Controlling aquatic weeds in dams with a pond cleaner and good water management

Anyone with a dam on their property will know that good water management is essential to keeping their dam free from an overgrowth of aquatic weeds. With the summer already here, the combination of high temperatures and falling dam levels can lead to problems with aquatic weeds choking dams and preventing wildlife and farm animals from reaching clear, fresh water.

It needs to be said that these aquatic weeds provide food and shelter for small crustaceans and fish, as well as for many birds. So the aim of water treatment is to manage these aquatic weeds, rather than to eradicate them completely from dams. The main two water management options for the control of aquatic weeds is either a mechanical pond cleaner or a chemical pond cleaner.

Using a mechanical pond cleaner for water management

A mechanical pond cleaner is best for small dams, mainly because it is very labour intensive. It simply involves cutting, dredging or chaining the water to mechanically remove the overgrowth of aquatic weeds. This type of water treatment is also expensive and doesn’t last very long, as the weeds quickly recover and grow again.

Using a chemical pond cleaner for water management

This is the method most often used by farmers to reduce the number of aquatic weeds in their dams. For these chemicals to be an effective form of water treatment, the aquatic weeds need to be identified as either emergent, free floating or submerged.

Emergent aquatic weeds have their roots embedded in the bottom of the dam with their leaves extending into the air. The most suitable chemical pond cleaner for emergent weeds is one based on glyphosate, and most of these products are frog friendly (you will need to check this).

Free floating aquatic weeds are not rooted to the bottom of the dam and the choice of water treatment depends on the species with glyphosate one of the options.

Submerged aquatic weeds are the most difficult to contain, because the chemical pond cleaner needs to reach very high concentrations in the water. The volume of water needs to be calculated and the chemical selected based on the species.

For more information on controlling aquatic weeds and good water management on your property, call 07 3889 8250 or send us an email.

6 Key strategies for lake and pond water management and remediation

Ornamental lakes and treatment ponds tend to have two characteristics in common – they are high in nutrients, but they are also stagnant, which makes water management important to their health and the ecosystem in general. Without good water management techniques, the water will become acidic and unhealthy, jeopardising the health of fish and other creatures that live in and on the water.

Stagnant, smelly water that smells like rotten eggs is often a sign of mismanaged water bodies that are deficient in oxygen with an accumulation of sludge on the bottom. A deficiency in oxygen is the main cause of these problems, but they can be easily remedied by careful water management using pond pumps or larger devices that include one or more of the following six strategies.

  1. Mechanical aeration: These submersible aerators oxygenate the water by drawing in air from the surface and dispersing it at depth. The air outlets can be placed at anything from 3m to 15m below the surface and are a very affordable and efficient pond cleaner.
  2. Mechanical circulation: These pond pumps circulate water throughout the water column from the surface to the bed of the water body, destratifying lakes and ponds and effectively reducing algae.
  3. Ornamental aeration: This type of surface located pond cleaner draws water through a central column and shoots it into the air, oxygenating a large body of water very efficiently. These ornamental pond pumps not only produce a wonderful fountain of water, but they can also be moved to different locations on the lake.
  4. Solar powered aeration: For a more environmentally friendly water management solution, why not use the sun to power your pond pumps? Our solar panels turn an efficient and chemical free pool cleaner into a cost saving device that also cleans your pond or lake.
  5. Static aeration: Utilising the existing infrastructure, a static aerator is attached to your water pump and mixes air with the water to oxygenate lakes, dams and treatment plants.
  6. Weed & algae control: At BioRemedy we use Cupricide or Kupramine to clear away all the algae that has built up in a water body, as well as Water Clear to reduce the aquatic weeds.

For more information on water management & remediation for your ornamental lake or pond, contact BioRemedy on 07 3889 8250 for a free quote.

The importance of aeration for superior water treatment

Water treatment is essential for keeping all bodies of water clean, whether this is an ornamental lake, small pond or a council or industrial wastewater plant. The most common water treatment technique is aeration that can be achieved using anything from small pond pumps to much larger aeration pumps.

Aeration keeps water bodies clean by adding air into the water column, promoting aerobic biodegradation of any organic pollutants by microbes that flourish in aerated water. Most people with a fish tank or backyard pond already understand the importance of using a simple pond cleaner that circulates air within the water. People tend to forget however, that aeration can be just as necessary in larger bodies of water, particularly in waste water treatment plants, because it helps to reduce the amount of organic matter in the water.

Aeration is an environmentally friendly type of water treatment

No-one wants to add lots of chemicals to fresh water bodies, whether this is their backyard fish pond, a beautiful lake or a dam on their property. Reducing our environmental impact is important for everyone and water treatments using aeration comes out tops for being the cleanest type of treatment available.

Aeration works because the circulated air contains oxygen that is used by the bacteria in the water to degrade organic matter. As the organic matter is broken down it forms carbon dioxide and water, which is obviously harmless. This added oxygen also helps to keep fish and other freshwater creatures alive in the water, maintaining a healthy ecosystem and is another reason why pond cleaners are so important.

However, if the water is not aerated, the microbes can’t break the organic matter down fast enough and it starts to build up and form a sludge at the bottom of the pond or lake. The organic matter is still broken down by the bacteria, but it is much slower in the absence of sufficient oxygen and leads to the release of carbon, hydrogen and sulphur that combine to produce hydrogen sulphide and methane.

This results in a lowering of the water’s pH, creating acidic conditions, a rotten egg smell to the water and the death of fish and other creatures that live in the stagnant water. All of this can be prevented by using pond pumps or larger water treatment devices that simply circulate air through the water.

Contact BioRemedy on 07 3889 8250 to discuss how aeration can help keep your water clean and healthy.

How to treat or remove pond algae

The growth of pond algae is a natural occurrence in freshwater bodies, but at some point you might need to initiate pond algae control measures to reduce the amount of algae. This can be achieved by using chemical, mechanical or more natural methods.

Chemical water treatment to remove pond algae

If you decide that a chemical solution is your best option, then you will need a high quality aquatic algaecide that controls the growth of both planktonic and filamentous pond algae species. These algae removers kill the algae by preventing photosynthesis from taking place. On the other hand, if you have too much duckweed (which can be confused with algae), you can use WaterClear, which is a type of pond algae control that has a minimal environmental impact. It works by reducing the surface tension of the water, causing the duckweed to sink and eventually killing it.

Mechanical pond algae control methods

If you have filamentous algae, you can avoid the use of chemicals by simply removing the algae by hand or using a net. If the algae grows on the walls of your pond you can scrub it off, but it will need to be followed with a chemical algae remover to actually kill the algae, otherwise it will grow back. You will then need to remove the dead algae and organic matter from your pond, so that it doesn’t accumulate on the bottom and form a sludge.

Natural pond algae control strategies

More natural and environmentally friendly water treatment strategies for controlling algae include solar aeration pumps. These pumps use the power of the sun to aerate the water column in your pond, which is a very effective long term solution for controlling pond algae. This method of control works well because it oxygenates the entire water column allowing biologicals that normally live in the top layer of water to move throughout the water column, competing with algae for living space.

Adding diatoms to your pond when you use a water treatment aerator is a great way to increase oxygen levels and they can successfully compete with the algae in the pond as well. Aerating your pond also moves bacteria from the surface layers to the deeper layers, helping to decompose organic matter and reducing the buildup of sludge.

For more information on pond algae control, call BioRemedy on 07 3889 8250 or complete our online enquiry form.