A clever pond design uses properties of water and gravity to run using minimum power. A circular pond is ideal because it has no dead space and has equal distance to all ends from the center. However, this shape is not aesthetically pleasing. But you can use shapes of many popular pools that have no sharp corners.


Rectangular and true L-shaped ponds offer more volume but have sharp angles where water movement is minimum. One can create water movement by installing return inlets or suctions in such corners. You can also have custom shapes by combining any of these shapes. Remember to have a deep end that is at least 4-foot deep so your Koi do not suffer from sun burn or freeze to death. Also, deeper the pond, less algae and predator problems.

A Koi pond must use 2 different water circuits operated by 2 different pumps. This is to prevent Koi deaths in case of a pump or filter failure.

In one circuit, water drawn from the bottom drains, goes through mechanical filters, The filtered water then passes through bio-basin. A pump installed after the bio-basin returns part of the processed water to plant-basin, UV and the rest to pond via top return inlets. Water from the plant-basin returns to the pond as a water fall or through top return inlets . The top return inlets in the pond should be at 1/3 the height from the top of the pond. Spacing and number of return inlets depend on the depth and shape of the pond. Generally, each return inlet must have a flow rate strong enough to create water movement in the pond. The goal is to make all areas of the pond has water movement. Make sure to install extra inlets where you suspect dead space.


For example, if a pond is 3-foot deep in the shallow end, the top return inlets will be at 1-foot depth from the top. If the deep end is 6-feet deep, the top return inlets will be at 2-feet depth from the top.

In the second circuit, a pump draws water from the skimmers, pushes it through a different mechanical filter. Filtered water passes through a UV sterilizer and returns to the pond through bottom return inlets. Bottom return inlets must be installed at a height of 1/3 of the pond depth from the floor.


For example, if a pond is 3-foot deep in the shallow end, the bottom return inlets will be at 2-foot depth from the top or 1 -foot higher than the floor. If the deep end is 6-feet deep, the bottom return inlets will be at 4-feet depth from the top or 2-feet higher than the floor.

In the bottom drain circuit, water from the bottom of the pond is drawn, filtered and returned to the top of the pond. Skimmer circuit draws water from the top, filters and returns to the bottom of the pond. Both circuits help pond water mix well. If the pumps are strong enough to circulate the entire pond volume in 2 hours, you can expect the De-nitirification to complete in 4-6 hours after feeding Koi. In such a pond, Koi can be fed every 4-6 hours.

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