Koi Rescue
Phoenix Arizona

My koi hatchery tanks

I have always wanted to be a fish farmer - so when I found out about these hatchery tanks I knew it was my chance to get into farming fish, even if it was just a very very small scale and only as a hobby.

The back story on the tanks is very interesting. There was a fish farmer and consultant named Ron Wulf. He lived both in Florida and here in Phoenix. He died and a storage shed that he rented was expiring, and his family did not want the contents. So it went up for auction - and nobody bid on it.

One of the regular bidders for storage units is a guy named Don. He had health problems and had severe limited mobility, and his doctor said the best cure would be regular exercise. Instead of working out at a gym, he started buying the contents of expired storage sheds and then selling off the contents. His excercise plan worked, his mobility was greatly increased from the bending, lifting, moving and was enjoying the treasure hunts through the junk. Mostly he would send the stuff to a guy he knew that has a booth at a flea market.

So Don being a regular auction bidder at the storage lot, the management offered to give the contents of the storage shed to him for free if he would get rid of the stuff or start renting it. He reluctantly agreed, thinking he didn't have anything to loose. There were tons of boxes of clothes and other random personal items, and many bottles of algaecide, some of which were broken and leaking on the floor. He started digging thru the boxes and in each box would find coins. Then more coins, and more... and after sifting thru it all, ended up with around two thousand dollars worth of collector coins and foriegn currency. Next he found an antique service revolver and some other items that turned this storage unit into a real winner !!

Among the stuff were a couple of aquaculture books, fish magazines, some technical notebooks, photo albums, and a diary. I acquired those with the hatchery tanks and read thru them. The diary was interesting, it was written by his girlfriend close to the end of his life. Not sure if was married before or had kids, but he seemed rather driven. He also was into reptiles and seemed to be breeding them.

In the photo albums, I found pictures of fish farms that looked like they were in Florida and others from what looked like the desert area here in Arizona. A couple of the photos had the hatchery tanks in them, and one photo shows Ron leaning over an aquaculture pond that had koi in.

When I brought the tanks home, I negotiated with my wife for a spot in the yard to put them and set about pouring concrete pads to put the tanks on.

Looking at the fittings previously on the tanks, they clearly were used before, but were just bare fiberglass and would release little bits of glass as I moved them around. So I repaired the previous plumbing holes, painted them, made covers to keep the birds out and fish in, and setup each tank with it's own filter. I try various filters to experiment, but mostly just use my combo barrel filter design.