Project find the leak (posts)

Project Find the leak started on May 27th.

So preparation is going well. Been gathering tools and things we need this week for the drain.Bought a 45lt air pump, with twin valves so we can run two stones into the swimming pools. We’ve managed to borrow a filter and pump, but lot of good it will do without any filter bacteria, so getting some gel, just to be sure.Quarantine pond will be re-fiberglassed and all plumbed back in for a couple of the fish that don’t look so happy, I’m going to salt this for the extra stress and keep it heated.

Not going to feed after today, although that will kill me :(

The plan is to set up pools and have them ready late tuesday, so we can start the drain early wed morning, catch the fish and then our pond guy can come around wed afternoon. But might have to be up really early, there is a lot of water to get out.

Will post some pics as we go along. Lets hope for some settled weather and some good luck. Think we’ll all need it. Cost us a fortune without even starting yet.

May 28th
So the fibre-glassing has been done today. Looks very good, hopefully it will be enough to strengthen the vat and to stop any further cracks and leaks.Next job, pick up the second swimming pool from Mr M and then we can set them up for Monday to drain it and see where we think the leak is coming from.We need lots of dry weather and good luck.

May 30th 5pm

Hey guys,Well pool was set up this morning and filling with pond water for around 4 hours. Paul set a pump and heater, (with the help of Mr M) and we have two air stones in there.I have to say I’m not happy at all, we caught the bigger fish and have left the smaller ones and the sturgeon in the pond.

Salt bathed the new female which went okay. She never panicked like she did in Chris’s bowl.

But when we caught big boy, we had a smaller fish in with him which he squished. He also got his dorsal fin stuck in the net and the freaked out. Paul tried to free it and got sliced…. He did look better, now he’s worse than ever. Blood red again, and now he has open wounds as well, big red welts. :cry: We salt bathed him with the little fish for ten mins, and put him in the pool, I just hope he’s okay.

As for the main pond, well that is going to be a nightmare as well. Two of the side shelves have fallen in, so we’re going to have to try and move some soil from them, before we refill. It is just a big bubble at the side of the pond. I wish we’d never tried to find this leak. I have a funny feeling this is going to go real pear shaped and fast. The worst being the fish are now in un-filtrated water, and some of them are in unheated water too. At least my fish are used to it…

Oh boy, big can of worms…..

Keep you posted.

Well yep, nightmare.Hubby in the bath now. All the koi seem okay, no one has tried to escape, they’re all swimming around testing the sides of the pool… They look funny at you when you walk over, but Hoover and Sunny are already coming up begging for food lol. At least having some chagois in there will help them out. NO food though, daren’t with no filter.Have around fifteen of the smaller fish in the main pond still. They keep trying to get on the shelf, but struggle to swim off it. I think its dropped an inch from 5pm, will keep an eye on it before I go to bed. See how much it drops, not as much water in there now, so it should be really noticeable.


May 31st 4:56 am
Well,Awake at 4, up by 430. Just couldn’t sleep, worried about the little guys…. Anyway, no one has jumped out of either pool of pond. Sturgeon don’t seem too happy, but they don’t like not having any food anyway. So they’re stil trying to swim on the shelf.Which I have to say still has the same amount of water on it as yesterday…. So I really don’t think its the bottom drain now. I have no idea. :( There are several large rocks which sit just under the water level on the back side, by the waterfall. I really hope we don’t have to start moving rocks around there as well today…

All fish seem okay in the pool. Just tested for amonia etc. Think I might have to change some water in there today, because it looks dirty on the bottom already. Wow, don’t they produce some poop…. never see it in a dark pond. No wonder I’ve had to do the filter every day.

So I think the plan is to still let the water sit. Prob have to top up the pond today and get the filter running again. Not so sure how long the bacteria in the filter will be okay not circulating anyway, don’t want that to starve as well and have to start all over again with that as well… yikes.

Still worried over Big boy, he’s the only one who stressed, and looks worse than he did before he went in the pool. Even Pinky, my male shiro hasn’t gone pink and he hates being caught. Normally his veins pop in his head before you even get him in the net… So at least thats a good thing. Actually think the female shiro looks better this morning, she doesn’t seem as stressed at all. Maybe its because there are less fish… yada yada, I could talk all morning, I’m sure.

I will need a kip this afternoon. I’m supposed to be scuba diving tonight, will have to see how I feel. I’m exhausted.

Keep you posted, as usual, thanks for reading…


Hey everyone,Pond is almost empty now. Got Pauls friend coming at 5 for the two big sturgeon, then I am going to finish cleaning it and draining it. Fill it up again tonight and before we put the fish in hopefully with some dye or milk I’ll be able to see where it floats too, without the fish swishing it about.I really think it will take all night to fill. Can’t put the fish back in till I’ve let it run a bit and settle. Ph of the tap water is 7 and the pond is at 7.5 – 8 somewhere in the middle. Ideally I’d like to put the pool water back in the pond, but I don’t think we’ll be able to. I’m also not very happy that the liner is drying out, not good for pvc and some of the rocks fell in, so if we couldn’t find the leak, we have more now :(

I’ve been fishing in the pond today to catch the rest of the fish. There was no amonia in the main pond but now have a slight trace of it in the pool so I’m doing a small water change.

I think the only thing we are going to be able to do is fill it up, and hope that we can save for a new liner and quickly. Would like it all done before we go on holiday, but I don’t think we will. Needs more time off work and I don’t know if I’ll get any without pay, I guess I’ll have to ask.

Oh well, roll on 5pm so we can finish off today and then get it filled up again.

Speak soon, will keep you informed…


May 31st 1056 pm
Thanks guys, your help has been very valuable. :)In both advice and support to both Paul and I.Plan is not to fill it, to re-seal bottom drain. At least it eliminates that from the equation. To fill it up tomorrow try the blue stuff and I guess see it it leaks. Think I might need filter starter again. Not so sure how long the bugs in there will last with no food. Bit like the hungry fish that went to Pauls friends.

Apparently BOTH sturgeon punctured the plastic inner bags. Water everywhere, and only about 2 inches in the bags still when he got them home.

Grass carp and shabumpkin have eaten, but sturgeon haven’t might take them a day to settle.

Least nothing croaked on the way home… :)

Keep you posted.


June 01 2:27 pm
Hey everyone, well it isn’t the bottom drain, with the amount of water from the surrounding gardens in and under the liner it was like walking on a water bed this morning. But there was no water coming back in from under the bottom drain and there should have been if there was a leak.So, now we’re going to try and bypass the pipework underneath the water fall, and just pump it straight from the filter, that way if the water level doesn’t drops when it is full then the problem is under there, other than that, it is a hole somewhere between the bottom shelf and the surface.

A very steep learning curve.

Fish are starting to stress out now, some flicking today. Amonia level is .25 and the ph is 7.8 grrr, the more they stress the more amonia they produce. Talk about a losing battle. Well they’ve had enough and I certainly have, so they’re going back in tomorrow.

The QT vat is fixed, not leaking and is set back up, so Big boy and the new shiro are going in there for a while, prob a good few weeks, till they settle back down.

Scuba diving later, with no energy. This will be fun…. lol not…. I need a holiday.

Tired, Dawn

Indeed with 23 tonne of water on top of the B drain and pipework, it could have cracked. There isn’t an easy way to by pass that at all, and we’d still have no filter.Having to do a serious water change tonight, Ammonia is at 1.5, need to get it shifted. So adding fresh and dropping pob about a third, will add some more sansai later. Putting the fish back into main pond tomorrow at least there is 5000 gallon in there, don’t really want to put water which has nothing but high ammonia in it though, so will have to check the ph levels are almost similar tomorrow before moving them.Def putting Big boy and a friend in the qt tomorrow, we’ve been given something to use called Vikron, Would like to know more about it, but he said it is fab stuff. Guess it can’t hurt to try it.

Speak later,


June 02  9:23 am
Sorry couldn’t get back on last night.This weeks sure been stressful. Got an appointment at the bank today and then going to pick up a small preformed pond a mate doesn’t want. He’s got filter, uv pump and hoover for it. £50 so we’ll see what it looks like, then seeing as the main pond is nearly full, the koi are going back in. Ph is now same as the swimming pool weird hey. Comes out at 7 but overnight changed to 7.5/8 same colour anyway. So defo putting the fish in,Will be back on later. :)

Thanks guys,


So, pretty stressful day. For the fish and me. :( again.Got filter start for the main pond and the QT, put sansai in both and Dechlorinator in the main pond. Put all fish back in, except Big boy Mummy ghosty and the new shiro. They’re in good water in the QT, to get better eat and heal up…So now lets see what happens, going to fill the main pond to the brim and see if it drops over the next few days. We’ve eliminated two possibles, the bottom drain and the pipework, so we’ll see hey.

Post soon, and chat later. :)


June 07th 6:15 am
Hey there,Yeah well pond is getting green, No uv, and doesn’t seem to be leaking. We have some plans, but I’ll have to update them all later.QT has eggs in it this morning, and Big boy and the shiro are still at it. I think they’ll all be gone though when I get in from work. Bummer, but like Paul says we’ve no where to keep them at the moo.

Will see what I can do when I get home.