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#483556 - 12/02/17 02:04 AM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
Still no sign of the awaited pontederia cordata, needed for the floating island. But the pond view-from-the-house is looking very nice.

Mother duck, five ducklings and the hydrangeas reflections. 2 Dec 2017.


Hydrangeas reflected in the pond by the setting sun. A few alstromerias in there, too.


Another view of the setting sun and hydrangeas. The Muscovies waddling off, stage right, not in a hurry, even.


The five remaining Peking ducklings and mother, taking a cruise.

Hungry things they are, too.


Edited by PerryNZ (12/02/17 06:09 PM)

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#483560 - 12/02/17 06:35 AM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
TGW1 Offline


Registered: 09/19/14
Posts: 2453
Loc: Harrison Co. Texas
Perry, it looks nice. Good job
_________________________
Do not judge me by the politicians in my City, State or Federal Government.
Thank The Good Lord the government in Washington DC gets little done.
Outlawing guns will make a lot of us down here in the South
Outlaws and proud of it

Tracy

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#483568 - 12/02/17 08:56 AM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
FireIsHot Offline
Moderator


Registered: 02/28/11
Posts: 3845
Loc: Emory TX
Gorgeous setting for sure.
_________________________
AL

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#483586 - 12/02/17 06:23 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
We departed early Sunday morning, for the local Farmers' Market. A great place, great environment, a busker, a cuppa coffee and a delectable treat from the German baker made it a very definite 'place to be' for a light breakfast. Harald also makes a superlative sour dough rye loaf, so one of those went home with us, too. Lunch today will be mashed avocado on rye, dusted with Spike.

<where's the drooling icon?>

The Market locality also has a nearby pond, containing eels, some small fish and a few ducks. The water is largely clear, but that might be because the surface has a 70% plus cover of water lilies. I took three two litre plastic bottles and filled them carefully, from the pond edge, allowing assorted bits and pieces of pond detritus to flow into the bottles.

Somewhere - was it on this forum? - someone had said that inoculating a new pond with water-borne biota from an established and settled pond was a good thing. It might even hasten the settling-down and stabilising of our pond.

Not something that will be apparent in days, of course, but there was no great effort involved. I hope that such an action is in the category of 'might do some good and can't do any harm.'


Edited by PerryNZ (12/02/17 06:24 PM)

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#483588 - 12/02/17 06:54 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
Bill D. Offline


Registered: 10/19/14
Posts: 5606
Loc: Boone County Illinois
Sounds like my kind of morning Perry. I can almost smell that sourdough bread! smile
_________________________

You'll never know what ya can catch unless you wet a line!

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#483590 - 12/02/17 07:18 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
Well, Bill, one oddity is that the crust seems to have cement reinforcing. When I get it home, I run it under the tap, put it in a plastic bread bag, and do my best to suck all the air out, before sealing the bag.

By midday or so, it's just right. wink

Which reminds me right now, where's that carving board?

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#483591 - 12/02/17 07:33 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
4CornersPuddle Offline


Registered: 01/24/11
Posts: 241
Loc: southwest Colorado
Perry, you got me with "mashed avocado on rye, dusted with Spike". That Spike condiment is my absolute go to seasoning for nearly every meal. And, I love to cook, believe you me!

We long ago (1970s) started using Spike, first the salted then the no salt kind. I'm back to the salted Spike these days.

I've enjoyed every bit of this thread over time. Your progress with the pond is remarkable.

You've got a beautiful spot.

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#483598 - 12/02/17 08:08 PM I Like To Cook With Wine . . . [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
. . . . Sometimes I Even Add It To The Food! wink

Spike costs the earth in New Zealand, so I am a bit selective. Avocado and tomato are the two favoured items for a dusting. One of my favourites is Vogel toast with mashed avocado, topped with finely chopped tomato and red onion, then dusted with Spike.

You may call red onions Californian onions and I doubt if you could get true Vogel bread in USA. New Zealand seems to be the only place I know of in the world where Han Klisser's* original Vogel remains [almost] true-to-the-original-recipe.

I say 'almost' because, since Han sold out, the dough is made in an MDD machine, with the grains being the only ingredients that are soaked, overnight. I.e. once it was made in home-style, now it's made factory-style. And consumers are the losers - as always.

Perhaps your nearest Whole Foods Store might have something close, as an equivalent?

* I once wrote a magazine article that included details about Han's bakery, so know a little more than most on that subject.





Edited by PerryNZ (12/02/17 08:57 PM)

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#483600 - 12/02/17 08:17 PM Re: I Like To Cook With Wine . . . [Re: PerryNZ]
Bill D. Offline


Registered: 10/19/14
Posts: 5606
Loc: Boone County Illinois
New one on me guys. Please share. What is Spike?
_________________________

You'll never know what ya can catch unless you wet a line!

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#483604 - 12/02/17 08:52 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
Refill packs are better value:


Can use the original dispenser or any other shaker you have available.

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#483606 - 12/02/17 09:29 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
Bill D. Offline


Registered: 10/19/14
Posts: 5606
Loc: Boone County Illinois
Thanks Perry, I will give it a go if I can find it locally!
_________________________

You'll never know what ya can catch unless you wet a line!

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#483609 - 12/02/17 10:16 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
4CornersPuddle Offline


Registered: 01/24/11
Posts: 241
Loc: southwest Colorado
We can get Spike at our Safeway market, our City Market (Kroger) and at natural food stores.

A sprinkle on LMB fillets makes them tasty. It is just the right thing on whitetail or antelope backstraps. Hardboiled eggs Spiked-delicious. I even enjoyed cantelope this summer with a dusting of the seasoning.

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#483611 - 12/02/17 10:32 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
I don't think it will be hard to locate in Illinois, at all.

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#485195 - 01/12/18 06:45 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
It's certainly been an odd week. Those Pekin ducks transmogrified themselves!

They started ploughing and furrowing the lawn! Arrgghhh! They've been banished to the hen run. They seem OK with their tiny-by-comparison pond. For now, at least.


The Muscovies seem more inclined to browse and graze, rather than excavate. One of them may be sitting on a nest, but I've left them all loose to browse around.

Another strange thing is that the cloudiness disappeared from the pond. That seemed to happen 'overnight,' but really over 2-3 days. It almost seems as if the suspended bentonite clay all decided to suddenly flocculate and sink to the bottom. But that the wildest of guesses.

Last week we had some high temperatures, but it's hard to see how that would create any sudden decrease in pond water turbidity. The water still has a dark greenish hue, but only slight.

Anyway - I'm not complaining.

It looks good.


Edited by PerryNZ (01/14/18 03:37 AM)

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#485983 - 02/08/18 08:37 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
The floating island is still not done. The three Muscovy ducks are sitting on eggs, so I expect we'll have between 30 and 40 ducklings in a couple of weeks.

The Pekins remain banished to the orchard! The mallard seems to fly in and out, over the 6 foot high fence, depending on when she wants a frolic in the pond.

And we have a new avian guest: Lucy the goose.


She was subject to serious abuse by some louts and was hospitalised. She was treated by my grand daughter (a degreed veterinary technician @ the Vet Hospital 2 hours drive from here).


My grand daughter said she was unsure if Lucy's wing damage would repair enough to allow her to fly, again. The owner was so scared that the larrikins would return, that my grand daughter suggested Lucy could be re-homed, here.

Lucy's mate, the gander, did not survive the scumbags' assault, so Lucy is a little lonely. But not idle, as she defends her honour from the over-amorous Muscovy drake.

The water has largely cleared and there's a coming weekend plan to raise the pump and pipe from the pond bed, to see if the pipe has indeed got claying-of-the-artery. If that's so, the water flow should return to what it was, after we've done some pipe-cleaning.

As the pond 'matures,' other things occur. The pond scum coming-and-going occurrences of months past has been replaced by a spontaneous introduction of what I think is duckweed. It may be watermeal, but I don't have the knowledge to say which. Maybe both?!

Seems that duckweed engenders polar opinion opposites amongst pond owners / users. Very much a love-it or hate-it situation. Because we have mechanical aeration via the flowforms, the de-oxygenation thing may be less critical, here.

In the pix which follow, the 3-rounder-leafed one was intentionally introduced. The two-leafed one introduced itself.

It's possible that the two-leafed one is an immature 3-leaf. I don't know. Perhaps some more knowledgeable forumite will enlighten me?

A close-up of the two types, near the pond edge.


Patches of the two-leafed one, further out from the pond edge.


A wider view


Another wider view


The pond is still leaking significantly, but that leaking is both slowing and occurring at a higher level. I'm hoping that the edges may slowly self-seal with suspended detritus. I'm even adding lawn-mowing clippings around the edges. I have a bit more bentonite clay to use, too. The last application around the pond edges was pecked away by the Pekins. I presume they were after grit for their digestive systems.

No rest for pond owners, eh?


Edited by PerryNZ (02/08/18 08:39 PM)

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#485987 - 02/08/18 10:51 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
4CornersPuddle Offline


Registered: 01/24/11
Posts: 241
Loc: southwest Colorado
Perry, thanks for your entertaining update. Ducks certainly can be a problem, can't they? As our pond stayed nearly ice-free this winter, we've had two dozen wild mallards and widgeon spending their time here. Their presence is double-edged. They are eating mass quantities of the abundant, weedy elodea that can choke our pond; they also add lots of fertilizer so we will have to fight a bumper crop of FA and elodea next summer.

Good on you and your grandaughter for rescuing Lucy. It is rather creepy that some people get enjoyment from abusing animals. The picture thread, re-homed, reminds me of pet geese we had when we were growing up.

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#486149 - 02/14/18 05:51 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
Well, the various Internet sources I consulted were right. Almost a total (watermeal) takeover in a matter of days. The very hot, unusually humid weather was probably a big help.

Not sure how worried I should be. The flowforms should be looking after the aeration and the watermeal cover may even help the water temperature remain lower than usual.

A few duckweeds evident amongst the watermeal.





In a week or two, we should be almost overrun with Muscovy ducklings. I wonder if they'll eat it? Approx. 45 eggs being incubated by three separate ducks, at the moment.

I spotted a rat in the orchard, this morning, so the bait stations went out, quick-smart, near where the ducks are nesting.

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#486151 - 02/14/18 06:46 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
MaxH Offline


Registered: 11/27/15
Posts: 28
Loc: IN
Perry, I just found this thread and love the pond and how much work you have done! Awesome place!

I was addicted once you said NZ. My better half and I try to take a trip to a new far away land every 2-3 years. Last summer (for us, June/July) we traveled the North Island. It is without a doubt my favorite place I have ever been! We are already planning a return trip and also doing the South Island this time. Where exactly are you located? So cool to meet a Kiwi on here.... you truly live in paradise!

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#492505 - 06/22/18 10:52 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
June - winter for us - has just delivered its first strong frost. We don't get ground freeze here, and a frosty morning is usually followed by a brilliant sunny winter's day. That's what it was when I sat out on the deck, sipping my flat white and surveying the pond from under my hatless brim.

The watermeal shows no signs of abating. It's thick and lush. I wonder: should I be concerned? Over the years, I've tended to take a path more or less embodied by the credo: Nature is easy to follow and hard to lead.

The pond level is creeping up and - at a guess - is about 1-2 inches short of being full. That's measured from the bottom of the main struts of the bridge: they are not water immersion treated. I'm still doing a daily top up, pumped from our well, but I do wonder if the watermeal is helping seal around the edges. Edges that we could not get the bentonite clay powder to stay on and seal.

The Muscovy ducks have proved enigmatic. The first two broods had a 100% mortality. The mother ducks simply abandoned them, after a few days. For the third brood, we snagged the ducklings and the mother and caged them together. We did the same for all subsequent broods - the last one was another batch of 18. Four of them went to a new home, yesterday.

Pictorial Parade
Brood One
Brood Two
Brood Three
Brood Four (Second attempt by that same duck.)

In another quirk, two nests of at least 15 eggs each were abandoned, before incubation was complete. The stories about Muscovies being good mothers was obviously a nasty rumour!

I've done nothing further about the floating island. Aside from some nice flowering pond pickerel, the idea was to shade the water a little. The watermeal is certainly doing that job.

Another reason for that being a failed / deferred project is certain family changes. In this case a house bus, along with daughter and dogs. Being the only one with the necessary licence class, daddy got to fly south and drive the beast back here, to the farm. Took three days and two nights to get the 14.3 ton, 40 foot, ex-wide-bodied coach behemoth back here.

Yesterday, daddy was fixing the water pump and measuring up for a new locker panel to mount a new inverter and counter-sinking the holes on the step kick strips, to get the screw heads down lower.

The perennial rye grass seed scattered over the paddock, following the addition and spreading of 90 cubic yards of river silt by daddy-on-the-digger, is now coming through, despite the cold, wet weather.

No wonder the pond got neglected. Next time someone asks me what retirement is like, I'll refer them elsewhere for polite comment. My observations may be unprintable.

Retirement you say?
What's that, exactly?
Tell me a bit more about it.
It certainly does sound like a concept I could get interested in.

Max:
We're on the east cost of the North Island. You would be most welcome to visit. Nearest city is Hastings and nearby Napier (30 mins away) has a regional airport.


Don't worry! crazy It's changed a lot since my father took that picture. The deceptively-innocent looking babe-in-arms is me, 69 years ago! Plus, tail dragging Lockheed Loadstars are quite out-of-fashion, nowadays, too. wink

And we're quite a long way from the South Island. A 3.5 to 4 hour ferry crossing, (no fun in wild weather, of course), followed by a 4 - 5 hour drive to get here.






Edited by PerryNZ (06/22/18 10:53 PM)

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#492506 - 06/23/18 12:11 AM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
anthropic Offline


Registered: 05/03/14
Posts: 1379
Loc: Louisiana, USA
Greetings from the American South, Perry! Like many here, I've always wished to visit New Zealand.

Regarding the watermeal, while it may shade the water & help shelter little fish, it also may heat it up by trapping more solar radiation. That's what happens here with floating plants such as water hyacinths.

Love the ducks! I've had a couple of them at my pond, but the geese tend to dominate.
_________________________
7 acre pond in east Texas, full pool reached March 2016. CNBG, RES, FHM stocked Nov 15; TP May 16; LSL bass 30 June 16. Added 100 12 inch N LMB and 1,000 shiners Oct 17, 150# TP and 70 HSB May 18




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#492507 - 06/23/18 12:34 AM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
We have one resident goose - Lucy. In a few weeks it seems likely that we'll also have a male peacock. Are we becoming a sort-of de facto animal shelter, I wonder?

That aside, if you ever do get to travel this way, put us on your itinerary. My dad trained in Pensacola and Corpus Christi and always said that most kiwis (New Zealanders) had no idea of what a real USAmercian was, because their perceptions were based on the garbage that's served up to them on the idiot box (TV): today's opiate of the masses.


Edited by PerryNZ (06/23/18 12:39 AM)

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#492925 - 06/28/18 09:12 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand

Some people need gardening gloves to prune their hydrangeas.
Some people need a boat and secateurs.
Ah, well, each to their own.


Edited by PerryNZ (06/28/18 09:12 PM)

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#492930 - 06/28/18 10:40 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
anthropic Offline


Registered: 05/03/14
Posts: 1379
Loc: Louisiana, USA
Ducks sure don't seem very frightened of you. I gather there's no hunting of them in your pond?
_________________________
7 acre pond in east Texas, full pool reached March 2016. CNBG, RES, FHM stocked Nov 15; TP May 16; LSL bass 30 June 16. Added 100 12 inch N LMB and 1,000 shiners Oct 17, 150# TP and 70 HSB May 18




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#492933 - 06/28/18 11:16 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: anthropic]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
Originally Posted By: anthropic
Ducks sure don't seem very frightened of you. I gather there's no hunting of them in your pond?

You're right. I'm a vegetarian and I think they've figured that out. wink

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#493747 - 07/14/18 10:30 PM Re: Pond Mission Impossible? [Re: PerryNZ]
PerryNZ Offline


Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 50
Loc: New Zealand
I've noticed that the ducks seem to like pecking at the pond edge/bank, while floating on the water. The mallard especially seems to like poking its bill under the long grass that hangs down for the bank. From what I can tell, a very small part of the bank has collapsed into the pond as a consequence.

That was enough to make me test Chevy, the robotic lawn mower. There a guide wire around the pond and if there's too much bank collapse, that puts the wire too close to the water and Chevy in danger of tumbling into the water. That would not be good!

I pointed him straight at the pond where the bank seemed to have collapsed, to see how he'd go. He stopped well clear of the bank and reversed away, but it's something I need to keep an eye on.

Quote:
A duck walks into a bar and asks: "Got any Bread?"
Barman says: "No."
Duck says: "Got any bread?"
Barman says: "No."
Duck says: "Got any bread?"
Barman says: "No, we have no bread."
Duck says: "Got any bread?"
Barman says: "No, we haven't got any bread!"
Duck says: "Got any bread?"
Barman says: "No, are you deaf?! We haven't got any bread, and if you ask me again and I'll nail your dang beak to the bar you irritating dang duck!"
Duck says: "Got any nails?"
Barman says: "No"
Duck says: "Got any bread?

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