Spring has Sprung
Info For Your Pond!
Q & A
to help you get Clean
water, Healthy Fish, Beautiful Ponds!
Choosing a Pond
As the temperature where we live is beginning to rise, we have
been noticing more algae. Since this is not our first
spring with the pond, we were already aware that spring brings
sunshine, rain, warmer temperatures and .... dah, dah, dah
dahhhhh... algae! Help!
Most ponds that experience a spring algae bloom do so because the
filter is not conditioned for control of the rapid increase in organic waste
levels in the warming pond. Active fish are eating more and putting out
more waste and ammonia, into the pond. Algae will colonize a pond with
rising organic waste levels in as little as 10 days. The best way to
control spring algae blooms is to ensure that the bacteria in your filter are
thriving and ready for the rapid increase in waste material as the pond warms
up. Clean your filter thoroughly and regularly. It is not a good
idea to simply add algaecide to a fish pond without a biological filter. Check
your UV Clarifiers and make sure you change the
season to keep them working optimally. Using
to treat blooms of aquatic algae can be a very quick and effective method as
typically kill algae fast! An algae bloom is to be expected in most ponds
in the Spring... this event is no cause for alarm! In fact, this bloom
actually helps protect fish from potentially high levels of
ammonia and nitrites. If the Spring Cleaning was adequately done and
the fish are not overfed, the explosion of green water will subside quickly as
the plants begin to dominate!
It seems like the deep freeze is over!! We bears are
thinking of coming out of our caves to take care of our ponds.
This task seems quite daunting!! What can you suggest to
make Spring Cleaning a bit simpler for us this season?
Welcome! We here in South Florida feel your pain (ha, ha!) We would
suggest a partial water change, perhaps as little as 20% if you prepared
properly before hibernating, or up to 50% if you notice a large accumulation of
dead leaves and other debris in the pond. 100% changes should not be done
on ponds with fish or plants. Remove any debris that you can see.
While the water level is low, check and inspect all equipment. Look for
liner damage, pump (housing damage, leakage) or filter issues (media, debris),
bulb mishaps and the like. Check tubing (kinks, holes), cables (fraying,
tears) and connections. Inspect plants... discard any that have perished
or weakened beyond salvation. Do not add tropical plants until temps are
expected to stay within normal range. Fish should be examined at this time
as well. They are probably sluggish enough to catch and check for
blotches, wounds or anything apparent. Then re-filling... a garden hose
trickling new water in over a matter of hours, or even days would be ideal.
Test your water levels. There are many
strips and kits available to assist you in determining if
dechlorinators or other
are needed. Once the pond is filled, circulation and filtration should be
resumed. Be careful not to give in to the temptation to toss handfuls of
high protein foods into the ponds for the fish. Much will go uneaten and
become food for the algae growth. There are
foods especially designed for the cooler water.
foods might be a good idea at this time, as you can see the uneaten portions
I have heard lots of mixed reviews on using additives to adjust
the levels of certain aspects of my pond (pH, ammonia, chlorine,
etc.) I have also heard mixed advice on how to use these
products. What is the best approach to using pond water
Indeed there are lots of additives out there and lots of
different manufacturers of similar treatments... where to begin?
Once you have determined what the issue is with your pond water,
take a look at organic answers... is your pond in direct
sunlight with lots of fish and plants? Perhaps you don't
UV Clarifier and should have one. Has your
media been changed and working optimally in your filter?
If it is
additives you seek, choosing the right one can dramatically
increase your ponds health. One thing for sure, DO NOT GET
CRAZY when selecting and using additives! Many products
are on the market under different manufacturers and different
catchy names. Many of them can be used for similar
issues... big thing here, DON'T OVER-USE, use them sparingly.
Take chlorine for example. Many pond people will recommend
doing nothing, and that over time chlorine will dissipate.
True, but how long do I have to wait? What about the "fish
killer" ammonia? Is there a remover for that? Yes,
of course... pH too low? There is an upper for that (and a
downer too...) Point is that if there is a problem, more
than likely there is a solution (or two, or three...) Get
the picture? Start somewhere with additives, but start
slowly and make sure to read the dosing and instructions
carefully... do I turn off the UV? do I remove carbon
media? do I have to aerate? Rely on the directions,
and when in doubt... ASK!!
have been thinking about getting a pond vac to help clean the
dirt and mess from the bottom of the pond. What should I
Pond Vac!! Indeed we have come a long way in the care and maintaining
of our ponds. Pond Vacs have come a long way too. There are some which
work on the strength of the pressure coming from your garden hose. Little
pressure, little power... these tend to work best for fountains and smaller
water features. Look at capacity. The larger the holding tank, the
longer you can go between starting/stopping/emptying the vac. Horsepower
is usually a good indicator of strength of the motor. Length of cleaning
tubes and types of adaptors might offer insight to how much distance you can
cover, what depths you can reach, and whether or not you will be able to get
into all the nooks and crannies around your rocks. All in all, a specific
pond vac might work well for one type of pond and not for another.