An Unlikely Thief - Koi Predators
Koi carp keepers treasure their specimens and beyond sentimental value some fish can even be worth a small fortune! Maintaining a suitable environment for the fish to flourish can require significant investment, hard work and of course, some time. It's completely understandable therefore that it must be extremely distressing when your personal koi are stolen.
Unfortunately the myth that all koi are very valuable, means that many enthusiasts are forced to take security measures in order to protect their stock. This is another overhead for keepers to incur in pursuit of their hobby and it can be infuriating to know that your essential pond equipment may have to include security cameras.
The fact is, that those very cameras that you loathe having to erect, well, they can turn out to be quite useful in investigating any kind of disturbance to your pond and can even unmask a thief.
Just last week a grandfather with two ponds in his garden was able to identify a thief who had been raiding his ponds and killing his stock of fish. Kelvin Skyrme had discovered that several of his koi were missing. The disappearance of the fish followed another episode when he had found dozens of goldfish decapitated and floating in the ponds. He feared that he was being targeted by somebody with a grudge but had no idea who that could be.
Hereford man Kelvin Skyrme sets up secret camera to discover prized koi carp killer: Kelvin Skyrme (pictured)...
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A Thief Revealed
Determined to get to the bottom of his troubles Skyrme installed a secret motion sensing camera with night-vision capabilities. Kelvin was hoping to catch a thug red-handed but was shocked when he saw the guilty party on screen. There was in fact a wild otter on his property that was responsible for the sad demise of the fish. Mr Skyrme had been keeping fish for more than four decades and had never seen such devastation in all that time.
As Kelvin Skyrme lived in a suburb of Hereford and a mile from the nearest river, he had never considered the possibility that an otter could be responsible for what was unfolding in his garden. He had built up a collection of more than 40 fish that resided in two large ponds and after his discovery he was forced to cover both with netting to prevent any further destruction.
The nets that Kelvin Skyrme put in place clearly did the trick. Further inspections of the camera footage revealed that the only animals that had then visited the garden since were the local neighbourhood cats and a hedgehog! Whilst Mr Skyrme has been relieved to have secured his fish stock, he also found himself somewhat disappointed as he is an avid nature-lover and would have ordinarily been delighted to see the otter again. The lost fish were worth hundreds of pounds however, which rather took the gloss off the sighting of an otter.
If either your koi carp or pond equipment goes missing, it might not be best not to jump to any conclusions as to the perpetrator right away. With pond live-stock especially, you may not have actually been targeted by thieves at all. Should you be concerned about theft then it can certainly help to have photographs of all of your specimens, especially if they are of some value. You could also go to the length of adding a security mark to your pond equipment, just in case. Whilst this might not prevent it from being stolen, it could help you to recover it later or make a claim or report for its loss.