Disclosure: We may earn commissions if you purchase products after clicking on a link from our site.
Do you see the most ornamental pond fish in the communities ponds and wonder how to fish for koi? Koi is an intelligent and skittish fish. This ornamental fish is intelligent and skittish as they try to evade predators with their bright and colorful appearance.
You can also find wild koi in some parts of the country that are large and put up a serious fight when hooked. It can be challenging to catch as it is very alert because of predators. Koi is a member of the carp family and in this article, we will share information to help you catch wild koi.
Table of Contents
- 1 Koi Fish History
- 2 How To Fish For Koi
- 3 1. Baiting
- 4 2. Fly Fishing
- 5 3. Chumming
- 6 Koi Fishing Tackle
- 7 Koi Fish Behavior
- 8 How To Care For Koi Fish
- 9 How To Catch Koi In An Urban Pond
- 10 Equipment For Koi Fishing
- 11 Koi Fishing Tips
- 12 The Bottom Line
Koi Fish History
The history of koi fish goes back to the 1600s when they were discovered by Chinese fishermen. This Asian carp was highly revered for its bright colors and interesting size.
In time, koi became known across Asia and they were bred on a large scale by the Japanese. This breeding resulted in many more colors of koi fish.
Fast forward to the 1900s, European countries and the United States began large-scale breeding of koi. And they became a popular fish worldwide. The 1920s and 1930s saw a big boom in the production of koi and this has not stopped since those days.
How To Fish For Koi
Baiting is one way that you can fish for koi. Bread dough balls, earthworms, blood baits, stink baits, hot dogs, and corn are some of the bait used when fishing for koi. The corn is usually soaked in water for a few days to allow it to ferment.
After fermenting, anglers will dump it into the water to attract koi. This is done for wild koi that are found in lakes and other bodies of water, not the community ponds and lakes. The fishing methods used when fishing for carp can also be used to fish for koi as they are a member of the carp family.
2. Fly Fishing
Fly fishing is also used by anglers when fishing for koi. Anglers will cast their lines with the flies and leave some slack on the line. Set the hook and hold the line firmly when it starts to tighten.
Fly fishing is a more refined fishing method that is used by more experienced anglers as they cast flies and retrieve them. This is done continually until a fish is hooked.
Koi will put up a serious fight when caught and the slack will help keep the koi on the line. Pellet flies, bread flies, algae flies, moss flies, and glo bug areas are used when fishing for koi.
Chumming is another fishing method that is used when fishing for koi. In the community ponds and lakes, you will usually see kids and other families feeding the koi with food pellets and sometimes bread. This is chumming as the bait that is dropped into the ponds and lakes will attract koi.
It is always a dash for the food as there are many more koi than the food items dropped into the ponds. This is chumming and it is used to attract koi. When they are attracted to the food items, you can then drop your bait and hook them up.
Chumming is a popular fishing technique used by many anglers to attract fish closer to their location. It is effective when you just can’t find the fish and attract them to you with your bait. If all fails, anglers will resort to chumming to attract fish.
Koi Fishing Tackle
A light line and tackle will work well when fishing for koi. A 6-8 lb fluorocarbon fishing line will work when fishing for koi as it is almost invisible in the water and also strong. Additionally, koi will not see it and this will improve your chances of catching koi since they are very skittish.
Moreover, a small hook will work when fishing for koi. A small circle or standard j-hook in the #4 to #10 size range will work well when fishing for koi. As mentioned earlier, koi are very skittish and the presentation is important when fishing for them.
Slide the bait up the hook and onto the line. This presentation covers the hook with the bait and it will only see the bait and not the hook.
Koi Fish Behavior
To be successful when fishing for koi, it is important that you understand its behavior. Koi is a brightly colored fish that can be easily seen in the water even if it is muddy. Therefore, they are skittish and intelligent as they try to avoid predators.
Unfortunately many have become accustomed to humans as most of them were once in community pools where they were fed by humans.
You may be surprised that they may be attracted to you as they expect you to feed them with food pellets. This makes it easy to fish for some of them that may have been dumped into the ponds and lakes.
How To Care For Koi Fish
Koi can grow up to 36 inches long and can take up a lot of space if you will keep it as a pet in your home. They can live for more than 50 years and it will be a lifetime relationship. It is reported that koi can learn to recognize their pet parents.
Wild koi are often found in slow-moving water. To provide the best environment for them to thrive, you want to create that environment for the fish.
An outdoor koi pond that is at least 3 feet deep with about 240 gallons of water will be the ideal environment for koi.
Additionally, let the aquarium be situated in a quiet area and away from direct sunlight and drafts. Keep the aquarium covered to prevent evaporation, splashing and the koi fish from leaping out.
Moreover, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when choosing and setting up the filter. Always add beneficial bacteria supplements to break down waste. Regularly test the water. The water quality is very important.
The aquarium filter should be able to process all of the water in the tank 3 to 5 times an hour.
If the aquarium is inside your home, the water’s temperature should be between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Always have an aquarium light above an indoor aquarium to illuminate it for about half of the day.
Feed your outdoor koi about 4 times a day in 5-minute increments with store-bought koi fish food. Follow the instructions on the package regarding how much and when to feed the fish. If they are indoors, feed them with the right koi food to ensure they have a balanced diet to keep them healthy.
Have a veterinarian to contact concerning the koi fish’s care and health. They will give you the best advice and information about properly taking care of the koi.
Koi is temperature-resistant and can hibernate under ice in the winter. make sure the pond is at least 3 feet deep or it could freeze solid and be fatal for the koi fish.
Koi prefer cool water between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit when they live indoors.
Fish and aquatic animals can transmit diseases to humans. Always wash your hands with soap and water before and after you interact with the aquarium.
Senior citizens and people with immune-systems issues, pregnant, and children, should be very careful when interacting with koi fish and the aquarium.
Don’t bring the koi fish close to areas where human food is being prepared or where there is human food.
Don’t release fish into the wild. They won’t adapt well and may damage natural habitats. Always contact the right authorities if you no longer want to keep the fish or another animal.
Don’t use soap or detergents to clean aquariums or home decor as they are toxic to fish.
Always help children with the washing of their hands after coming in contact with pets, their habitats, or the aquarium.
When transferring new koi fish to the aquarium, float them in the water inside their bag for 10 minutes which will allow them to acclimatize to the new water temperature.
How To Catch Koi In An Urban Pond
When fishing for koi in an urban pond, you can use baits such as corn, bread dough, hot dogs, wheat, and other things humans eat.
They may be skittish in the beginning, but continue to feed them and then use your line with the hook covered by the bait for catching koi fish.
Additionally, you can also fly fish for koi in an urban pond. Algae, moss, pellet, and bread flies can be used when fly fishing for koi.
Don’t forget that koi is a bottom feeder and you can also target them by using bucktail jigs, spinners, hair rigs, and live insects.
Equipment For Koi Fishing
To safely catch this ornamental pond fish without injuring it, it is important that you have the right tools and equipment.
1. Koi Fish Nets
High-quality, soft-mesh koi fish nets work well to safely catch koi when you have it hooked and have reeled in close to you. Make sure to get the size of a fish net that will work for the average size of koi that you catch.
2. Koi Socks
Koi socks, also called koi transporters, are tubular nets that are used to safely transfer koi fish. The koi socks hold water and allow the fish to remain submerged while you transport them, reducing stress and minimizing the chances of injury to the koi fish.
3. Wading Boots
When catching koi in a pond, wading boots or sturdy waterproof shoes are important as they provide a better grip and stability as you walk through the water.
Koi Fishing Tips
- Koi is a member of the carp family and you can use the same techniques used to catch carp to fish for koi.
2. Chumming, fly fishing, bottom fishing, float fishing, koi nets, and baiting are fishing methods used by anglers when fishing for koi.
3. Koi are very skittish as it protects themselves from predators. Be quiet when fishing for koi. Avoid a lot of foot traffic.
4. Bread dough balls, corn, earthworms, blood baits, stink baits, and hot dogs can be used as baits when fishing for koi.
5. Pellet flies, moss flies, bread flies, algae flies, and glo bug areas are used when fly fishing for koi.
6. A light line and tackle will work when fishing for koi.
7. A small circle or standard j-hook can be used when fishing for small koi. A #4 to #10 size hook will get the job done.
8. A 6-8 lb fluorocarbon line will work well when fishing for a skittish koi. This line will be almost invisible under the water and this will help you catch more koi.
9. Wild koi will often be found in slower bodies of water. Look for them in lakes and local park ponds instead of river systems.
10. It is illegal to fish, buy, sell, or own koi. it is the only state in the United States that prohibits fishing of this fish.
11. Koi fish live at the bottom and will feed off the bottom of rivers and other bodies of water. Therefore, also use baits that bottom feeders will be attracted to.
12. Bucktail jigs, spinners, and live insects will be attractive to bottom feeders like koi.
13. Be quiet and stealthy when fishing for koi as they are very intelligent and skittish.
14. Koi nets and socks are also used when fishing for koi.
The Bottom Line
Koi is a brightly colored fish that is intelligent, skittish, a bottom feeder, and often found in ornamental ponds. It eats almost anything and you can fish for them using baiting, chumming, fly fishing, koi nets, bottom fishing, and float fishing.
It is a member of the carp family; therefore similar fishing methods used when fishing for common carp are applicable when fishing for wild carp.
Light tackle and small hooks are used when fishing for koi. Additionally, you want a good presentation that will hide the hook in the bait that gets catch koi.
Moreover, a fluorocarbon line will work well as it will be invisible to the fish and will improve your chances of catching koi. If you want to also learn how to catch grass carp, then you can read how to catch a grass carp in a pond.