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#509326 - 07/24/19 10:26 AM Surface skimmer for 1/3 Acre pond?
Busarider29 Offline

Registered: 07/23/19
Posts: 4
Loc: Michigan, USA
Greetings from Michigan, USA

We have a 1/3 acre pond that I would like to implement a skimmer for, or something to help keep the surface of the pond clear of debris. We live in the woods, so the pond gets a lot of fall off from the surrounding trees (pollen, leaves, etc). I would install an off-the-shelf skimmer (or three) but the "problem" that I foresee is the fluctuating water level of the pond. In the spring after the snow melt, the water level is high. By late July, the water level will recede by as much as 2 feet typically. Off-the-shelf floating skimmers that I have seen are more for small decorative ponds, so not practical here. Does anyone have any recommendations? I'm open to custom designs if anyone has done something with their pond that works well.


#509334 - 07/24/19 12:17 PM Re: Surface skimmer for 1/3 Acre pond? [Re: Busarider29]
Quarter Acre Offline

Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 1492
Loc: West Central Missouri
I suspect that your skimmer will have to be positioned in the pond and ballasted such that it floats up and down with the changes in water level. I have often thought about how to do this, but never tried. My vision would be a hinged arm (like the gangway of a floating dock) attached at the bank that could support the skimmer (assuming that it is all self contained and built as a unit). The outbound end of the arm would have to have a float that could be adjusted to place the skimmer assembly positioned just below the water level. A simple float could be positioned somewhere along the arm using it's final location for proper skimmer positioning...or a float made from a barrel could be positioned at the end and filled with the right amount of water to set the float height. Once the system is adjusted and running, no further float adjustment should be needed.

Bottom line is, the skimmer would have to be much bigger than the traditional garden pond varieties. A big koi pond is, what?, a few thousand gallons...compared to a 1/2 million plus gallon pond. The "arm" I spoke of could easily be a dedicated floating dock for access.

I think I would be amazed at how often the filter screens would have to be cleaned out on a pond with tree coverage.

My next concern would be the type and size of pump that could take what the pond has to offer.

Just some brainstorming on my part and Welcome to the forums!
Fish on!,

#509359 - 07/25/19 08:32 AM Re: Surface skimmer for 1/3 Acre pond? [Re: Quarter Acre]
Busarider29 Offline

Registered: 07/23/19
Posts: 4
Loc: Michigan, USA
Thank you for the feedback. A skimmer on a hinged arm would work. I didn't think about that. That's an idea too. One important requirement that I would need is that the unit cannot extend out into the pond area, like a dock. So a section on the bank would need to be dug out to contain the skimmer. Your idea is similar to mine with a floating mechanism. My initial thoughts were to have a square like skimmer. Sink 4 round posts into the ground around the skimmer unit.
Make it so that the skimmer unit would be able to slide up and down the posts via a float that would be mounted on top of the skimmer. For a 1/3 acre pond, yes, the skimmer would need to be rather large. My guess is at least the size and depth of a large outdoor trash barrel (?). The pump would have to be rather large to pump out that amount of water, but I'm not concerned there. We have 220 and 110 power at the pond that I put in last year when I installed the aerator.

To make things simpler with the skimmer, the only other thing I can think of, and it would be rather expensive, is to make provisions that keep the water level constant. This would require drilling a well dedicated to the pond. When the water level is low, a float mechanism, much like a sump pump trigger, triggers the well pump to fill the pond until it reaches a second, higher level float switch. When the water level is high, such as in the spring, water is pumped out via a separate transfer pump. That water gets pumped out and into the creek at the back of our property. There would be a few additional benefits with this option, but again, this would be pricey and a very hard sell to the wife. This idea was actually mentioned to me by a couple people already after I already had thought of it.

Either way, it appears its going to have to be something custom built. I'm going to get in touch with some pond building companies and landscaping companies and inquire if they have implemented anything in the past.

Edited by Busarider29 (07/25/19 08:39 AM)


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