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Thread: Whats that skinny guy been doing? Fixing a pond.

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    Skinny's Avatar
    Skinny is offline General More Posts Than Postman Pat
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    Feb 2005

    Whats that skinny guy been doing? Fixing a pond.

    The former house of my parents where I now live, has a large pond. Or should I say, mud pool. Here is a pic of a few weeks ago:

    There where even some fish in there, or so it was rumoured:

    Hard to say for sure.

    So I took it upon myself to improve the pond and build a proper biological filter. Buying those things for such a big pond is out of the question, they cost a fortune, and I have no idea why. The principle is simple enough, so I set out to buy some 220 liter rain water barrels and some plumbing and a few days later I was ready to test with just 3 barrels (plan on going to 6 eventually)

    I kept the first empty as vortex filter (allow heavy particles to sink in to a vortex). I made cones at the bottom from fibreglass and epoxy to allow water to slow and dirt to slide down, just like the professional vortex filters but for a few dozen euro rather than 500.

    filled the second barrel with leftover PVC piping cut in to rings, and the third I was waiting for proper filter media. Found a nice spot to put it in, you cant see it from the garden at all:

    So I was testing for a few days, it wasnt leaking or anything, not clogging either. So far so good. Then I turned on a large fountain to help aerate the pond. Next morning I wake up, and find the mud pool... empty. Well almost:

    The fountain head clogged, and the pressure of the very powerful pump tore the hose apart and spilled all the water out the pond over night. Leaving only the dirt and sludge accumulated over 30 years, and some fish (gold fish, some Koi and some others), several of them motionless on dry concrete. They might have been there for hours and I presumed they where dead, and ones in the oxygen deprived toxic sludge would surely die later. Miraculously, putting them back in the water, they started swimming! they all lived. All of them as it turned out, not a single fish was lost.

    Anyway, I set about on a rescue mission at 7:30 am, still in my pyama's and not even had coffee. What a morning. Initially put all the fish in the filter barrels I had just made, but by noon I had set up an emergency pond on the right side of the big pond. Used an old door and some plastic thats meant for covering the floor while painting. Added a mix of the mucky water they where used to and tap water, an air pump, some plants and hoped for the best:

    The "air pump" is actually a compressor for an airbrush set. I glued an aquarium air stone to it and it worked- rather miraculously.

    Then i figured I might as well use the occasion to properly clean the pond. 3 days of hard, stinking unpleasant work. Luckily I got some help from friends and family. Help as in, bringing beers and telling me I was making great progress lol. Only on the third day I realized I could just have called a sewer truck to empty it in 10 minutes. Instead I wasted 3 days of my vacation. Oh well.

    Anyway. A week and a half later now, and Ive put all the fish back. I only filled the pond partially to allow the water to mature, and because Im going to build a proper skimmer and need to do some building, but so far its looking as if its paying off:

    Thats without skimmer (surface is laden with pollen), and with the UVC still turned off. Meanwhile the filter media arrived and were put in the third barrel, and a large air pump will arrive this week to aerate the biofilters and pond itself.

    Still got lots to do, but I always said by the summer, I will have a clean and nice pond, and maybe Ill actually achieve it too
    Last edited by Skinny; 26-04-2011 at 23:37.


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