Just yesterday my wife and I notice several little babies swimming around in our pond. We have a 3400 gallon pond with 7 Koi - 8-10 inches / 4 Shubunkin and 2 comets. The babies are from a dark color to a transparent color with spots. Could our older Koi be mature enough to have babies? Either way we are mainly hobbyiest and have no harsh water conditions or problems with the pond but have a few questions.
What are the do's and don'ts to care for the new fish?
Can they live off the algae on the rocks?
Will the bigger Koi eat them?
We also have a bunch of plant life for them to hide, what percent survives and what is the growth rate?
How does it feel to be a koifather?
Koi mature enough to start spawning at about two years.
Your best bet as far as care for the sprats is to concentrate on maintaining great water quality and otherwise leave them alone. They'll do fine living off algae and debris in the nooks and crannies of the pond.
The larger koi will ignore them as soon as they are recognizable as "fish".
Depending on conditions and crowding, you can expect them to grow to about three to four inches in their first season. They can double or triple their size in the second year with optimal feeding and conditions.
Per cent survival varies. Once they are an inch log and free of predation, disease and poor water quality, 80-90 percent is reasonable.