The first thing to do is learn about your pond. Here is what to know:
- The size and volume of your pond. Measure the length, width, and depth. To roughly calculate the total gallons, multiply Length x Width x 80% x Avg. Depth x 7.48 = total gallons *the basin takes up approximately 80% of the actual SQ. FT.
- Are there fish, how many? If you have fish, count them and note their size to know the type of food they my need. If it is winter, do not feed your fish. Their cold-blooded metabolism does not process food during the cold season.
- How the pond is built. Is this a rubber liner pond, concrete, preformed?
- Pumps and filtration. Does your pond have a skimmer? Is the pump working efficiently? If it is a large pond, is there adequate aeration? This is the circulatory system of your pond, and is the difference between having a vibrant healthy pond, and a sludge puddle.
After learning these details, the next thing to do is take action. This probably means cleaning your pond. We’ve found that many ponds are not properly maintained, especially after the previous owner has left the property. Believe it or not, this is not an uncommon scenario. The most important steps to rejuvenating your pond are cleaning out all the debris and muck that has been accumulating on the bottom, and inspecting the pump and filter to make sure they are in proper working order. The more large debris you remove, the less work your muck-destroying beneficial bacteria and aeration system will need to do – and the quicker your pond will return to optimal conditions.
- Run the pump continually unless the pond temp is below 50 degrees. Fish get most of their oxygen from plants and aerating the water, and the hotter the water the higher the need for oxygen.
- Keep your pond filled with water. If you find yourself needing to add an inch or more per day in 70 degree weather, you may have a leak, and need to call a pond professional.
- After learning the basic details of your pond, get to know your local pond supply experts, they will be able to advise you on how much to feed your fish, how to maintain water quality, and answer any other pond-related questions you may have.
- Take pictures of your pond to show to the experts. They can help you identify issues of concern, as well as the types of plants that are growing and which of those are desirable and which are weeds to be removed.