Grass carp in the garden pond: size, growth, attitude and nutrition

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Grass carp in the garden pond: size, growth, attitude and nutrition: size

The grass carp is also known under the name White Amur and is one of the freshwater fish. He can reach both a stately size and a considerable weight and therefore needs sufficient space in the garden pond. Both the conditions in his habitat and the care must be right, so that the fish can feel comfortable. In addition, not too many specimens may populate the garden pond.


The grass carp belongs to the white fish and is not related to the other types of carp. The White Amur bears the scientific name Ctenopharyngodon idella and is a much larger fish than the normal inhabitants of the garden pond. Therefore, a species-appropriate environment is urgently needed so that this fish species can feel comfortable in their new habitat. If the garden pond turns out to be too small, the grass carp can eat up all the plants. This circumstance must be observed before purchasing. Its original home is the grass carp in Asia, from China to eastern Siberia, where it can be found in the rivers and lakes. Meanwhile, this species of fish is also spread in Europe and America due to human influence. However, due to the low temperatures in the local garden ponds, there is usually no natural increase.
  • Mostly algae eaters
  • Laughs only at constant water temperatures of over 20° C
  • In this country, the fish usually do not multiply by themselves
  • Population is very easy to control and keep in check
  • Form large and silver scales
  • Dark outline of the scales looks like a net drawing
  • On the back is yellowish-green to green-black color to see
  • Silvery-white shades form on the ventral side
  • Becomes on average 5-11 years old
  • Extremely long-lived specimens are even 21-33 years old
  • Strong and pronounced tailstalk
  • Tail fin has significant indentation
  • Blunt muzzle with slightly lower mouth


With the size of the grass carp there are large fluctuations, which are directly related to the habitat and the care. The warmer the water in the garden pond and the higher the food supply, the bigger the fish becomes.
  • Average orders of magnitude are 50-80 cm
  • Maximum sizes are 120-150 cm
  • Long and slightly rounded body
  • Slightly flattened at the bottom
  • The maximum weight is 40-45 kg


Grass carp - Ctenopharyngodon idella

The growth of grass carp depends on the appropriate food supply and the prevailing climate. The more food the animal finds and the higher the water temperatures are, the more and faster the fish grows. There is also a strong dependence of the size of the fish species on the size of the respective water body.
  • Growth in the first year is on average over 20 cm
  • By the seventh year another 10 cm per year will be added
  • Rogner develop significantly faster in weight and length
  • Exceptional specimens reach up to 1.5 m within 5-6 years


The name grass carp has been given to fish in the local latitudes, as it is an algae and herbivore. It was first introduced in Europe a few decades ago to prevent over-growth of the plants in natural waters and in managed ponds. Smaller specimens feed much less, and the losses caused by predators, such as herons, are much higher. Since the animals also feed on plant residues, the water in the garden pond should not be completely cleaned by a filter system. Depending on the water temperatures, fish can eat up to the same amount of their own body weight daily in the summer months. The colder the temperatures, the less the animals eat. If the other fish in the garden pond are also fed, the grass carp eat the fish food and neglect the plants afterwards.
  • Represents few claims to its habitat
  • Prefers warm waters
  • Even temperatures over 30° C pose no problems
  • Can withstand cold temperatures too
  • In the normally large garden pond 1-2 pieces settle
  • For natural ponds, the stock depends on the weeds
  • A grass carp medium sized enough for 100-300 square meters of water
  • For very large fish, plan for fewer specimens
  • For smaller copies some more
  • Create suitable underwater planting

garden pond

The preferred habitat of the grassy stock are quiet and deep rivers, with a warm water temperature. In addition, the fish also settles in warmer lakes and ponds. Therefore, the water temperature in the garden pond must not be too cool, so that the animals feel comfortable.If it is a flowing water, then the grass carp populated above all quiet places in the altars, to save power. Due to the considerable size of the domestic garden pond should have a certain depth and spatial extent, so that the fish have a sufficient amount of space. Only if the grass carp a sufficient space can be offered, these should be purchased.
  • Grass carp are very sensitive to the environment and its conditions
  • Is only partially suitable for garden ponds
  • Prefers warm water temperatures between 21-26° C
  • Needs generous space in his living space
  • Necessary is pond with depth of at least 1-2 meters
  • Pond circumference should not be less than 10,000 liters
  • Need high oxygen content in the pond
  • Too low oxygen content of the water causes stress
  • Regularly check the oxygen content in the garden pond
  • If necessary, additionally generate oxygen
  • Install vents, fountains or waterfall
  • Regularly observe fish behavior for abnormalities
Tip: If too many fish live within the pond, it may happen that the grass carp jump out of the water due to their nervousness. If this is not noticed in time, the fish will die.


For the White Amur, proper nutrition is especially important. Unlike the other fish in the garden pond, the grass carp should not be fed exclusively with fish food. In theory, the fish do not need additional food as they only feed on plants in their natural habitat. But there must be a sufficient supply of plants within the pond. The more grass carp in the garden pond, the higher the probability that the existing planting will not be sufficient. In this case, the fish need additional green fodder, which can be obtained either from the garden or elsewhere from nature. If the white amure does not find enough food then the fish at the edge of the pond try to use it. With an excessive occurrence of the fish can change the underwater world of the pond completely by his Kahlfraß.
  • Fish larvae initially feed on zooplankton
  • From the size of about 6-10 cm feeds primarily on aquatic plants
  • Preferably soft plant species and seedlings
  • Duckweed, hornwort, spawning herbs, reticulated algae and duckweed are very popular
  • But also like rushes, reeds, sedges, cattails and water plague
  • In rare cases, fish spawn and worms are eaten
  • Hungry animals try to find food outside the pond
  • In case of lack of plants, additionally feed fresh grass
  • Cut off some of the lawn with secateurs
  • If necessary simply throw it into the water
  • From this, the fish are sufficiently full
Tip: When water lilies grow in the pond, the presence of grass carp often leads to the decline or even disappearance of beautiful plants. Who wants to prevent this, should not settle too many copies.


Grass carp - Ctenopharyngodon idella

For the grass carp, the cold season is a major problem. Only at a corresponding pond depth is the White Amur hardy. If the garden pond is in higher mountain areas, then wintering in this area often becomes impossible. When the pond freezes completely and for a long time, the animals often die. Although the fish do not need as much food in the winter months as in the summer months, the sensitive animals need a lot of oxygen. In order for the grass carp to survive the winter unscathed, therefore, certain measures must be taken and the conditions in the garden pond agree. If the conditions in the pond do not fit, then the carp in the winter time are necessarily to catch up.
  • Pond may not be too shallow, minimum depth of 80 cm is required
  • Ideal are pond depths of 1-2 m for the habitat
  • In depth, the lower water regions do not freeze
  • Even under the ice there must always be liquid water
  • In frost, no layer of ice may form on the water in its entirety
  • Freezing certain areas on the surface can be prevented
  • In the specialized trade there are special devices for it

Diseases & pests

The grass carp can be both the carrier of diseases, and the host for parasitic pests. In certain viruses, the fish themselves do not fall ill and are only the transmitter, the infection is not to look at them. Once the viruses are in the water of non-drainable ponds, there is no chance of getting rid of the virus completely.
  • Carrier of Koi herpes virus
  • Other carp and above all roaches get infected
  • Leads to the death of most pond inhabitants
  • Even after several years, it can come to die again
  • Frequently transmits parasitic tapeworms

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