Do you have a pond or a lake on your property? If you’re new to the stewardship of water, you may have thought you could just sit back and let it be. However, if you want a healthy, beautiful and useful pond, you will need to put in a little bit of work.
Flora and Fauna
A balance of plant and animal life is necessary for good water quality; a good ratio is 10 to 1. To avoid too much unsightly algae make sure that your pond is properly aerated with a good flow rate. Increased phosphate or nitrogen can also cause unhealthy algal blooms. There’s a lot to keep track of, so if you lack experience it’s a good idea to turn to professionals in pond or lake management.
You can tell a lot about a pond from its water quality. Common things to check for are pH, ammonia, nitrates, nitrites, potassium and hardness. You want to keep the pH, or the measurement of acidity, between 6.5 and 9. Ammonia is toxic so you don’t want to find any at all. Hardness is the measure of alkaline earth elements like calcium or magnesium- these are important for healthy fish. Be sure to research the proper levels of all elements and regularly test for them.
Water temperature influences the onset of fish spawning, vegetation growth, the presence of oxygen and the biological demand for oxygen. A range of 60-78 degrees throughout the spring, summer and fall is ideal. Planting trees and shrubs around the water’s edge helps to provide shade a regulate temperature. Proper levels of dissolved oxygen and water flow rate can be essential for all life in the pond.
Owning a lake can be hard work, but it is well worth it in the end. Not only will it create an amazing view, but you have also now created many opportunities for recreation on your own property. A happy pond means a happy life!