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Koi Club of San Diego

Volume 23 Issue 5



May 2023


by Lenore Wade

Our April meeting was rewarded by beautiful weather and the kind hospitality of Robert and Weiben Schmidt. More than 35 members came to see the pond and fish of our host family. It is extra nice when so many

members can spend time together.

Our May meeting on the 7th will also be at the home of new members. Jeff and Donna Kane live in Carlsbad and will be opening their home to us for the first time. If I am remembering correctly, the pond was built last year. I hope to see many of you there.

As president, I would like to welcome Jill Leach to our board. She has offered to take over the position of Membership Chair. Greg Ruth, who served the club, through fat and lean years, has decided to spend some time travelling with his wife in their new RV. We send him on his way with great thanks.

May is the month that we start the nominating procedure for the coming year. The club is hoping that more of you will be willing to step forward to help with the running of the club. We can’t thrive if new blood isn’t infused into the process. We each come with our own thoughts and ideas, so please think about throwing your name into the pot so that at the June elections you can join us and help send the club forward for another year.

The board is actively working to restore the club to our non-profit status. The board recently appointed Julia Schriber as Financial Review Chairman. Julia has worked hard in getting the paperwork prepared to be submitted. It is not an easy job having to cull through years of forms and papers to make Sacramento happy.

The Koi Club will have a table at the Cuyamaca Garden happenings on May 6th from 9 to 3. We will have information about the club to share and, as always, there will be stories to tell. You might want to check it out.

The club is always thinking of new options that would interest the club members. We are thinking about sponsoring a road trip to Barstow Koi in September. Please let us know if it interests you. More follow-up will come.

As president, I also agreed to keep the fundraising table in good order at the meetings. But it isn’t something I can do alone. Yes, I can always bring bags of Koi food, but more is needed from you. I have emptied my drawers and cupboards, so now I need your help. It is fun to re-gift.  Bring treasures from your garden to share, or samples of your crafty handiwork. Everything is greatly appreciated. For every item you donate, you will be given a free ticket.

Time to feed my fish, so I will sign off with hopes of seeing you at the May meeting.

May Koi Club of San Diego Meeting

May 7th, 2023

Social hour - 12:00 noon - 1:00 pm

Meeting begins at 1 pm

Potluck, bring your own chair

If you have any koi related issues or questions, bring them to the meeting! 


Jeff and Donna Kane

7330 Las Brisas Ct

Carlsbad, CA 92009






As announced at our August meeting, we are looking for a member who can help us at the Japanese Friendship Garden on Monday mornings around 8:00am. Before there was a koi pond in the upper Garden area there was grass. That’s all. We suggested for years that we would take care of the filter system if they would build a koi pond which would become the central jewel to the Garden (there was no canyon Garden at the time). Norm Meck of our club designed the pond (with a few modifications) and Voila! we have a koi pond. We have been taking care of and cleaning the filter system since 1999 really as a community service to Balboa Park. We would appreciate any help even if you can’t commit to every Monday. Being able to lift 35-40 pounds is necessary to open each section of the deck where the filter is located. AND you get to pick the brain of our KHA/Show Entrant Chairman, Koi Jack, who has been overseeing the fishes health since 2005 along with our Membership Chairman/Show Vendor Chairman, Greg Ruth.
If interested, call me and leave a message at 619-200-4146 and/or email me at

Linda Pluth
Japanese Friendship Garden Liaison

Koi Club of San Diego Ponder Profile

by Lenore Wade, photography by Bill Newell

Jeff and Donna Kane

Carlsbad seemed so far away when I set out on Tuesday afternoon, boy, was I wrong.  It is not a bad drive at all. So, I am sure all of you will be anxious to meet Jeff and Donna Kane (and their 11 fish) at the meeting on May 7th. 

Delightful is an “old” word, but it fits this couple so well.  I felt 

and welcomed at their beautiful home with a yard that overlooks La Costa Country Club, as well as Batiquitos Lagoon with the ocean in the distance.  They are looking forward to spending time with you.

Jeff had a dream and a plan for his pond, which he executed well.  The pond is about a year and a half old and has a stream of small waterfalls cascading to the main 4500-gallon pond.  There are not a lot of fish, but like mine, they all have names.

The couple have been married for 39 years, and have lived in their home about 37 years where they raised their 2 children; son, Nick and daughter Alex.  Neither are married, but Sophie, the friendly 15-year-old dog, loves all the attention she gets.  She ambles around well even though she is blind.

Jeff was born and raised in the Long Beach/Lakewood area of Los Angeles before coming south to become an “Aztec for life” and settling here.  He has been in real estate for over forty years and is currently president of Coldwell Banker Commercial Real Estate.  He deals with commercial properties, hotels, office buildings, and apartment buildings over a 3-county area.  He stays continuously busy, but loves his job.

The amazing Donna is a flight attendant with over 49 years of service with Delta.  She still works a couple of flights a month on international routes.  She started out with Northwest Airlines in the Chicago area where she was born. Her job moved her to the Seattle area before she came to San Diego.

Having airline privileges, you can imagine how much they have loved to travel over the years.  Jeff said they go to Maine at least once a year, if not more.  It is an area where they love spending time.  I asked where they have not been and would want to visit and their answers surprised me.  Jeff would like to spend time in Scotland and Russia.  (He is of Russian heritage.)  Donna wants to trek around Iceland.

Please read this next part carefully.  When I drove up, I took Leucadia Blvd off of the 5, and followed it when it became Olivenhain, then Ranch Santa Fe.  I then went through a maze of 7 more streets until I reached my destination 25 minutes later.

Jeff gave me simple directions when I left which only took me 7 minutes to reach Interstate 5.  He e-mailed me, today, with these directions for you to follow.

  • Take Interstate 5 to La Costa Ave (Carlsbad)
  • Proceed east on La Costa Ave. approximately 4.5 miles to Esfera Street
  • Turn Left on Esfera Street and go about 4 blocks and turn left on Fosca Street
  • Proceed 1 block to Las Brisas Ct. and turn left
  • The Kane’s home is at the end of the cul-de-sac  --  7330 Las Brisas Ct, Carlsbad, CA 92009.

I look forward to seeing you on the 7th with your potluck dish and goodies for our donation table.




Wednesday, May 10th

at 7:00 pm

(earlier if you are ordering food)


2691 Navajo Road

El Cajon, CA 92020 

View in Google Maps

In Memoriam 

by Peggy Milfeld – Inland Koi Society

Koi keepers everywhere have lost a Friend and Mentor, by his own admission, an incurable fish geek, who had a long-held philosophy regarding our shared interest that bound him to the rest of us: “It’s a hobby and has nothing worth going to war over.” Simplified, that attitude became his signature and byline for Koi Organisation International (K.O.I. or KOI, Inc.), of which he was a founding member ~ “If you’re not havin’ fun, you’re not doin’ it right!”

Spike Cover and his sweet bride, Ginger, joined IKS in 2009, but he was also a member of several other koi clubs, and enjoyed being a speaker/presenter at club meetings, koi and veterinary seminars. He kept an extensive personal library which e used to teach himself about koi health and disease, and he applied his knowledge to articles written for KoiUSA, Nichirin, Nishikigoi International, and various club newsletters.

Fish were part of Spike’s life from age three, when he had goldfish in a tub. He graduated to guppies and bluegill, tropical fresh water fish in more and bigger aquariums. By his mid-40’s he was ready to start a koi pond, but it took ten years to complete it and get serious about the hobby . . . and retire!** His pond was a 3000-gal system with prefilter, two 300-gal up-flow rock-gravel-sand filters, two ¼ hp Lim pumps, and a 50K BTU natural gas heater. He had a 500-gal heated quarantine /hospital tank, and kept about 25 koi sized 16"-26".

By the end of the 90’s, Spike was involved with the AKCA (Associated Koi Clubs of America) and served as head of its Scientific Committee for the next ten years. During that time, he planned, staffed and founded AKCA’s KHA program, serving as Program Director, course-writer, and instructor in Anatomy, Physiology, KHA/Hobbyist Interface, Labs, and KHV; for five of those years he served as Director of AKCA’s Project KHV, writing a com-prehensive KHV status paper; identifying and vet-ting research projects including the ongoing ~$80K KHV research project at Oregon State University.

In 2009, Spike looked beyond the faltering AKCA and joined with others as a founding member of K.O.I., the on-line group of international expert hobbyists who promote the fun side of koi keeping by teaching all aspects of the hobby — including all the good science behind keeping healthy koi and a successful pond. He was a writer and instructor, and continued being a speaker for various clubs.

**Spike retired to “fun” from a career built on his 1963 B.S. in Mechanical Engineering (he graduated and married the same year). For the first 10 years he worked in Aerospace, playing with guns, missiles, bombs and aircraft hydraulic controls. The next 22 years, he worked in the Biomedical industry, playing with dialysis equipment, extracorporeal (heart bypass surgery) products, ophthalmic products, peripheral IV catheters, working his way up through consultant, engineer, project engineer, chief engineer, VP of R&D, President & CEO, and finally entrepreneur — the best part of it all.

We have not heard yet of services for Spike. If you would like to, cards may be sent to:

Ginger Cover

24612 Acropolis Drive

Mission Viejo, CA 92691

A note from Phyllis Spoor

Passing on information from Carol, a friend of long time club members Kay and Clark Corbin:

Kay and Clark will be interred at Riverside National Cemetery across from March Airfare base on the 27th of April at 1pm. Their will be military colors. About a 15 minute ceremony.

John and I visited them in the hospital and nursing home before they died. 


Brett Morey and Karla Prieto


Jeff and Donna Kane
Justin Ly
Scott and Jennifer McCardell
Greg and Sharon Ruth
Ken Sinclair and Sharon Zelin


by "Koi Jack" Chapman

Spring/Summer Feeding & Pond Maintenance Plan 

So now that pond temps are generally above 63 and even some approaching 70 have been reported – What’s a koi hobbyist to think about?  Like most years I am guilty of feeding too much too early and koi poop watch tells me to cut back.  With that in mind, I thought I would give you some things to think about concerning koi nutrition at this time of year.   If not already done it’s a good time to review your feeding plan for spring and summer.  I feed once a day when morning pond temps reach 58 degrees (lower protein levels) and go to twice a day when the temp reaches 68 degrees.  I also raise the protein (38/42) content at 68 degrees.  Then at 72 degrees I start moving to my summer feeding plan and go to feeding 3 times a day.  Yes, when my pond gets to 76/77 degrees I’m feeding 6 times a day – think auto-feeder if you are not available.  Well my pond temp this morning finally reached 68 degrees and I’ve started feeding my koi some additional protein in their daily diet.  After water quality, I think nutrition is the second most important thing you can do to ensure the health and growth of your koi.  You should be feeding your koi at least twice a day now and at 72 degrees you too can consider three times a day.  The quality of your koi food will have a direct effect on solid waste, nitrogen and phosphate levels in your water.  The digestibility of your koi food can be observed by the amount of solid waste you see in your pond (best time early AM).  Non digested koi food or uneaten koi food left in the pond will lead to increased oxygen demand; additional ammonia-nitrate-phosphate; decreased performance of filters; increase in microbial growth (some bad for koi - aeromonas); and even toxic hydrogen sulfide gas for some poorly designed or poorly maintained ponds.  YES, you can overdo protein (been there more than once).  The major source of nitrogen (Ammonia-Nitrite-Nitrate) for the average pond is protein found in your koi food.  For each gram of ammonia produced by your koi the pond and its filter system will produce about 4.4 grams of nitrate.   Carp raised as food fish are fed a diet containing 31 to 38% protein to max their growth with the carp’s metabolic capability to assimilate proteins.   Bottom line – If you feed your koi more protein than they can metabolize, it just passes through the koi and becomes part of the fecal material.  You pay a higher cost for food and the undigested protein reduces your water quality.  Don’t forget you have additional ammonia from any other decomposing organic matter in the pond and don’t forget your source water will also have some nitrogen products (be it low levels).  With raised phosphate levels in your pond the koi will do okay at first but algae growth may become an issue leading to conditions that can (depending on fish load) result in fish loss.  Koi require phosphate in their diet – but they have a harder time and reduced assimilation rates from fish that have a stomach (i.e. no production of hydrochloric acid).

  • Got to stop somewhere as this is a complex subject with multiple environmental issues that directly affect this subject matter so on to How much to feed?  Well, make a list of your koi and their individual estimated length.  Good to catch and measure a koi that’s in the middle for length in your koi collection as a go-by for other koi and go to the koi measurement chart.  Even a good thing to pick this time (or fall) of year to record the length of all your koi – should do once a year for good record keeping and evaluation of all the stuff you do with your pond and koi.  I personally do it in the fall so to record the results of the summer feeding schedule.  So once you have the total weight from the charts I do a 12% plus-up for females over 18 inches and a 12% reduction for males over 18 inches to get a more accurate total fish weight.  As anal as I am, I’ve not weighed each of my koi – but I’ve thought about it LOL.  So feed at 1% of total weight to basically maintain and maybe get very little growth; 2% for moderate growth and good health; and 3% for max growth and good health.  This is suggested for ponds with koi of multiple lengths and a wide range from smallest to largest and a range of ages.    The feeding schedules for same size and age is different and for another time.  For example, the above schedule for a pond with say 50 pounds of estimated koi total weight would be as follows: 50lbs = 800 ozs and 1% would be 8ozs of food daily - 2% would be 16ozs of food daily – and 3% would be 24ozs of food a day.  As a general statement, if your koi collection is mostly under 3 years of age, I would suggest the 3% plan and if mostly 3 to 6 years old the 2% plan and if mostly over 6 years old you could try the 1% schedule but I would never go below 1.5%.  The above is for processed koi pellet food.  I do not use it when temps are above 76/77 and I am augmenting my daily pellet feedings with usually two of the following on a rotating basis -- Manda-Fu with honey/red yams/edamame/krill/shrimp/silk worm pupa/and my home-made paste food for that matter. YUM YUM
  • The five-minute feeding time is a good general rule.  If you still see food on the surface after 8 minutes then think about cutting back on volume. 
  • Got any koi food (processed koi pellets) over a year old – get rid of it!!
  • Remember to keep an eye on the early morning poop watch.  If you see a lot of feces on the bottom of your pond then you are overdoing the amount and maybe the protein level and I suggest you cut back a little.  I use this tidbit (BIG TIME) to evaluate my current feeding schedule!!

So now that the spring/summer feeding plan is in place don’t forget that your water quality will deteriorate faster.  With more food you have additional ammonia to deal with and with the same pond parameters (filter capabilities), another year’s growth and maybe more koi than last year the rate of water quality deterioration will be shorter and you could exceed your filtration capabilities leading to koi health issues to include fish loss.  Good time to review your maintenance schedule and your water quality readings and if your test kits are more than a year old you should consider replacement.   Don’t forget your pond journal and recording your test results.    

I’ll close with the following thoughts for your consideration: 

Don’t keep more than 3 months’ food supplies on hand at any one time.

Keep all food in a cool dry place. (Very important)

Feed your koi a variety of food items (subject for another article).

Observe your koi eating habits. (Best time to observe mouth problems).

Broadcast food over large area (so the little guys can get some food).

For me, if all food is gone in 8 minutes, I’m happy.

Remove any food left on the surface after 10 minutes.

Keep the food out of any skimmer during feeding.

What about using an automatic or on demand feeder??

Can’t help myself - For the science nerd the feeding interval is:

    Interval = 40 times the square of W divided by T

                       Interval = time between feedings in hours

                                 W = body mass, grams

                                   T = temperature, C  

                       (RAS 2nd edition; Timmons; pg506)


Some of this you may have seen in past KHA Korner articles from 2014/17/19, but we get new members each year so from time-to-time I think it prudent to repackage/update and pass along some of the more core-type information for the backyard koi hobbyist and over the years I’ve changed some of the data points as the hobby updates and changes practices - which is a cool ever-learning journey to enjoying this hobby. 

r/koi jack

Notes from Koi Club of San Diego Steering Committee Meeting

Wednesday, April 12th, 2023 by Tamsie Pierce

Members Present in person:

Matt Rhoades

Greg Ruth

Jill Rhoades

Lenore Wade

Julia Schriber

Linda Pluth

Ben Adams

Tamsie Pierce

Called to Order at 7:10 PM

Lenore spoke about the shed clean out, a plaque for Phyllis Spoor that she found and has sent on to Phyllis, and several pins for the 2020 show she has sent to Ginger Herlihy.  She also spoke about the need to have members bring donations for the drawing table and mentioned the upcoming June elections.

The May meeting will have a date change due to Mother’s Day. That meeting will be at the home of Jeff Kane in Carlsbad. The Speaker will be Ben Plonski of Laguna Koi Ponds.

June meeting will be at the home of Jill & Matt Rhoades with a demonstration of how to catch and bag your fish.

May 6 will be the Spring Garden and Butterfly Festival at Cuyamaca College.  Our plans are to share a booth with the Water Garden Society with fliers of information about our club.

VP Venue reported that the July meeting will be at the home of Julia Schriber.    

A variation of the membership form was presented, however plenty of forms are on hand for the new membership Chair. Formal approval of the appointment of Jill Leach as Membership Chair was passed. Membership stands at 109.

Treasurer’s report was presented. Non Profit status is still working on the paperwork necessary for reinstatement. Membership income is up from last year due to raise in dues and merchandise sales (t shirt sales).

April 18 is Free Tuesday for the Friendship garden. A tancho in the pond was treated for illness, but otherwise the pond looks good.  A seine netting for the remaining small koi is to be scheduled.

Shed clean out - there was some discussion of the need to retain the assortment of pallets from the shed. Dean Strasser may need to keep the fish carts outside due to storage space.

New Business-With the passing of Spike Cover it was decided to have a short article on Spike Cover and his K.O.I. organization written for the newsletter. It was decided to contact John Svelan to write it.

Proposed, Moved (Jill Rhoades) and Seconded (Matt Rhoades) to approve Julia Schriber as Financial Oversight Chair.

Elections, per the by-laws, requires the new slate of officers to be presented in May by the Nominating Committee, elections in June and take effect July 1.

Koi Person of the year is to be nominated by the President.

Newsletter- Lenore Wade and Bill Newell do the ponder profile and photos for the upcoming meeting.

Matt Rhoades spoke to the possibility of making a road trip available for membership to out of area koi dealers.

Meeting was adjourned at 8:01.

Koi Person of The Year 2022 Lenore Wade



President: Lenore Wade

First VP-Program: Open

Second VP-Venue: Matt Rhoades

Secretary: Tamsie Pierce

Treasurer: Jill Rhoades




Newsletter editor/

Webmaster: Julia Schriber

Membership Chairman: Jill Leach

Koi Health Advisor/

Librarian: Jack Chapman

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

To Host a Meeting: Matt Rhoades

To Submit an Article: Linda Pluth

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