Maintaining a Healthy Man-made Pond

It may seem easy enough to dig a hole, fill it with water and add a few fish. However, the reality of how difficult it is becomes obvious to anyone that has watched a manmade pond fill with algae, become stagnant and fail to support any life other than bacteria. Artificial ponds require a serious commitment in order for them to remain visually appealing and allow aquatic creatures to thrive.

Choosing the Residents

Stocking a pond with fish should be done with care. Experts state that only around 1,000 pounds of fish are suitable per surface acre of pond. Overcrowding the fish will lead to oxygen deprivation and the lack of adequate food resources. Properly established ponds will eliminate the need to feed the fish and doing so could lead to decaying, uneaten food that clouds the water and raises pH levels.

Preventing Plant Invasions

Be careful of all the plants introduced to the pond and be prepared to weed the water occasionally. Identifying invasive and fast growing weeds early will avoid an overabundance of plant life. Avoid the use of fertilizers and pesticides in the area around the pond. The runoff could affect the health of the fish and other aquatic life. Plant life is a great source of oxygen for ponds but it will not always provide enough for the deeper sections of the pond. An aerator is usually needed to keep the pond at the correct oxygen level needed for a health ecosystem.

Protecting the Water

The healthiest water for all fish will be natural sources from wells and springs. Use this whenever available to provide fresh water to replace what is lost due to seepage and evaporation. Line the pond with a soil high in clay to reduce water seepage. The pH level of the pond will determine the health of the fish and clarity of the water. Most fish thrive in water with a pH level of 6.5 to 9.0.

Additional wildlife like birds, turtles and frogs add to the charm but may also add to the development of algae or rising pH levels. Aeration systems, frequent water testing and occasional harvesting of fish are all ways to keep the pond attractive and healthy. Visit www.livingwateraeration to learn more about providing an adequate oxygen supply to any pond or lake.