Frequently Asked Questions

Should koi be kept in a pond or an aquarium?

Koi are bred to be viewed from the top, and thus while a sufficiently large aquarium can house koi, we believe it reduces the full experience you will receive as a koi hobbyist. Koi can grow around 2-3 feet long and thus requires a fairly large footprint, minimum of around 1000-1500 US gallons and height of around 3 feet.

How do I add fish to their new home?

For most fish, simply floating the bag and waiting until the temperatures equalize will suffice, we generally do not recommend using drip acclimation for koi. Warning: Never dump the water from the bag into your pond or aquarium. If there are already fish present in the pond, we advise quarantining the new fish before adding it to the main pond. New koi can have the tendency to jump in their new environments, and care should be taken with a secure cover to prevent nervous koi from leaping out onto the floor.

Can Plecostomus be kept with koi?

While it is enticing to add an algae eater to your koi pond, it is generally ill-advised to keep koi and plecostomus together indefinitely. Plecos can be kept with koi during warmer months but should be taken out during cold months; in vise versa, koi should not be kept in permanently warm water. It is also important to know that most plecostomus are omnivorous and may end up sucking the slime coat or inflicting wounds on koi if they lack sustenance. We have personally kept both genus of common plecos, Hypostomus and Pterygoplichthys with our koi during summer months with moderate to great success, particularly with the latter genus.

Can I release koi back into the wild?

It is often restricted and heavily dissuaded in many states and countries to release any captive animal into your local environment. Aside from the fact that koi are an unnatural manmade creation, carp are potentially one of the most dangerous invasive species to the environment. It is advised that unwanted pets are given a new home or given to pets stores that will take them in.

Are your koi imported from Japan?

While we do import koi from Japan, most of our koi listed on Goldorado Aquatics are domestically bred using Japanese lines. We always consider importing breeds of koi we currently cannot or have no intention of breeding.

Why are female koi more valued?

While male koi tend to have more vibrant and perfect patterns, they lack the sheer size compared to their female counterparts. However, this is not so much of an issue unless you are aiming to win a grand championship prize in Japan.

How long do koi live?

Koi or Cyprinus carpio can live as low at 15-25 years and as high as 100-200 years. We are not entirely sure on the criteria needed to the path of an ancient 200 year old koi. But if kept in properly filtered clean water and given good diet, your koi will likely live a considerably long and healthy life.

What do koi eat?

Like many carp species, koi are primarily herbivorous eating mostly vegetables and other plants. This makes keeping plants like Water Hyacinths (Eichhornia crassipes) may be quite challenging if the koi take fancy to its flavor. They will also consume protein-based diet like shrimp and worms, but when in doubt, quality koi pellets will give your koi everything they need. However, like any fish in the aquarium trade, a varied diet will improve the quality of life and health of your animals.

Do koi have predators?

Koi are susceptible of being predated by animals such as raccoons, otters, and fishing birds. Even adult koi too large to eat can be mortally wounded by a bird’s beak. Barriers should be considered if your pond is mysteriously missing fish, but be sure to check your local laws to avoid harming protected species before attempting deadly forms of protection.