Thought this would be a suitable time for a quick brief on the pond and the multiple challenges we face with maintaining it, so here goes:
The pond is constructed out of concrete with steep sloped sides all round and only about 750mm deep right the way across with no variation. Perfect conditions for the water to heat up quickly so algal blooms can be frequent especially with the levels of phosphorus in the water -likely coming from the mains water top up, bird droppings and food thrown in for the fish as well as vegetative matter breaking down, bottom feeding fish like carp disturb the sediment layer also releasing phosphorus. The two turbines which were installed can only run during the day and are so aggressive they disturb the sediment also releasing phosphorus (in the form of soluble reactive phosphate).It is surrounded by pavement and close to the road so run off is an issue and so is people stepping from a vehicle, on their phone and falling in(yes this has happened)
How do we manage these issues, well the first thing, turn off the turbines, the next was to install floating reed beds to assist in covering water surface, give a protective barrier along the kerb side, fitting a curtain underneath the reed beds creating a protective habitat for zooplankton such as daphnia which are very efficient at filtering pond water and removing algal particles, also establishing a beneficial food chain. The resident heron helps by keeping the growing fish numbers under control. The results are slow but judging by the amount of wildlife this year especially damsel flies and dragonflies the process is working, if we can control the amount of debris entering the pond even better, who knows we may even get the bats back feeding again.
(More detail can be found on our web pages soon)