Wildlife pond questions

Discussion in 'Newbies to Garden Ponds' started by Eric Blair, Feb 6, 2018.

  1. Eric Blair

    Eric Blair

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    The pond is 1.72m long, 1.2 m wide and .69 m deep.
    The surface area is 2 m squared (probably a bit less as it is not a rectangle).
    Is this big enough? This is scenario A
    Width wise I have 1.93 meters to the raspberry bed (so can only add 30 cm that way).
    Lengthwise I have 0.6 m to the first branches of the apple tree and 1m to the gooseberries so I only have .3m each way.
    So the maximum I could have is 2.32 by 1.5 giving 3.48 ms squared, scenario B
    However I think that is too big - and I am fed up with digging and mess. I could add a shallow shelf 10 cm to the width and 10 cm to back. Or maybe slightly less this is scenario C
    A) Is ok now or would scenario C be a lot better?

    I attach a photo, this will only have wildlife and is in South London.
    I am hoping to put the lining in soon, but want to make sure it is as good as I can get it.

    [​IMG]Pond IMG_0292 by davholla2002, on Flickr
     
    Eric Blair, Feb 6, 2018
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  2. Eric Blair

    addy1 water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins Moderator

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    Nice hole! Even though just for wildlife, make it as large as you can. Ponds just seem to do better with more water.
     
    addy1, Feb 6, 2018
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  3. Eric Blair

    Eric Blair

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    Thank you, would some shelves round the side help? Unfortunately, because of the size of my garden, it can only be slightly larger.
     
    Eric Blair, Feb 6, 2018
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  4. Eric Blair

    MitchM

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    Like addy said, the bigger the better. Larger ponds are more stable.
    Focus on keeping good water quality which means proper aeration and circulation and a balance of organic matter and minerals.
    Use a water test kit to monitor water quality.
     
    MitchM, Feb 6, 2018
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  5. Eric Blair

    CountryEscape

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    Welcome!!!
    By "wildlife" do you mean frogs and turtles, opossums and raccoons, deer, birds, ??? Assume all of these, I'd put in shelves for sure so the wildlife can step in and get a drink, and possibly take a bath. Birds love to get in my plant bog, which is filled with pea gravel, and plants, but the water is very shallow. Assuming you don't plan to have fish, will you just have standing water, or maybe a waterfall or fountain for movement? Those of us with fish know that movement and aeration are important, and plants also help use up the poo the fish make, but if you don't have fish, not sure about the plant idea. Need more info! But, whatever you do, enjoy the pond you create!
     
    CountryEscape, Feb 7, 2018
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  6. Eric Blair

    Eric Blair

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    Well I just meant frogs and birds as I live in a city in the UK so no deer nearby and no turtles nor opossums for thousands of miles.
    I will not have fish and I will put plants in.
     
    Eric Blair, Feb 7, 2018
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  7. Eric Blair

    addy1 water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins Moderator

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    What works for wildlife, is like CE is saying above. The birds like shallow moving water that is open, for quick flight escape, to bath in.

    Frogs like anything that is water. I have them living in my deck ponds, stream ponds and the big pond. They only lay eggs in the fishless ponds. They like to have rocks to sit on around the pond to sun then do a quick jump back into the water.
    Dragonflies, like plants that stick above the water for a landing spot, like grasses, iris.
    Bees drink out of plant filled ponds so they have a safe landing spot.

    Also do you get cold, i.e. freezing in the winter? If it gets cold enough for the pond to freeze over, make sure you have a decent depth like 2 - 3 feet in part of the pond for the frogs to hibernate over the winter without freezing.
    Make a deep area then have a shallow area for the birds, like a inch or two of water to bath in.

    I lose a few frogs every winter, they think the tiny water collections in the stream are safe for winter, they hibernate there and freeze. I try to spot them and move then when I can.
    We had a darn cold winter this year, I am sure I will be scooping out some bodies this spring.

    Plants will do ok even without fish poo, make sure you put them in kitty litter type clay (pure clay litter), or garden clay.
     
    addy1, Feb 7, 2018
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  8. Eric Blair

    Eric Blair

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    It does get cold but maximum -10 C 14F and that only every 10-25 years or so.
    Normally it not get below -4C

    On the subject of birds, I don't want them to bathe there, the pond is too close to cover for the neighbours cats to get them. Frogs, newts etc would be great but I don't think native fish will live in such a small pond and no goldfish as they are not native.
     
    Eric Blair, Feb 7, 2018
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  9. Eric Blair

    addy1 water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins Moderator

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    Then don't make a shallow bathing area, just have as deep as you want to go, thinking of winter and hibernation of frogs and newts. Have one end with shelves or slope up so the newts, frogs can climb on a shelf and sit or climb/ hop out of the water.

    Plants to live in, hide in, with the plants critters will come that will feed the frogs and newts.
     
    addy1, Feb 7, 2018
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  10. Eric Blair

    addy1 water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins Moderator

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    addy1, Feb 7, 2018
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  11. Eric Blair

    Eric Blair

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    Eric Blair, Feb 7, 2018
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  12. Eric Blair

    addy1 water gardener / gold fish and shubunkins Moderator

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    Weird, I just clicked it was fine.

    Just type in tiny termite in the search bar. Posted by member.

    Page four is where she introduced herself.
     
    addy1, Feb 7, 2018
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  13. Eric Blair

    Dave 54

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    @Eric Blair lol sorry mate turtles are taking over most of the ponds they escaped too or have been ditched into by bad owners "victims of the Ninja Turtle crazes" who's owners when they started to get around about the size of dinner plates thought it prudent to ditch them.We do have deer even here in Plymouth but opossums no, however we do have a fledgeling colony of green Parrots + one blue Parrot here in what we call central park Plymouth

    Dave 54
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2018
    Dave 54, Feb 9, 2018
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  14. Eric Blair

    JamieB

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    I’d be out catching a few parrots! Young ones just fledging or so.
     
    JamieB, Feb 11, 2018
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  15. Eric Blair

    adavisus

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    Your ground looks soft, likely to slump in heavy rain. Laying old carpet down might help it keep its shape.

    A wild pond 2m in size will be a neat oasis for the local amphibians, birds will be a bonus when they visit to drink.

    A little island position might keep them safe from pesky cats....
     
    adavisus, Feb 12, 2018
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  16. Eric Blair

    Eric Blair

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    Thanks for that, it didn't slump in the wet winter a few years ago.
     
    Eric Blair, Feb 12, 2018
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