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#310785 - 11/02/12 09:58 AM Get the Muck Outta Here!
RydforLyf Offline


Registered: 08/03/11
Posts: 89
Loc: Marietta, GA
I've been doing a lot of research on a DIY Muck Removal process for our 39 YO 3.5 AC BOW recently and think this could be a long-term project to slowly tackle removing the muck and debris in the lake. While researching all of this, I've found a few web sites with some good information that others may be interested in as there have been several posts on this subject over the years.

First, there's Piranha Pumps. (http://www.piranhapumps.com/mini_dredges.html) This one's been shown before.
Some good looking equipment, but not cheap. $10,400 for their larger 165 unit. This is a twin pump unit that passes all material through the large trash pump and uses the smaller clean water pump to power an agitator jet to loosen the muck so it can be sucked up by the larger pump. This is a "muck through pump" unit.

Many of us saw Mike Rowe on TV recently doing some Diver Assisted Suction Harvesting (DASH) with the guys from Aqua Cleaner Environmental.
(http://www.aquacleaner.com/)
These guys are basically using a modified gold dredge that uses twin clean water pumps to power a venturi nozzle that allows all of the sticks and leaves to be sucked up through the nozzle and then be separated from the slurry before the slurry is pumped off to the final destination that could be a settling pond or dewatering bag.

I've also found Waterfront Remodelers (http://waterfrontremodelers.com) here in Georgia. They've since retired from the business, but their website has a lot of great project related pictures showing how they handle the muck slurry. This is also a "muck through pump" operation with a separate agitator pump to loosen the muck.

The big difference I see is whether or not to use a gold dredge style venturi nozzle that allows all of the hard organic items, twigs, sticks and leaves, to pass through the nozzle and be separated above water or to use a "muck through pump" approach and filter out the harder objects by using a filter strainer on the intake.

For simplicity's sake, the "muck through pump" approach allows for a single operator and requires fewer pumps and a simpler operation. The gold dredge approach requires a more substantial piece of equipment with a separating station where you'd normally have a sluice box and then a large slurry holding tank with a separate transfer pump to pump the filtered slurry to the dewatering site. A second person is also needed to separate the sticks and debris, and like the process Aqua Cleaner uses, package the debris so it can be off-loaded. This method leaves a cleaner lake bottom because everything is removed while the "muck through pump" rigs require that the large objects be left in the water since they can't go through the pump.

I can't create a thread like this without also mentioning Muck Doctor which is also here in Georgia. The Muck Doctor founder is now working with Greg Grimes and Greg says that he is just maintaining the web site and is no longer operating the business.

Hopefully I can continue to add content to this thread as my project gets off the ground this winter and I start putting it into action Spring of 2013.

Regards,

-RFL

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#310790 - 11/02/12 10:36 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
Bluegillerkiller Offline
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Registered: 09/08/09
Posts: 3536
Loc: Illinois, St. louis area
For $10,400 I'd consider the new pond option..
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#310792 - 11/02/12 10:37 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
rmedgar Offline
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Registered: 03/12/04
Posts: 2435
Loc: S. Mississippi
Good info, RFL. Thanks.
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#310794 - 11/02/12 10:50 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: Bluegillerkiller]
RydforLyf Offline


Registered: 08/03/11
Posts: 89
Loc: Marietta, GA
Ponds must be more affordable in Illinois than they are here in GA. You couldn't pay for the stream mitigation fees for $10,400 here.
Since 99.99% of the ponds in our area are embankment ponds, and any ditch that ever holds water or runs when it rains is defined as a stream, any pond construction requires destroying a stream and therefore you are required to pay ridiculous per/foot stream mitigation fees.

-RFL

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#310815 - 11/02/12 01:14 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
Bluegillerkiller Offline
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Registered: 09/08/09
Posts: 3536
Loc: Illinois, St. louis area
Yeah we must be cheaper and I've never heard of stream mitigation.. My dirt guy is not an exclusive pond builders but has built, repaired, renovated 100's in the area.. He charges a flat $100/hr usually cuts me a little deal him and my dad grew up together and I went to school with his son.. However if he needs a dumptruck he has a guy he subs which adds to cost.. He dug my basement in 4 hrs and charged me $350 I had a few bids and my cheapest was almost $2k.. I think alot has to do with speed and efficiency he gets in gets done fast..
_________________________
I believe in catch and release. I catch then release to the grease..

BG. CSBG. LMB. HSB. RES.


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#310859 - 11/02/12 08:02 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
RydforLyf Offline


Registered: 08/03/11
Posts: 89
Loc: Marietta, GA
That sounds like a great guy to know. Prices around here are ridiculous.

-RFL

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#310860 - 11/02/12 08:04 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
fish n chips Offline


Registered: 09/06/11
Posts: 2315
Loc: Northeast Ohio
Lots of neat equipment shown there in the videos. It seems like I am always drawn in by the posts that involve pond renovation and the various ways that it is achieved.

My gut instinct on this method is that it must be ALOT of hard physical work. And its going to be super dirty work. If I was seriously considering this method, I would want to talk with others that own these. I would also take it one step further and volunteer time in helping them run one. You would get first hand experience on its pros and cons, and find out whether you would like to proceed with the idea or not.

Are the gold dredge machines more/less expensive than the muck thru systems?

Are you looking to just clean up the pond occasionaly, or does the pond really need a good dredging?

For the money involved, might it be better to just hire the dredging out to a company that deals with it everyday?

Are you not allowed to use a conventional dragline in the pond?

Best wishes, and I will be following this post as it develops. Keep us informed. Thank you....

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#310882 - 11/03/12 08:36 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
RydforLyf Offline


Registered: 08/03/11
Posts: 89
Loc: Marietta, GA
Thanks for the ideas. So far in my search I haven't found a local resource that operates anything like this,,,,,yet. I'm sure they're out there, but I haven't found them yet.

Our lake is about 3.5 AC and I've got about 1' of muck in the places I've measured it. That's about 150,000 cu ft of muck. I agree that it is going to be hard work but my plan would be to nibble away at it over time. Right now I'm not looking at doing a drain and scoop method and instead want to pursue a lower impact method of cleaning it out. Once it's done, I'd be looking to sell off the "gently used" equipment.

A dragline isn't good for light material like muck because muck almost immediately liquifies once it is scooped up. That action would stir up all of the trapped nutrients into the water column instead of removing them, which is the intention.

I'll post more as I learn.

-RFL

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#310899 - 11/03/12 12:58 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
fish n chips Offline


Registered: 09/06/11
Posts: 2315
Loc: Northeast Ohio
Originally Posted By: RydforLyf
So far in my search I haven't found a local resource that operates anything like this,,,,,yet. I'm sure they're out there, but I haven't found them yet.

I would call each company that you are considering and ask for for a list of customers that have bought one near you. Then do some visits. If there isn't anybody close, then some road trips would be worthwhile. Heck, if I knew of someone near me with one of these machines, I would want to go watch it work because of my curious nature. I love new ideas and approaches, and since I am a do-it yourself type, these things interest me for future refereces. The lack of them out there(that I've seen) makes me skeptical.



Originally Posted By: RydforLyf
Our lake is about 3.5 AC and I've got about 1' of muck in the places I've measured it. That's about 150,000 cu ft of muck. I agree that it is going to be hard work but my plan would be to nibble away at it over time. Right now I'm not looking at doing a drain and scoop method and instead want to pursue a lower impact method of cleaning it out. Once it's done, I'd be looking to sell off the "gently used" equipment.

1' of muck doesn't seem like much. Have you considered aeration to minimize the muck? I agree that a dragline would be overkill for only 1'.



Originally Posted By: RydforLyf
A dragline isn't good for light material like muck because muck almost immediately liquifies once it is scooped up. That action would stir up all of the trapped nutrients into the water column instead of removing them, which is the intention.

Just guessing on this, but from the videos, it looks like they "isolate" the area off they are working, so this process might also stir everything up.
----

With my experiences so far with pumps, I would be cautious of how much the pick-up line gets plugged. They seem too, even with a biggere hose it just means larger/longer objects stick on the end and then starts to accumulate more and more stuff. Then you would be cleaning the end frequently. It would depends on what your muck is made up of. If there are tress nearby, you can be assured there are sticks, etc

Also, what about the accesories that you might need? These could add up fast. Those dumping areas/bags might be costly.

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#310906 - 11/03/12 01:49 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
Robert-NJ Offline


Registered: 09/06/12
Posts: 294
Loc: South NJ/Varna Bulgaria
dredge spoils these days are tough to deal with,just to warn you.Although my experience is with salt water dredging I would imagine you may find the same red tape.

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#310949 - 11/04/12 07:54 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: fish n chips]
RydforLyf Offline


Registered: 08/03/11
Posts: 89
Loc: Marietta, GA
Well it sounds like you've put in a lot of thought on this like I have. Checking for customers is a great idea.

No power there, so no aeration possible at this time, but future plans include a unit.

There's always going to be some material stirred up but since ours is a private pond, there's no one to call and complain about the turbidity.

Thanks for all of your comments. It's always better when you can bounce ideas off of someone else besides one's self.

-RFL

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#310950 - 11/04/12 07:55 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: Robert-NJ]
RydforLyf Offline


Registered: 08/03/11
Posts: 89
Loc: Marietta, GA
Originally Posted By: Robert-NJ
dredge spoils these days are tough to deal with,just to warn you.Although my experience is with salt water dredging I would imagine you may find the same red tape.


I agree. I haven't even begun the permitting phase, but I can imagine there will be some hoops to jump through.

I do plan on keeping all of the material on-site, so at least I won't have to deal with hauling it off.

-RFL

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#310954 - 11/04/12 08:32 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
catmandoo Offline
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Registered: 08/08/06
Posts: 5685
Loc: Hampshire Co., WV
Several years ago we had a lot of discussion here on Pond Boss about using tilapia for cleaning muck from ponds. From what I recall, three seasons with tilapia could really clean out a lot of muck.

It is something I still would like to try for myself.

What happened to those ideas? Did the tilapia work? Are tilapia legal to put into your pond where you live?
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#310964 - 11/04/12 09:48 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
Robert-NJ Offline


Registered: 09/06/12
Posts: 294
Loc: South NJ/Varna Bulgaria
catmandoo.........tilapia are a no go in GA for use in lakes and ponds,but that is one more fact I never knew about them that may help some others.

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#310968 - 11/04/12 11:24 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: catmandoo]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
Posts: 24029
Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
From what I remember, they need to be stocked at a higher density than for FA removal. Maybe Rex can chime in?
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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).

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#310969 - 11/04/12 11:25 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: Robert-NJ]
fish n chips Offline


Registered: 09/06/11
Posts: 2315
Loc: Northeast Ohio
Originally Posted By: Robert-NJ
dredge spoils these days are tough to deal with,just to warn you.Although my experience is with salt water dredging I would imagine you may find the same red tape.


There is a large lake near me that a friend lives by, along with alot of others in an association. They trim the weeds every year and do the usual maintainance. They wanted to dredge their back canals and other areas to prevent further decline of the quality. They don't have any place to put all the dirt/muck, so I offered to my friend that they could haul it to my place. They did more research and found out that the material would be considerd hazardous and had to be dealt with properly. If they loaded the wet stuff into a truck and one drop would fall out of it onto the roadway, the whole operaton would be shut down and fined big time. The only way they could do it was to keep the material onsite.

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#310971 - 11/04/12 11:27 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: fish n chips]
esshup Offline
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Lunker

Registered: 01/26/09
Posts: 24029
Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
I'd asy something, but I'd have to moderate myself. mad
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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).

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#310973 - 11/04/12 11:32 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
fish n chips Offline


Registered: 09/06/11
Posts: 2315
Loc: Northeast Ohio
RFL, here is another source for a company that does this kind of service. No machines available to buy. There is some small info on their process scattered around on their site.... service.. I just might have to give them a call sometime to see if they have done work in my area and check it out.

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#310975 - 11/04/12 11:34 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: fish n chips]
esshup Offline
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Lunker

Registered: 01/26/09
Posts: 24029
Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
Earlier this year I did some checking around into the services that come out and suck the muck out of the bottom of your pond for a client. The average quote was $30/cu. yard.......

It would have been cheaper to drain, re-dig and refill.
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#310981 - 11/04/12 11:50 AM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: RydforLyf]
Robert-NJ Offline


Registered: 09/06/12
Posts: 294
Loc: South NJ/Varna Bulgaria
fishnchips,my uncle owned a marine construction company.Years back before my time he bought a salt marsh island to dispose of spoils for less then a song.At first he just used it to store equipment,after a few too many Budweiser's he sold off a piece with the agreement to build a marina.Today that island is a marina complex trailer park and waterfront homes.............fast forward too today they now use a property that cost 1.2 mil$ just for the disposal of dirt frown

To the OP,I read your thread and another involving a HOA lake they wanted to dredge/restore.To be honest if it was my property and there wasn't a nosey NIMBY neighbor etc.I might consider doing a little at a time on my own............in other words I'd tread lightly while looking into the permit process wink

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#310992 - 11/04/12 01:05 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: esshup]
fish n chips Offline


Registered: 09/06/11
Posts: 2315
Loc: Northeast Ohio
Originally Posted By: esshup
It would have been cheaper to drain, re-dig and refill.


If the "powers to be" let you... sick mad

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#310998 - 11/04/12 02:54 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: fish n chips]
catmandoo Offline
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Registered: 08/08/06
Posts: 5685
Loc: Hampshire Co., WV
Originally Posted By: fish n chips
Originally Posted By: Robert-NJ
dredge spoils these days are tough to deal with,just to warn you.Although my experience is with salt water dredging I would imagine you may find the same red tape.


They did more research and found out that the material would be considerd hazardous and had to be dealt with properly. If they loaded the wet stuff into a truck and one drop would fall out of it onto the roadway, the whole operaton would be shut down and fined big time. The only way they could do it was to keep the material onsite.


There is always a lot of razzing about WV being a little behind the times. And, we certainly have some pretty contentious environmental issues like moutain-top removal and fracking for natural gas.

But, being part of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed with extremely strict water quality monitoring, and being adjacent to several Great Lakes states with very strict invasive species and fish health issues, we seem to be in the right place, at the right time, to get ahead of these issues before uninformed legislators make non-scientific based laws on emotional pleas.

About eight years ago I got involved with the West Virginia Aquaculture Association (WVAA). I was shocked to find that most pond muck and most fish poop was classified as toxic waste, and fell under numerous crazy regulations. At that time, virtually all fish and aquaculture fell under the auspicies of the WV Dept of Natural Resources (DNR), plus 42 other agencies. The WVAA started a campaign to move aquaculture (including private ponds) from under the DNR to the Dept. of Agriculture. It has now been three or four years since the change happened. What an incredible world of difference. Fish poop and pond muck are now basically classified the same as cow manure. We also went from 43 agencies of oversight, to just a handful -- depending on your operation.

I don't want to see this thread go berserk politically regarding ...., whatever. I ask that it not go to the fringes or to ...., whatever.

But, there are many things we can do without becoming extremists, while we work in helping modify or eliminating aquaculture practices that don't make sense to anyone except the truly misinformed.

Like most of you, I'm just a hobbyist pond owner, but I've found that my voice in the aquaculture industry is one more voice and opinion in the always contentious environmental issues. However, even as small pond owners, don't be afraid to get involved with your state's aquaculture association. One of my longtime education issues to the regulators has been that we are a very large monetary block in the many industries related to aquaculture -- feed, feeders, pond builders, docks and boats, fish stocking, and dozens more. I strongly believe that people who own hobby fishing ponds have a lot more disposable income than their general state population median. Few of us are wealthy, but if we own enough land to have a stocked pond, and enough time to enjoy it, we are probably not destitute.

Enough. It is now time to go hug a big tree -- actually, I need to do this only because I need to get an accurate chalk line around what will be the stump. I only have a 24-inch bar on my biggest chain saw, and the tree is at least 28 inches DBH. Then I need to hug it some more, as I need to get ropes/chains up about 30 feet to help pull it well away from the tractor barn! I unfortunately don't have room to safely get the excavator in place.

Get involved. We are a much bigger force than you may realize.
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#311001 - 11/04/12 03:11 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: catmandoo]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
Posts: 24029
Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
Ken, you should be able to knock down a tree that's at least 48" DBH with that bar, just not in one pass.
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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).

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#311023 - 11/04/12 05:55 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: fish n chips]
RydforLyf Offline


Registered: 08/03/11
Posts: 89
Loc: Marietta, GA
Originally Posted By: fish n chips
RFL, here is another source for a company that does this kind of service. No machines available to buy. There is some small info on their process scattered around on their site.... service.. I just might have to give them a call sometime to see if they have done work in my area and check it out.


Interesting. It would be nice if they would show some of their equipment.

-RFL

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#311024 - 11/04/12 05:56 PM Re: Get the Muck Outta Here! [Re: fish n chips]
RydforLyf Offline


Registered: 08/03/11
Posts: 89
Loc: Marietta, GA
Originally Posted By: fish n chips
Originally Posted By: Robert-NJ
dredge spoils these days are tough to deal with,just to warn you.Although my experience is with salt water dredging I would imagine you may find the same red tape.


There is a large lake near me that a friend lives by, along with alot of others in an association. They trim the weeds every year and do the usual maintainance. They wanted to dredge their back canals and other areas to prevent further decline of the quality. They don't have any place to put all the dirt/muck, so I offered to my friend that they could haul it to my place. They did more research and found out that the material would be considerd hazardous and had to be dealt with properly. If they loaded the wet stuff into a truck and one drop would fall out of it onto the roadway, the whole operaton would be shut down and fined big time. The only way they could do it was to keep the material onsite.


I understand it can get messy trying to haul offsite. Luckily hauling will not be a requirement for us.

-RFL

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