refurbishing old pond


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I have had a small, approximately 300 gal. goldfish pond for about 12 years and never had any problem with algae. I recently drained it and cleaned it because the ground had shifted under the pre-molded basin and it was no longer level. I believe the people that I hired for this project may have accidentally introduced single-cell algae when they started it back up. My 500 gph pump aerated the pond easily upon start-up-making the water flow over a "waterfall". I had no filtering system for about 2 weeks but had introduced my fish and new plants back into the pond. After a while I had an algae bloom like I had never seen before and couldn't get it cleaned up. Got my filtering system up and running-not uv-but it did not seem to help. Nor did the introduction of bacteria or algaecides.

Before starting it back up again I have thoroughly cleaned the basin and sprayed it down with hydrogen peroxide that was recommended. I'm ready to try again but am terrified I will get the same algae problem. I see no point in having a fish pond if you cannot see the fish! My plan is to get the filter going immediately and wonder if it would be helpful to make a tent to block some sunlight until it gets re-established. I would love for someone to give me some sort of step-by-step process in setting it all up. Since in all the previous years I never had any problem I am totally clueless. Thank you so very much!
 
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cess, actually the algae just comes - no one has to introduce it. Its like spores (? or whatever they are) are in the air. By draining and cleaning it you may have dislodged the beneficial bacteria and also did you have string algae before you cleaned? You may have had it and not noticed it much if your fish, like mine, liked to eat it. If it was removed, then that would be why the single cell would have taken over. Since Ive given up on plants (since my fish destroy them) Ive come to appreciate string algae. It uses up the nitrate, leaves the water clear, AND provides a nice emerald green carpet over the ugly liner.

When I was struggling with pea soup, my pond guru said that I would have to establish plants to use up the nitrate.... or I would have algae as a necessary evil... and of the two, the string algae is preferred for the above reasons. I actually took some home from his pond and within a few weeks it had switched over to string algae and the pea soup was no more!

Other folks have different philosophies on algae incl uv to get rid of the pea soup - that might be the way to go, to get things in shape faster.
 
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Thanks so much for your info. I'm pretty sure there was no string algae and the reason I have been so confused is that for 12 years I had no algae problem and all. Hmmm----
 

j.w

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@cess501 you had a nice 12 yrs of acclimated water and then you took out all the good bacteria when you cleaned it all out. Now you are starting all over and will have to wait till you get all the good stuff back again. It will happen, you just have to have patience and get your pond back to it's old self again.
 

j.w

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But you still have the same fish only they are bigger or you have more than when you first started. The fish make poo and your new pond water can't keep up w/it all yet. Don't feed your fish as it will just make it worse.
 
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See my post called "Interesting phenomenon!" (It was the coolest thing!) With patience and letting nature do its thing, you will wake up one day and it will disappear! Starting over will probably start the algae over again. Do you have enough plants to consume the waste from the fish and excess food? Plants that absorb nutrients from the water will starve the algae. Once the plants start growing for the season, they use the nutrients causing the algae to grow. Till then, the algae is actually helping keep the water quality good for the fish. Fish will eat the algae, too. Balance and patience is the key. But I know it is hard!!!! Do you have pictures? We love to see ponds! Good luck!
 

addy1

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Welcome to our forum! Plants are the key to healthy ponds. This is my pond right now only filtered with plants/bog. This is the 3-4 foot deep area.
20190421_130645(1).jpg
 
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I will check out your post. Thanks bagsmom. I rarely had plants before since the water was clear so would love suggestions as to which might be best and how many. I have to mail order them, having no local source. My pond is about 6 x 3 and a couple of feet deep at its deepest with some mid-depth shelves on a couple of sides.
 
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There are many folks on here who know LOTS more than I do. I'm still kind of a newbie. But I second Addy's comment: Anacharis and hornwort are great - and they just float around and suck up nutrients! Does anyone know other plants great at using up the stuff in the water? Maybe a mini water lily?
 
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Water lillies, I’d say duck weed and floating plants, but if you’ve got fish, the duck weed is just food! Fish can survive with out us feeding them, or feeding minimally. Like once a week or less. They’ll eat algae, bugs, plants, you name it! The fish get by.
 

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