Koi Club of San Diego

Volume 22 Issue 7



July 2022

We are looking for topic ideas and contact information for possible speakers for future Koi Club of San Diego meetings! 

Please email your suggestions/contacts to Will Vukmanic at obshen33@gmail.com.

July Koi Club of San Diego Meeting

July 10th, 2022

Social hour - 12:00 noon - 1:00 pm

Meeting begins at 1 pm

Potluck, bring your own chair

We are bringing back “Open Floor”! If you have any koi related issues or questions, bring them to the meeting! 


4319 Newport Ave

San Diego, CA 92107

Koi Club of San Diego Ponder Profile

by Lenore Wade, photography by Bill Newell

Will Vukmanic's Pond


Our host for the July Koi Club meeting, Will Vukmanic, was the luckiest kid in the world growing up. His parents owned a candy store, “Joe’s Candy Cottage” in Manhattan Beach. By the age of 19, he was a master candy-maker. He has had a fascinating life that has given him the chance to travel around the world.

In school, he was headed for pre-med before he de-railed that plan and moved to San Diego in 1984. Will spent 17 years pounding the pavement as a mail carrier. But, his true passion has always been healthy living. He is an herbalist, practicing both eastern and western plant medicine. By profession, Will is a retired acupuncturist, but he is also a classy chef who appreciates good food.

Will has owned his home in Ocean Beach for about 9 years. He has done much work both inside and out to make it special. When you first step into his backyard, you can fully understand Will’s love for nature and the good stuff that comes from that. His yard is not exceptionally large, but he has 21 flourishing fruit trees. Everywhere I turned, I saw a new one. There are 3 avocado trees, orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit, apple, apricot, peach, cherry, and pomegranate trees. There are six types of grape vines and a blackberry bush. He also has a 4 in 1 plum tree which, I believe he said, grows four different types of plums on one tree.

Yes, he has a koi pond, but it was first designed as a water feature, which was to have a bridge, to make his 9-hole miniature golf course more enticing. Remember, I said his yard is not very large considering all that is in it.

About six years ago, San Diego Pond and Garden helped him design the pond and encouraged him to make it for koi. Will contacted a Fung shui consultant to be sure that everything was in the proper order. (It is an ancient Chinese science which creates balance and harmony to living & work spaces, so that your life force energy or Ch’i (pronounced chee) flows, increasing your prosperity, health and happiness.).

The pond is 6x9 feet, holds 1000 gallons, and is three-and one-half feet deep. It is home to four much-loved fish. They all have names that you must ask Will about.  I will tell you that Gleason is “king of the pond” and knows it!

There is a full-sized shuffleboard game in the works. This means that you need to watch where you walk and be very careful not to step into a golf course hole.

Parking should be fairly easy along the street, and you need to walk up about 4 stairs to get to the back yard. If needed, there is a street-level access to the yard through an entry off the alley in the rear…no room for parking, but you can drop off a passenger. Don’t forget to bring your chairs.

Will is busily working on his front yard where he is installing a 3-circuit labyrinth (maze) along with a great variety of plants to invite the butterflies and birds.

Will also has a live-in tenant named “Miss Jackson”. She is a 23 year-old African grey parrot. She loves her freedom and not happy to be locked up. She talks and gives kisses and adds great joy to Will’s life.



The Koi Club of San Diego



Wednesday, July 13th at 7:00

(earlier if you are ordering food)


2691 Navajo Road

El Cajon, CA 92020 

Saturday, September 24th, 2022

9 AM - 3 PM

San Diego Pond and Garden

12257 Old Pomerado Road

Poway, CA 92064



Rodolfo & Bridget Bravo

Bill and Jeanette Newell



by Matt Rhoades

He’s The Man!

God bless Buck Buckles!  Again,,,,, And here’s the back story.  A few weeks ago, my sump pump in my filter pit wasn’t doing the job.  That morning, before running off to an engagement, I worked on making it better.   After washing down the sump tank (Attack of the algae maggots - another story), I took the pump out, cleaned and tested the pump to see its effectiveness.  I noticed that, even after doing a deep cleaning on the pump, it had lost a lot of its flow; so, I made the decision to buy a replacement pump, I made a note in my head to buy a new pump and fix the problem tomorrow afterwork; I was safe; the sump tank was empty.  The RDF (Rotary Drum Filter) “couldn’t” fill the tank with that much water (it runs around once a ½ hour), and I'd have this solved before anything happened… right?  I left to dress and get ready to go.

The next afternoon when I arrived home with the new pump, I came out to my pond. That’s when I noticed the water dripping from my garden hose that I had used to clean the sump tank.  I thought to myself “Why is that dripping?” Oh, I forgot to turn off the hose and it has been charged since I left the previous day.  The water from it was dripping into the pond.

“No problem”, I thought, “It’s like a slow-drip refilling the water from evaporation loss”.  But also, I noticed the sound of the pond pumps weren’t there.  I looked in my filter pit; problem.  Let me explain what really happened.  Because of a #w@e&ir4d 15 cent hose gasket missing from the hose; the hose dripping, the water dripped into the pond, the water level rose.  My RDF was/is set at the desired water level for my pond.  The water level was exceeded, so the excess water flowed into the waste chute of the RDF.  The waste chute is connected to a pipe that takes it to the sump tank. The tank is emptied to the sewer line by the sump pump; oops - strike that last line…Problem.

My filter pit was 2+ feet deep in water, front to back. My pump motors were submerged. The GFCIs had tripped. The RDF was tripped.  My UV unit (on a different circuit) had shut down due to loss of water flow.  I unplugged everything involved and broke out my 900 GPH sub pump to pump out my pit.  I was standing in front of my own creek without a paddle.  As my twisted mind turned numbers over in my head on what it would cost to replace two pond pumps, one water jet pump, and the motor attached to the RDF; I walked into the house to get my phone and call in the Buck-man.

After many minutes of silent meditation pondering the situation, the great one spoke.  He told me of others who had “Buried their motors” in the H2O and he was successful in bringing them back from the dead. He told me he would stop by Wednesday.  Before hanging up the Buck-phone, I told him that I’d have my son Cole standing by to assist (I’m still in the working world).  I went back outside to the pond, turned on the air, and then said a silent prayer for the situation outcome and the Buck.

When I returned home Wednesday afternoon, Buck and Cole were at the patio table; Buck elbow-deep in pond motors. Cole was silent (good strategy) observing.  I sat down and took up the cause (silently) for success. He had the motors standing on end, covers off, and working his magic.  His tools were various screwdrivers, a heat gun, and air compressor to blow out the water droplets from the pumps. Buck was successful in getting those motors back to working order. The two pond motors and the RDF motor have returned to service with little to no signs of wear. The spray-jet water pump is working, but has a replacement standing by, due to the bearing going out.  Another crisis, caused by me, was rescued by my dear friend.

I have taken Buck’s suggestion and installed a back-up sump pump (at pit-floor-level) to guard against this ever happening again.  A small insurance policy recommended by the man.

Welcome to the incoming President and Steering Committee

Lenore Wade is taking over as President.  I’ll be the VP of Venue. Will V. is the VP of Program.  Tamsie Pierce as the Secretary.  We are still looking for a Treasurer.  Here’s to a fun and successful 2022 year.

The July General Meeting

The next general meeting on July 10th will be taking place at Will V’s house in OB.  See you there

Wishing you a happy summer with your koi,

Matt Rhoades




by "Koi Jack" Chapman



Well, there has been more than the usual interest over the past couple months about feeding your koi so when I looked at past KHA Korner articles, I did a nutrition series in 2014 and 2018 so must be time to review/update and do a 2022 nutrition series which consist of three basic areas with the first being on protein and amino acids.  So, without further introduction welcome to an overview of protein and associated amino acid requirements in a koi’s diet. Protein is an essential element in koi food.  I think Duncan Griffiths explained it best when he compared koi key nutritional elements to a car’s engine when he wrote “Generally protein is for building cells and growth, whereas carbohydrate and in particular lipids are the energy to drive the engine, vitamins can be viewed as the spark plugs in the process.  Look at it this way ‘protein’ is the mechanical metal lump of a car engine and all what goes to maintain it.  The carbohydrate and lips are the fuel it burns to make it function. Last but not least vitamins are the spark plugs and injectors that make the whole process take place.”  There has been a lot of science and research into fish nutritional needs as they are raised as a food source for us humans.  From that research fish meal has proven to be the best available and usable protein source in koi processed foods – period.  For the science nerds – koi can break down fish meal into smaller amino acid chains than other animal sources of protein – so bottom line look for fish meal in your processed koi food.  It’s been said that below 25% protein in your koi’s diet will result in reduced growth potential AND yes you can overdue protein with the non-metabolized protein going out the vent and reducing your water quality and wasting your money.  Younger koi during the summer feeding can and do utilize up to say 55% protein, while adult koi are said to be able to process up to 40% protein and mature koi will only need 32 to 35% protein.  Yes, this will make you scratch your head for the average back yard koi hobbyist has a mix of aged koi in their pond.  I feed to the requirements of my younger koi and deal with the water quality issues appropriately and waste some money.   Fish meal also provides all the required 10 essential amino acids (arginine, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine) and another 10 or so that are broken down during metabolism by enzymes in the koi digestive track which is about 3.5 times as long as the koi, but no stomach.  If any of the 10 essential amino acids are missing in your koi’s (protein) diet then growth/reproduction will suffer and overall health status more than likely will be reduced.  Koi cannot synthesize any of their essential required amino acids.  Most plant sources of protein are missing one or more of the required 10 amino acids.  I’m cutting the science nerd part short in this area as most hobbyists are interested in the basics, but I can’t help myself and will cover protein-sparing as it can affect ammonia production within your koi based on the koi diet.  DVM Nicholas Saint-Erne explains it quickly as “Excessive proteins not needed for growth or reproduction are utilized as an energy source instead of fats or carbohydrates.  However, because proteins average 16% nitrogen, the breakdown products of protein metabolism are ammonia (NH3) and a small amount, less than 2%, of urea…  The ammonia is passively released into the water through the fish’s gills and can lead to toxicity if levels increase.  Non-protein energy metabolism does not cause ammonia production.  Fats and simple carbohydrates added to the diet have a protein-sparing effect in that they can be used for energy instead of protein, without increasing ammonia production.”  Subject for later article.  Also, appetite and efficiency of digestion depend on water temperature.  They increase proportionally with water temperatures until water temps reach the 80’s.  Growth rate, however, increases at a faster rate because koi eat more as temps increase and what they eat gets converted into tissue growth more rapidly at higher temps.  Please don’t forget to keep your opened koi food in an airtight container at room temp as air, sunlight, moisture and high temps all degrade the nutritional value of your stored koi food over time.  I suggest all your koi processed food purchases be consumed in 90 days if possible.  Well, I hope this is helpful the next time you look at the label on your next koi food purchase or even better if it encourages you to review any of the plethora of available info on this subject.  AKCA bookstore has a couple small pamphlets covering koi nutrition available to all or you can borrow mine.   Also, when you joined the club you should have received a copy of Healthy Koi Made Easy by DVM Jessie Sanders which has an excellent chapter on koi nutrition.  


Show Tank Storage Work Party

Official Guide to 8’ Diameter Show Tank Stacking


What Does It Take…

by Tamsie Pierce


This is not a description of cow tipping.  But it is an example of what it takes to restack the hard sided tanks used at the Koi Show. 



5 hours                                               68 degree temperature

30 tanks                                             1 pallet jack

9 dedicated Koi Club workers                1 bandaid

90 blocks cut                                       camaraderie

30 lengths of flexible PVC                     1  power screwdriver

1 flower patterned knee pad                 240 screws

lots of  elbowgrease                             1 shovel

24 pounds of ice                                  1 chop saw

400 yards of Visquine type wrap (think industrial plastic wrap)

1 water break                                      Time on Saturday, June 18


Unlike the aforementioned cow tipping, all tanks are identical in size and uniform in shape.  Much more similar in activity to nesting bowls in kitchen cupboards.  Only upside-down.  The goal is a steady stack that will unstack easily.  In other words, a safe stack.

This activity is best viewed as a team project. Directly related to team building. “A job well done” to be appreciated most the next time the show comes around .

Start with the basics – a collection of tanks. After division of labor, set one team to making the spacers to go between any and all two tanks. This involves the flowered knee pads, a powered hand drill with appropriate bit for the securing screws, a proper length of flexible PVC and blocks cut with the chop saw.  When all is attached into a loop, lay product on the upended base of the first tank, set the second one over top, settling it into place securely.  Rinse. Repeat.

When stack is approximately 6 feet in height, move to second pallet and begin second stack.  Wrap all completed stacks in black visquine (for sun protections as well as to secure stacks on pallet).  This activity is similar to wrapping up kitchen leftovers in plastic wrap (Saran wrap?) for refrigerator storage.

A big thank you to:

Greg Ruth         Matt Rhoades Julia Schriber

John Svelan                       Buck Buckles Will Vukmanic

Ben Adams Al Pierce          Tamsie Pierce




Notes from Koi Club of San Diego Steering Committee Meeting

Wednesday, May 11, 2022 by Tamsie Pierce

Members Present in person:

Matt Rhoades - President

Lenor Wade - VP Venue

Tamsie Pierce - Secretary

Al Pierce - Property Mngr

Jessica Lynch - Treasurer 

Jack Chapman - Health

Greg Ruth - Membership

Ben Adams - Member

Linda Pluth - JFG

Will Vukmanic - VP Program

Julia Schriber - Webmaster/Newsletter

Steering Committee Minutes for June

Koi Club of San Diego Steering Committee Meeting, Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Members Present in person:
Jack Chapman
Linda Pluth
Jessica Lynch
Matt Rhoades
Jill Rhoades
Ben Adams
Julia Schriber
Tamsie Pierce
Al Pierce

Meeting was called to order at 7:00 PM

Treasurer report was presented. There is a positive balance in the bank account. Questions and concerns were expressed on billing for show overnight security  Matt will follow through. We are not sure services billed for were provided.
Still questions on resolution of the non-profit status to be addressed later

VP Venue - June is hosted by Jamie Kaines, July will be Will Vukmanic, August, September and on are still open.

VP Program - Will Vukmanic absent. It was suggested we have Question and Answer panels at some upcoming meetings.

KHA- Jack Chapman reported not too many sick fish calls recently.  Some questions on feeding the fish. His advice is 3 times when water is at 72 degrees, 2 times a day when water is between 58 and 72 degrees.

Webpage / newsletter - Julia Schreiber thanked folks for the timely submission of articles for the newsletter.

There was discussion on tank storage, including costs for fencing and monthly space rental. A new contract with San Diego Pond and Garden will involve :
       no booth at the show
       no sponsorship
       $200 per month for space rental

   Go Daddy still remains a problem. Jessica has contacted Jerry Myers as he is on the contract. There are questions on the URL (website) and link to Go Daddy. Julia will try to contact Go Daddy for answers.
   The status of the club’s non-profit is still in discussion and research. Solutions are still being evaluated and will be voted on at a later meeting    
   Jessica Lynch will not be able to serve as treasurer for the upcoming year..
Resolution: it was agreed that we email current membership for options of show tank storage
Elections 2022 - the proposed slate is:
President - Lenore Wade
VP Venue - Matt Rhoades
VP program - Will Vukmanic
Treasurer - ?
Secretary - Tamsie Pierce

In the roundtable before end of meeting Greg Ruth’s emailed thoughts were shared on recognition for Jerry Myers work on the newsletter and website.

Meeting was adjourned at 8:37 PM

Koi Person of The Year 2022 Lenore Wade



President: Lenore Wade   


First VP-Program: Will Vukmanic


Second VP-Venue: Matt Rhoads


Secretary: Tamsie Pierce


Treasurer: Open




Show Chairman 2022: Matt Rhoades


Newsletter editor/

Webmaster: Julia Schriber


Membership Chairman/

Vendor Chairman: Greg Ruth


Koi Health Advisor/

Librarian: Jack Chapman


AKCA Representative: Scotty Yee


Club Historian: Dr. Galen Hansen


Property Manager: Al Pierce


Correspondence Secretary: Shirley Elswick


Japanese Friendship Garden Liaison: Linda Pluth



Koi Health Advisor/

Water Quality: Jack Chapman


Program Suggestions: Will Vukmanic


To Host a Meeting: Lenore Wade


To Submit an Article: Linda Pluth


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