Why Do Koi Fish Jump Out of Water?

Koi fish is an ideal pet for aquarium lovers as they are playful and friendly.

You will often find your koi fish swimming around excitedly, so much at times that you may see them trying to jump out of the water.

If you are wondering: Why do koi fish jump out of water? Read this detailed guide to find out.

Reasons Why Your Koi Fish is Trying to Jump Out of the Fish Tank

There are several reasons why your koi fish might try to jump out of the water. However, the majority of them are not a cause for concern.

It is imperative to understand why your koi fish is hopping out of the water so you can attend to it and take care of the situation accordingly. 

Reason # 1 – Your Koi Fish Is Having Fun

Like we said earlier, your koi fish trying to jump out of the water does not mean something is wrong with them.

Sometimes koi fish do this out of excitement as jumping is fun for them.

Many playful fish exhibit this behavior, so it is not something to worry about. However, as a koi fish owner, you still have to control and prevent the situation somehow.

If you notice your koi fish trying to escape the fish tank, the best thing to do is place netting or cover on top of your fish tank to avoid any accidents.

Reason # 2 – Your Koi Fish is Curious

If you have recently added a koi fish to your fish tank, it will swim around and try to explore the environment to adjust to it.

Your koi fish might be curious to find out what’s outside the tank and try to jump out of the water.

Moreover, suppose you have made visible changes to the fish tank and introduced new plants or decorations.

In that case, your koi fish might feel adventurous and try to explore the environment.

Keep an eye on your koi fish when you do so, as they may try to escape the fish tank during their exploration.

To prevent serious accidents, it is better to put netting on your fish tank or keep the lid closed when you are not around to keep an eye on your koi fish.

Reason # 3 – Your Koi Fish is Hungry

Your koi fish might act out when hungry, and hence you might find them trying to jump out of the water.

Note that koi fish are used to seeing food served from the top of the fish tank.

This explains why they might try to swim around the surface or jump when looking for food when they are hungry.

In addition, if your koi fish sees you near the fish tank, they might get excited about food and try to jump out of the tank in hopes of finding food.

This tactic is also to get your attention and lure you into feeding them more often.

You can control this situation by ensuring that you always hand feed your koi fish and keep a strict watch on them while doing so.

If your koi still tries to jump out after being fed, put netting and lid on top.

If you continue doing this regularly, your koi fish will eventually start behaving and avoid escaping the fish tank once they understand that this tactic is not working.

Reason # 4 – Your Koi Does Not Feel Comfortable in the Fish Tank

If your koi fish tries to jump out of the tank because they do not feel comfortable, it is a real cause for concern.

There could be various reasons why koi fish do not feel at home in the tank.

You need to ensure that the fish tank is spacious enough for the koi fish, so they feel comfortable inside it.

Moreover, look for signs of discomfort like hiding behind a toy or low energy levels.

If you notice your koi fish looking unhappy or aggressive with another fish, they will likely jump out of the water to avoid it.

You can also try adjusting the water temperature and adding more decorative elements inside, so your koi fish feels more comfortable in the tank.

Using a netting or lid on top is the fool-proof way of preventing accidents if your koi fish keeps trying to escape the tank.

However, the best solution is to transform your koi into another tank so that they feel more comfortable in their tank and do not try to escape it again.

Reason # 5 – Your Fish Tank Has Poor Water Quality

As mentioned earlier, if your koi fish does not feel comfortable inside the fish tank, it will try to jump out of the water. This could possibly be because of poor water quality.

You can verify this by getting a testing kit to check the quality of the water on the regular.

Higher ammonia levels or pH readings indicate that the water quality is not healthy or safe for your koi fish.

If the water quality is not up to the mark, you should immediately clean your fish tank and replace the water to ensure a safe and healthy environment for your fish.

Make sure you perform a water quality test every two weeks for the safe side.

If you still notice your koi fish trying to jump out of the water, you may look for other signs to determine the exact reason behind this behavior. 

Reason # 6 – Low Oxygen Levels in the Fish Tank

If you notice your koi fish swimming around the water surface and trying to jump out of it while gasping for air, it is a clear indication of low oxygen levels in the fish tank.

Your koi fish is not actually trying to escape the tank; it is trying to breathe and survive. This needs immediate action as it could risk your koi fish’s life.

Immediately transform your koi fish to another tank with high oxygen levels in the water so they can breathe easily again.

Moreover, you can add live plants or an oxygen pump to the fish tank to resolve the issue.

As an extra safety precaution, keep netting on top of your fish tank so that even if your koi fish tries to jump, it can always bounce back inside the water.

Reason # 7 – Excessive Chlorine in the Fish Tank

Excessive chlorine in the fish tank water can be harmful to your koi fish.

When you change the water in the fish tank and skip out on de-chlorinating the fresh water, your koi fish will most likely try to jump out of the tank for safety.

De-chlorinating your fish water is an important step you cannot miss; otherwise, it will put all the fish inside your aquarium at risk.

From chemical burns to breathing issues to fatality, the excessive chlorine content in the water is a severe health hazard for fish.

Therefore, ensure that you are careful about replacing and de-chlorinating fresh water to ensure a safe and healthy environment for your koi fish.

Reason # 8 – Your Koi Fish is Sick

If your koi fish is sick or in pain, it might try to jump out of the water to escape the pain.

If your fish is sick or attacked by parasites, you will notice a visible difference in their behavior.

This includes low energy, swimming sideways, swimming upside down, or jumping out of the water.

All these signs are a clear-cut indication of your koi fish suffering from pain, so you need to take immediate action.

Watch out for the above signs so you can get your koi fish treated before things get worse. If it’s a parasite attack, you may notice them clinging to your koi fish’s body.

As soon as you spot parasites on your koi fish, get them treated immediately before they try to jump out of the tank risking their life.

Reason # 9 – Excessive Sunlight Exposure

If there is direct sunlight exposure inside your fish tank, this may cause problems for your koi fish.

Excessive sunlight can cause sunburns on koi and force them to jump out of the water in hopes of finding relief.

Your koi fish might try to cool off by swimming closer to the water surface. If that does not comfort them, their next resort is to jump out of the fish tank.

Therefore, it is recommended that you keep some sort of shade in your fish tank to avoid overheating the water.

You can also change the position of the fish tank and limit sunlight exposure to ensure there are no skin burns or rash on your koi fish.

In case you spot any sunburns on your koi fish, immediately get it treated or take your fish to a vet if the injury is too severe.

The Bottom Line

Now that you understand why your koi fish is trying to jump out of the water, you can help resolve the issue easily.

Hopefully, this guide on ‘Why do Koi Fish Jump Out of Water’ was a valuable read for you.

If you have more valuable information to add to this guide, please share it in the comments section below.

Stay tuned for more informative fish blogs and guides.

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