Select Stone Company
Phone: (419) 861-9600
Toll Free: 1-800-695-9867
Fax: (419) 861-0913

9645 Airport Highway
Monclova, Ohio 43542

 


SEASONAL POND CARE

      Winterizing your pond should begin in the fall with cleaning of pond debris, leaves, etc. Know the condition (cleanliness) of your pond going into winter. You should be able to see the bottom of the pond. Remove any leaves and sludge settlement with a fine mesh algae net or pond vacuum. This is very important. √

Do not empty your pond and scrub it down. This would destroy your ponds ecological balance and most of the beneficial bacteria you work all season to build, not to mention the stress you would cause your fish with such
a drastic change in their environment. A partial pond cleaning is ok when debris build up is excessive. Rent a utility pump if you don’t have an extra pump that can move larger particles. Pump about 1/3 of water out of pond while tending to your plants, then use pond water to spray off sidewalls and shelves to loosen debris. This will cloud/muddy the water. If you have an additional pump you can send the dirty water through your filter box to filter out a lot of the debris. You may have to clean your filter material during this procedure. Trim dead/old plant leaves, remove dying tropical plants & floaters and from pond. This is a good time to remove excess fish (you could check with local pet stores to take small goldfish for feeder fish) Add your pond treatments Microbe-lift Autumn Prep & Barley Pellets and Pond Salt. √

Use your pond thermometer to check the water temperature as needed. As the water temperature cools, reduce feeding and stop feeding when water temperature is below 50ºF., don’t feed again until spring when the water temperature rises consistently above 50ºF. If the fish are able to eat they will begin on their natural food (algae). When the pond water cools down the fish’s metabolism is slowed making it difficult for them to digest food. We stock a low protein fish food for spring and fall. √

A common cause of fish dying during the winter is improper gas exchange (lack of oxygen) caused by a frozen over pond. Large fish or heavily populated ponds require more oxygen. In these ponds oxygenation of the water is necessary for survival, more so than ponds with a few small fish. Fish gasping at the surface is a sign of lack of oxygen. To reduce harmful pond gases you should net out decaying pond debris, prevent leaves from polluting your pond by netting out leaves daily or cover the pond with a pond net.

If you have ever considered adding a skimmer to your pond, this is a good time. In most situations it is quite easy to retrofit a quality skimmer to an existing pond. Just ask us how. “You will have a cleaner and lower maintenance pond and that makes spring startup a breeze”. √

Please keep a hole open in the ice to allow oxygen/gas exchange and provide oxygen during extreme cold, use a safe floating garden pond deicer (shown right) or a pond air stone/compressor. If you use an air stone/bubbler make sure is cannot end up deeper than 10” below the top of the pond, as this could cause the whole pond to chill to rapidly and possibly cause a fish kill. A pond Deicer or pond air stone system will cost less than buying new fish next spring. Many pond keepers use both and a halogen light as follows: We also highly recommend a submersible halogen pond light ranging from 20 to 75 watt size that will keep the lower level at a comfortable temperature 24/7. NEVER break the ice using any force like a hammer etc., the sound wave shock could kill your fish. √

When you remove your pump for winter, clean it well, put it in a bucket of soft water and store where it will not freeze. This will prevent the pump seals from drying and cracking, please refer to the manufacturers care instructions. In the spring check the impeller to see that it turns freely before installing and turning on. Drain and clean filtration system and drain the supply lines that could freeze resulting in damage. We remove, clean and store our filter media for the winter. √

If you want to run your waterfall for the winter and you have a pump greater than 2000 GPH it won’t freeze (provided it runs continuously). You may have to is connect any external filtration systems (remember to drain the filter before it could freeze) and connect the pump directly to the waterfall tubing. This method may lower the temperature of the entire pond. To counter this place the pump close to the waterfall and higher off the bottom to reduce the cross circulation of the pond water. We suggest using a pond heater with this method. Place the heater (deicer) at the opposite end of the pond in less disturbed water. You may need to add some water to replace loss through splashing or evaporation. You must drain the lines (unless they will drain by gravitational flow) if you shut off the pump or have power loss for any length of time. Remove check valve from line so water can freely return to pond if pump is shut off. Above: Beautiful Koi huddling around their halogen pond light! √

Enjoy your winter ponds more by leaving underwater lights on 24/7. Your fish enjoy the lights even more, as the light gives off heat. You may notice some fish that are not tolerating the cold water “Burrrrrrr!” huddling close to the heaters and
lights for a little warmth.



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