Whether you have a small garden pond for ornamental fish or a larger pond for weekend fishing, with careful planning and preparation, the stocking process is not that difficult. Below is a brief guide to the stocking process.
Before you introduce new fish into your pond, make sure that it is a suitable habitat. First, rid your pond of unwanted wild fish to ensure that your chosen fish do not have to compete for food resources. Next, remove overgrown water weeds. You can do this by hand or, in many cases, by applying herbicides designed specifically for fish ponds. Finally, it is generally recommended that you test your pond for parasites or diseases before stocking.
There are a wide variety of fish that flourish in ponds, from ornamental goldfish to rainbow trout. However, there are several factors to consider when choosing your fish. First, the size of your pond may limit the types of fish you can choose. For example, the popular ornamental carp, koi, is generally too large for miniature garden ponds. Additionally, climate and temperature are important factors in selecting suitable fish. Next, if you plan to introduce more than one species of fish, you must make sure that they can coexist peacefully. Finally, determine how many fish to buy. This depends primarily on the size of your pond. Overstocking your pond may reduce oxygen levels, leading to fish die off.
In most areas, you can find a fish farm, pet shop, or home gardening center that sells pond fish. There are also online stores that will ship live fish right to your home, though you should try to find a local seller first. For information and recommendations on fish selection specific to your pond size and climate, speak to a local professional.
Typically, new fish are packaged in water-filled bags. Float the bags on the surface of your pond in order to equalize the water temperatures. After an hour or so, allow some pond water to mix into the plastic bags. Then release your fish into their new home.
Your well-stocked pond will add another layer of vibrancy to your backyard or garden.