Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Frozen nights but warm Ranchu!

UK Ranchu Ponds

I have pushed on with my plans to start warming the ranchu gradually and things are going well. We have had a run of nights with temperatures below freezing recently. The lids and just a single 300w heater in each pond has kept the water above 9 degrees C, which was a surprise and also a great relief.
As the temperature continued to increase and went past 10 degrees C, the ranchu have began to respond to the change. Each fish appearing a little less lethargic and labored when moving.

Within the next 14 days i expect the temperature to be between 12 and15 degrees C. I will then observe the ranchu and expect feeding and water changing routines to begin again soon after. 

This spring,instead of warming the ponds up to summer temperatures in one continuous process,I intend to hold the ranchu ponds heaters around 15-18 degrees C for a while, allowing the spring sunshine (when it comes!) to increase the pond temperatures further at times, more naturally.

Let me know how your winter has been.

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Time to start warming things up!

The ranchu have now been at winter temperatures and unfed for several weeks. I now intend to begin very gradually warming them. I expect this process to take a further 3 or 4 weeks, before the ranchu ponds reach a temperature that i am happy to feed them at once again.

I had hoped we would have seen some snow and winter lows by now, but so far our winter has been mild, with only one sub zero night to memory. I expect this will mean snow and ice will arrive in the next few weeks, mid warm-up, meaning the heaters and pond lids will be put to the test once more, aswell as my wallet. 

In the last couple of weeks, i have made some modifications to the pond lids. We have had high winds recently, uprooting trees, and unfortunately the pond lids were also tossed about. Thankfully the ranchu were not injured. The lids have had more robust hinges fitted and also a latch and lock which i hope will mean i can rest more easy, regardless of the forecast. 

A mild day today saw the pond increase to 8 degrees C. All the ranchu look well, but i must admit im looking forward to cleaning ponds, warming and feeding the ranchu once again.