Pond Maintenance FAQ’s

Pond Maintenance FAQ’s
In Bannockburn, we are fortunate to have ponds throughout our community. Ponds can have a wide variety of aquatic and terrestrial plants and animals, stormwater detention benefits and visual appeal, provided the ponds have good water quality and good shoreline conditions.

Just like cutting your lawn or trimming trees, ponds need care and maintenance too. If the ponds aren’t maintained and managed properly, stagnating waters, algal blooms, and other unhealthful conditions can develop, which can be breeding grounds for mosquitoes and other vector.

Here are some helpful suggestions & information (FAQ) to ensure your pond is at its best.

FAQ ON PONDS

What is considered undesirable water quality of a pond or signs of degradation?

Turbidity: Turbid water, appearing cloudy or muddy, is caused by sediment, algae, and other particles suspended in the water.

Algae Bloom: Algae thrive in water that is rich with nutrients phosphorus and nitrogen. Storm water runoff carries into detention ponds excessive amount of these nutrients from lawn fertilizers and pet and waterfowl waste. When algae become abundant enough to color the water green, it’s called a “bloom”. Like sediment turbidity, algae blooms block sunlight from reaching through the water to the pond bottom, which prevents the growth of rooted aquatic plants – a beneficial part of a pond ecosystem.

Sedimentation: Sedimentation can cover fish spawning beds and create mudflats where opportunistic weedy species such as purple loosestrife, reed canary grass, cattails, and willows can invade.

Reduced Aesthetics: Any of the above-mentioned signs of degradation can affect the decline in the pond’s visual appeal. High turbidity and green or brown water color can detract from the ponds appearance.

What are solutions to maintaining ponds?

Watershed Management: A “watershed” is the area of land that drains into a waterbody. Managing the activities going on within a detention’s pond’s watershed is just as important-if not more so-as managing the pond itself. There are ways to reduce the sediment and nutrient runoff in your pond, some of which include (i) establishing a buffer strip of native vegetation along the pond shore, (ii) having your soils tested to see what nutrients your lawn and garden areas really need, (iii) reroute your roof downspouts onto lawns rather than driveways or streets, (iv) cleaning your storm sewer catch basins and maintenance of vegetated drainage swales.

Other solutions are stabilizing eroding shorelines, pond cleaning, pond aeration and to minimize resident waterfowl populations. The best solution is regular inspection and maintenance.

All information was provided courtesy of Lake Notes, a publication of the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency.  Visit http://epa.illinois.gov/topics/water-quality/surface-water/lake-notes/index

 

 

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