Algae Problem & Pond Algae Control

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Pond Algae Control 

Pond Algae
Algae, in its various forms, can be a real nuisance in a pond. Green water is caused by unicellular algae that proliferate in an enclosed and nutrient-rich environment. Algae thrive in bright sunlight. It is, therefore, generally a summer problem. It is made worse by long hours of sunshine and high temperature. However, aquatic plants and freshwater plants are higher in nature’s chain than single celled algae, so as the plants begin to flourish and take up the excess nutrients, algae problems tend to decrease.

Once plants begin to grow, and water lilies as well as other surface growing plants provide an adequate amount of shade, the algae no longer obtain the high levels of sunlight and nutrients they require and begin to disappear. Adding more aquatic plants, particularly the submerged varieties, can help to reduce levels of algae, and it is generally ponds with insufficient plant growth that have the algae problems.

Green water indicates an imbalance in your pond, but its mild presence in a wildlife pond will have some benefits. It provides a superb primary food for many microorganisms and invertebrates and can fuel a really beneficial biodiversity in a pond. Green water is also full of colour-enhancing carotenoids, which, if your fish are ornamental, will help to produce stunning and vibrant colours. Extreme cases of green water should be avoided because at night, it can cause severe dissolved oxygen depletion, which threatens the life of any fish and invertebrates.

Pond Algae Control
It is important that you do not empty your pond full of green water. Although that may seem like the best thing to do, nothing could be farther from the truth. Emptying the pond will temporarily alleviate the green water, but the minerals in tap water will cause the refilled pond to become thick with algae very quickly. These salts and minerals are one of the causes of algae and take a long time to break down. If you are looking for a quick fix for green water, and your pond is not new, use one of the many proprietary algae treatments available from garden centers and pond shops. With some patience and continual creative planting, you should see the level of green water in your pond decline to acceptable levels.

Duckweed can be a very frustrating weed. It finds its way into your pond on other plants or via birds. Only a single fragment is required, and under the right conditions it will rapidly divide and quickly cover the whole pond. This can then deprive beneficial submerged plants of light and even prevent gas exchange in still water ponds, leading to anoxic conditions and the telltale “bad eggs” smell.

Duckweed is hard to get rid of; there are no safe chemical treatments. If you have Koi or goldfish in your pond they love to eat duckweed. You can decrease the amount of food you are giving your fish to encourage them to eat the duckweed. You can try leaving a hose running in your pond, causing it to overflow slightly and cause the duckweed to float off.

String Algae
To control string algae, you need to address the cause-rising levels of nutrients (nitrates and phosphates) arriving through food and even in the tap water. Some string-algae treatments involve harsh herbicidal chemicals that address the symptoms, only for the algae to return later. The best approach for string algae is to use natural methods to keep the nutrient levels low, preventing the algae from thriving in the first place.

There are other various bacteria-based remedies that work very effectively, competing for the nutrients and causing the string algae to die back. There are other barley straw-based treatments that break down naturally to release various natural compounds that are effective against algae.

As nutrients inevitably continue to enter the pond, the threat will remain, so you will have to continue treating against the threat of nuisance algae.

If you would like to read more information articles on how to keep your Pond and Fish healthy and thriving visit Koi Pond Guide. There is also 2 FREE pdf downloads on algae control, click here.

This is a website that shows all the effective ways they use to build fish ponds. Casey and her team have been building fish ponds and has an optimal, sure fire, and economical way which is beneficial not only for your pond and fish but for you as well. Visit their site to learn how to create a tranquil space for you and your family. You can always sign up for the 10 part email course for free tips and information on your Koi fish and Koi pond.

Everyone should be able to have a peaceful place where they can relax. The stress of everyday life puts so many demands on you, you need to have a place to refresh, to build your energy back up. A Koi pond is a tranquil spot where you can go to get away from it all. Everyone needs somewhere that will take you back to nature, your Koi pond will be that serene place for you.

Whether you are a Koi Hobbyist or new to the Koi world this website will show you not only how to keep you pond, fish, and plants healthy and thriving, but to create the best tranquil space for you.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Casey_L_Lane


Crystal Clear Water

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Koi Pond Equipment - How to Keep the Water Crystal Clear

It is every Koi fish owner’s dream to have healthy Koi swimming in crystal clear water. But how to do that has always been a challenge. There are a few pieces of equipment that will help you in your quest for that elusive perfectly clear water.

First there is the ozone unit. Ozone has been used in aquariums for some time but its use in Koi ponds is relatively new. Ozone is created by passing air through a high voltage electrical discharge. The result is oxygen with extra atom. This extra atom of oxygen is easily detached and in the process has a powerful disinfectant effect, killing any living organisms in the water nearby. Clearly ozone is dangerous for the Koi and can never be allowed in the pond. In using this equipment water is fed into the ozone unit and treated. It is then returned to the pond free of disease, bacteria and parasites and with improved water clarity. Unfortunately these systems are very expensive and out of the reach of most owners. But they are something that should be investigated and may be added as you can afford them.

Another option for improving water quality and clarity is the UV clarifier. These units help to keep the water clear of single-celled algae that flourishes in sunlight and high levels of nitrates and phosphates. The UV clarifier radiates ultraviolet light causing the algae to collapse and decay. This unit is not a UV sterilizer that is commonly used in aquariums. The clarifier allows a higher volume of water to pass over the light where as a sterilizer lets a smaller volume of water pass closer to the light to receive a high dose of UV light. These are far less expensive than ozone units but aren’t a substitute. They do different things but can both help to provide clearer, cleaner water.

A third option is the use of a variety of “water polishing” units. Traditionally this was done by passing the water through a sand filter after the last main filter stage before the water was returned to the pond. Today there is a more cost effective way to accomplish this using a canister device containing a series sieve plates designed to capture extremely fine particles.

Consider these options as you look for ways to get that extra water clarity in you pond. It will make a real difference and greatly enhance the enjoyment you get from your fish.

John Stoner is an author and Koi Fish Enthusiast. Learn more about Koi pond care and get many other tips in his latest book on Koi care

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=John_C_Stoner


Green Water Problem

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Green Pond Care - Natural Solutions To Green Water Pond Problems

When you hear the term “green pond care” your first thought is probably, “yeah, I know all about green ponds”! But do you know why the pond water looks like a green pea soup? The answer is that age old problem called pond algae.

Algae in ponds is nothing new, heck it probably dates back to the stone age or before, but the bottom line is, it can affect any size of pond, from the smallest backyard varieties to the largest of multi-acre lakes. You’ll even find some species of it in the ocean.

The type that you see causing your green water problems though is called Planktonic algae. In a more literal and technical sense, you could be looking at several strains or species of algae in your pond at one time. Do names like Chlamydomonas, Chlorella, Euglena, or Closterium ring a bell? Maybe not, but they are all types of planktonic algae.

You’ll hear a lot of suggestions and comments on how to clear up green water in a pond. Some say that the only way to treat green water is by partially draining or completely cleaning out the pond. Other suggest that mechanical options like ultra violet filtration is the answer. And still others sit confused and helpless, wondering if their fish are still living in the depths of the pond.

To be clear, in many cases, fish don’t have that much of a problem with green water. Afterall it does provide a form of shade in the hot summer months and it most often looks worse than it really is on the health of the pond. Still, no pond owner relishes the thought of looking at it all season long.

So what is the answer to clearing up this green mess? Well there are several and we can talk about a few of them here without making things too complicated.

Out of what was suggested earlier, such as pond cleaning, UV filtration, or sitting helplessly by, all have their merits, except maybe the last one. Pond cleaning is something you’ll want to do from time to time, and usually it’s a great way to start off the spring and get things spiffed up and ready to go. Usually when a cleaning takes place you’re removing some of the organic build up that’s settled through the course of a year and this call help with algae control.

If you have fish, and you’ve taken the steps to clean the pond out, and in a few weeks you see the water turning green again, you can probably blame the fish. Let’s not blame them exactly, they’re only doing what comes naturally, but their waste material may be a problem. As this builds up, nutrient levels rise, and as temperatures warm too, green water may develop.

So if you see this, do one thing. Check your fish load in the pond. Ideally you should have no more than one inch of fish per every ten gallons of water. With Koi fish, it should be one inch of fish per every twenty five gallons of water. Anything more than this and you may be over loaded and will want to think about thinning the fish population down. Your friends can use more fish right?

In terms of mechanical options, ultraviolet filtration is probably the most recommende option for green water issues. Be aware though that this type of filter only works on green water algae and not string algae or other “thick” types of growth. Simply put, if the algae can’t pass through the filter it won’t be affected. Amazingly you might never deduce this by looking at the ads for the devices.

Finally, if you haven’t tried a beneficial bacteria product, consider doing so. These can actually work in limiting all types and kinds of algae because they work to lower the nutrient levels in the pond and they can do so naturally. This makes them much safer to use than chemical options and they can help clean some of the organic material up at the bottom of the pond as well. All in all they represent a very good option to try when confronting a green water problem.

Mark Washburn is a pond care specialist and has helped pond owners deal with algae problems for over a decade now. Learn more about his thoughts on pond algae and how to control it by visiting Pond Algae Solutions

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Mark_Washburn


Koi Pond Maintenance - Need For Regular Partial Water Changes

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Koi Pond Maintenance - Need For Regular Partial Water Changes

 Koi Pond with Water Plant

Whether it is a pond or an aquarium, regular water change is recommended. Actually, partial water changes and it should preferably not be more than 50% of the water at a time. This is because fish (Koi included) does not like sudden changes to their living environment. This change could be in terms of temperature, pH and water chemistry.

Firstly, why are water changes necessary? Can I rely on my filtration system to remove fish waste and other debris like uneaten fish food, dead insects and plant matters?

A good filtration system should be able to trap solid debris through mechanical filtration and allows you to remove them easily during regular filter maintenance. However, mechanical filtration is not 100% efficient. Some of this debris will remain and settled at the bottom of your pond and filter. If not removed, they will accumulate over time and pollute the water.

A good filtration system should have a biological filter in addition to the mechanical filter. The bacteria in biological filter should remove dissolved fish waste like ammonia by converting them to nitrite, and then from nitrite to nitrate. This is done through bacteria action in the biological filter is known as the Nitrification Cycle. Ammonia and nitrite are harmful to fish and must be removed as soon as possible. Although nitrate is relatively harmless to fish, excessive nitrate when allowed to build up in the pond can still harm the fish. Excessive nitrate also leads to excessive algae growth which is not a pleasant sight although Koi feeds on algae.

Evaporation of water does not remove nitrates and other dissolved matters in the pond. Regular topping up your pond to replace water lost through evaporation is not considered a partial water change.

Water plants remove nitrates. Even if you have some water plants in your pond, it is unlikely that the plants can remove the nitrates at a sufficient rate compared to the amount of food consumed and waste produced by the Koi. Some advanced Koi keepers have explored the use of commercially designed trickle tower system to remove nitrates. These are quite bulky and not inexpensive. Most Koi keepers will resort to partial water changes to remove nitrates.

Besides removal of nitrates and other pollutants, some Koi keepers believe that regular water changes allow their Koi to grow better and healthier as minerals and trace elements useful for Koi growth are replenished through the added water. Koi tends to perk up and become more active after a partial water change.

How to do a water change? How frequently must it be done?

The aim is to maintain a stable pond environment with good water quality for your Koi. Therefore, frequent and regular small amount of water changes of about 10% are preferred over ad hoc and larger water changes. If your filter design allows you to carry out pond and filter maintenance and water changes easily, then a weekly interval should be sufficient. You may want to flush the bottom drains or perform other maintenance of your filter system while carrying out your partial water change.

Even with regular water changes, you should monitor the nitrate levels in your pond. Nitrate cause a slight brownish tint to your pond water. Other symptom of excessive nitrates is excessive algae growth! The most accurate way is to measure nitrate and water quality using a water test kit. Commercially available water test kits allow you to measure parameters like pH, nitrite, nitrate and oxygen levels.  Nitrate level should be less than 25 mg/litre. Ad hoc water change is still needed if the water quality if not up to the mark.

Water that is removed will have to be replaced. If you are refilling your pond with tap water from the utility company, you will have to consider the additives to the water. The tap water contains chlorine to kill germs and it is also a fish killer. The chlorine will dissipate from the water naturally after a few hours. Depending on the water you are getting from the utility company, you could potentially do small percentage (less than 20%) of water change without using dechlorinator and not kill your fish. If you have an option to increase aeration to your pond like turning on a fountain or venturi pipes, you should do it. Aeration helps remove chlorine. Refilling the pond through a spray hose helps provides aeration and dissipation of the chlorine from the water as well. If you have to perform larger amount of water change, a dechlorinator to remove chlorine is strongly recommended. In any case, it is better be safe than be sorry.

Jeffrey Lee keeps Koi as a hobby and lives in Singapore.

Visit his website at http://my3ponds.blogspot.com where he shares his experiences with constructing and maintaining his 3 Koi ponds over the past 13 years. The site contains pictures of his ponds and Koi.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Jeffrey_HS_Lee


What is a garden pond or a koi pond?

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A garden pond or a koi pond? 

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There are some vital differences between a ‘garden pond’ and a ‘koi pond’. It is important to understand these distinctions before we look more closely at how to build a koi pond.

What is a garden pond ? Click Here!

 A garden pond is literally a water feature that enhances the appearance of a garden and supports a wide range of plants and wildlife that share the watery environment. When you create a garden pond you can choose from a host of aquatic plants to soften the edges of the construction and provide colour and interest the whole year through. Around the perimeter of the pond you can feature moisture-loving plants, such as hostas and primulas, that will thrive in constantly damp soil. In the shallow water over a planting shelf or lapping onto a ‘beach’, you can grow a huge selection of marginal plants, from the bright yellow blooms of spring-flowering Caltha to the elegant spikes of irises and tall stems of reeds and rushes that continue their display into the autumn months. And in the deepest parts of the pond, you can enjoy the elegance of water lilies, surely the most magnificent of aquatic plants.

Into this ‘jungle’ of plants and water, you can introduce goldfish and other hardy pond fish. These will thrive and survive throughout the year and be joined by native creatures, such as frogs, toads, newts, water beetles and dragonflies, that will make themselves at home in your pond environment. And the added bonus is that you can create this diverse and successful habitat without worrying too much about a minimum overall size or water depth, and without too much in the way of complicated life-support systems. Yes, you will need a filter and a water pump if you want to sustain quite a few fish or build a waterfall and fountain, but to a large extent a well set up garden pond is a self-sustaining system.

What is a koi pond ?

Like a garden pond, a koi pond is also a hole in the ground filled with water, but there the resemblance ends. A koi pond has a single purpose: to provide a suitable environment for keeping koi. And because koi are fast-growing fish that produce a great deal of waste, the main aim is to create and maintain a large volume of clean, well-oxygenated water in which they can flourish and show off their colours. A koi pond should be at least 1.5m (oft) deep and to keep


How to maintain Koi Pond ?


koi-pond-463369.jpg    Koi Pond Maintenance

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Your pond is built, your koi are swimming around happily in their new home and you can sit back and relax - wrong! Now that your pond is up and running, you will need to devise a routine for yourself so that you can regularly carry out all the tasks required to keep your system in optimum condition. Some jobs, such as feeding the fish and testing the water, obviously apply to every pond, whereas others depend on the type of filtration you have installed. In this part of the book, we start by looking at the maintenance of a pump-fed system and then go on to examine the care of a gravity-fed pond.

This is followed by a more detailed discussion of important topics that are appropriate no matter what type of pond you have, such as feeding, monitoring the health of the fish and water testing. You will soon realise that all these aspects of koi-keeping are inextricably linked with the efficient running of the pond, however large or small it is and regardless of the complexity of the systems you have installed. For that reason, you should make them part of the everyday regime of dealing with your pond. Set aside a certain time each day to check filters and appliances and to carry out the necessary maintenance quickly. While your fish are feeding, look them over and keep an eye open for potential problems. Dedicate yourself to these tasks and you, your pond and your koi will undoubtedly enjoy the benefits in the long run.So that is it, you are thinking. But there is one last thing to think about and that is how to improve your pond. The systems described in the book so far will more than adequately support a koi community, but in this part of the book we look at some items of equipment that you may wish to add to your pond at a later date. One example is a water purifier. Including one of these during the initial setting up process will confer undoubted benefits, but the absence of a purifier will not affect the basic functioning of the pond. It is an item you can add later, so it is discussed in this part of the book. So read this final section and get ready to start making those inevitable alterations that are all part of the ongoing enjoyment of the hobby.

 Koi Pond Cleaning