Plants, turtles and leaves

Joined
Jul 22, 2021
Messages
12
Reaction score
1
Country
United States
So many questions! I have a turtle pond that’s 10‘ x 6‘ and has three depth levels 12 inches 18 inches and 30 inches. It’s about three weeks old so it’s going through the new pond syndrome, the water tests great but it’s brown. It’s clearing up a tiny bit maybe. I have it almost 2/3 covered with water lettuce hyacinth and two big pond lilies. I also have plenty of marginal plants around the edges. My questions are 1. tree leaves, do I just move the plants around and scoop them out the best I can? 2. Or because I have turtles that I would like to overwinter do I let the leaves settle on the bottom and clean in the spring? I’m in zone five b they are sliders. 3. Do I cut off dead lily leaves? I’m trying to make the pond as natural as possible, I only have solar filtration so the pumps go between six and 10 hours a day (or will once I have the second one set up that has battery back up, it’s still on its way) thanks!
 

Mmathis

TurtleMommy
Joined
Apr 28, 2011
Messages
14,011
Reaction score
8,164
Location
NW Louisiana -- zone 8b
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
Good questions! IDK the answer — I have turtles, but mine are box turtles so they don’t brumate under water — but I’m sure the other turtle-keepers will chime in with advice. Where do you live, climate-wise?
 
Joined
Jul 22, 2021
Messages
12
Reaction score
1
Country
United States
Good questions! IDK the answer — I have turtles, but mine are box turtles so they don’t brumate under water — but I’m sure the other turtle-keepers will chime in with advice. Where do you live, climate-wise?
Zone 5b
 
Joined
May 21, 2018
Messages
1,255
Reaction score
926
Location
Florida
Country
United States
So many questions! I have a turtle pond that’s 10‘ x 6‘ and has three depth levels 12 inches 18 inches and 30 inches. It’s about three weeks old so it’s going through the new pond syndrome, the water tests great but it’s brown. It’s clearing up a tiny bit maybe. I have it almost 2/3 covered with water lettuce hyacinth and two big pond lilies. I also have plenty of marginal plants around the edges. My questions are 1. tree leaves, do I just move the plants around and scoop them out the best I can? 2. Or because I have turtles that I would like to overwinter do I let the leaves settle on the bottom and clean in the spring? I’m in zone five b they are sliders. 3. Do I cut off dead lily leaves? I’m trying to make the pond as natural as possible, I only have solar filtration so the pumps go between six and 10 hours a day (or will once I have the second one set up that has battery back up, it’s still on its way) thanks!
You mention turtle in the second sentence and then turtles later on. Is it one turtle or multiple sliders? The reason I am asking is your pond is about 750 gallons (roughly). Question 1, 2 & 3. If you intend to overwinter the turtles yes, leave the debris on the pond's bottom. Sliders brumation actually starts in late August in your USDA Zone. They will begin to slow down and you should be very judicious with feeding during the transition period. In the wild, sliders overwinter in the mud or sand well underwater. I have seen them on lake bottoms when winter scuba diving.
In my opinion your filtration is sorely inadequate. Turtles are extremely messy and need massive, 24/7 filtration. Your brown water is probably a combination of leaves leaching tannins and turtle waste. Since you only have a turtle (s) cycling the pond is not as critical as it would be if you were keeping fish. With fish, it is essential...turtles not so much. Better for your pond is a huge, well cycled filter teeming with beneficial bacteria. Your zone 5b can get down to -15 so I would carefully consider that. Can you overwinter the turtle indoors? That is really the best solution. And, if you choose to do that, then you can clean the debris off of the pond's bottom and trim your plants. Make sure you lilies are the hardy variety. Your water lettuce and hyacinth will die back and rot during the winter so also consider that.
 

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Similar Threads


Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
31,101
Messages
512,377
Members
13,343
Latest member
Jessied1478

Latest Threads

Top