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#3041 - 06/30/03 05:03 PM New Pond Losing Water
GeorgeS Offline
Lunker

Registered: 06/30/03
Posts: 78
Loc: Grapevine/ Tool, TX
We finished construction of a 1 acre pond in May of this year. The recent rains filled the pond and it overflowed as designed. In recent weeks, the pond has dropped nearly 5 vertical feet. The bottom was yellow clay and was packed with a dozer. There were no signs of gravel or springs during construction. We are counting on runoff from our land to replenish our pond. The water loss is much more than normal evaporation.
Is this common with newly constructed ponds? Can we expect it to hold water better once the bottom and dam are saturated or is this indicative of what we are stuck with? Any advice or feedback will be greatly appreciated. Signed: $8kInTheHole.
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#3042 - 06/30/03 07:23 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
ilovefishingmark Offline
Member

Registered: 04/21/03
Posts: 271
Loc: mtn. home, arkansas
yeeahhhh, sounds like you've got a leak somewhere! did you take pics of the bottom before it filled? have someone take a look at the pics, see if there is an area on the pics that could have caused problems. i can not imagine that much evaparation in that time period. did you dam a ravine, or dig a hole. the water will soak the area some, but i can't imagine 5 feet worth! there are a lot of previous topics on this website about options such as bentonite, liners and some other stuff. good luck

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#3043 - 07/01/03 08:57 AM Re: New Pond Losing Water
GeorgeS Offline
Lunker

Registered: 06/30/03
Posts: 78
Loc: Grapevine/ Tool, TX
The pond was dug in an existing runoff area that funneled water from about 25 acres of water shed. We did a test dig before construction and hit some gravel and water at about 13 feet. We had 3 foot of black top soil and then about 10 foot of yellow clay before we hit the gravel. We decided not to dig beyond 10 foot to keep us in the clay. I guess I'm hoping others will tell me that newly dug ponds are much "more absorbant" than existing ponds. George
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#3044 - 07/01/03 09:09 AM Re: New Pond Losing Water
Dave Davidson Offline
Lunker

Registered: 04/22/02
Posts: 1892
Loc: Hurst & Bowie Texas
Newly dug ponds are much, much more absorbent than existing ponds. Of course, that doesn't rule out a leak. Has it stayed at the same level? If so, that could determine where the leak, if you have one, is. If you have a leak, it is most likely at the dam.

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#3045 - 07/01/03 01:46 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
GeorgeS Offline
Lunker

Registered: 06/30/03
Posts: 78
Loc: Grapevine/ Tool, TX
In addition to hearing from various folks regarding my leaking pond, I would also appreciate any leads on a "good" pond builder in the Ellis County area (TX) that can help out on some possible changes to this pond.
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#3046 - 07/01/03 03:42 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
Buzz Tatom Offline
Lunker

Registered: 11/26/02
Posts: 105
Loc: Dallas
George, I think that is a fairly common concern of newly built ponds. I know when we built our ponds they always seemed to be going down faster than we thought and we were convinced we had leaks but after about a year things seemed to settle out for us. Texas summers will also take out far more water than I ever thought. It hasn't happened this year but in past years we could go down almost a foot a week during the dog days. I would give it some time. As far as a pond builder in that area I would think you should at least talk to Mike Otto from this website. He is top notch. Good Luck.

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#3047 - 07/01/03 04:20 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
Dave Davidson Offline
Lunker

Registered: 04/22/02
Posts: 1892
Loc: Hurst & Bowie Texas
The NRCS keeps a list of dozer operators. I would check references and go look at their work on anyone I used. I've hired numerous ones and only about 25% are really good. The ones that only know how to clear mesquite charge the same as the good ones.

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#3048 - 07/02/03 09:50 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
ken Offline
Lunker

Registered: 01/31/03
Posts: 350
Loc: ohio
george, if you pump her dry and redo the sides and bottom , a good operator knows a dozer dosn,t compac the earth.the weight of the machine is spread on the tracks , he should tow a sheeps foot to properly compac the earth . hope things work out for ya.
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#3049 - 08/07/03 01:35 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
GeorgeS Offline
Lunker

Registered: 06/30/03
Posts: 78
Loc: Grapevine/ Tool, TX
Just a follow-up note... Our pond is now 95% dry. The remaining water is less than 2 ft deep and is about the size of a kiddie pool. The folks at the Soil Conservation office said that the "Lewisville Silty Clay" that makes up our pasture is very crumbly and will not hold water. My advice to others... just because everyone in your area has a pond with water in it don't assume your soil is the same. Do homework before digging...not after like I did or you will have an $8,000 hole to ride motorcycles in like I do.
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#3050 - 08/07/03 02:58 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
Dave Davidson Offline
Lunker

Registered: 04/22/02
Posts: 1892
Loc: Hurst & Bowie Texas
George, I think I can speak for everyone in offering condolences.

Dave

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#3051 - 08/07/03 05:35 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
GeorgeS Offline
Lunker

Registered: 06/30/03
Posts: 78
Loc: Grapevine/ Tool, TX
Thanks Dave.

What I really need is a huge BYOB party at our newly dug hole. Bring Your Own Bentonite!
Beer, Bikinis and Bentonite. B-There!
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Working hard so others don't have to.


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#3052 - 08/08/03 09:15 AM Re: New Pond Losing Water
Bob Koerber Offline
Member

Registered: 04/24/02
Posts: 470
Loc: Hartselle, Alabama
George have you looked into a liner for your pond? It might be less expensive than other methods. I got a small one from Bend Tarp and Liner for about .30 a square ft and larger ones are even less. You might be able to salvage the pond for about 3K or so. Since you already have a bunch tied up in it maybe thats the way to go. I have to use a well pump to keep my pond from doing the same thing last summer I lost about 4 ft of water and the fish were swimming backwards to keep the mud out of their gills! This summer I am only down 11 inches.

Bob

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#3053 - 11/03/03 11:39 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
Scott Trava Offline
Lunker

Registered: 10/28/03
Posts: 182
Loc: Wurtsboro N.Y.
George
Have one of your local pond guys sound the pond with 2" black pipe around area where you suspect leak they should be spaced approx. 3 foot apart.and put in at same depth.

Scott Trava
Catskill Pond
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Scott Trava
Catskill Pond
http://catskillpond.com
scott@catskillpond.com
Returning Catskill Waters To A Simpler Time
EST. 1923

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#3054 - 11/03/03 11:51 PM Re: New Pond Losing Water
Scott Trava Offline
Lunker

Registered: 10/28/03
Posts: 182
Loc: Wurtsboro N.Y.
Forgot to say.
We have sealed many ponds wiyh sand wash available at your local sand pit. Have it prossesed sample down to a 230 sieve . Apply it to pond bottom 8-12" thick and knit with existing soil all the way up sides to top deck if in doubt just do a 40 ft circle at bottom and watch results. granted there is no hydro pressure. It should cost you approx. 250$ but might show promise
Scott Trava
Catskill Pond
_________________________
Scott Trava
Catskill Pond
http://catskillpond.com
scott@catskillpond.com
Returning Catskill Waters To A Simpler Time
EST. 1923

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