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#338881 - 06/12/13 08:49 AM Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond...
bronconaegerski Offline


Registered: 06/12/13
Posts: 17
Loc: missouri
What are the pros and cons of pumping water out of a creek to fill my 4.5 acre pond?

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#338898 - 06/12/13 10:21 AM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
rmedgar Offline
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Registered: 03/12/04
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Loc: S. Mississippi
Are you using electric, solar, ram, or is it down hill?
Do you know how many gal-per-hr?
What size pipe?
The cons can be unwanted trash fish, and other little critters, etc.
Pros - good cold water, etc.
Tell us more about you set-up. Pictures if you got 'em...
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#338901 - 06/12/13 10:43 AM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
bronconaegerski Offline


Registered: 06/12/13
Posts: 17
Loc: missouri
its about 50 feet uphill. 3 inch gas trash pump. I have two of them. I have access to other pumps.

how do you post pics?

the old pond was 1.3 acres. new pond is 4.5

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#338902 - 06/12/13 10:46 AM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
highflyer Online   happy


Registered: 07/09/11
Posts: 1768
Loc: East Texas
Ram pump, Nice!!

As for the rest, DITO.

Also, you need to test the creek water so you know its chemistry before you add it to your pond.
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#338922 - 06/12/13 01:28 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
rmedgar Offline
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The 3" gas trash pump will give you the most volume - by far. And, 50' up hill won't be a problem, as long as it's not straight up. Can you enlarge the gas tank? We've had this discussion before, but I don't remember the verdict - if any. Refilling the gas tank after 4-6 hours is the only drawback that I've had...
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#338937 - 06/12/13 04:28 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
DonoBBD Offline


Registered: 06/13/12
Posts: 1776
Loc: Ontario, Canada, Eh.
This is exactly what I do. My creek is just what we call a man made drain that drains 400 acres north east of me. I use two 4800 gph sump pumps into a 2" line. This then runs over my water fall before entering the pond. The floats let them suck the creek dry if we need water in the pond. There is a few minnows in our creek but no suckers or unwanted fish. I don't think they would make it through the impeller if they did get sucked in.

Cons are the run off from farm land tiles and can be murky if pumping when the water is dirty.

Pros I love it because it allows me to maintain water level to the inch and with my pumps running off the power from the house I don't need to truck the fuel. When I did fill with a trash pump to fill the pond quick it was 4.5- 5 hours of fuel depending how cool the air was.

If you have a good screen for the suction end start pumping and fill up the pond.

Cheers Don.


Edited by DonoBBD (06/12/13 04:29 PM)
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#338940 - 06/12/13 04:57 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
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I have a 2-inch semi-trash pump rated for about 9500 gallons per hour. I mostly use it for irrigating a my garden (approximately 50' x 100') from my bottom pond. The area around the intake always has lots of fry and fingerlings. The intake filter on the hose has about 1/4 inch holes. I've never found fry, pollywogs, eggs, etc., in the sprinkler filters. Sometimes those filters will clog with shredded FA or leaf debris -- but that is about all. I don't see a problem in doing what you are planning, unless as said above, you have some kind of contaminated water in the stream. Semi-trash and trash pumps can move an incredible amount of water with very little gasoline.
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#338953 - 06/12/13 07:17 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
Dave Davidson1 Offline
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Registered: 01/04/06
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Loc: Hurst & Bowie, Texas
Two possible downsides.

Introducing unwanted fish that are a lot of trouble to get rid of. And then you might pick up some unwanted vegetation.

One inch of water over one acre is 27,000 gallons. Do the math. I once had a good 3 inch pump. It would fill a 50 gallon barrel in 11 seconds.


Edited by Dave Davidson1 (06/12/13 07:19 PM)
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#338960 - 06/12/13 07:35 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
bronconaegerski Offline


Registered: 06/12/13
Posts: 17
Loc: missouri
The creek only has fish in a couple number of holes. Otherwise it is just a couple of inches deep. The hole I will be pumping out of is about 20 by 20 and water runs into it constantly. I did catch two largemouth about 12 inches and were fat as could be. I did however catch a small green eared sunfish. The existing pond was 1.3 acres and was pumped down to 1 acre and 3-4 feet lower to add to the existing dam. The additional 3 acres has been constructed but is empty. The old pond slowly trickles into the new area due to two springs running into it. The old pond has a good population of blue gill and large mouth bass. It also has a few crappie and 10 or less channel.

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#338969 - 06/12/13 08:26 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
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Water quality issues. Possible introduction of a lot of nutrients into the pond if the stream gets a lot of fertilizer run-off. That might result in a FA explosion.
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#338994 - 06/12/13 09:30 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
Bill Cody Online   content
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As mentioned the two main disadvantages are 1. excess nutrients. I usually wait until farmers are done fertilizing and streams have had a chance to flush nutrients and water is running clear. Turbid creek water often contains lots of phosphorus since phosphorus attaches to silt particles. 2. Unwanted freshly hatched fish fry that are often drifting down stream. Fry range from 1/4" to 1/2 long. I suggest that when filling from a creek or ditch use a homemade filter screen made from fiberglass window screen. Use a piece 4ft to 6 ft long. Roll it into a long cylinder. Sew together the long seam. Fold over one end and sew it closed. A shore repair shop can be used to for sewing the screen. Clamp open end over discharge hose. Periodically empty the filter bag if it get filled with debris. I prefer not to pump when fish are spawning from May thru Aug so chances of getting unwanted fish fry are a lot less, plus after August the fry are all too big to pass through the window screen.


Edited by Bill Cody (06/12/13 09:30 PM)
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#345891 - 08/01/13 02:52 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
Omaha Offline
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Registered: 12/06/08
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I'm going to add my situation and possible solution to this thread since it's similar.

I "finished" my pond at the beginning of spring. Just in time for some nice rain. Started to fill quickly, then July happened. Little to no rain and my water line is going down. It's about a 1/3 full at the moment with a few species of fish already introduced.

This pond sits right next to, but uphill from, a creek that flows year round. It is quite the trek uphill to the pond's bank, but they basically share the same shoreline.

I had completely ruled out the option of filling from the creek early on, especially when sampling said creek and realizing that I could possibly introduce some nearly microscopic species. And I'd have no clue what they were. But this low water and no rain has me nervous and I want it to fill badly. So I'm considering it again, but with some conditions.

There is no electricity at the pond and I don't live on it. So even a trash pump wouldn't work. I was considering a hydraulic ram, however, there's not a lot of elevation with this creek. It's all pretty level. I'm going to do some looking around this weekend to see if there's a spot where I can make this work.

Here's the crux of the plan, an idea given to me by a friend of mine who many of you met at PBV, Alex. The water coming from the creek, uphill, enters a 55 gallon plastic drum before entering the pond. This drum is filled halfway, or 2/3 of the way, with sand and gravel. Holes are drilled into the bottom of the drum to allow this water to enter the pond, which, in theory and in hopes, would be now free of unwanted species from the creek.

Pond is approximately one acre. Species will be redear sunfish, yellow perch, smallmouth bass, wipers and walleye.

Below is a diagram (oldish aerial photo) of where the pond (outlined in red) is in relation to the creek (blue line).

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#345909 - 08/01/13 04:52 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
catmandoo Online   content
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Josh and others,

Just some random thoughts ...

Filtering/killing microscopic organisms is something I know very little about.

But...

Would it make sense to fill the 55-gallon drum with diatomaceous earth instead of regular sand? It is what is typically used in swimming pool filters. Could you then set it up to backflush the contaminants on a periodic basis.

Lastly, in relation to the filter, would it make sense to periodically add chlorine or bromine "pucks" to the top of the 55-gallon drum filter, or in a water-tight box at the output, to kill whatever is coming into/through the tank. I believe it might be enough to kill organics, but the concentration would probably be way too low to do any damage in a pond with several million gallons of water. Hopefully, we have some experts who can chime in on this.

Over the last 50 years I've played around with a number of ram pumps. Even though a creek looks like it has very little drop, you might be surprised when you measure it. I know I've sure been surprised whenever I've measure water drop in a stream that looks almost level. An inexpensive Sight Level can easily give you a pretty good idea of how much drop you have. You can also use a hose or plastic tubing to make a simple water level. With just a little ingenuity, you can make one for a few dollars -- it just won't be electronic.

I'd recommend a "pressure tank" -- but it too doesn't need to be much more than a sealed can or barrel with a partially inflated tire innertube.

Depending on a lot of factors, figure that you can get about 3-feet of lift for every foot of drop from your system intake to the pump output. People claim that you can get as much as a 10 feet of lift for every foot of drop, but I've not experienced anywhere near that. I doubt I've gotten more than 5 feet of lift per foot of drop, under the best of conditions.

Lastly, I don't remember what the typical input/output efficiency is for ram pumps, but it is fairly low. A lot more water goes through the pump, than it pumps uphill.

The good thing now-a-days is that you can use Schedule 40 pipe for nearly everything, including the check valve. I was mostly using cast iron sewer pipe, sealed with lead, and galvanized pipe, when I last played with these things. When I was doing it, they didn't even have things like inexpensive PVC check valves -- only brass, and they were damned expensive. For the feed pipe, you may even be able to get away with using corrugated HDPE plastic drain pipe, which is available in 100-foot rolls at most places like Lowes, Home Depot, Mennards, etc.

There should be a lot stuff on the Internet about ram pumps. There should also be a lot of old hippies (I consider people like RMEDGAR/Randy and myself to just be young hippies) here on the forum who have a lot more recent experience than we have.

Good luck,
Ken
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#345914 - 08/01/13 05:07 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: catmandoo]
Omaha Offline
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Originally Posted By: catmandoo
Would it make sense to fill the 55-gallon drum with diatomaceous earth instead of regular sand? It is what is typically used in swimming pool filters. Could you then set it up to backflush the contaminants on a periodic basis.

Lastly, in relation to the filter, would it make sense to periodically add chlorine or bromine "pucks" to the top of the 55-gallon drum filter, or in a water-tight box at the output, to kill whatever is coming into/through the tank. I believe it might be enough to kill organics, but the concentration would probably be way too low to do any damage in a pond with several million gallons of water. Hopefully, we have some experts who can chime in on this.


Very cool things to consider Ken. Thank you.

Originally Posted By: catmandoo
Even though a creek looks like it has very little drop, you might be surprised when you measure it. I know I've sure been surprised whenever I've measure water drop in a stream that looks almost level.


That gives me hope Ken. Really liked reading that. I'll find out this weekend.

Originally Posted By: catmandoo
Lastly, I don't remember what the typical input/output efficiency is for ram pumps, but it is fairly low. A lot more water goes through the pump, than it pumps uphill.


Everything I've read, and yes, there's a ton of videos and instructionals on ram pumps, you'll lose anywhere from 80-90% of the water through the pump, leaving only 10-20% going up the hill.
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#345940 - 08/01/13 09:26 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
rmedgar Offline
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Josh, good suggestions from Ken concerning filteration of water etc, but you've still got to get the water up the hill. I have a very similar situation, and since I live at the pond and have electricity I don't have those two problems. Trash pump and electric pump work fine. I could dam my full time creek up and get a little more "drop" for a ram pump, but I just don't think that's worth the effort.
Bronco, how is your pumping going?
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#345965 - 08/01/13 10:40 PM Re: Pumping water out of a creek to fill my pond... [Re: bronconaegerski]
DonoBBD Offline


Registered: 06/13/12
Posts: 1776
Loc: Ontario, Canada, Eh.
I am getting about 20 feet of lift at 9000 gallons per hour with two sump pumps into a 2" line. I didn't notice the power on the hydro bill and they have their own floats that turn them on and off when there is water there. Works great and I don't have to worry about them at all.

There is about 200 acres of field tile that drains to this creek to keep my .75 acre pond full.

Cheers Don.
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