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#371289 - 04/05/14 03:17 PM Anything positive about filamentous algae?
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Have some filamentous algae around the edge of the pond. It has covered my shallow "spawning area" that I had provided gravel and small rocks for the fish.

Was pulling some out today. Noticed that it is teeming with life. Snails, little critters that look kind of like tiny aligators, red worms, other worms......all kinds of living stuff.

I don't have any rooted pond weeds. Is The FA providing the cover for these tiny critters till some rooted vegetation takes over? Is "some" FA actually beneficial, as long as it does not get out of hand?

One bunch I pulled out had an 1.25" BG fry. So some fish must use it for cover. Is FA all bad and to be eradicated before it takes over? Or is it ok as long as it does not get out of hand?


Attachments
001.JPG (869 downloads)
Description: FA along the shore line in a shallow area

002.JPG (833 downloads)
Description: FA I'm pulling out

006.JPG (847 downloads)
Description: Snails and snail eggs everywhere, including in the FA. RES ought to be well fed


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#371294 - 04/05/14 05:46 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Gavinswildlife Offline


Registered: 01/25/14
Posts: 44
Loc: Canton, Ohio
I would remove it one way or another. The sooner the better. It can cover much of the shore. One thing you don't want is eutrophication when it dies.

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#371295 - 04/05/14 05:48 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Rainman Offline
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It all depends, snrub! FA produces oxygen, but can die and consume oxygen after several cloudy days. FA provides shelter for small aquatic life, but is a bugger to get off a fishing line/lure. Producing oxygen causes bubbles to get trapped and pull large mats of FA loose from substrates to float on the water surface....causing some ponds to look like a sewage lagoon and blocking sunlight to oxygen producing, subsurface plants and phytoplankton. FA may be the new crude oil of the future....FA is being researched, and "designer fuels" are being created with algae.

Like I said...it all depends, on your opinion of the stuff.

In Kansas, you can add tilapia to consume the FA. The tilapia reproduce like crazy, LOVE eating FA, and all those T-babies feed your other fish. Less FA will give other aquatic plants a better chance to utilize nutrients to get established.
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#371297 - 04/05/14 05:58 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: Gavinswildlife]
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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Originally Posted By: Gavinswildlife
I would remove it one way or another. The sooner the better. It can cover much of the shore. One thing you don't want is eutrophication when it dies.


I have FA along the shore out three or four feet around my trophy pond and it keeps out the heron along with the staked lines. It's tough for them to wade through.

FA also metabolizes ammonia and nitrates but usually that's not in issue in ponds.


Edited by Cecil Baird1 (04/05/14 11:20 PM)
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#371300 - 04/05/14 06:28 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
catmandoo Offline
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I think that Rainman Rex hit the major points. I love to fish the Shenandoah South Fork and Potomac South Fork rivers. At different times of the year, they become almost impassible, even in a kayak, with FA -- but the SMB fishing becomes incredible using top water baits, poppers, and flies.

I've probably caught more citation size SMB at these times than during any other times during the last 40 years. We usually do pretty well with trophy size BG during these same times. This happens about 2-3 times a year, starting shortly after ice-out, through August. Each time with similar looking FA.

When my main pond now gets hit with FA that floats up, it looks like a Senior's bus tour of old cows and steers that took a rest stop break. Nothing bites during those times.

With a lot of settling ponds in my major watershed areas, diversion wetlands, vegetation, and keeping my pond edges will vegetated, I've really cut down on FA in my ponds.

I think my oveall fishing is better -- but, we seldom keep records anymore, and just enjoy 3-4 generations catching dinner.
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#371303 - 04/05/14 07:04 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Bluegillerkiller Offline
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I hate that stuff.. of course i have an acre of pond 3 ft deep or less that grows FA like crazy and best thing I've found to do is let it be because that's a battle i can't win..
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#371344 - 04/06/14 11:22 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Ok, thanks everybody for the replies.

Catmandoo said "With a lot of settling ponds in my major watershed areas, diversion wetlands, vegetation, and keeping my pond edges will vegetated, I've really cut down on FA in my ponds."

That comment leads me to believe excess nutrients are at least part of the problem. I lined this pond when new with a layer of topsoil on suggestion of our local NRCS guy so we would not have as much problem with suspended clay causing the water to be turbid. It accomplished that goal as this pond was never as muddy looking as any regular new pond in the area that just left the clay exposed. But I have read recently (think it was last PB magazine) that it was not recommended to put topsoil in because of excess nutrient problems.

Seems like getting the nutrient balance right is a struggle. Some ponds need more, others need less.

Having read lots of different things when I built the pond (but not yet discovered PBF) the literature talked about fertilizing a new pond. So I put a couple scoops of manure mixture in as the pond filled. Also fertilized the banks for grass and let the dry fertilize throw out into the pond. Then also about half the runoff area of the watershed is farmland with pretty good fertility levels and we tend to have large rain events sometimes when we get rain so a lot of runoff.

What I am getting at is, even though this pond is only a couple years old, I seem to already have excess nutrient problems. Water clarity stayed about 18" last summer with a nice green cast. It is probably closer to 2.5 feet now but the water is still cold and I noticed just yesterday the visibility is dropping with an algae bloom.

My plan of action is to pull some more out in the shallow area created for spawning and some around the banks where it is floating up. Beyond that don't think I could keep up with it anyway. So will just pull out the worst areas and watch and see what happens with the rest. Hopefully will not need to resort to chemicals, although being a farmer chemical use is no stranger.

Thanks everybody for the input. I was just really surprised at all the bug life in the FA. Guess I should not have been.


Edited by snrub (04/06/14 11:24 AM)
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#371347 - 04/06/14 12:09 PM some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Found this publication that shows a bunch of common bugs that live in ponds. Pond insects PDF

Looks like the FA had lots of Nymphs in it, Did not look closely enough but maybe Damselfly and or Stonefly. In the FA they were very tiny ones. I found larger ones in an old dead weed covered with FA. I have seen the larger Nymphs on the underside of rocks previously while looking at snails. Bunch of other tiny worm like things that were to small to identify without magnification.

I just saw the FA surface literally moving with activity when it was drug up on the pond bank. Thought it was interesting how much life it held.


Edited by snrub (04/06/14 12:10 PM)
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#371357 - 04/06/14 01:13 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
Bocomo Offline


Registered: 05/06/12
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Loc: Boone County, MO (pond)
Oof yeah with topsoil in there you definitely have a head start on organic matter in a new pond!

Just wanted to issue a friendly warning -- be sure to wear gloves if you're handling the FA as the backswimmers bite really hard.
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#371358 - 04/06/14 01:25 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Thanks for the warrning. Now what the heck is a backswimmer???
frown


Edited by snrub (04/06/14 01:31 PM)
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#371361 - 04/06/14 01:34 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
Rainman Offline
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Originally Posted By: snrub
Thanks for the warrning. Now what the heck is a backswimmer???
frown


Crayfish, craws, damn finger pinching backswimming $$!!*^'s
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#371362 - 04/06/14 01:37 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
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#371365 - 04/06/14 01:47 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: Bocomo]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
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Loc: SE Kansas
Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks. New one on me.
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#371366 - 04/06/14 02:09 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
Bocomo Offline


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When mom would put out the backyard kiddie pool in the summer it would be full of these little suckers after after a few days. Between them and the horseflies we had to keep on our toes.
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#371373 - 04/06/14 04:20 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
Cody Veach Offline


Registered: 09/20/10
Posts: 384
Loc: Central PA
I love being at my ponds and I know what I do does not work for every one. When I refurbished, " mucked out" my big pond on my moms property I spent a year non stop removing FA next year I had chare so thi k you could walk on it. Pulled it out non stop. Past two years the pond has been pristine . Added grass carp and have aeration but I believe as I removed the plants nonstop I removed what ever nutrient load that was in the pond. I can't argue with the success .

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#371434 - 04/06/14 11:44 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: Cody Veach]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Concerning removing nutrient load............

One thing that I may have done to make the FA problem worse around the edge of the pond is I feed the baby FHM's around the edge of the pond. Every day I would throw a little sinking feed in close to the shore (a few inches of water) where the small FHM's would peck at it till it softened enough for them to finally get it all eaten.

Makes me wonder if that wasn't also adding nutrients right in that shallow water. Fish probably got rid of waste same place they were hanging around feeding. Might have been fertilizing the FA by feeding the small fish.


Edited by snrub (04/06/14 11:45 PM)
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#371435 - 04/07/14 01:20 AM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
Bluegillerkiller Offline
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That feeding was not likely causing your problems unless you were throwing large amounts.. Also I don't think your feeding though in good intentions was doing much for your minnows IMHO I could be wrong but I don't think it's needed..
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#371437 - 04/07/14 04:18 AM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
John Monroe Offline
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In my opinion FA is good when you look at it as food source and are converting it into animal life. Rainmans tilapia are a great example. Also KOI, Israeli Carp, tadpoles, snails and water plants also help to control FA. Plants help steal nutrients from the FA and the examples given eat FA while it is forming under the water before it can float to the surface. I like to have traces of FA just around the edges of the pond.
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#371443 - 04/07/14 07:53 AM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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I read somewhere that some FA is the sign of a healthy pond.
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#371445 - 04/07/14 08:10 AM Re: some of the bugs [Re: Cecil Baird1]
DonoBBD Offline


Registered: 06/13/12
Posts: 1971
Loc: Ontario, Canada, Eh.
Originally Posted By: Cecil Baird1
I read somewhere that some FA is the sign of a healthy pond.


I think it really shows allot of dissolved acid nutrients. If you can tie up the excessive acid nutrients with lime they will sink to the bottom and become plant food and not algae food.

I hand spread hydrated lime on our FA and it gos away fast.

Cheers Don.
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#371446 - 04/07/14 08:21 AM Re: some of the bugs [Re: Bluegillerkiller]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
I would say you are probably right about the minnows not needing it. There is probably plenty of natural feed for them without it, and them eating the feed means likely they are leaving an equal amount of natural life for something else to use (like FA maybe?). So I might of actually been doing more harm than good. These were the half grown FHM's that hung around the very edge of the water. The adults I threw the feed out in 2-3' of water where the 2-3" BG would also work on it (sinking feed).

Thing of it is, it was more for my benefit than theirs for the half grown FHM's as I liked to see them work on the pellets around the edge. Guess there is something about a pond that I put all those stocking fish out there and it is nice to see some reproduction and evidence. Most of it stays hidden from our sight.

Having said all that, all those tiny FHM's are not to be seen this spring so either A. the 3" LMB I stocked last fall ate them in the fall and winter or B. they grew up. I have harvested at least ten pounds of FHM's to stock sons and daughters ponds and doesn't seem like I made a dent in them. I can put some feed in a minnow trap and 30 minutes later have it a third full of minnows. Wait an hour and it is half full. So either on their own or with the help of the feed, they certainly did ok somehow.

I've been feeding the adult FHM's for two or three weeks now hoping to get one last good spawn year before the LMB get big enough to wipe them out. They go after the feed like pigs in a pen and will clean up any amount I have put out so far in short order. About 1-2 gallons of feed a day for a 3 acre pond, depending if I get out there once or twice. The BG are starting to get some of it the last week. I have definitely had minnow production. I feed a mix of sinking and floating, depending on wind conditions.

Put a camera in the water yesterday and dropped it on the bottom. Dropped some feed down where I could see it in about 5-6' of water. Occasional BG came by but a mass of FHM's came and mobbed the feed. I think it is going to be fun to watch this episode when the LMB get big enough and smart enough to come by at feeding time and feast on FHM's. I expect to see a mass of FHM's, see them scatter and the glimpse of a LMB streak by in front of the camera. A movie coming later this spring and summer. smile
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#371448 - 04/07/14 08:22 AM Re: some of the bugs [Re: Cecil Baird1]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Originally Posted By: Cecil Baird1
I read somewhere that some FA is the sign of a healthy pond.


Maybe "balance" is the key? Some is good, too much not so good?
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#371449 - 04/07/14 08:24 AM Re: some of the bugs [Re: DonoBBD]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Originally Posted By: DonoBBD
Originally Posted By: Cecil Baird1
I read somewhere that some FA is the sign of a healthy pond.


I think it really shows allot of dissolved acid nutrients. If you can tie up the excessive acid nutrients with lime they will sink to the bottom and become plant food and not algae food.

I hand spread hydrated lime on our FA and it gos away fast.

Cheers Don.


Interesting!!! Might have to try that on small sections at a time. I would think maybe it not a good idea to do too much at once so as not to affect PH too much at one time, but samll sections might be beneficial for other reasons besides the FA. Thanks!
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#371450 - 04/07/14 08:25 AM Re: some of the bugs [Re: John Monroe]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Originally Posted By: John Monroe
In my opinion FA is good when you look at it as food source and are converting it into animal life. Rainmans tilapia are a great example. Also KOI, Israeli Carp, tadpoles, snails and water plants also help to control FA. Plants help steal nutrients from the FA and the examples given eat FA while it is forming under the water before it can float to the surface. I like to have traces of FA just around the edges of the pond.


Thanks John. Sounds reasonable to me.


Edited by snrub (04/07/14 02:46 PM)
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#371475 - 04/07/14 01:05 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
DonoBBD Offline


Registered: 06/13/12
Posts: 1971
Loc: Ontario, Canada, Eh.
Originally Posted By: snrub
Originally Posted By: DonoBBD
Originally Posted By: Cecil Baird1
I read somewhere that some FA is the sign of a healthy pond.


I think it really shows allot of dissolved acid nutrients. If you can tie up the excessive acid nutrients with lime they will sink to the bottom and become plant food and not algae food.

I hand spread hydrated lime on our FA and it gos away fast.

Cheers Don.


Interesting!!! Might have to try that on small sections at a time. I would think maybe it not a good idea to do too much at once so as not to affect PH too much at one time, but samll sections might be beneficial for other reasons besides the FA. Thanks!


I use a small hand held grass seeder with hydrated lime in it. Weather I am creating a time bomb of nutrients I do not know but it gos away when I use it.

Cheers Don.
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#371497 - 04/07/14 05:22 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: DonoBBD]
Rainman Offline
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Originally Posted By: DonoBBD
Originally Posted By: Cecil Baird1
I read somewhere that some FA is the sign of a healthy pond.


I think it really shows allot of dissolved acid nutrients. If you can tie up the excessive acid nutrients with lime they will sink to the bottom and become plant food and not algae food.

I hand spread hydrated lime on our FA and it gos away fast.

Cheers Don.


Don, hydrated lime is extremely caustic, and kills the algae by breaking it down at the cellular level. Bad thing is, it will also kill many other critters caught in the pH change.
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#371687 - 04/08/14 10:49 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: Cody Veach]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Originally Posted By: Cody Veach
I love being at my ponds and I know what I do does not work for every one. When I refurbished, " mucked out" my big pond on my moms property I spent a year non stop removing FA next year I had chare so thi k you could walk on it. Pulled it out non stop. Past two years the pond has been pristine . Added grass carp and have aeration but I believe as I removed the plants nonstop I removed what ever nutrient load that was in the pond. I can't argue with the success .


Well I'm getting a start on it. This is a picture of my first attempt of FA going to a compost pile. I might have got 10% of it. No way I'm going to even keep up with it, let alone get ahead of it. I have a shallow area where there is gravel and rocks for spawning that is covered with FA. Pretty sure the fish will not use it as is, so will try to remove the FA at least from this shallow area. Water is down 15" so this area that is normally 2-4' deep is pretty shallow and a good time to remove the FA. When I raked the FA up, was a black stinky layer under it. Area looked pretty good with the FA gone when the sediment stirred up settled out.

Most of my water is deep enough FA should not be a problem except around the shore line. I may try DonoBBD's hydrated lime idea around part of the shore line. Will not remove the nutrients that way though, just recycle them.


Attachments
025.JPG (739 downloads)
Description: One big glob of FA that came out of about half of my "spawning bed" area.




Edited by snrub (04/08/14 10:53 PM)
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#385316 - 08/18/14 04:53 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Ok, observations to date.

After raking out some of the worst areas of FA in the spring, early summer brought lots of it to the surface and blown by the wind to various parts of the pond (depend on which way the wind was blowing).

Having had back surgery 3 times previous, I'm a little selective of what I do with a shovel/rake/pitchfork. Doctor said he did not want to see me again because the next time it would not be as much "fun". So I decided to go the "John Monroe" route of letting the pond evolve to see what happened, as opposed to raking lots and lots of FA. I really appreciate John's observations.

The early portion that I raked out, brought along with the algae a lot of various critters (nymphs, etc) along with some tiny BG fry. Since this pond is still in its early stages it seemed important to me to have good spawns and fry survival. Having no established rooted weeds yet (that I knbow of or can observe) it seemed the FA was taking the place of weeds as habitat for these small fish. So I left the FA in the pond. Fortunately the wind kept the coverage of the surface down to 10-20% of pond surface area. Ugly, but tolerable.

As I've watched the FA die and float to the surface, channels have developed and I can clearly see lots of small FHM fry using it as refuge. Earlier this year we had an explosion of FHM. Adults and half grown schools. The half grown schools sometimes were 10' in diameter. Now I hardly see an adult FHM. None chasing pellets like earlier. I think the LMB (9-10" back then) and adult BG (8") have done a number on them. But I have gobs and gobs of FHM fry interlaced in the FA beds. Also lots of BG fry seen around the plumes of FA held up by gas bubbles and floating dead FA (kind of look roughly like............. nuclear explosion mushroom cloud????).

So it is my observation, that by leaving the FA, I will have FHM for another year (maybe) than I otherwise might. I also expect to have BG fry to live to larger size for LMB food than they would have with a bare shore line. So for me, while FA sucks to look at, I think it has served a purpose till other natural cover develops. My non-expert opinion. Would love to hear other opinions and/or facts.

FA in ponds reminds me of something I have observed in the ocean for many years. I had the pleasure to scuba dive the same wreck (specifically sunk for an artificial reef) for about 7 years, every year and most years both summer and winter (near Peurto Morelos, Mexico). My first dive on it was only a few months after it had been sunk (maybe 4 months). The first thing to colonize it was a red algae (more green towards the base and red on the tips). The whole ship was covered in this 6" long algae (I guess you could say it was filamentous, because it had length). Looked like a big fuzzy ship. I've also noticed this algae on reefs that have been torn up by hurricanes. It is the first thing (that I observe at least) that colonizes the bare, exposed, broken limestone. I watched this underwater wreck "evolve" like I imagine what John Monroe describes his pond evolving. Although I have not went diving on it for a few years not, the last time I did there was none of this algae left. The algae had taken advantage of the nutrients available and colonized the boat, then gave way as more complex organisms made the boat their home. Now it is encrusted with hard and soft corals, mussels or clams, sponges, etc.

I do not know, but I suspect FA plays a similar role in a pond (and would be happy to hear others experiences or expert observations). It appears to me, at least at this time, that the FA will prepare the pond for the next progression of colonization which will likely include rooted weeds.

So while the stuff really looks sucky, it appears to me it plays a natural role in the progression of a pond. Not saying that we have to abide by any natural progression (because they make algaecide's and other things to modify the natural progression), but if we do likely the FA will eventually be less of a problem to be replaced by whatever the next thing is that replaces it.

It appears to me, from the standpoint of the fish populations reproduction and food chain, the FA has served a positive purpose.

Would like to hear others experiences so I know what mother nature is going to throw at me next. grin Pond was built 2012 and initially stocked Mar 2013 with FHM and BG (with a few RES). LMB, CC and some more RES late fall of 2013.


Edited by snrub (08/18/14 05:03 PM)
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#385319 - 08/18/14 05:14 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
One other positive thing about FA. Before I had FA, if I threw out floating pellets on a windy day, some might end up on the bank from wave action. Now it just floats up to the edge of the FA and stays there till eaten or sinks and is eaten below.

Probably not enough reason to like the stuff, but hey, it is one positive. crazy
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#386873 - 09/08/14 07:38 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Dave Davidson1 Offline
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Interesting observation about the ship. However, a pond is a much smaller, enclosed, ecosystem. As the FA dies it rots and fertilizes the next generation. You see the results in the black muck. Once it becomes an infestation, it rules the pond as a perfect survival model wherever sunlight can penetrate. I think of it as the Johnson Grass of the pond. But it's not as bad as the duck weed that splits and regens itself every couple of hours.

All plants provide the benefit of becoming a home to small species of life. You just have to pick the plant that you want and this is easier said then done once an infestation starts.

Raking provides a small benefit but allows sunlight penetration to give next gen a start.

The important word here is infestation. And FA understands that word very well. I have found that it is important to control it by spraying when it first appears in the Spring. And keep hammering it.
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#387431 - 09/15/14 10:20 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Shorty Offline
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FA gives dragonflys and damselflys a place to land an lay their eggs.
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#387434 - 09/15/14 10:42 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: Shorty]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
I also noticed that the floating mats around the edge are a favorite place for frogs to sit. I have a good population of frogs and tadpoles, even though more recently rains have sent the FA mats to the bottom and are pretty much unseen. I think it helps keep the predators (LMB) at bay, giving the frogs much more cover in the mats than they would otherwise have to lay eggs and cover for the tadpoles.

I have a theory. It is not a very good theory because I pretty much don't know what I'm talking about when it comes to ponds. But everybody has opinions, even when they don't know what they are talking about. So here goes.

I believe FA is the organism that takes advantage of plentiful nutrients in a BOW until the time that root based aquatic weeds take over that job. In the absence of said aquatic weeds, the FA provides a valuable function of providing YOY fry, aquatic insects and other "critters" valuable cover, thereby enhancing the long term success of the fishery.

FA can be a good thing. There, I said it. The way it makes a pond look sucks, but as far as the under water portion of pond health goes, it provides a valuable service.

I just came out of the FA "closet". I kind of like a certain amount of the stuff (but not too much grin )


Edited by snrub (09/15/14 11:11 AM)
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#387447 - 09/15/14 11:32 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Shorty Offline
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FA can do quite well with aquatic vegetation present, here is a picture from my dad's old pond. The FA is anchored on top of the milfoil which is rooted to the bottom. In the spring the milfoil would grow to the surface and then later in the summer FA would cover all of the places that the milfoil made it to the surface. The outside edge of the FA in this picture is 6-8 feet deep.

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#387448 - 09/15/14 11:45 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: Shorty]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
So much for that theory. grin

I hope mine does not get that bad.
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#387449 - 09/15/14 11:53 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: Dave Davidson1]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Dave, when you say spray it at first sign, is that first sign when it shows up on the bottom? If I understand it correctly it starts on the bottom in early spring and grows towards the surface. As it dies off it is then when the mats float up to the surface. Do I have this correct?

If so, how do you spray it on the bottom? What chemicals do you use?

I well understand the meaning of comparing it to Johnsongrass. And to think that many, many years ago our road department used Johnsongrass to seed road ditches. Now they spray to kill it as it is considered a noxious weed.

So far mine has not been terribly bad, but bad enough for about a month in the summer. Maybe I need to get a handle on it next spring????

One thing that I think has made mine worse than it would have been, is that we started out water levels about 18" low this spring and did not have the normal fall/spring recharge where the pond starts out full and with some flow through. I know for you guys in Texas 18" low is nothing, but for us it is very unusual to not get at least one large spring rain event to fill the ponds to overflow. So this started out the spring with water that would have been three feet deep with no sunlight to the bottom to 18" with sunlight hitting the bottom. So I think the low water exacerbated the FA problem for me.


Edited by snrub (09/15/14 11:59 AM)
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#387450 - 09/15/14 11:54 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Shorty Offline
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The current owners are running bottom diffusers and have very little milfoil and FA in the pond. wink
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#387471 - 09/15/14 03:10 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
teehjaeh57 Offline
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In my experience FA has varying year classes. My FA this year was pretty strong, due to a couple factors IMO:

1. Dry spring allowed 8' water clarity much longer into the Spring following ice out which helped FA grow deeper than it has historically due to increased light penetration.

2. Cool spring delayed rooted vegetation establishment at least 2 weeks later than normal and also reduced planktonic algae blooms which helped water clarity and light penetration.

So, FA had the light due to water clarity and available nutrient loads due to lack of competing rooted vegetation and this resulted in at least 200% increase on my ponds - much deeper than it normally can develop.

In years we have warm, wet Springs I have seen the inverse occur due to early establishment of rooted vegetation. These are just my casual observations that might be helpful.

I don't like FA, however, I also find YOY fish use FA for cover, and often find grass shrimp in close proximity - upon which they are ostensibly grazing.
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#387515 - 09/15/14 10:20 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: Shorty]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Good info guys. I put in bottom diffusers (three double 9" with 2 cfm to each on 3 acre pond) but it was early summer before they were installed and running so the FA already had a running start. Maybe next year will not be as severe.
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#387516 - 09/15/14 10:59 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
teehjaeh57 Offline
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Originally Posted By: snrub
Good info guys. I put in bottom diffusers (three double 9" with 2 cfm to each on 3 acre pond) but it was early summer before they were installed and running so the FA already had a running start. Maybe next year will not be as severe.


I think you should be prepared to see it come and go, John, depending on the conditions you're presented. If you can remove it once it floats I recommend it in order to help reduce nutrient loading that occurs when it degrades. I find a nice 8' net is far better at removing FA than rakes and easier to remove.

I like you are composting your FA - great use! I dry it and use it as an element in my potting medium along with peat and black soil. Not sure it makes much difference, but at least imparts a feeling that I'm being resourceful/creative.
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#387521 - 09/16/14 01:35 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
John Monroe Offline
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Registered: 06/03/02
Posts: 1105
Loc: East Central Indiana
Originally Posted By: snrub


I have a theory.

I believe FA is the organism that takes advantage of plentiful nutrients in a BOW until the time that root based aquatic weeds take over that job. In the absence of said aquatic weeds, the FA provides a valuable function of providing YOY fry, aquatic insects and other "critters" valuable cover, thereby enhancing the long term success of the fishery.

FA can be a good thing. There, I said it. The way it makes a pond look sucks, but as far as the under water portion of pond health goes, it provides a valuable service.

I just came out of the FA "closet". I kind of like a certain amount of the stuff (but not too much grin )


First of all SNRUB I am a member of the back club with a herniated disc for the last 30 years.

Observing nature as you did in the ocean tells you a lot about water nature. It seem that water and plants got along just fine through millions of years without us. I like to read things like the daily notes of Louis and Clark in their expedition exploring the Louisiana Purchase and the excursions of Teddy Roosevelt to see what the water ways were like when they were pristine and untouched. When General Sherman was in command of troupes in Florida they took a single seine sweep for fish in the coastal water shore and filled five barrels with fish. It's hard to beat mother nature.
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#387559 - 09/16/14 04:17 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
ewest Offline
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Lots of very good info in this thread that should be mined for the archives thread on FA.
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#409492 - 04/28/15 10:47 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
mthompson Offline


Registered: 08/20/10
Posts: 19
Loc: WI
Filamentous algae is also a place that perch can string their egg ribbons out....Taken yesterday while attempting to manually remove some algae before it gets out of hand.

I stopped, and found that just about every clump around the pond had ribbons on it...well played algae, well played.

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#413873 - 06/03/15 09:24 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
A landscape rake works fair at pulling FA out around the pond edge. But it had its shortcomings. One was the FA would wrap around the top of the aluminum and then I had to tip the rake from side to side to try and get it to slide off. Lots of extra movement and effort to remove the FA from the rake.

Thought there must be a better way. Made the improvements shown in the pictures below and thought others might like to see them. The foam is some 2" insulation scraps that came out of some construction we tore down. I made it tall enough so it has floatation so the rake stays above the FA and never wraps over the top of the rake. That helps reduce effort of FA removal by at least a few hundred percent.

I've also found that with the flotation, once I remove a section of the FA I can put my hand on the end of the handle, shove the rake down into the water at the angle the pond bottom drops to deeper water, and make great turbulence (like a boat oar dipping into the water) and stirring the muck up off the bottom. The idea being that stirring the muck up will put nutrients into the water column and create a planktonic algae bloom rather than a FA bloom. As the rake is forced down into the water, the positive buoyancy of the insulation causes it to pop back to the surface for low resistance retrieval from the operation. Works much better than before the flotation portion was added.

Notice also the longer handle added. This was simply about an 8' piece of 2" electrical conduit I has laying in the shed. Gives the tool lots better reach. Bolted it on with a 1/4 x 2.5" bolt and nylock nut.

Works lots better than the original bare landscape rake.

picture 5 shows how I used a circular saw to make a slit to fit the insulation over the aluminum rake frame.
Picture 6 shows how I used heavy duty zip ties (used to tie up household duct work in heat/air systems) to attach the insulation
Picture 7 shows the handle extension
Picture 8 shows it in operation


Attachments
004.JPG (770 downloads)
005.JPG (687 downloads)
006.JPG (644 downloads)
007.JPG (568 downloads)
008.JPG (656 downloads)

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#413880 - 06/03/15 09:42 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
I found a large landing net worked great, just scoop it up and the water draines right out...
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#418969 - 07/20/15 12:02 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Bill Cody Offline
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A smelt dipping net works best for net algae removal. If u put a bolt through the end of the rake handle and add a rope you can toss the rake out into the pond farther than the handle along reaches.
Look up Lake Rake on the web for an example.


Edited by Bill Cody (07/20/15 12:04 PM)
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#419004 - 07/20/15 04:51 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
RC51 Offline
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I've had air in my pond since 2010 and I still get FA sorry air alone wont take that monster away. Like TJ says it comes and goes. Air may help some but it's not a fix for FA... I usually wait till it all blows to one end of the pond and then I try to go rake it out. Then not long after my Chara starts coming up and the FA goes away! Well my floating FA goes away...

RC
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#431715 - 12/15/15 02:00 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
Turtlemtn Offline


Registered: 11/24/15
Posts: 368
Loc: Missouri
I think the FA would be grazed by scud or grass shrimp if you had either or both of those in your pond. The crustaceans would help to control the FA, and they would also be forage for your fish.

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#431728 - 12/15/15 06:01 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: Turtlemtn]
DonoBBD Offline


Registered: 06/13/12
Posts: 1971
Loc: Ontario, Canada, Eh.
Originally Posted By: Turtlemtn
I think the FA would be grazed by scud or grass shrimp if you had either or both of those in your pond. The crustaceans would help to control the FA, and they would also be forage for your fish.


I think some FA is good for the ponds diversity. I have seen this year where crayfish will graze the FA but only in spots the size of a dinner plate. Seams you need a butt tone to eat allot of this stuff. I have allot I mean ALLOT of crayfish and they cant keep up.

I don't see aeration making a big different with FA. I do see if your grass clippings get blown into the pond I will have FA in a week.

Cheers Don.
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#431729 - 12/15/15 06:31 PM Re: some of the bugs [Re: snrub]
Shorty Offline
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FA has been absent in my pond for the last two years, I suspect my abundant golden shiner population might have something to do with it.
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#447637 - 05/19/16 01:01 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: teehjaeh57]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
An update to this thread.

This spring I took a proactive approach to see if I could keep ahead of the FA and keep it from getting into the nasty glob stage. I don't mind some around the edge of the pond, but wanted to try and keep it mostly under control. I actually like a little because it is good cover for critters that my BG like to eat.

So far it SEEMS to be working. However it could be just as TJ suggested that some years it can be worse than others and this simply might have been a not-so-bad year.

But this is what I have done that has seemed to have helped at least to date.

First, I started off early. FA gets started (at least in my pond) in very early spring and this year we had a warm March and it was already starting to grow on the bottom.

I took a two pronged approach. Limited chemical control and pond dye to keep light from penetrating deep into the bottom of the pond.

The water was very clear early this year after winter during water warm up. I could see the green FA starting on the bottom of the pond. Around the shallow edge it was already getting 6" long or so, not as much in deeper water.

I used some Cutrine granules from the bank to about 6' out and ordered some black pond dye. The Cutrine did a good job of killing the near shore FA.

The black is harder to find than the blue, but my wife and I both like the reflective look of the black than the blue tint of the blue dyes. I ended up using two different brands of dye but both were concentrated and advertised that a quart was equal to a gallon of regular pond dye. Having never used pond dye I have no idea if this is true (or they were just pulling my leg to get a sale). The treatment rate was 1-2 qts per surface acre with an average depth of 6'. I started with 2 quarts on a three acre pond, not wanting to make too drastic change all at once. Within the next week I added one more quart then another to end up at the time with 4 qts on the 3 acres. The dye looked like it might be helping but could still see the bottom at 3' depth or so. Ordered another brand direct from the manufacturer (at a better price but have to order 12 quarts case). Added more till I was at the upper 2 quarts per acre rate.

In the mean time the FA was coming back around the pond edge where the water was shallow. Treated with a small amount of Cutrine liquid and within a few days took care of it.

To date this appears to be working. I have added a little more pond dye as it naturally dissipates over time and as we have had large enough rain events to have flow-through and dilution. When I have a good algae bloom it is not needed. I only add the dye if the water clarity gets too great for several days without an algae bloom and it appears the FA could again start up. Usually only add one to two quarts at a time. Out of the original 4+12=16 quarts I have bought I think there is still 4 left in the box. This is on three acres of pond.

So far so good. With a couple of fairly minor treatments early with Cutrine around the edge along with the pond dye when the water was too clear, so far all I have had is small amounts of FA around the edge of the pond at times and at times none at all.

That is this year. If I can control it again next year with the same routine I will consider it a successful treatment (assuming it continues through the rest of summer well). I might have just got lucky and this was a lesser FA growing year or my pond has changed. But so far, so good.


Edited by snrub (05/19/16 01:03 PM)
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#447647 - 05/19/16 02:11 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1943
Loc: West Michigan
snrub, do you mind shooting a picture of your pond with the black dye in it at concentrations that you find pretty ideal? (point where you feel you don't have to add any more in to get the desired color)

I'm curious how dark the water has to be to get the desired effect. A close up may not be that helpful, I'm thinking more a shot from 100-200' away to get the whole idea of the color.

Only if you have time...

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#447657 - 05/19/16 03:44 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: canyoncreek]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Funny you should ask. A few days after adding the black dye back March 19 I took a series of photos specifically for the benefit of PBF members to see the effects. As happens all too often, I got lazy and never did anything with the photos on my phone.

Thanks to you, I now have the needed "push" to do something with them so they are now downloaded and are posted below. The first picture listed is of the main pond with the dye and the second picture is taken at the same time of day and angle of my adjacent sediment pond to get a comparison of dye vs. no dye. At times the water in my sediment pond looks drastically different than the main pond but at this particular time we had not had much rain so the waters were similar when the dye was added. The rest of the pictures are taken at different angles to show how "different" the pond can look depending on the angle of the shot and time of day taken.

All pictures were taken March 19 except for the last two. It was kind of overcast on the 19th and sunny the next day. Pictures labeled Black dye 3 and 4 were taken the next day one right after the other. One is of the right side of the dock and the other is of the left side both at 12:45 pm. I took these two just to show how the same water at the same time can look different simply because of the angle looking at the water. Pictures were pointing NW and SW. Notice the other picture taken off the dock the day before the water looks very much different because of sun/time of day.

In my opinion, for the most part, the black dye doesn't really make the pond look "black". Too little dye in too much water to do that. What it does is give it a slightly darker color but much more of a reflective "mirror" type surface rather than actually changing the overall color that much.

Hope this helps. My wife and I love the turquoise blue water of the Caribbean when we go scuba diving there. But somehow we neither one liked the similar color the blue dyes sometimes gives ponds. For our local setting and surrounding landscape it did not seem the right contrast for our taste. Thus the reason we decided to try the black dye which is much less popular than the blue.

So far so good. We like it ok.


Attachments
IMGA1641 Main pond with black dye.JPG (781 downloads)
Description: Main 3 acre pond with black dye

IMGA1640 Sediment pond with no dye.JPG (677 downloads)
Description: Sediment pond with no dye right next to main pond

IMGA1638 Black pond dye 1.JPG (675 downloads)
Description: Shows reflective surface well

IMGA1639.JPG (508 downloads)
Description: off side of dock

IMGA1642 Black dye 2.JPG (571 downloads)
Description: another angle around the pond

IMGA1643 Black dye 3.JPG (562 downloads)
Description: looking NW to the right side of dock next day

IMGA1644 Black dye 4.JPG (608 downloads)
Description: looking SW to left side of dock next day




Edited by snrub (05/19/16 03:57 PM)
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#447696 - 05/20/16 03:38 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
John Monroe Offline
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Registered: 06/03/02
Posts: 1105
Loc: East Central Indiana
Snub you started this thread saying FA was teaming with life. So that'a positive for FA. But we don't want it to cover our pond. I love the stuff and I only have it around the edge of my pond but when it hits the plants in my pond it stops dead in it's tracks. So many try to control it with chemicals or dye's which stops not only FA but much of the beneficial plants in a pond. I go with nature and not fight it.
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#447705 - 05/20/16 09:18 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1943
Loc: West Michigan
snrub,
Thanks, those pictures are worth a lot! Much easier to see than try to describe. I see how it isn't jet black or totally reflective but yet has a darker hue. I like it!

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#447716 - 05/20/16 12:14 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: John Monroe]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
John I agree with you and hopefully I'm on my way to getting some desirable plants established. I have no desire for the expense or trouble of treating with Cutrine and/or dye every year. I'm hoping the current treatment only has to be done a year or two till I get things in more of a self regulated state.

To me the natural dye is a better partial solution than using larger amounts of Cutrine, both from an environmental and an economic view.

I also don't mind some of the FA around the edge. But I don't like where the pond is half covered with floating blobs that shift from side to side of the pond with the wind and make swimming and fishing very difficult or undesirable.

There is some water primrose starting naturally around the pond and some spike rush getting established. I think the addition of the sediment pond has also helped some with the nutrient load.

It is not that I don't like to use what nature provides when I can. It is just that sometimes nature has different desires and goals than I do for this particular spot on the planet. My garden is the same way. Were I to let it go "natural", it would mostly be weeds and grass. I prefer to eat vegetables.


Edited by snrub (05/20/16 12:20 PM)
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#447718 - 05/20/16 12:27 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: canyoncreek]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Originally Posted By: canyoncreek
snrub,
Thanks, those pictures are worth a lot! Much easier to see than try to describe. I see how it isn't jet black or totally reflective but yet has a darker hue. I like it!


On the cloudy day or viewed at a low angle, it can almost look black at times but so can natural water without the dye. That is why I showed the last two pictures where the view was on a sunny day looking more directly down into the water. The dye just replaces what would preferably be an algae bloom.

I much prefer to have an algae bloom rather than using the dye. Something I have not done but should is take a water sample. I may very well have excess phosphorus and not enough nitrogen at times. I might could add a slight amount of nitrogen to get the bloom. I just hate to go that route adding even more nutrients when I know I have an excess to begin with. Plus adding five or six pounds of fish food per day (about 2-3# per acre)for 2/3 of the year adding more nutrients.

The dye was an experiment based on some other posts here on PBF having success with it. So far I am happy with results. Never ever thought I would ever be using pond dye. smile


Edited by snrub (05/20/16 12:28 PM)
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#448250 - 05/27/16 01:13 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
esshup Offline
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The trick to controlling FA is to get ahead of the curve. If you wait until it breaks free from the bottom and is floating, you are already behind the curve and have to play catch-up.
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#450367 - 06/23/16 12:20 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
An update to this thread on using black pond dye to control the FA. It appears to have worked and I have added no more dye for the last month. As water temperature got warmer a natural algae bloom seemed to take the place of the dye so I have had no need to add any more.

At least so far this year, as Esshup pointed out, getting ahead of it early before it became a big problem the very limited amount of Cutrine at the very beginning and the dye to keep it from coming back seemed to work till I got the desired algae bloom. Of course every year may be a little different so will try about this same procedure next year to see if it is actually a workable plan or I just got lucky with the year.

Right now I don't see any FA at all. Maybe the variety I have is a cool weather type because the hot weather/warm water seems to have knocked it out. Went snorkeling the other day and the bottom was bare. Last year green fuzz six inches deep everywhere light penetrated. But I only had about two feet advisability because of the algae bloom so the snorkeling sucked. All I got to see was small BG that would come up to my face when I held still for a couple minutes. Would feel larger fish brush up against my legs but never come up front where I could see them.

The dye seemed to work for me early but I no longer need it.


Edited by snrub (06/23/16 12:22 AM)
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#452311 - 07/20/16 01:35 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
And yet another update. We had large multiple rain events and HUGE flow through a week or two ago. So I suspect most of the dye is gone due to both normal degradation as well as dilution.

Been noticing a week ago a little FA around the edges of the pond and out a few feet on the bottom. Today I have some floating out to a couple feet from the bank. I do not mind that. We do not keep this pond like an urban showcase property and I actually like a little FA around the edges for the critters and small fish refuge.

But I can see this is starting to take hold and possibly become a problem. So I added a couple more quarts of black dye today (supposedly a quart of this dye is equal to a gallon of ordinary pond dye - who knows if it is sales hype or the truth). That is on three acres with recommended rate of 1-2 quarts per acre. Will monitor it for a week and see if the FA stays at current levels or if it gets worse. If it gets worse may have to use a small amount of Cutrine liquid around the edges. Will wait and see.

I have some concern if I kill off all the FA the nutrient load will cause blue green algae to replace it. We had a problem with Blue green algae last year. But last year water levels were low with little flow through. I would think nutrient levels should be much lower this year do to the dilution effect. We will see what happens.

I have been very happy with the water quality so far this year. Hope it stays that way through the dog days of July/August.


Edited by snrub (07/20/16 01:40 AM)
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#452826 - 07/25/16 10:02 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Decided to add the last two quarts I have on hand of black dye today. Thought I should document in case someone else wants to try dye to control FA. FA still mostly around edges but seeing just a little floating out in some other shallow water. With the two quarts I added earlier, it is getting in mid range of the recommended amount. The big rains had pretty well washed out what was left of the earlier spring application. Will wait about a month and report back here if control was maintained or no. Decided not to use any Cutrine and just see what develops for the rest of the season. Had another inch of rain today and brought the pond back to within a half inch of full pool, so the water depth and quality has been a lot better overall this year than last. That may have as much to do with the FA behaving better this year as the dye and Cutrine.

If anyone is interested the black dye I am using is made by Rain Biologics. You can do a search if more information is desired.


Edited by snrub (07/25/16 10:05 PM)
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#461588 - 01/07/17 08:38 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
I forgot to come back and make the final report for the year. The last two quarts I put in seemed to keep the FA to tolerable levels. I am satisfied with the control achieved and will try it again next year.

One concern I have is that in surpressing the FA there seems to be more problems with bluegreen algae outbreaks. I guess that gets back to the message heard multiple times here on the forum. Nature is going to find some organism to take advantage of excess nutrients. Surpress the FA and something else is going to come along.

My longer term goal is to have some rooted plants take care of the nutrient problem. That and my sediment pond helps slow the flow of nutrients into the main pond.

This thread reminds me, I need to get some dye ordered early to have it on hand. Last year with a warm March thr FA was already going good.


Edited by snrub (01/07/17 08:40 AM)
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#461592 - 01/07/17 12:07 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Bill Cody Offline
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Snrub - Good report. What brand of black dye do you use? Do you see black as having benefits compared to blue? My understanding is most black is made with blue, yellow, and red.


Edited by Bill Cody (01/07/17 12:09 PM)
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#461593 - 01/07/17 12:09 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Bocomo Offline


Registered: 05/06/12
Posts: 1176
Loc: Boone County, MO (pond)
Originally Posted By: snrub
One concern I have is that in surpressing the FA there seems to be more problems with bluegreen algae outbreaks. I guess that gets back to the message heard multiple times here on the forum. Nature is going to find some organism to take advantage of excess nutrients. Surpress the FA and something else is going to come along.


Bill Cody, can you weigh in on this? I thought that BGA was a bigger problem when using copper products as some BGA are copper-resistant. It's my understanding that BGA are photosynthetic and would also be slowed down by pond dyes that block the wavelengths they need to make energy just like FA.
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#461596 - 01/07/17 01:17 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Bill Cody Offline
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Bocomo - ""It's my understanding that BGA are photosynthetic and would also be slowed down by pond dyes that block the wavelengths they need to make energy just like FA.""
Algae and especially bluegreen algae (BGA) are not this simple. One cannot generalize and apply it to all BGA. This is a complex topic due mainly to there are so many species of algae - tens maybe hundreds of thousands. The smaller the organisms become the more species there are in that group. Not all algae including BGA are the same. We can't assume they all have the same requirements. Each species is unique and many if not most, are adapted to often a unique set of environmental variables; that is why they don't all bloom at once in the same conditions. Some algae are what we call generalists and can grow in a wide variety of conditions. Some algae species are indicator species and are very specific as to what they need to thrive. This is similar to fish. Carp are generalists and can grow in almost any water type, not true with say brook trout or other species sensitive fish called an indicator species. Invertebrate species are are similar in their wide range of environmental requirements that span all the species.

Yes some BGA are copper resistant although some other species belonging to other algal groups are also tolerant to various concentrations of copper. Some algae will thrive or bloom in higher concentrations of copper that kill all the others - they have adapted as tolerant or needing abnormal amounts of copper ions.

I am convinced bluegreen algae species are stimulated by various types of light wavelengths and intensities. The floating planktonic BGA usually prefer high intensity light. Bottom growing BGalgae often tolerate low light and some BGA I think can thrive on different wavelengths than green algae. Many algae in all groups can thrive in low light conditions. Beginning to see the 'rub'?

The BGA that Snrub is seeing in his black dyed pond could be thriving in the areas where the dye is less effective such as shallow water zones or on the surface. Or his BGS could be adapted to black dye better than a dye of another color.


Edited by Bill Cody (01/07/17 07:52 PM)
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#463020 - 01/31/17 09:50 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: Bill Cody]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Snrub - Good report. What brand of black dye do you use? Do you see black as having benefits compared to blue? My understanding is most black is made with blue, yellow, and red.


I thought I had replied to this but see I had not.

I started with Black Dyemond. Then when I needed more ordered from Rain Biologics. You can do a Google search and find both.

I saw no difference in the performance of the two.

I only used black because my wife and I did not think the blue turned the water color to a shade that went with our decor'. grin
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#471277 - 05/05/17 10:58 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: Bill Cody]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Bocomo - ""It's my understanding that BGA are photosynthetic and would also be slowed down by pond dyes that block the wavelengths they need to make energy just like FA.""
Algae and especially bluegreen algae (BGA) are not this simple. One cannot generalize and apply it to all BGA. This is a complex topic due mainly to there are so many species of algae - tens maybe hundreds of thousands. The smaller the organisms become the more species there are in that group. Not all algae including BGA are the same. We can't assume they all have the same requirements. Each species is unique and many if not most, are adapted to often a unique set of environmental variables; that is why they don't all bloom at once in the same conditions. Some algae are what we call generalists and can grow in a wide variety of conditions. Some algae species are indicator species and are very specific as to what they need to thrive. This is similar to fish. Carp are generalists and can grow in almost any water type, not true with say brook trout or other species sensitive fish called an indicator species. Invertebrate species are are similar in their wide range of environmental requirements that span all the species.

Yes some BGA are copper resistant although some other species belonging to other algal groups are also tolerant to various concentrations of copper. Some algae will thrive or bloom in higher concentrations of copper that kill all the others - they have adapted as tolerant or needing abnormal amounts of copper ions.

I am convinced bluegreen algae species are stimulated by various types of light wavelengths and intensities. The floating planktonic BGA usually prefer high intensity light. Bottom growing BGalgae often tolerate low light and some BGA I think can thrive on different wavelengths than green algae. Many algae in all groups can thrive in low light conditions. Beginning to see the 'rub'?

The BGA that Snrub is seeing in his black dyed pond could be thriving in the areas where the dye is less effective such as shallow water zones or on the surface. Or his BGS could be adapted to black dye better than a dye of another color.


Great explanation for us laymen Bill. An update on my algal situation of my main pond.

Early this spring I was getting some FA growing around the banks in shallow water that looked like it could become a nuisance. I had a little Cutrine granules left over from last year so treated the area from about 1-3' out from the bank. Did not put any granules right at the edge of the bank because I do not mind a little FA for the critters and fish larvae to use for cover as I have little bank vegetation yet. Ordered some more Cutrine Granules and black pond dye at that time (early March).

The Cutrine knocked it back and have done nothing since. Got a good planktonic algae bloom going and looked like I might not need the dye. Lots of water flow through with local flooding lately so that should cut the nutrient load down on the pond and I am crossing my fingers I am done with FA management for the year. We will see. I'll have the Cutrine granules and dye for next year.

Bob Lusk had chimed in on another thread about using dye that if you are going to use it for FA control do it early in the season, not later when the YOY larval fish need the phytoplankton to survive and the phytoplankton need an algae bloom to survive and thrive. I was glad to get that information as otherwise I might have used dye later in the season than I should.

An odd thing happened when I ordered my black dye from Rain Biologics. I kind of forgot about it and a couple months later wondered where my dye was. I emailed them saying I had never received it. They promptly emailed back and said they had screwed up a few orders and mine was one of them. They were going to ship my case of black dye out immediately and for my trouble at no cost also ship me a case of blue dye. I would have settled for an apology (mistakes happen) but they went beyond that and gave me a bunch of free product. I thought the company was trying very hard to keep pleased customers. I was impressed how they took care of it and without me pressing them or asking for any special favors.

With the free blue dye I may try mixing blue and black next spring should I feel the need to dye the pond. Ideally both cases will sit on a (non-freezing location) shelf and never be needed.


Edited by snrub (05/05/17 11:05 AM)
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#471284 - 05/05/17 01:04 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
anthropic Offline


Registered: 05/03/14
Posts: 1639
Loc: East Texas, USA
My pond is less than two years old. It's too young to dye!
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#471291 - 05/05/17 03:03 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: anthropic]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
grin grin grin

I thought the same thing. My pond was too young and should not have excess nutrients.

But I did line the pond with a thin layer of topsoil to have more clear water (less clay suspension) and that soil was pretty fertile. Plus I was feeding pretty heavy.

I am actually feeding less feed than I used to to try and not put so many nutrients in the pond.
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#471295 - 05/05/17 05:03 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Custom 68 Offline


Registered: 05/09/14
Posts: 116
Loc: Springfield MO area
speaking of topsoil part my shallow end was left as "dirt" as my pond was built. We worked the dam end with a core and money got tight as it took more effort and depth than originally planned we wanted this end right and left a portion to "backwater" if this did not hold then we would attach that later as long as the dam was good. That said maybe this is where my higher nutrients are coming from. I had not thought that to be an issue at the time.
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#494359 - 07/30/18 01:11 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
Pictures below are of my sediment pond with a terrible FA problem. I treated one time around the edge with Cutrine liquid and it knocked it back a couple weeks (when the FA was mostly noticeable around the 3' perimeter). It was getting to be summer and hot weather so I thought I would be in the clear as the water got hotter. Nope.

First picture is the pond as it was a couple weeks ago. I then raked the FA off around the edge that I could reach with my rake. This helped as far as the fish go as once I had clear water around the edge I could see the fish utilize this new open water.

Ran out of time (and it was horribly hot to be raking FA out of the pond) and left for a couple weeks on vacation. Got back and it looks like I had done nothing. Just a small area around the aeration plume of open water and several small other openings.

Raked some more tonight to open up the edges again.

I do not really care too much about this pond being covered. It is after all a sediment pond. I am raising some LMB fingerlings in it to later transfer to my main pond (in the back ground in some of the pictures). My main concern is if it comes a big rain event and water goes over the emergency overflow (which it will if it comes a 3" rain pretty quickly) all the FA will end up in my main pond where all the water flows to.

Some background. This sediment pond had a massive fish kill earlier due to some very fine dusty chicken litter (manure and wood shavings) applied to the adjacent field and a sudden unexpected downpour rain that washed this fine dusty litter into this sediment pond. It was a near total kill of the remaining fish that were not transferred to my main pond (strong wind blew the gasping fish to one end where I dip netted most out and transferred to main pond). A small number of 1 to 1.5" fish did survive (including GSF naturally). The sediment pond did its job. Some of the excess nutrients did flow through to my main pond (3 acres) but the majority settled out in this 1/10th acre pond. So the nutrient load in it was tremendous with all the organic fertilizer that has high levels of N, P and K.

The first year the water primrose that had started around the edge thrived and was the darkest green color I have ever seen water primrose. It extended out about 3-4' nearly all around the pond. I actually liked this as I thought it would be a good use of the excess nutrients. I drug some of it out at the end of the first year (the next year after the fish kill). So I thought it would be back this year. But instead this year the FA overcame the water primrose and essentially chocked it out.

I would have much rather had the primrose back instead of this FA. Interesting how the pond has utilized the excess nutrients in two completely different ways in the two years following the fish kill.

When raking the FA out of the pond I figured we would have a really windy day that would compress it to one side of the pond making it easier to remove. Have not had the windy day at least to date when I was at home. If the FA is still touching the bottom the wind will not blow it very well. If you get it "broke loose" a good wind really compresses it and makes it much easier to remove.


Attachments
20180707_112221.jpg (101 downloads)
Description: Before raking around the edge about two weeks ago.

20180707_112229.jpg (113 downloads)
Description: Showing main 3 acre pond in background. This sediment pond catches sediment and nutrients from the adjacent agriculture ground before the water flows into the main pond.

20180708_083732.jpg (107 downloads)
Description: rake to remove FA

20180708_083750.jpg (115 downloads)
Description: what the edge of the sediment pond looked like after raking.


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#494389 - 07/30/18 04:22 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
azteca Offline


Registered: 07/08/16
Posts: 152
Loc: QUEBEC
Hello.

Lots of FA, and lots of work.

I work with Toad tadpole they eat FA, I don't know for the Bass,but my Yellow perch don't eat Toad tadpole.

A+

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#494398 - 07/30/18 09:02 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
poppy65 Offline


Registered: 04/15/13
Posts: 270
Loc: illinois
Originally Posted By: snrub
Pictures below are of my sediment pond with a terrible FA problem. I treated one time around the edge with Cutrine liquid and it knocked it back a couple weeks (when the FA was mostly noticeable around the 3' perimeter). It was getting to be summer and hot weather so I thought I would be in the clear as the water got hotter. Nope.

First picture is the pond as it was a couple weeks ago. I then raked the FA off around the edge that I could reach with my rake. This helped as far as the fish go as once I had clear water around the edge I could see the fish utilize this new open water.

Ran out of time (and it was horribly hot to be raking FA out of the pond) and left for a couple weeks on vacation. Got back and it looks like I had done nothing. Just a small area around the aeration plume of open water and several small other openings.

Raked some more tonight to open up the edges again.

I do not really care too much about this pond being covered. It is after all a sediment pond. I am raising some LMB fingerlings in it to later transfer to my main pond (in the back ground in some of the pictures). My main concern is if it comes a big rain event and water goes over the emergency overflow (which it will if it comes a 3" rain pretty quickly) all the FA will end up in my main pond where all the water flows to.

Some background. This sediment pond had a massive fish kill earlier due to some very fine dusty chicken litter (manure and wood shavings) applied to the adjacent field and a sudden unexpected downpour rain that washed this fine dusty litter into this sediment pond. It was a near total kill of the remaining fish that were not transferred to my main pond (strong wind blew the gasping fish to one end where I dip netted most out and transferred to main pond). A small number of 1 to 1.5" fish did survive (including GSF naturally). The sediment pond did its job. Some of the excess nutrients did flow through to my main pond (3 acres) but the majority settled out in this 1/10th acre pond. So the nutrient load in it was tremendous with all the organic fertilizer that has high levels of N, P and K.

The first year the water primrose that had started around the edge thrived and was the darkest green color I have ever seen water primrose. It extended out about 3-4' nearly all around the pond. I actually liked this as I thought it would be a good use of the excess nutrients. I drug some of it out at the end of the first year (the next year after the fish kill). So I thought it would be back this year. But instead this year the FA overcame the water primrose and essentially chocked it out.

I would have much rather had the primrose back instead of this FA. Interesting how the pond has utilized the excess nutrients in two completely different ways in the two years following the fish kill.

When raking the FA out of the pond I figured we would have a really windy day that would compress it to one side of the pond making it easier to remove. Have not had the windy day at least to date when I was at home. If the FA is still touching the bottom the wind will not blow it very well. If you get it "broke loose" a good wind really compresses it and makes it much easier to remove.


I'm sure no expert but this is from my experience. I think the FA grows in deeper water too and when some breaks loose and floats to the top, the mats tend to drift around the edge of the pond. I doubt you impacted that much only treating out 3 ft. I had the same severe problem about 3 years ago nearly covering my pond. I divided up the pond into 3 sections and treated each section at 2 week intervals. Since then I have used pond dye and nearly no FA at all but I do see small patches of it still growing next to the shore.

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#494405 - 07/30/18 10:24 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
Bocomo Offline


Registered: 05/06/12
Posts: 1176
Loc: Boone County, MO (pond)
Snrub,

We have had good results controlling FA with pond dye. You can add as much or as little as you want to achieve the desired effect. We don't add enough to eradicate it, just enough to knock it down for aesthetics and nuisance abatement for fishing. It sure beats trying to rake it out!
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#494407 - 07/30/18 10:30 PM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: poppy65]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5362
Loc: SE Kansas
I don't mind a little around the shore, especially in this pond. Next year I will get more aggressive with it early.

I used pond dye in my main pond with success but have not had to the last two years. seems like the stuff is not consistent or maybe conditions are not consistent year to year.
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#494413 - 07/31/18 12:03 AM Re: Anything positive about filamentous algae? [Re: snrub]
poppy65 Offline


Registered: 04/15/13
Posts: 270
Loc: illinois
Originally Posted By: snrub
I don't mind a little around the shore, especially in this pond. Next year I will get more aggressive with it early.

I used pond dye in my main pond with success but have not had to the last two years. seems like the stuff is not consistent or maybe conditions are not consistent year to year.


I think you're right about it not being consistent. About 4 years ago the Water Primrose was a horrible problem. The stuff was all around my pond growing 10 feet or more out from the shore. I noticed it heavy in other ponds also as well as drainage ditches going under the highway. Then it just died off for no apparent reason everywhere. I know at least some plants do get viruses and other diseases, so maybe that's what happened. A few years ago nearly all the wild blackberry vines around here died off the same way and a university said it was a virus. The Water Primrose never has recovered. I see a sprig of it here and there but it seems to die back by itself.

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