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natural pond & nutrient problem

Discussion in 'Water Features' started by Mike Fronczak, Aug 25, 2007.

  1. Mike Fronczak

    Mike Fronczak LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 301

    We bought our house about three years ago it has a natural (man-madeI assume)pond, about 3/4 acre. When it is full it is 6-7 feet deep, currently about 3-4'. It is fead by both ground water & a drainage culvert from the other side of the street (runoff from farm fields). Each summer we have had a major problem with weeds (currently duckweed). It is so thick it looks like a lawn. We have had two fish die off this season, the first was about 2 dozen bluegills, now I have 6-12 20" carp floating with maggots all over them (It looks great). I had the soil & water people come out, I have excess nutrients was their conclusion. Their suggestion was to increase the buffer around pond (from 6' to 25', I don't fertilize curently with in 25' of pond only spray weeds, so that's a joke) & aeration, (all the aerators I have seen though are big money upfront & to run, & needs 8' or more). My firm belief is the nutrients are coming in durring spring from farm fields across street, I don't know how to stop it. I am at a loss, seriously considering starting to fill it in. I am going to call the DEC first to see if they have any solutions. Any ideas???
  2. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 863

  3. Mike Fronczak

    Mike Fronczak LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 301

    If I dam it up chances are it is illegal (DEC permit needed according to soil & water). I'm going to call the tow on Monday to see what they will do. There is an overflow, I would prefer they divert directly to that, the second on on neighors proerty (feed by overflow), looks clear. I refuse to do any thing (other than start filling) until they or I fix the problem (which I believe is the nutrients from across road).
  4. Fechmupbud

    Fechmupbud LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    Are you still looking for help, or is it sodded by now? I can give you some pointers, as I manage ponds professionally. It would problably be more useful to speak over the phone. The pond sounds completely eutrophic... The dead fish are most likely due to D.O. levels plummeting overnight - which is due to the excessive duckweed. The duckweed is thriving because the water is so still and highly nutrified. All these things say to me, YOU NEED AERATION. I'm not trying to sell you. Just help. I think for your application you should look at a diffused air system. This is similar to the bubbler stone you plopped into fish tank when you were a kid.

    1. You don't have to remove it from the pond in the winter.
    2. Can run it all winter long. (Will aid in aerobic decomposition)
    3. No electrical parts in the water. Worst thing that can go wrong is a check valve fails in the air tubing.
    4. Most efficient way to oxyenate water - most oxygen for your buck.
    5. Because it sits on the bottom, you get entire water column circulation, which means you don't have stratified layers a.k.a. "dead zones"
    6. The surface water movement will also help with the duck weed issue.


    Like I said, I'm just trying to help, not sell you. I don't have a business license in NY and am not interested (unless someone invents 34 hour days.) Send me an email if you want, I'd love to see you get it back in shape. Kevbeam@comcast.net
  5. Fishwhiz

    Fishwhiz LawnSite Member
    from Oregon
    Messages: 112

    You may work yourself into a catch-22 here. Without that enriched runoff, your pond will probably dry up since you are already losing about an extra 3 feet of water more than most NE ponds lose in a typical dry summer. Either the pond has a modest leak, is too large for its watershed or is fluctuating with the ground water table.

    You might supplement with a well, but you will want to ensure the quality of your seal before taking that step.

    It all depends on your budget. If a $1k aerator is not in your budget, it is unlikely you will want to invest in the rest of the fix. I'd suggest the aerator and tolerate the nutrient loading. If you attempt to do anything to clear that water up, you will be infested with submerged weeds within a couple years.

    Sometimes you have to pick your poison when the budget is tight.

    oh, and kill the rest of the carp. They will only exacerbate the situation in this type of pond.

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