It had been a great summer with club events to visit eleven member's ponds that have all been very well attended. To mark the end of the summer, for our October meeting we returned back to the club house in Dunstable for our monthly club night.
The night started with the "Judge it for yourself" for all the members to review all the koi that have been entered into the Summer Garden Show. This is the third year of the garden show and ove 200 koi from 14 member's ponds were entered. BKKS Judge Gary Pritchard will be presenting the actual results in our December meeting but this gives members a great chance to
- See everyone else's koi
- Put their koi appreciation to the test
- Understand which breeds are part of which show variety
The second item on the agenda for the night was Bob Grinyer's annual koi quiz.
The first few questions were all related to identification of koi breeds which gave everyone a nice start. This easy warmup was followed by parasite identification. Fortunately for the quiz but unfortunately with my experiences this year this was another great round for my team! The final part of the quiz focused "living water" with question varying from the 'nitrogen cycle' to the 'temperatures of anaerobic alley'. This certainly generated a large amount of discussion when we ran through the results. Many thanks to Bob for putting all this together.
Finally was a presentation by Craig Emery on the tough and stark reality of KHV (please note Craig's pond nor anyone's at the club has had KHV).
During 2014 there have been a number of KHV cases in the UK. This has included a dealer who imported an infected koi from Japan and a number of hobbyists including serious koi keepers on the show circuit.
This weather this summer with the extraordinarily hot April - May, cooling in June and then heating up again for the rest of the summer has been a natural form of heat ramping. This heat ramping is used by dealers within their quarantine systems to bring out these health issues. From the images presented it was clear to see the rapid damage that took heathy pink gills to completely white and destroyed in a few weeks.
The summary and clear message from this presentation were the following best practices,
- Don't take fish (koi of otherwise) from local lakes and add them into your pond. This was the cause of on case in Hertfordshire.
- Know your koi dealer and understand their quarantine system.
- Have a quarantine tank (however small) and use it before adding koi in with your prized pond.
Next month (12 Nov 2014) we have Mark Davis from Cuttlebrook Koi Farm (http://www.cuttlebrookkoifarm.co.uk) visiting the club to give a talk on Koi Genealogy starting at 19:45.