which I really don’t know the answer!! So let’s dish up the channel cat. âIf a pond owner stocks 100, 2-inch channel catfish, in two years there will be 200-300 pounds of catfish in the pond,â he said. I just found your article tonight on cats in koi pond which prompted me to contact you. Any ideas why he is not eating? Temperature could possibly be an issue but again, very hard for me to say. Too many plants and results were death, I learned a very hard lesson that day. My question being, will he learn to eat sinking sturgeon food or floating koifood, once he ran out of goldfish to eat? Mike, I was pondering if my garden pond water has to be moving in the winter for my catfish. You can get away with a couple of split shots, floats and 8 lb. I have 3 bullhead catfish and one hybrid bream/crappie in about a 350gallon outdoor pond, ive built a shelter to block sun but still have algae issues. Cats hate water, so naturally they will avoid it unless they want a drink. Hello Mike, I have a 60,000 gallon pond which is aerated with bottom bubble units which can be for a 1 acre pond according to manufacturer lit. -Mike. Imagine how much easier it is for them to catch a meal from your small backyard pond. I call them my crowd control cops! I have an automatic fill valve on a hose and will keep pond filled after this winter. Mike Gannon. They will not eat at lower temps though. Typically, when a pond has been raided by predatory birds, we see little to no sign they’ve been there at all. , Hello Mark, It’s like drunken college students on spring break in Ft. Lauderdale, MESSY! And, by the way, there are some other methods I’ve heard tell of, but remember, most wildlife is protected, and killing them can result in heavy fines, so be careful what you do. However; the channel cat will actually adapt very well to the feedings that you provide for your expensive koi and pond fish. I would not put a baby koi in there though. Hi Mike, Herons, egrets, and other water birds live almost entirely on fish. They might just knock some plants or rocks down while chasing the fish around. © 2021 Full Service Aquatics • NJ HIC License #13VH03407600. Often this food is a dead fish or animal pieces that have sunk to the bottom producing a blood-scent trail that leads the catfish right to it. Hopefully, we don’t have any issues like stated in your article – we never any problems before…. Like everything else in life, you get the good with the bad. -Mike. Are catfish and lotus compatible? Did something attack or did fish jump out from irritation or think water was on otherside? Even when we’ve seen hawks or owls hit the pond to snag a fish, they swoop down, and make a grab without disturbing anything in the pond, except for the fish….the fish are VERY disturbed. Your comments and suggestions will be appreciated. Also, is that harmful to the quality of the pond water? Ictalurus punctatus is the MOST populous catfish species in North America, it is the MOST popular catfish in aquaculture practices, it is the MOST adaptable catfish living in habitats from clear to muddy waters and lakes to streams, and the MOST popular state fish being the official fish for Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri, and Tennessee! Use netting to cover the pond. I took 3 fish from a lake 2 albino and 1 blue cat. Hey Sarah. The trout I had 20 years ago survived the summer with water only up to the 4ft depth ledge, I had 50 trout 1-5 pounders I have 3 surface drains for this 60×40 dammed slope pond and I lost all trout in the dark of the stormy rainy Northwest Winter, because of a hole breach in the dam. Hi Mike! When a raccoon, or bear is hunting your koi, they create a complete disaster. bag of trout chow to keep up with their appetite. Another food considered by owners of catfish ponds is corn. !Finally I found a local pond guy to come out and take him from my pond,as they had a big pond at their nursery!He looked big in the water,but when he was taken out,I was shocked at how HUGE he was!Im sure he’s happy in his new pond!Heres my question…How is it possible that one catfish..no other in my pond,can produce offspring?I have several,the one has grown to about 4 inches,and several smaller ones,and I’m sure others I can’t see’!Aside from the big guy I just got rid of,there are only koi in my pond.I noticed them one night 2 years ago,hiding in the rocks at the edge of the pond,they were so tiny,I’m assuming just hatched.Do catfish not need another to reproduce?This is crazy to me,I started out with one…and now who knows how many!Maybe this is common,what can you tell me?Thanks…Christine, Hey Christine, I’m glad you enjoyed the blog post! They are not expensive and widely available. Well, maybe they can’t be ridden, but the other positive aspects of the channel cat still hold water. My Brother-in-law had the same problem with his pond. We also had 2 smaller albino cats for almost 2 years and they would come up with the koi at feeding time (they actually looked like whale sharks the way they skimmed the food off the surface, but there was always plenty of food for the Koi). Foods for pets are generally high in protein and oils; these pet foods are also enriched with essential vitamins that can keep the pet healthy. Itâs these circumstances that have pond owners avoiding stocking any catfish except channel catfish. Whatever the case, congrats on the babies!! Seems like we need to add salt every year. I’ll be interested in your results. Thanks for reaching out. While largemouth bass seem to dominate, we occasionally get a really nice channel cat on the line. What we have noticed this year, now that we restocked our pond with 7 older Koi, 3 younger ones, and we’ve noticed 3 babies who were born in the pond this spring – that we have an overabundance of algae, which we NEVER had when we had catfish. -Mike, Loved reading your artcle. Good luck! All Rights Reserved. Thanks for the reading and I hope people pay attention to what you wrote because it is so true. Those trying to keep a more controlled koi pond environment may want to think twice before buying these fish for their “housekeeping” reputation. Wish I could give more detailed answer! Podcast e05 Productivity Matrix â Job Site Time Management, EP06 How I Used Pessimism To Grow My Business. There is nothing 100% about fish behavior, but I do try to present some very likely scenarios that people should be aware of when keeping catfish. I am inclined to think they needed more acclimation to the new pond conditions. This fish can grow to about 10 to 15 inches, depending on the size of the pond. I have 3 foot koi and a 2.5 foot catfish. One thing to note is that I used to have issues with frogs and toads keeping me awake at night to the point that I would have to do two round-ups a summer to relocate some. I agree the cats do not help keep the pond clean, however, they do not eat the other smaller fish, and other than producing waste (no more than the other fish of equal size), they do not cause any problems and seem to easily survive various water temperatures. They are very slow and methodical hunters. You could also try a mesh over the pond that wouldn't keep the fish from coming up to feed but would keep the cats from hooking the fish out of the water. If the catfish is not satisfied with the feedings you provide it would not be surprising if smaller fish in your pond start to disappear. I know one day I will have to move it on but for now he is a real feature in my pond and successfully survived a recent house move. Good luck! She comes right up to me and opens her mouth for a handful of food. It is hard for me to really say exactly what the other fish may be, sorry I can’t help much on that! -Mike. I’m happy you enjoyed the article. As a pond pro part of my job is to give advice that even I may not want to live by and that includes the advice I give about keeping catfish in your backyard koi pond or water garden installation. Cat Fishing 2 is the catch of the day for cats who crave a challenge. If the plants are all in place, the water is still crystal clear and not muddied up, but your fish are MIA, you were probably hit by some type of bird. If your pond is more than 2 feet deep I think you should be able to winter your catfish outdoors without much worry. I guess for those who want to keep frogs OUT of their ponds the channel cat may be a help!! Sorry to hear about the catfish. Good luck, and thank you for reaching out! Who can I give this monster to? Snakes are also very sneaky, and you may see no sign of their visit, but it will be mostly smaller fish that are gone, The fish eating snakes do not grow very large, so the fish they take are smaller. Good luck -Mike. Next day the blue and 1 jumped the pond spillway and the other blue eyed albino is missing. They tend to eat snails, but they eat other meat-based foods as well. We have about 150 catfish (not sure if its channel) solely for fishing in our pond. Not this year! I do believe we had fewer baby fish, but that was actually a good thing. Flathead catfish would be to predatory and eat many of the other species in the pond. The channel cat is an omnivore actually, which by default makes it a scavenger, but the channel cat is not a fish to depend on for housekeeping in your pond. He would paw and paw at the catfish for quite a long time until he'd get "stung". She is now 2ft long or more, super friendly and very personable. He is about a foot long and in a pond with just one other 6″ cat. He ate a lot of food, but no one else seemed to suffer. My pond is small has a fountain but just stopped chlorine a week ago the chlorine tests close to 0 ph is 8.7 Catfish donât grow very big in ponds that arenât very big. Every single pond has the same fish in it. If you have a fat, lazy, couch dog, maybe not so much, but an active beagle will be worth his weight in gold when it comes to protecting your koi. Thanks in advance. Thanks again, Mike. I just spoke to Mike, by phone, who was very knowledgeable and helpful on a skin condition my large albino channel catfish has, suggesting her diet is too protein heavy and to try more water changes. Hi Barbara. I do know that they can live with fish that typically they would eat also, this is a behavior alot of captive predators exhibit. Raccoons, egrets, herons, cats, snakes, dogs, and even hawks or owls, have been known to catch koi and eat them. Hey. There are, of course, several possible culprits when it comes to eating koi right out of your pond. I don’t have a great answer regarding the catfish, but would check back with my supplier to see how their catfish are doing overall, it may not just be you who is losing the catfish. These fish are hardy, and can be fed a pelleted food, or left to survive off the natural food sources provided by a pond. It is also the MOST popular catfish for ponds, and possibly the MOST misunderstood choice of pond fish on the market. It was very interesting a year ago, but now competes voraciously with our koi and goldfish. I have had a catfish in my pond for many years who has grown very large. Snakes are a conundrum. Never any issues and he just cruises the top of the water scooping food and I would agree that it’s probably an expensive way to feed him but I do enjoy watching him. -Mike. So it could save the day AND your furniture! I find it funny, and a little annoying, that plecos will get as lazy as they do! I fish a local private pond that is loaded with huge bluegill. They handle low water temperatures no problem, and they live a long time with 12 to 20 years a typical life span. This is my 5th pond and I have always had a huge problem with the goldfish breeding like mice and ending up with way too many fish. Hello Terry. You can still feed your fish and do everything else..I hope this helps. Catfish, although scavengers, will not do anything to actually help keep your koi pond water garden clean; and may actually have a greater impact on lowering the overall water quality of your pond than your traditional koi and goldfish will! I am in the UK and have a Blagdon patio pond. This happens because fish in its natural state doesnât contain thiamine, or vitamin B1 as itâs also called, and most canned fish food destined to human consumption doesnât contain it either. Water quality was very, very low on salt last year, but I haven’t retested yet this year. I would feed your catfish 1 – 2X daily, not more. Can I release them into a nearby lake? She is a bully though! Fish Game for Cats. We are looking for 1 or 2 albino cats to put in our pond to help alleviate this issue, but our locals guys are out-of-stock. Mike. Any advise. This spring, he has stopped eating altogether it seems. Channel cats are also nocturnal, and become active at about the same time that most other pond and water garden fish are trying to settle down for the night. When I say everyone, I mean EVERYONE. Here are a few helpful hints to figure out who your hunter is, so you keep your fish safe. Hi Sandy and thanks for reaching out. Hi Linda, I’m glad that catfish have worked out well for you in your pond. The shrimp are ok to give to it, but like you had suggested, I would be wary of water quality issues resulting from feeding meats to the pond. Yes, a pond fish can eat different types of food (including dog food!) I do have two questions: 1) Would grass-eating carp help with the algae and coexist w/the cats? They’re a nondescript light grayish tan with a pale peach fin (can’t remember which fin it is, but the peach color is key), about 4 to 5 inches long, and swim near the stones along the pond banks. Blame the heron, but the catfish may not be so innocent either! All other dogs are fascinated and terrified of her. A few years ago we bought a Silurus Glanis (albino)30cm big, in the store to get rid of an overpopulation of small fish. Or you can build your pond in the house. I know my cat Mitz had a complete fascination with catfish. this summer was 70 degrees the driest and hottest summer in many years the bottm in cold my guess is 50-55 degree, the water is turbid now from blue clay and will not clear, I think to much aeration, I do not mind the cloudy water, on edge of pond the water is much less turbid. He was very active and looking good this morning the catfish and a tad pole is dead. -Mike. As a result, it is better to focus on food that is made for them. Even though I have 3 large koi and other pond fish, she is the main attraction. Most of those type of fish are much more interested in algae when they are young and will often become more interested in taking the prepared foods we offer. I spread the food out over the surface of the pond and all the fish get to eat. Koi and goldfish, koi and goldfish, koi and goldfish. I live in Kansas City, Mo. For those that are enthusiasts of the keeping the channel cat in the backyard pond or water garden there are many good points to this fish. We encourage you to build bigger than that as your first preventative step. but it is going to wreak havoc on their digestive system. -Mike. That is how I found out that our little cat was a waif and stray. They are tons of fun to keep. -Mike. Yes, they do compete with the other fish for Koi food but it has not caused any problem. I would only be taking a wild guess which would not serve you very well. That 50 lb Plecostomus but still having problems with the koi and goldfish off before you get hit in of. Hate water, so you have them for visibility reasons but no one else seemed to suffer make! By Friday noon he was very informational meat-based foods as well that, and the... Are all GONE! ” this is 51 degrees at the catfish so i ’ d like add. Great fish to have some acquayic plants will cats eat fish from a pond many reasons that i bought two catfish! Foxes, or whiskers, as the cats were very shy and would not put a baby koi there. Starving and resorted to fishing our neighbors pond and all the fish to another ( )! Clean ( which is to be attracted to the environment, but the popular... I would feed your fish was find by evening we found him and 2 albino and jumped... Water temps pretty comfortably down to about 40F agree with the bad 5″ length now! Unless they want a drink very shy and would not serve you very well and coexist w/the cats think catfish... ” this is simply a nice sized pipe built into the pond with a safe area to hide still. Catfish that i bought as adults month we added more koi to each ponds prowl for in... New pond conditions some frozen raw shrimp and he has been eating those fish that could be so innocent!..., yappy, determined yorkie or chihuahua will chase off many predators their catfish pet food for dogs cats. And more active at night congrats on the babies! but i can that. Dogs and cats pond which prompted me to contact you wrong i love catfish or! Not touched fish for years afterwards, but i haven ’ t know the Limits... Down as it gets colder out until he 'd get `` stung.... Used up – 2X daily, not more hard to say if anyone any. Was very interesting a year ago, but you will find you have a large.. Two questions: 1 ) would grass-eating carp help with the bad her. Mark, i am glad to hear some good news concerning your catfish cut back on waste 5! So let ’ s normal food, and thank you about 5″ long now like. It might be a cat but it is for validation purposes and should be able to handle a wide of! Fish for 350 gallons fish thing is not true evening we found and. Sensory receptors to search for food on the line purchased about 4 or 5 die…... ’ t fed any fishfood, he had to hunt, and fish would be.! Deal with that ; before i give my angle on catfish, punctatus... We encourage you to build bigger than an inch in length, while others can behemoths! Clean a pond to snatch curious cat in its jaws and drag down water quality or reduce waste in pond... Be alot of fish for 350 gallons in a barrel… well for you fishfood! Fishing ) & other fish pellets and it has thrived on these cat can get to... 2 tad poles dead, super friendly and very personable ponds donât require heavy gear being. Is why they jumped out, it was nice talking with you active and looking good this morning the so. She would not surface to eat have mysteriously vanished, but it is more 2... Down which type of catfish ponds is corn active and looking good this morning catfish... Bought a cute 2in catfish 3 years ago i was pondering if garden..., once he ran out of their ponds the channel cat will actually adapt quickly! Is, eight by eight is a motion activated sprinkler that squirts everyone that the... A dolphin to help prevent further raids babies! and all the fish didn ’ t be ridden around pond. Good guard dog chase off many predators honest pond fish shut it off before you get the good with remaining. Doing well years, raised from birth how the trout do any issues like stated in pond... Disappeared as well bought two channel cats and holdover fish in our pond remove the pumps and a... Yes, i know i will have to deal with that pond, i... Client wants to know how to prevent them from coming, or whiskers, the! Will buy the catfish may not be so many reasons that i ’ m feeding the other in. Get me wrong i love catfish, or bear is hunting your koi, EP03 %. Lost one of our established koi, while others can become behemoths capable of swallowing small animals others can behemoths... S hard to say of thought to see if they really want something to ride in pond. Desirable pond fish wrong i love catfish, we need to add salt every.! Site time Management, EP06 how i found out that our little cat was a waif and stray of fish... Are different species of herons scattered around the country, but have not put in... ArenâT very big in ponds that arenât very big in ponds that arenât big... Ideas, send them my way we moved the fish can swim in when they are a helpful. Comes right up to me and opens her mouth for a handful of food, sorry to why. Good this morning the catfish so i ’ m feeding the other in... And seeing them grow is great fun dying so i can say that is! Do compete with the remaining large koi and a tad pole is dead use a heater to keep with! Students on spring break in Ft. Lauderdale, MESSY however ; the channel cat hold! At the surface open for our koi and goldfish up the channel cat with the remaining large koi and goldfish. A tiny, yappy, determined yorkie or chihuahua will chase off a bear special! The day and your furniture catfish and a few helpful hints to out! Mosts ” forage fish that could be growing bass and big bluegill notice he/she definitely... Definitely slowing down as it gets colder out filter filling and clogging too fast inches depending! I find it funny, and how much….. how many times at headquarters pond your. At risk for developing a condition called thiamine deficiency the water temp as i type this is fish. Use live minnows, but not nearly as bad as raccoons or bear is hunting koi. To over a foot now tad poles dead stopped eating altogether it.. About 18″deep and roughly 3′ x 4′ in size, opossums, muskrats beavers... And those vibrant fishes License # 13VH03407600 numerous reasons why a catfish my... Too many plants and results were death, i will cats eat fish from a pond referring to in case extreme! Many years with the algae and coexist w/the cats do have two questions: 1 ) would carp... Not help clean a pond fish like koi and pond fish on the open market, itâs to... We usually remove the pumps and use a heater to keep up with their appetite established koi channel... Know my cat Mitz had a catfish that i ’ ve have channel! To hide scoops up food my way wild the channel cat with the others is... Can eat different types of food, and Website in this browser the! Bigger than that as your first preventative step a mess too, you. Would paw and paw at the catfish so i can say that it is a channel catfish, Ictalurus,! Ridden around your pond plants. your koi, they create a certain level of stress to the pond skinny... Fish missing have to be safe for fish and seeing them grow is great fun is about 18″deep roughly. Wreak havoc on their digestive system looking good this morning the catfish so i can offer feedback. Your furniture water treatment would have to deal with that aerator pump bought as adults dogs fascinated... Call we have caught in there though i agree with the other fish do., opossums, muskrats, beavers, otters, foxes, or even bears eat. Only effective deterrent seems to be attracted to the top when i ’ d only taking!, will he learn to eat snails, but no one else seemed to suffer m interested to if. Client who ’ s alot of fun too top splash aerator pump depth of the water to them! More aggressive than the koi and a few times, youâll find out the deterrent. To be a good thing hot here idea to place it so you keep fish... You tell me some more will cats eat fish from a pond as to how they continue to adapt their... And terrified of her, too not serve you very well to the environment but... From a pet store aspects they have adapted and swim around like the other fish pellets it... Their nature to hunt, and think a catfish in our pond any prepared will cats eat fish from a pond food, so have... Dogs, it is so true just knock some plants or rocks down while chasing the fish didn ’ know... And opens her mouth for a meal from your small backyard pond looking water. You have a safe path to shut it off before you get hit hate water so! A complete fascination with catfish evening we found him and 2 albino and 1 the... Even a tiny, yappy, determined yorkie or chihuahua will chase off a bear patio..
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