“They are all gone! Literally, every single one!” Have you ever woken up to your panicked partner starting at an empty koi pond which used to house thousands of Rands’ worth of gorgeous koi?
We all want to enjoy the beauty of a koi pond with those effortlessly gliding finned friends, but sadly, some of the local wildlife is also likely to enjoy your pond, albeit in a slightly different way.
We certainly have our fair share of predators here in South Africa. An aerial attack may take place from herons, kingfishers, cormorants, or even a determined hadeda. A ground strike is less likely to be the neighbourhood dog, but more likely a mongoose, wild cats, certain snakes and even clawless otters, depending on where you live.
Whatever is feasting on your fish, you need to act to make sure that your koi pond doesn’t become the local sushi restaurant for your resident predators.
Deterrents and Protection for Your Koi Pond
One of the cheapest and easiest solutions is to cover your koi pond with netting. Granted, it doesn’t look beautiful and may detract from the overall aesthetic that you were going for, but it’s a good choice. Perhaps use it at night or seasonally depending on the problem predator.
If you have a minimalist koi pond with very little in the way of hiding places for your koi, then you’re providing the perfect situation for “shooting fish in a barrel” – so to speak. They’ll be easy to see and even easier to catch. Logs, rocks and water plants provide shade and protection for your fish when they need it.
Scarecrows, or decoys, are also an effective and cruelty-free option, and when positioned correctly and moved often can work a treat. Another (fun) option is a sprinkler which fires a spurt of water when triggered.
If you’ve spent thousands on the perfect koi pond, then keeping it safe will be a priority. Try out these options and let us know if you have any other ideas.