), but they’d also eat the koi feed as soon as it sinks and hits the pond floor. For further information on optimizing water filtration, cleaning, and what equipment to use, see our articles below: Thanks for the comment. Either way, a hole in the surface ice, … Although it won’t be as large a clean as your autumn one, it is useful to supplement the pond with beneficial bacteria and remove any lingering debris for the best kick-start to the year. During one of our Pond Cleaning Services Mark recorded this video "How to clean a pond without draining it". Aim for a third of the surface of the pond to be covered by plants at all times. Also, vacuums are designed to be used in contact with the pond liner, and since fish don’t actively lay on the bottom, it would be very unlikely to get sucked up that way! Installing an aeration system is the best way to keep your water and pond clear and free of organic buildup. Waterfalls, floating fountains, and lake bed aerators keep oxygen circulating in the water and decaying organic material from becoming toxic, preventing fish loss and algae growth. In future, I’d recommend adding a good variety of plants to keep the water healthy and to help attract more wildlife to the pond. A Pondless® Waterfall will take considerably less time. We have to hose off the filters as they are full of muck twice a day. About 8 years ago we installed a pond with a waterfall in our backyard that has many frogs and well established plants. You may be able to get away with a quick debris removal using a pool net, but if the pond is very dirty, you’ll need to remove most of the water as well. Problems with algae occur when it’s left to grow uncontrolled and rapidly takes over the pond system. A well-maintained pond can last forever. I have a tiny pond(?) Performing Basic Pond Maintenance Clean your pump's filters out regularly. Having an efficient filtration process in place will help reduce overall cleaning and also improve water quality for pond fish. If you have a particularly deep pond, you’d want to look for a model which can keep suction at good depths and which has an extendible handle for easier cleaning. Maintain a healthy fish population. Our community’s sanitary sewer authority considered using them several years ago only to find winter water temps here in northern NJ are too chilly. You should be just fine! Matala Power-Cyclone with Dual Pump System. When is the best time to clean a fish pond? If you have a wildlife pond and want to keep most of your sludge, you can instead just add extra beneficial bacteria to complement the nitrogen cycle. All winter long the water is crystal clear. You starve out the algae and pond weeds from sunlight by using an aquatic sunblocker or 'pond dye' such as Aquashade or Black or Blue Vail. This depends somewhat on the strength of your UV light, but overall it’s very unlikely that it will kill all bacteria, whether good or bad. To combat free-swimming algae we recommend installing a UV clarifier which will filter water and destroy algae at the cellular level. Install an aerator. Yearly maintenance of ponds costs an average of $2,000 for four regular servicing visits during each of the seasons. My question is similar to the previous one asked by S. T. Dupont. Essentially, an aeration system will blow air into the bottom of the pond, pushing that still water up to the surface. Thank you very much, your site is very informative. The pond is situated beneath a large Monterey pine tree which would be okay if it wasn’t inhabited by rooks! How to Clear Weeds From a Large Pond With a Rack. Pond vacuums will allow you to clean the bottom of your pond liner without having to drain water, and the best models will have a variety of different head attachments for cleaning hard-to-reach areas of the pond. Another way to remove bottom muck, which is also much faster and easier, is to invest in a quality water vacuum. Next step is to combat any bottom sludge you have, and although you don’t need to remove it all, it can be beneficial to reduce most of it before winter so your fish have a safer hibernation period. This lets the water from the bottom absorb oxygen at the surface and release other gasses like hydrogen sulfide. (Hibernation Explained), Discharge Hose Length: 8 Ft, Max; Flow Rate: 1300 Gph. A strong filtration unit is a must for pond waters clarity and … Since you don’t want fish, simply performing a good bottom clean of the muck and a partial/full (50-100%) water change would be a good way to re-fresh the system – both of which can indeed be done with a pond vacuum. Then, use barley straw, which is shown to prevent the growth of algae in backyard ponds. We have just moved and have a pond in the garden, there are a number of fish in it but the water is so murky it is difficult to see how many, We have cleaned out the filters and replaced a faulty UV lamp and when we drain water of we get a green sludge even if we drain every four or five days, we are obviously not draining the whole pond just enough to get rid of the green sludge. These are essential to ponds with fish, and form the basis of the “nitrogen cycle“, which helps keep the pond in balance. ... How to clean out a garden pond; How to clean out a garden pond. ), but they should be fine with either a koi or goldfish feed for the time being. Even if you do have small fish in your pond, vacuums are quite noisy and, in my experience, fish tend to keep away from the area you’re cleaning. Here are some separate articles that cover these subjects in more depth that may be helpful to you: https://pondinformer.com/best-pond-water-test-kit/ https://pondinformer.com/koi-pond-water-change-guide/ https://pondinformer.com/how-to-lower-ammonia-fish-pond/. Using the Biosphere PRO in the pond can eliminate the need to use harsh chemicals like algaecides in your pond. And if I need to remove, must I use the expensive vacuums? Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Contact | About, Guide to Cleaning Fish Ponds without Draining Water (updated 2020). If you have a heavy fish stocked pond it can be difficult to maintain water quality as fish produce so much waste, especially in summer when their metabolisms are high. Recently had a couple of ducks move in and the water has naturally become murky. We want to add some minnows, blue gill and bass. You starve out the algae from food by cleaning up the sludge and muck by using the PlanktoniX faithfully. I guess I will need to wait for the tadpoles to mature but is there anything in the meantime that can help, would a filter be able to cope with duck debris? Other times when you may need to clean your pond would be to remove algae overgrowth, fallen leaves, or excess plants, such as duckweed. Is there any point in adding “beneficial bacteria ” to break up pond sludge when you have a UV lamp installed? Removing as much floating debris as possible is always better before cleaning the pond liner or you’ll just be cleaning it again later as it sinks. … These can be removed manually using a basic pond net, or you can make use of an automatic skimmer system for constant clean-up. Waterfalls, floating fountains, and lake bed aerators keep oxygen circulating in … Use a Strong Filtration Unit for the Pond. Best of luck with the new pond! If so, what are the results showing? Hi. After cleaning the bottom muck out and letting things settle, if you’re still not satisfied with clarity, a few small water changes may be beneficial to further reduce waste substances and top-up natural alkalinity. The water is clear and only a few feet deep. Performing a deep clean at the end of autumn is common practice for fish keepers, and should be something you consider if you have koi or goldfish. Sludge can be beneficial to wildlife ponds as it provides nutrients for plants, as well as food for insects and micro-organisms. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Natural bacteria, such as in the products GreenEx or Microbe Lift PBL, can break down muck and sludge, cut down algae and aquatic weeds, and help reduce bad odors. On top of this, you’ll want to have a vacuum with a reliable discharge system for constant cleaning and to make it easier to remove waste. If waste levels get too high, you will just need to manually remove enough waste so bacteria can get back to work again – no total drainage required! The bottom of the pond doesn’t really have “muck”. If your filter media is becoming clogged that fast with just brown gunk (not green debris – indicating active algae), it sounds like your bottom muck has reached a critical point and you simply have a huge amount of free-swimming debris particles present. Pond water is filled with micro-organisms and millions of beneficial bacteria which are constantly at work to break down harmful substances, such as ammonia and nitrites. This process is known as eutrophication . Thanks for the comment! There are also a few fish (bottom feeders) that we have no idea how they got in there, and only have seen them a few times as the water has become very mucky. …A Pond Cleanout: Clean your rocks waterfall filters and pond equipment. Glad to hear the article was helpful to you. Removing pond water means you’ll also be reducing the natural beneficial bacteria populations, which will cause a reduction in your ponds biological filtration process. It’s always important for us to first try to determine the root cause of the murkiness, as this will help us to prevent it occurring again in future. Have you performed a water quality test recently? Best of luck with the pond! There is also years of mud and detritous sitting on the bottom of the pond. Vegetation can benefit a pond by providing habitat for fish oxygenation, erosion control and visual appeal. Also, my pond has loose pebbles on the bottom, can a pond vacuum work in these conditions? Fully draining pond water should always be a last resort, and it’s certainly not something you need to do if you want to clean your pond. 5 tips for harvesting and keeping a live Christmas tree, See what’s trending right now on Living the Country Life. I thought I should invest in a pond vacuum? You’d want a vacuum with a decent discharge length and some good reach, as your pond sounds fairly deep. I can’t do anything about the rooks but I can clean out the pond as we do get mallard ducks here. The first thing I’d do in your situation is pickup a broad range water quality test kit and determine parameters for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, pH and alkalinity (KH). This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Can fish get injured or sucked up by pond vacuum? A scrub brush such as a toilet brush can be used to lift up and remove the algae. Once you have these measurements, you can then take steps to reduce (or increase) parameters and optimize conditions for your fish. We don’t have a pond vacuum but will buy one if that’s what the problem is. Average Cost of Koi Pond Cleaning & Maintenance. Best of luck with the new house and pond! Problems with excess sludge occur mainly with fish as a by-product of its natural decomposition is ammonia, which is highly toxic to koi and goldfish. So, in a nutshell, if you have a large pond or lake, you will need to treat it with beneficial bacteria every 2 weeks when water temperatures are 50°F or above, have adequate aeration running 365 days a year, and treat it with an aquatic sunblocker such as our Aquashade or Cygnet Select. It works best on bigger water (maybe a 1/4 acre and up to multi acre ponds and lakes). You don’t have to drain a pond to combat algae, and even string algae attached to the pond floor can be removed with the right mix of treatments. Control weed growth by using a product that breaks down and is safe for wildlife. Do you have a large natural pond, farm pond or large very large lined pond overgrown with weeds, with deep layers of sludge, excessive algae growth or water clarity issues? Personally, I wouldn’t disturb the sludge just yet as this may kick-up harmful substances in the lower layers, which could cause further issues if water quality is already poor. Credit: STIHL-sponsored photo contest entry by Henry Hudson Ponds are a wonderful addition to a forest or tree farm, providing a source of water for animal, crops and people, as well as a place to swim, observe wildlife and, of course, fish. Large ponds and lakes will fill in over time and in time, that grand old pond that once stayed clean and clear, now has algae or other problems. We have a small garden pond with a waterfall, which the birds love. Pond skimmers are a good long term solution if you’re constantly fighting back debris that falls into your pond, or if you have lots of fish and want maximum water clarity. Use a long handled net or a garden rake to scoop out as many leaves, dead plants and twigs that you can. Sturgeon are bottom feeders and will spend most of their time swimming close to the pond floor, which probably explains why you may not have seen them until you drained most the water! We provide large pond maintenance and products specifically for these problems. The rocks do get covered with sludge/algae as well. Remove string algae with a brush, net, or your hand. I dug into the filtration box, cleaned out the heavy silt, scraped off the pump and motor, washed off the filter. Although filters should be rarely cleaned as it can harm bacteria living in the box, it’s sometimes necessary if the media has become completely clogged. Hi, I’ve got a medium sized pond, with no fish just natural wildlife. (Cold Water & Plecos), Do Pond Fish Hibernate? Drain or siphon it into a large container, like a plastic trash can. Alternatively, you could also make use of a regular aquarium siphon so long as the tub isn’t too deep. Cleaning a pond without draining will ensure that your natural bacteria populations are maintained, allowing them to continue providing bio-filtration after the worst of the waste is removed. Topping up with more water after draining can cause even more disruption, as mains water is usually high in chlorine, which is toxic to much of the natural micro-organisms living in ponds. Without human intervention, new ponds gradually fill with silt and organic matter. In instances such as this, harmful substances will slowly rise and oxygen content will be reduced, eventually leading to fish becoming sick or dying come spring. ” to break up pond sludge when you have any more questions or need some help along way! Of silt on the surface ice, … garden ponds can how to clean a large pond damaged over and. Of use, please see https: //pondinformer.com/how-to-dechlorinate-pond-water/ https: how to clean a large pond https: //pondinformer.com/best-pond-water-test-kit/ https:.... Flood water can quickly erode the back side of the pond is about 3′ deep and scoop with a discharge... ( we keep the numbers down by giving some away every year ), just bought a with! I have been told that overfeeding goldfish can cause murky water, is this a fact about 8 years we! Clogged and not functioning when I bought the house, surprisingly no dead.. Floating fountains, and lake bed aerators keep oxygen circulating in … Skim the surface for floating debris out! 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