Pond maintenance companies can make pond care and cleaning easier, but this can be pricey and some maintenance tasks can be tackled by homeowners. Not sure when to hire a pro or when to do it yourself? Here are a few situations where it makes good sense to turn to a professional.
- Stocking A Pond
Unless you are truly a fish and wildlife expert, it’s usually smart to have a professional come over and provide you with some stocking advice. They can take a look at your pond and lake, at its size and depth and location, and make some advice about the species of fish and amount that your pond can handle. It’s important to note that not all pond maintenance companies can help you with stocking your pond, so you may want to hire a fish stocking service instead.
- When Fish Are Dying
When oxygen levels in a pond drop, this can lead to fish kills. Many issues can cause oxygen levels to drop. For instance, if there is too much floating organic matter in the pond, these organisms can reduce oxygen levels. If your pond has too many aquatic weeds or too much sludge, this can cause oxygen levels to drop. A sudden spike in water temperature also can cause problems.
Sometimes, your pond ends up overstocked with fish, and the fish have to compete for oxygen, and their waste releases nutrients that contribute to plant and organic growth. If you notice fish are dying, it’s best to call an expert as quickly as possible and look for a solution that you can implement immediately to avoid killing all or most of the fish in your pond. A pond maintenance company may be able to help with this task, but often you’ll need to find companies that specialize in stocking and fish management.
- Excessive Sludge
If your pond or lake has too much muck or sludge on its bottom, this can create an untenable situation for your aquatic life and lead to fish kills. Even if your pond is not stocked, swimming in a pond with a sludge-covered bottom isn’t something that most people enjoy.
Pond maintenance companies often provide dredging services or can vacuum out the sludge in a smaller pond. Of course, if you have a smaller pond, you could purchase a pond vacuum and complete this task yourself, but it does take time and energy. Additionally, at Healthy Ponds, we have developed several products that can help reduce or eliminate sludge.
These products use proprietary strains of beneficial bacteria to eat away at sludge and excess nutrients, restoring your water and increasing oxygen levels. These bacteria also eat away at the green organic floating matter that causes odors and makes your water look like that unhealthy pea soup green. Contact our team and we can help you determine if our product will help you abate the issue or if you truly need to hire a pond maintenance company, or perhaps use a combination of both.
- Seasonal Cleanups
Spring cleaning isn’t just for your home. Early spring is the ideal time to think about cleaning up your pond, removing excess sludge, leaves and debris. A pond maintenance company can come out and ensure that your pond is ready for the warmer months. You also can contact a pond maintenance company for cleanup services in the fall so that your pond is ready for winter.
You could get out there with weed cutters, rakes, skimmers and vacuums and do the job yourself, but if you are pressed for time, hiring a professional pond maintenance company can be a great option for seasonal upkeep.
During the summer months, using our beneficial bacteria can help prevent many common summertime pond issues. We’ve all seen those ponds covered in green organic material, and not only does it look unattractive, it’s also not healthy for the fish in your pond. Even if your pond water is not stocked with fish, green murky water can smell and invite pests such as mosquitoes, which breed more easily in stagnant water.
Using our bacteria products can reduce the amount of general maintenance you’ll need to do to maintain your pond, which saves you time and money. You can treat your pond once each month with our AquaSphere®PRO product, and we also have additional bacteria products that can give your pond water a boost whenever you start to see green floating material at the top of the pond or notice any odors.
With AquaSphere®PRO, you simply toss in a proper amount of the biodegradable spheres and they begin working immediately and last for 30 days. Our additional treatments, such as Natural Blast®, come in water-soluble bags, which you toss into the water. These dissolve in less than a minute and begin spreading bacteria throughout your pond. We recommend that you use AquaSphere®PRO every month and add Natural Blast® whenever needed.
Other steps you can take to prevent pond issues:
Install a pond aerator – this helps keep oxygen levels steady and prevents ponds from becoming stagnant
Create a vegetation barrier – This helps prevent debris and runoff from making their way into your pond and helps protect the shoreline from erosion
Use no-phosphorus fertilizer – Phosphorus and pond water aren’t a good combination, and switching to a different type of fertilizer can prevent phosphorus runoff from affecting your pond.
What About Koi Ponds?
Because koi ponds are smaller, it can be easier for homeowners to handle the maintenance. For instance, when you head out for feeding time, bring along a skimmer and remove any debris and leaves. This goes a long way toward keeping the water fresh and clean.
Our AquaLily® Water Cleaner and our All Purpose Water Cleaner are two products that can help with koi pond maintenance. These products were designed for smaller water features and release beneficial bacteria into the water. Daily maintenance combined with the use of beneficial bacteria can prevent many koi pond issues, but it’s also crucial that you don’t overfeed your fish, as excess food and excess animal waste can cause water issues.
Pond maintenance companies can come out and clean your koi pond each week or month, but if you remove debris and treat the water, you probably can handle maintenance on your own. If you notice tears in your pond lining or issues with your aeration system, it can be smart to contact a pond maintenance company. Any issues with koi health also should be addressed by a professional.