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#459201 - 11/16/16 10:05 PM $40-50K 1/2 acre pond
beastman Offline

Registered: 12/05/11
Posts: 223
Loc: Cincinnati, OH
Is this possible given the soil has a 3 ft section of mud that needs removed ? Construction is on day 13 , I am not paying this amount but builder said he will lose $ on my project. Soil has layers of clay but the mud/sand has been the issue. What is average cost per day running dozer and excavator ? They have hauled some of the mud off site as well to a near bye location. They are experienced and they told me from the start they would make this work for me and do it right. I believe most days have 2-3 people on site operating.
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#459202 - 11/16/16 10:32 PM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: beastman]
John Fitzgerald Online   content

Registered: 10/27/15
Posts: 2139
Loc: S. end of Elkins, Arkansas
Around here, I believe a typical excavation for a half acre pond would take about six days with a dozer and backhoe and cost around $6,000.

#459206 - 11/16/16 11:13 PM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: John Fitzgerald]
poppy65 Offline

Registered: 04/15/13
Posts: 271
Loc: illinois
We don't have the mud and sand problems in much of this area so I'm not sure how much that raises the costs. Our heavy yellow clay all the way down allows a pond to be dug about anywhere that will hold water. From what I've seen and experienced here, a 1/2 acre pond costs about 5 or 6K also on cleared land.

#459210 - 11/17/16 07:38 AM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: beastman]
willywonka Offline

Registered: 06/19/14
Posts: 62
Loc: ontario, canada
In My area a good estimate is $1000 per day per piece of equipment. I have perfect clay, if you dig a hole it holds water. I have 2 half acre ponds and I'm sitting right at $40000 for both. Hauling dirt is very expensive. My dirt did not go very far at all or my cost would have been much more. Remember the farther the dirt goes the more trucks you need or your excavator is sitting idle waiting for the truck to get back.

#459215 - 11/17/16 09:18 AM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: beastman]
beastman Offline

Registered: 12/05/11
Posts: 223
Loc: Cincinnati, OH
Yeah, I just purchased the property and it has 5 acres so not much choice in terms of where the pond could go. I guess I am lucky I had a contact with a good builder or I would assume most would have quoted me too high or I would have been stuck with a per hour cost that would have escalated quickly due to all the mud. He did say that one of the operators is training and some days there have been 1 guy , others 2 or 3. He took out the extra topsoil to sell in the Spring and didn't charge me on those trucks. Tough situation, wanted more than 1/2 acre but given that he isn't charging me his regular rate and the cost of the job so far can't do much about it.
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#459219 - 11/17/16 09:59 AM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: beastman]
Zep Online   content
Hall of Fame 2014

Registered: 07/27/10
Posts: 3170
Loc: Dallas & Wills Point, Tx
beastman....$40K-$50K for a 1/2 acre pond seems really high.

Not sure how many unusual circumstances are involved, but typically I would think $7K-$17K would be the ballpark price range depending on locale and geography/soil circumstances.
Fishing has never been about the fish....

#459228 - 11/17/16 08:12 PM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: beastman]
DonoBBD Offline

Registered: 06/13/12
Posts: 1974
Loc: Ontario, Canada, Eh.
Our flat land pond took one dozer, one high hoe and one truck. 60% of the clay was trucked out seven truck loads of top soil were sold and trucked away. We ended up with a 1 acre pond at about 1,000,000 gallons deep. High hoe was $110 per hour, dozer was $100 per hour and the truck was $75 per hour. All Canadian funds. We were one week with one guy most of the time with the truck two guys. We ended up at $12,000 Canadian with $4000 in trees.

Cheers Don.


7/8th of an acre, Perch only pond, Ontario, Canada.

#459233 - 11/18/16 02:13 AM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: beastman]
teehjaeh57 Offline
Chairman, Pond Boss Legacy award; Moderator; field correspondent

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 7972
Loc: Lincoln, NE
.25 ac pond with agridrain installed cost me $2500 8 yrs ago.

.75 ac pond cost $7k two months ago.

Pricing seems exceedingly high.
Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after. ~ Henry David Thoreau

#459444 - 11/23/16 11:30 AM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: teehjaeh57]
esshup Offline
Field Correspondent


Registered: 01/26/09
Posts: 24032
Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
TJ, it all depends on the quality of the dirt involved, and how far it has to be moved to be disposed of. Machine and operator time here is between $100 - $200 per hour depending on the machine, and can be $125/hr just for the machine, not including labor, fuel, delivery (including oversize permits) or maintenance.

When a single machine can burn 5-8 gallons of diesel per hour costs can go up fast.

That's why I like to get things as dry as possible, moving slop costs extra in time and material.

I had roughly a week here in just moving/grading/distributing dirt that was taken out of my pond, and that is with a dump truck, excavator, ASV and a dozer. 2 guys running those 4 pieces of equipment.

That doesn't count the 2500-2700 cubic yards of sand that we took to my parents place, 7 miles away. That was 2 trucks, a guy on an ASV and me on the backhoe loading the trucks. Those were 2 LONG days of moving dirt!!!!!

3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).

#459457 - 11/23/16 12:12 PM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: beastman]
beastman Offline

Registered: 12/05/11
Posts: 223
Loc: Cincinnati, OH
Yeah, it was the mud / slop that is the issue, they can't get equipment to push it, have to dig it out and move it out. Maybe if they had time they could have let it dry out some and move layers? No idea how that all works. I am sure if this were a regular customer and he had his standard pricing this would add up bad....

He told me when I bought the property he would make the pond work for me...however, I don't think he thought there would be this much slop to move around. My guess is he's just charging me mostly fuel cost and some labor. He has someone training on this site and one of the owners doing most of the work so going to eat a lot of the equipment appreciation / labor cost etc....

They are a very successful company but still feel bad they are going to eat so much cost..
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#459697 - 11/29/16 10:17 PM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: beastman]
Bernie H. Offline

Registered: 02/15/05
Posts: 104
Loc: Northern Ky
I'm across the Ohio river from you and have been involved in the building of a few ponds,including my own in 1984. I've never heard of such costs, but my experience is in the past and I'm not up on current heavy equiptment costs. It's hard to push mud & if you have to truck it off site prices skyrocket. Is there no place on your 5 acres to dump and let it dry ?

There wouldn't be many ponds built in no. ky. at those prices. Thankfully,we have good clay in many areas!

#459701 - 11/29/16 10:48 PM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: beastman]
John Fitzgerald Online   content

Registered: 10/27/15
Posts: 2139
Loc: S. end of Elkins, Arkansas
The sludge field from a cleaned out half acre pond likely will not cover quite a half acre. It took a year for mine to dry out enough to move after the clean out in August 2015. We spread and smoothed it a few months ago, then seeded it with annual rye/fescue mix. Now it looks like a wide grassy hump in the field below the pond. We pushed it up against the back of the dam and sloped it out from there, so now it tapers from nothing to about four feet deep to nothing. When sludge is first pushed out it will have the consistency of low slump wet concrete. When exposed to sun and wind, it will quickly acquire a crust that a man can walk on, but don't be deceived, it will still be totally mushy below for a long time.

#459730 - 11/30/16 09:29 AM Re: $40-50K 1/2 acre pond [Re: John Fitzgerald]
R&R Offline

Registered: 05/20/11
Posts: 358
Loc: Wash. County , IN. 10ac. pond
Does seem quite high. I'm in southern Indiana about two hours from cincy. I had a .68 pond built in 2007 on our previous property. Two 953 high lift's for three days and a skidsteer for half a day. no material hauled off. $5200.00. I did get very lucky it turned out good. It was pre pond boss!! Good Luck.
"If you aim at nothing you'll hit it every time"

Zig Ziglar


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