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#503674 - 03/28/19 10:48 AM aeration fish kill
bdog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/27/05
Posts: 73
Loc: Texas
My 1/3 acre pond was constructed in 2017. It had aeration from day 1. I let it run 24/7 from about March to November. I shut it off during the cold months. I did this in the winter of 17/18 with no issues and did so this winter as well.

My pond is stocked with CC, BG,HBG, & HSB.

I turned the aerators back on Sunday and noticed nothing different Monday or Tuesday but yesterday I found 14 dead catfish and today I found 5 dead catfish and two dead bluegill.

I am guessing the aerators Brough up some nasty stuff that is hurting the fish? It seems to be affecting the catfish the most. No HSB have been harmed and while I have a lot of BG/HBG in there I have only seen two dead.

What should I do at this point? The aeration has been on nonstop for 4 days now. Just leave it going?

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#503677 - 03/28/19 12:12 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Journeyman Offline


Registered: 08/10/17
Posts: 26
Loc: wisconsin
If it were me, I'd turn off aeration right away, wait a few days then turn it on only for a couple hours a day for a few weeks. Gradually work up to 24 hours aeration.

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#503679 - 03/28/19 12:24 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
Typically, when restarting, you follow the same criteria as if it were a new system. 15 minutes the first day, 30 the second, an hour the third...and so on until you reach the full 24 hours.

When you first started, your pond hadn't had time to stratify, so it was the same top to bottom. Now you have fish, and their waste as well as other decomposing matter is accumulating on the bottom. Going to a straight 24 hours has mixed all those gases and your basically poisoning the fish. By starting gradually, you give those unwanted ingredients a chance to be expelled at the surface.

If you smell a strong odor down wind when the aeration is running, shut it off and back up to the last shortest run period, until you no longer smell it, then start build up again. You should be doubling these times until you reach 24.
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#503680 - 03/28/19 12:26 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: Journeyman]
bdog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/27/05
Posts: 73
Loc: Texas
If I recall when they designed my aeration system I think it turns over my pond something like 5 times a day due to its small size. Being it has been on 4 days the pond has been circulated 20 times already.

I get the working slowly bit but I wonder if maybe I have already cleared the bad gasses out?

Specifically I don't doubt that I should have worked up slowly when turning it back on but now that it has been running nonstop for 4 days should I just keep it going?


Edited by bdog (03/28/19 12:28 PM)

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#503682 - 03/28/19 12:28 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
Your fish are telling you....no
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#503684 - 03/28/19 12:34 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: Mike Whatley]
bdog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/27/05
Posts: 73
Loc: Texas
I guess I am just worried that I have all this poison gas stirred up now and shutting off the aeration will make things worse.

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#503688 - 03/28/19 03:11 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
I'd let settle a day or two myself, then start up again....slowly.
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#503693 - 03/28/19 04:10 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: Mike Whatley]
Quarter Acre Offline


Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 1032
Loc: West Central Missouri
Originally Posted By: Mike Whatley
I'd let settle a day or two myself, then start up again....slowly.


I agree, I'm with Mike. This is your safest route, BUT (not that I wrote the book or anything)...I bet you are past the worst of it unless the stress was enough to make them sickly then changing the pond could stress them further.

That's a tough one. Hopefully one of our more seasoned members can help with better confidence.
_________________________
Fish on!,
Noel

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#504292 - 04/12/19 12:37 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
RC51 Offline
Ambassador
Lunker

Registered: 07/06/09
Posts: 4256
Loc: Arkansas
There are a lot of what if's in this question. Too many really. I think you pond is being over turned to many times a day IMO 2 is enough really. In your case your air is so powerful this may be why your losing fish as it overturns way to fast. Typically if your setup was correct for your pond this may not have happened. Although in this colder water most of your pond if not all should have been 100 percent saturated anyway. If you don't have a timer you should get one. I don't think it's from gases after a couple of years your pond isn't that old really. I could be wrong but IMO you have them to much to quick with your setup I bet.

RC
_________________________
The only difference between a rut and a Grave is the depth. So get up get out of that rut and get moving!! Time to work!!

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#504293 - 04/12/19 01:28 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
bdog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/27/05
Posts: 73
Loc: Texas
Thanks for the reply. The system was professionally designed. Not saying that ensures it is right but I didn't just haphazardly install random stuff.

I failed to follow up on this thread but shortly after my last post the fish stopped dying. I think I lost 23 total. The aeration has been running 24/7 and the fish seem happy, healthy and are feeding strong. I have always ran it 24/7 and never had any issues until I turned it back on after it was off for a few months over the winter. It is getting pretty warm here already. Was in the 90's earlier this week.


Edited by bdog (04/12/19 01:28 PM)

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#504314 - 04/13/19 07:19 AM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
TGW1 Offline


Registered: 09/19/14
Posts: 2708
Loc: Harrison Co. Texas
A few yr's ago I lost a couple of lmb and a few cnbg during the startup procedure. For me it happened during the double the time each day as recommended. When I went from 8 hrs doubled to 16 hrs is when I lost the fish. So I no longer double the start up times and I go a lot slower. After all, what is the big hurry, now I do like 8 hrs then 10 and then 12 hrs and etc till I get to where I want to be or 24 hrs run time.


Here is a couple of other changes made with my aeration. My first two yrs I ran it 24/7 and watched my water temps rise to 87 top to bottom during the month of August. Bob Lusk suggested not to do that. The water was too hot! And to run the aeration only at night during the heat of the summer. It dropped the water temps to 80. Bob Lusk also suggested to get the diffusers off the bottom of the pond to where there would be a thermocline, a place where the fish could cool off. I did that by building a table out of rebar set @ 21" off the bottom of the pond. And with the diffuser being about 10" tall it set the bubbles about 30" of bottom. Now I have a cooler sanctuary for the fish. And my diffusers used to stir up the bottom around the diffuser. There would be a cloudy 10 foot circle of dirty water around each diffusers. Mr Lusk also said that was not good. And I have read where several people experience that same cloudy water when running the diffusers. So when I raised them off the bottom, that also stopped the diffusers from stirring up the bottom.


I hope my experience helps others here when it comes to aeration.
_________________________
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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#504321 - 04/13/19 09:19 AM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
Hey Tracy, I'm following your startup almost verbatim. Up to 2 hours yesterday and elevated diffusers about 22 inches. Biggest difference is my diffuser base doesnt have a plate under the diffusers and I dont get the thermocline. I do see a variation in temp from top to bottom of about 6 degrees however, so there is some cooler water on the bottom.

Do you always start your pump at the same time every day or just allow so much time between each run?

My biggest problem is algae bloom, and I'm trying to decide how long a run is sufficient enough to help reduce the nutrients they're feeding on. We figured I'm getting a complete turnover every three hours. Dont want to run 24/7, but I'm thinking a 12 hour cycle may be enough. That gives the pond 4 cycles per day.

I'll be switching to nighttime runs when the surface temp stays 80 degrees. It dropped to 60 yesterday with some new watershed, but my algae bloom is pretty strong. Really need to get it under control.


Edited by Mike Whatley (04/13/19 09:43 AM)
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#504326 - 04/13/19 10:28 AM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
TGW1 Offline


Registered: 09/19/14
Posts: 2708
Loc: Harrison Co. Texas
Mike, I will gradually easy up run times using a timer. So I don't have to be there for the run times and I start up at approximately the same time every day. I am no expert, just telling my personal experience where I have seen an improvements.
_________________________
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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#504334 - 04/13/19 07:39 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
That's the way I try to do my runs as well, tho I did start earlier today because of the weather. Tomorrow I'll be up to 6 hours and I'll hook my timer up then so I don't have to watch it. I did see some improvement in the algae density today, but it's been raining on and off all day and absolutely no sun. I did notice a cloud of very green "something" today out in the middle of the pond. All this rain has a lot of nutrients washing into the pond lately. I think I may need to deploy some straw to try to clear thing up as well. Trying desperately not to use chemicals.
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#504338 - 04/13/19 10:13 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Snipe Offline


Registered: 10/26/18
Posts: 241
Loc: NW Kansas
Hey Mike, what kind of straw volume do you need for something like that??
_________________________
I Subscribe!

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#504346 - 04/14/19 09:23 AM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
From what I've read, Snipe, 1 square bale of straw per surface acre is sufficient. Some just bust up the bales and let it sink but I think that just contributes to adding muck on the bottom. If you leave the bales intact, deployed around the shoreline shallows, then you have to consider how to remove a waterlogged bale when it's time.

The recommended process is to build some kind of container that will allow water to flow thru, and stuff them full with some kind of flotation. That's what I did last year with chicken wire and saw good results. Whether it was the straw, or just coincidence that my pond cleared up, your guess is as good as mine. I do know, there are a lot of farmers around here who use straw.

This year I'm using milk crates (2 lashed together open end to open end) with a piece of styrofoam to float it and anchored with a railroad spike.

I deployed two baskets this morning with some wheat straw I had on hand. It's already wet and starting to deteriorate so hopefully the process will be escalated a bit.

It should also be said that Barley straw is recommended over everything else, but availability is often an issue. Wheat straw will work and takes a bit longer to see results, but it is more readily available, at least here, anyway.

Also, this doesn't kill algae, but the natural decay produces hydrogen peroxide which prevents algae from growing. If you already have an algae bloom, like I do, it will have to run its course and die naturally, but in conjunction with aeration, it should greatly diminish future blooms.

Sorry for the novel.


Edited by Mike Whatley (04/14/19 09:35 AM)
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#504347 - 04/14/19 09:51 AM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
RAH Offline
Lunker

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 4296
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...
FYI - Chemicals released from barley straw inhibit some algae species https://iahr.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09593331003663294 . Whether "natural" or "synthetic", chemicals can be selective or not. However, humans have not yet made a chemical as toxic to mammals as the naturally occurring botulism toxin. The fallacy that "natural" chemicals are safer than "synthetic" chemicals is very commonly believed by non-scientists, but is false just the same. I personally simply allow my emergent plants and waterlilies to absorb excess nutrients and keep the algae in check. This has worked very well for me.

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#504351 - 04/14/19 11:26 AM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
If my pond had plant growth sufficient enough to control algae I wouldn't bother with the straw. My plant growth is coming around, but nowhere near enough yet to absorb the excess nutrients in the pond. When it does get there, I'll change tactics, tho with the volume of watershed I get at times (14.75" of rain YTD), I may never completely get away from using it.

Truth is, straw doesnt harm any existing plants or fish, unlike most manmade chemicals which can kill everything it touches and greatly reduce DO levels. It only henders algae growth.

I personally put a lot more value in the remedies mama earth provides than most things man made. Can they be misused, absolutely, but thourough research is necessary in all things before taking action.
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#504352 - 04/14/19 11:54 AM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
RAH Offline
Lunker

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 4296
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...
Your perspective is why the word "natural" is plastered all over food labels. It has no actual legal definition, so its use is not restricted, and it is a great marketing tool.

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#504365 - 04/15/19 08:28 AM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
TGW1 Offline


Registered: 09/19/14
Posts: 2708
Loc: Harrison Co. Texas
I think a lot of us try to use plants instead of man made when it is possible to do so. Heck, Look at Pot plants, Mary Jane, Weed today. Marketing makes it look like a cure all for most everything that effects the human body. It can or it might replace some chemical or medical treatments. And it may have a pleasing effect when eaten or inheld. I just need to experiment with it smile to see if it will give my fish the munchies, making hook smart fish want to eat more. Nothing wrong with going natural when you can.
_________________________
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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#504367 - 04/15/19 10:13 AM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: TGW1]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
Originally Posted By: TGW1
I think a lot of us try to use plants instead of man made when it is possible to do so. Heck, Look at Pot plants, Mary Jane, Weed today. Marketing makes it look like a cure all for most everything that effects the human body. It can or it might replace some chemical or medical treatments. And it may have a pleasing effect when eaten or inheld. I just need to experiment with it smile to see if it will give my fish the munchies, making hook smart fish want to eat more. Nothing wrong with going natural when you can.


I know we're hijacking this thread now, but I've started using CBD chewable on my two big dogs when their storm anxiety kicks in. That stuff is amazing. 60 seconds after eating one they're both layed out and chilled. Thought my lab was going to hyperventilate before I put him on it.

Back to the subject... I've tried using chemicals and while they worked to clear algae, they also killed anything else they got blown onto. Kind of frustrating when you are trying to get good plants going. The straw worked last year and my visibility increased to over 4 feet. When I pulled it out, the visibility started to decrease. I think it'll be a permanent fixture from now on.
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#504386 - 04/15/19 01:28 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1987
Loc: West Michigan
Mike, thanks for posting that. It is time for my lab/aussie mix to get a hair cut. he goes nuts doing that and no one can work on his tail or by his ears when trimming. I was looking for a good calming med but wanted to steer clear of Vet bills and anesthesia drugs.

Our dog is 5yrs old, weighs about 85 pounds (yep he needs more exercise) and I'm wondering what dose or size/number of CBD chews works well? I'll have to try to source them locally since places around here seem to only sell the liquid/oil.

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#504389 - 04/15/19 02:35 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
I think I bought this thru Amazon. Both my lab and mastiff are well over 100 pounds. If they were constantly hyper or anxious I could give them 3 a day. We only use it when there's a storm or the neighbors get to shooting their guns or fireworks.

I'll post a pic of the container when I get home in a bit.
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#504398 - 04/15/19 04:21 PM Re: aeration fish kill [Re: bdog]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 811
Loc: Louisiana
Sent you a PM CC.
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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