Common salt, Sodium Chloride (NaCl) is commonly used in the health care and maintenance of Koi for treatment of parasites. It will eliminate seven out of nine parasites that are commonly found in Koi ponds, but salt can also cause pond plant damage if it's concentration is too high. Maintaining the perfect balance of salt in your Koi pond is essential. Koi fish naturally have salt in their tissues that helps ward off parasites, which they have absorbed from the environment through osmosis. When salt concentrations are too low, fish can easily be infected by parasites as well as becoming dehydrated. When levels are just right, osmotic pressure is lower which allows the fish to save energy and its immune system to work properly to ward off disease.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What % of salt should I run in my pond?
We have been told everything from 0.1% all the way up to 4%. Just not sure how much salt. right now we are at about 1lb per hundred gallons, which has given us approx 0.1%. any advice is gratefully received.
A: Do not run salt in your pond at all times. Use salt as needed when needed. If you run salt all the time, three things will happen:
- You won't be able to use salt later for nitrite blocking.
- Your plants will never thrive.
- Parasites will become adapted to the salinity and will not respond when desperately needed.
With few exceptions, the amount of salt to add when you suspect it's needed is three pounds of non iodized, non mineralized salt per one hundred US gallons or 0.3%
Q: How long should I run salt in my pond?
A: Don't run salt in your pond all the time unless you're in retail. For retailers there's too much at stake NOT to run it all the time. For the average pond keeper however, running salt all the time is a continuous setback for plants and algae, and it creates an eventual immune-condition against Salt by various parasites which may become adjusted to it.
KoiMedic Salinity Meter
Salt Level Test Kit