There is little doubt that Evolution Aqua is one of the major players in the UK Koi market, and their products and brand are well recognised the world over by Koi hobbyists. Their flagship product, the ‘Nexus’ filter, can even be found running in a Niigata breeders’ Koi house.

The company started in the early 2000’s with the launch of ‘The Answer’ micro screen filtration unit.  My personal relationship with Evolution Aqua started soon after, I became the proud owner of ‘The Answer’ with serial number 50.

Soon after Kaldnes K1 biological filtration media became part of their product range, and the aforementioned ‘Nexus’ followed as a single unit solution to hold both ‘The Answer’ for solids removal, and K1 for biological filtration.

Between 2001 and 2007 I was a user of many Evolution Aqua products, some of which have been consigned to EA’s history, and others, most notably the Nexus and K1, which have become the backbone of the companies’ product range.

The last time that I visited Evolution Aqua’s premises in Wigan was early in 2005, I had been invited to visit and see the latest iteration of the Nexus unit, that being ‘The Easy’, utilising a bed of static K1 media in place of ‘The Answer’ for solids removal.  I became one of the first owners of that unit.

Last week, almost exactly 12 years later, I visited Evolution Aqua again.  The Nexus and K1 remain at the core of the company, however it has grown a huge amount in that time it seems and it was extremely interesting to discuss the past, the present and the future of the company, its products and the Koi industry as a whole with MD and founder Nick Jackson, Sales and Marketing Director Phil Jolly, Commercial & Technical Director Jasper Kuijper along with Chris Hickman and Jeremy Gay, who worked as editor of Practical Fishkeeping magazine before joining EA.


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On arrival at EA’s premises in Wigan what was immediately apparent was that rather more units were sporting the Evolution Aqua signs than previously.

Evolution Aqua Premises

Evolution Aqua Premises

The unit on the left of the picture above is the unit I visited a number of years ago, in addition there is now the far unit in the picture, home to the burgeoning range of EA aquariums, cabinets and related products, and also another unit behind the position the picture was taken from which is primarily home to the production of the companies’ ‘Pure’ range of products which carries with it a very pungent odour hence its isolation.

Twelve years ago the then relatively newly released Nexus was very much the main EA product, indeed at that time it came in just the 300 size.  Since then the EA range of products has expanded to effectively include everything required to build a pond, other than the actual shell of the pond itself.  Now there are EA water pumps, air pumps and UV units to complement the filters, as well as a full range of pressure pipe fittings and of course the hugely popular Eazy connectors.  The Nexus itself comes in 2 sizes and then there is the Eazypod, Cetus Sieve and K1 Microbead filters as well.  For full details of the range be sure to check the Evolution Aqua website – http://www.evolutionaqua.com – or download the  2016 Product Catalogue.  However, also be sure to carry on reading for details of some new EA developments coming your way soon!

EvoUV units awaiting shipping

EvoUV units awaiting shipping

EA Water Pumps

EA Water Pumps

EA Water Pumps

EA Water Pumps

EA Air Pumps

EA Air Pumps

Many EA products now sport a 'Manufactured in the UK' logo

Many EA products now sport a ‘Manufactured in the UK’ logo

Not only has the Evolution Aqua product range expanded over the last decade or so, so much more of the product range is actually manufactured in the UK.

Below you can see the assembly points for both the evoUV and automatic cleaning units for the Nexus.

Assembly point for EvoUV units

Assembly point for EvoUV units

Assembly point for Nexus automatic cleaning units

Assembly point for Nexus automatic cleaning units

Without fail, the most dominant addition to the main warehouse/factory unit since my previous visit is the roto moulding machine that is now used to manufacture all Nexus, Eazypod and Cetus units.  This unit turns some fine plastic powder into a Nexus 320 in just 42 minutes!  You can read much more about the process in this article written by Jasper Kuijper – http://www.evolutionaqua.com/acatalog/Nexus_manufacture.pdf.


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EA's rotary moulding machine

EA’s rotary moulding machine

EA's rotary moulding machine

EA’s rotary moulding machine

Mould for a Nexus 320

Mould for a Nexus 320

Nexus units and parts awaiting assembly

Nexus units and parts awaiting assembly

The manufacture of K1 and K1 Micro filter media is also all now done in house.  This of course means that EA can be sure of using the purest source material for making the media, and not using recycled plastic products ensures no risk of contaminants.

The machine below sucks in the source plastic, melts it, moulds it, cools it and chops it at a rate of several cubic metres per shift and at the time of visiting was in the process of manufacturing a huge quantity for supply to a large commercial fish farm.  K1 and the moving bed process is recognised for its effectiveness not just by Koi keepers but by the commercial aquaculture industry as well.

Extrusion machine used for manufacture of K1 and K1 Micro media

Extrusion machine used for manufacture of K1 and K1 Micro media

Extrusion machine used for manufacture of K1 and K1 Micro media

Extrusion machine used for manufacture of K1 and K1 Micro media

The 3 ponds below were a feature of the factory only first visit 12 years ago, in fact at that time they were testing the Nexus ‘Eazy’.  Whilst the ponds themselves haven’t changed, indeed the Koi that swim in them are essentially the same Koi as well, the oldest of which is now apparently 23 years old, the filtration has evolved along with the product range of EA, in fact arguably it has evolved ahead of the product range, this being the test bed of many ideas.

EA test ponds

EA test ponds

Nexus banner

Nexus banner

Last summer EA released the Nexus Automatic unit, effectively making the Nexus self cleaning.  The unit below runs one of the 3 test ponds, as you can see, along with an evoUV, and EA water and air pumps.  After my visit to EA I subsequently visit Tim Waddington at Quality Nishikigoi and Ken Wilkie at The Koi Collection.  Since the unit’s launch Tim has installed a number of clients’ ponds and rates them very highly, as does Ken who has one installed on his Nexus unit at The Koi Collection.  So, if you are after more information, or hands on experience of running the unit (although i’m told the biggest complaint is that it’s actually completely hands off) contact either of them, or both!

Nexus with auto cleaning system installed

Nexus with auto cleaning system installed

Nexus with auto cleaning system installed

Nexus with auto cleaning system installed

Nexus auto cleaning system control box

Nexus auto cleaning system control box

Following the launch of the auto cleaning system above, which can be retro fitted to both Nexus 200 and 300 series models, the latest development for 2017 is to have developed an automatic Eazypod system.  I’d heard about this system from one of the EA sales reps a few weeks ago, and indeed it was advertised in the latest Practical Fishkeeping magazine.

Eazypod with auto cleaning system installed

Eazypod with auto cleaning system installed

The current Eazypod Complete, including airpump and integral UV is available on the market for £525.  As I stood watching the demonstration of the unit which turned off the water pump, turned on the air pump, cleaned the media and then opened the automatic drain valve to waste it seemed great.  I expressed a concern about the drain valve staying open and the water pump coming back on with the potential disaster of draining a pond, but am assured the circuitry and failsafes built in would make this impossible, without the valve fully closed the water pump cannot restart.


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eazypod auto cleaning system control box and integrated air pump

eazypod auto cleaning system control box and integrated air pump

My only other question mark over the unit was that as clever as it was, surely it was going to be rather expensive, that assumption coming from the automatic ball valve on the drain.  It seemed like taking a little old mini and fitting it with a state of the art V8 engine.  When I was told the retail price of the complete unit, including airpump (which is inside the black box), and integral UV, would be just £695 I was simply amazed.  Without the UV it will be even cheaper at just £645.

Auto ball valve on eazypod auto cleaning unit

Auto ball valve on eazypod auto cleaning unit

Whilst the Eazypod is not aimed at the fully fledged Koi pond, there are plenty of instances where this would be an ideal unit for running a quarantine of smaller growing on pond at a very reasonable price point.  Later in the summer the automatic unit will be available as a retrofit to existing Eazypod owners.

Just a couple of weeks ago I actually acquired a second hand Eazypod to install onto the pond here at home in my mum’s garden, 1000 gallons with a pump fed filter.  That Eazypod will now be sold on, as it makes perfect sense to wait the couple of weeks until the automated system hits the shops and one of those will go on instead.

Eazypod awaiting shipping

Eazypod awaiting shipping

It was really interesting to catch up with Evolution Aqua and see behind the scenes of the company.  The Nexus range of filters which form the backbone of the company continue to develop and evolve with a changing market, and continue to do exactly what they did when they first came onto the market.  I would imagine there are more Nexus units running Koi ponds around the UK than any other make/model of filter.  Speaking to the guys at EA there is still plenty more innovation to come from the company whose tagline is ‘innovation in water’.

I mentioned earlier that Evolution Aqua had expanded into the aquarium market, and it would be remiss of me not to share a few pictures of a couple of display aquariums in the EA offices.

EA Marine Aquarium

EA Marine Aquarium

EA Marine Aquarium

EA Marine Aquarium

EA Marine Aquarium

EA Marine Aquarium

EA Aquascaped Aquarium

EA Aquascaped Aquarium

EA Aquascaped Aquarium

EA Aquascaped Aquarium

EA Aquascaped Aquarium

EA Aquascaped Aquarium

For more information of Evolution Aqua visit the EA website – http://www.evolutionaqua.com – or you can find them on Facebook at – https://www.facebook.com/EvolutionAqua/.


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There are many Evolution Aqua stockists where you can find the EA range of products on display to inspect them close up, and indeed many places where you can see the products actually running as well, including many Nishikigoi.Life advertisers.


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