Elevated Bog Pond

dustboy

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Found a dead bird in the water yesterday...Wonder how that happened? Hard to imagine he was bathing in the bog and got sucked down the waterfall.

I do believe the pond has brought a lot of new birds to my yard, which is fun to watch.
 
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addy1

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I love the wildlife the ponds have brought.

I find dead birds now and then, it just happens
 
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I bet you get birds taking bathes in that weir... that will be fun to watch.

How does the bog clean itself if it's your only filter? The plants will remove some if the dissolved nitrates from the water... but what about that awesome green gel stuff that builds up in filters? I am new to the world of sand and gravel filters... and adding some plants in the top would be nice!

For me... after a week when i clean the sand and gravel filter.. tons and tons of stuff gets flushed out in the waste water. It isn't clogged up in single week... but it definitely would be after a month of use and have reduced flow.
 

addy1

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How does the bog clean itself if it's your only filter? The plants will remove some if the dissolved nitrates from the water... but what about that awesome green gel stuff that builds up in filters?
I get no awesome green gel stuff.
My bog is big, I don't draw water right off the bottom but about a foot up. The bog has been running for over 9 years now without being cleaned. My water stays in great shape nice and clear, it is only cloudy first thing in the spring for about 2 days when I first turn it on.
 

dustboy

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I haven’t seen any green stuff besides the suspended algae that is making it hard to see my fish right now...trying to be patient for it to clear up! The Creeping Jenny is growing like mad and should fill in most of the bog in a month or two.

I visited a friend this weekend who bought a distressed property waaaaay up the the Sierra mountains with two gigantic ponds...1/4 and 1/2 acre...There’s an old colony of Koi in the smaller pond, very healthy (and inbred) but I think once they get bigger they turn into snacks for the abundant wildlife there. The largest is about 6”. They have several hundred juveniles, she said “how many do you want, and what colors?” Yes I am very excited. As soon as they are fat enough to travel I will go pick up about 3.

Their plan is to introduce some new Koi (and give away some of the old colony) to bring some diversity to the gene pool.
 
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dustboy

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As promised, the water is getting clearer. I can see down about 12” now. Added a few more plants for good measure, horsetails, water hyacinth and Indian Rhubarb that my wife picked out.
 

dustboy

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My water has improved somewhat to a visibility of ~12”. It still has a brown/yellow/green haze to it. I have plenty of plants now, the ~28 goldfish get fed maybe 2x per week.

What else can I do to get that sparkling clear water?
 

dustboy

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Time is your best friend right now. How many gallons is your pond again?
500-600 gallons I think. I know I need to be patient, just figured it’s been about 7 weeks since the water was new, and 3 weeks since fish were added.

I guess there are two ways to get clear water: money or patience. I don’t have any money. A friend has a 3,000 gal pond with over 20 12” Koi, his water was pea soup. No plants in the water. The pond guy showed up while I was there. 2 weeks later when I came back, the water was crystal clear and my friend’s wallet was a lot lighter. A huge pressurized sand filter, giant UV tube, and gallon jugs of algaecide and who knows what.
 
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Right. And now he has a constant maintenance problem, as he hasn't addressed the cause of the pea soup: too many fish and no plants to balance it out.

You'll get there. And still have money in your wallet! You may want to consider that that's a lot of goldfish for 600 gallons, especially as they grow.
 

dustboy

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Yes, I may have gotten a little carried away with the fish count. Started with 10, but realized at least 2/3 of them are hiding at any one time...so I tripled the population. Now there are always a few fish to watch but as they grow it will likely be too many. I’m sure I can find homes for them later on.
 

dustboy

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Glory be! The water is CLEAR! I can see the bottom and all the lil’ fishies. It’s so crazy how you turn your back for a day and it clears up literally overnight.

We’ve had 4 days of triple digit temperatures, I would think somehow that would have the opposite effect but maybe it helped.

Oh and our little family of water striders has multiplied, we now have about 5 adults and some little baby striders skating around the pond surface. Neat little critters.
 
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Congrats! Here's to CLEAR water (especially when it happens as an overnight surprise!) And, yes - water striders multiply quite rapidly... :oops:
water striders 01.jpg
 
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Glory be! The water is CLEAR! I can see the bottom and all the lil’ fishies. It’s so crazy how you turn your back for a day and it clears up literally overnight.
There you go! Happens every time. Being patient pays off!
 
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dustboy

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Made some progress on the landscaping around the pond, namely a new compacted DG patio. Hard work! It’s such a sweet spot to sit in the shade and relax, the sound of the waterfall just melts the stress away.

Plus a quick pic of the happy goldies.

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Nice job! I don’t think anyone would guess that you started out as an absolute newbie! Ponds are a challenge, but in the end are so worth it. Good job, congrats... be proud of what you’ve accomplished.
 

dustboy

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Nice job! I don’t think anyone would guess that you started out as an absolute newbie! Ponds are a challenge, but in the end are so worth it. Good job, congrats... be proud of what you’ve accomplished.
All the info I needed is right here on GPF! A great resource. I never would have imagined that a bog was all the filtration I needed, and probably would have ended up with thousands of dollars in filters and UV equipment etc.

I have had to do a little maintenance on the bog. When the creeping jenny gets too thick, it slows the water on the top of the bog enough that it rises above the side of the box and spills. I have to keep it trimmed so there is a path for the water to reach the weir.

Also I had a ‘blowout’ in the gravel that allowed water to spurt up and out of the bog. There is only 1” of gravel above the diffuser pipe, with all the roots and bio matter in the gravel, the water took the easy path to the top. I rotated the pipe slightly to make sure the holes were all facing downward.

I need to put the floating skimmer back in. I took it out because it was catching my goldfish, but with fall approaching I will need something to catch the leaves and flowers from the crepe myrtle tree. I think if I split the inlet to the pump between the skimmer and a screen, the flow into the skimmer will be slow enough as not to trap the fish.
 

dustboy

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Did some work on pond-adjacent projects this weekend...Adding a deck in front of the shed. The shed is my woodworking shop, it’s only 10x16 but with the deck I can roll machines and larger projects outside.

There will be a nice space between the shed and the pond for a couple of adirondack chairs.

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