We have an 80,000 gallon Koi pond. It has never been filtered and the water is green.


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This pond is about 35 years old. It has never been filtered. About 20 years ago the pond was emptied and a liner was installed. I have tons of smelly muck and would like clearer water. How do you inexpensively filter a pond this size?
 
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Mmathis

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Hello and welcome!

WOW! 80,000 gallons — I can’t even imagine what that looks like! And no filtration at all? Is there a bubbler or aerator in the pond? Has the water always been green or is this a recent development? How many and how big are the koi? Where do you live?

Like @j.w said, a bog might work well — a very large bog. Boy, you could go crazy planting it and it would be gorgeous!

Please post some pictures for us!
 
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Okay so you want clear water and no muck in a pond that has 20 years of muck and I suppose, a lot of fish? Do you want it tomorrow? Sorry, i’m Trying for humor here but am not good at it. We need to know how many fish and how much food you add to the water daily. That will tell us how much daily muck is produced by your school. Then we can talk about filtration size and total water flow. Theoretically you need to turn your pond volume over once every one to two hours through filtration designed to service a specific weight of fish. With that information we can plan to remove the weekly amount of waste your fish produce so that the pond never builds up muck again. The pond should draw water to the filters from both the bottom and top surface. Bottom drains and top skimmers. The filtration can be pressure filters, bog filters or a combination of both. The main point is that muck buildup is controlled when the pond removes 100 percent of the solid and chemical waste produced every day through filtration.

As for the green algae problem the question is how much visibility do you want? Crystal clear or visible down to a certain level? That is your choice and drives your choice of mechanicals. For our pond for example we are happy if we have good visibility down to about 30 inches. We like some turbidity because the fish feel safer when they can hide a bit. And we can see them just fine when we feed. That concept tends to foil predators too. We have never had a heron death, and our pond is only about 30 miles from the second largest heron rookery in the United States.
 
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Wow this site is great. Thanks for all the responses. The front pond has about 6-7 large Koi, about a dozen medium Koi and lots
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of babies. We also have about 5-6 tilapia and a grass carp. The first two pictures were taken in May 2018 and the pond actually looked pretty good. The next photos were taken late June 2018. The first photo below is a huge pile of muck!! We have been using Muck away for about two months now. I image that the muck is breaking up and has no where to go. Help!!!

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I woke up this morning to find that my back pond which is about a 1/4 acre. Is covered in what looks like algae. We have had duckweed and watermeal in the past but this looks different. We have about 20 tilapia and 2 grass carp in this pond.
 
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Clean the much out of the pond which is rotting and giving the algae something to eat. You need something like large fountain to aerate the water. Then a bog to allow good bacteria to grow, which will starve out the algae.
My advise is to read articles on this site about algae control and bogs.
 
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Whoever attacks this problem needs to be shovel qualified. You can also use a bucket and chain dredge attached to a lawn tractor throw the bucket across the muck deposit and drag it through. The muck would be a valuable addition to a compost pile. That said be careful not to remove muck in the water by stirring up the bottom in large quantities. That can release hydrogen sulfide in amounts that can poison the fish. The effect is similar to carbon monoxide poisoning in that it combines with hemoglobin in a binding fashion causing respiratory distress. H2s is very difficult to detect even though there is a smell and tougher to quantify., but the fish will be sluggish and disoriented. The best study of this problem came out of South Africa which has a robust koi network and is clearly documented on line.
 
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Wow this site is great. Thanks for all the responses. The front pond has about 6-7 large Koi, about a dozen medium Koi and lots View attachment 113422 View attachment 113423
of babies. We also have about 5-6 tilapia and a grass carp. The first two pictures were taken in May 2018 and the pond actually looked pretty good. The next photos were taken late June 2018. The first photo below is a huge pile of muck!! We have been using Muck away for about two months now. I image that the muck is breaking up and has no where to go. Help!!!

View attachment 113424 View attachment 113425 View attachment 113426
Thanks for posting pics!...now I'm jealous!:ROFLMAO:
Your pond is as beautiful as it is large!
I would definitely get that bog a serious though!... it'll take time and work, but it's the cheapest, and most satisfactory route and the healthiest way to filter a pond IMHO

Good luck with your project! Please allow us to follow your progress :)
I forgot to add I also would add a large aerator and more water circulation
 
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The least expensive way to filter a pond is by water circulation and plants.
Water circulation will distribute gasses and nutrients, plants will consume the nutrients.
Aeration is probably the most trouble free method of water circulation.
 
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Over the weekend we spent big bucks and bought an aerator for our back 1/4 pond. The results are amazing. Probably going to put one in the koi pond too.
 
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Over the weekend we spent big bucks and bought an aerator for our back 1/4 pond. The results are amazing. Probably going to put one in the koi pond too.
Great news! It may be expensive, but the results will be long lasting and satisfying!
 
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Now that you have circulation breaking down organic material, you're going to have nitrates and phosphate available.
I recommend measuring for those 2 plus KH and GH.
Bacteria require oxygen from the circulation, carbonates and trace minerals to keep doing their job.
Excess nitrates can be taken up by plants, but string algae may be what benefits from the phosphates.
Phosphates can be chemically bound by clay or be consumed by plants.
 
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