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#64947 - 02/15/06 09:02 AM Water Well to Support Pond in Dry Seasons
OKIE Offline

Registered: 09/15/04
Posts: 34
Loc: Edmond, Oklahoma
I have reviewed posts and been studying drilling a water well for the sole purpose of maintaining water levels in my new ponds especially during dry seasons. It appears some have had success doing this. I live in Oklahoma and have built two new ponds completed in the mid summer of 2005. Right now maybe we should call them holes, because ponds must have water (I think).
I personally have kicked off the 2nd Dust Bowl in Oklahoma History with my decision to build these two ponds as since completion Oklahoma has been the driest in the last 85 years.

I believe all calculations are correct and even weighting back heavily the level of drainage acres, average rainfall amounts, runoff, etc. if we just get average annual rainfall I should be in good shape. (I pray and hope, as until they fill you always wonder)

Getting long winded here, but the question I would like some feedback on is I want to use a well to control the water levels and do you really think the investment will get me the results I am seeking. I have one pond (1 and 1/2 Acre) that sits above and spills into another pond that is (2 and 1/2 to 4 acres).

My goal is to keep that upper pond at full spill all the time and especially in the dry season. I don't plan on trying to fill the ponds (may supplement a little) but really use the well once both ponds are full to maintain and control water level.

I met with a well man yesterday and learned alot.
One thing is that it appears you have to have some good luck to get the well that will pump the capacity you want. Seems like you really would want a well that pumps 50+ gallons a minute. If you pump for a month or two straight that would give you the water needed as I calculate and could likely keep the pond full.

These ponds are important to me and I am willing to make the investment if I can get the results I want. If you have tried this or are doing this let me know what you think. The well would be located at the mouth of a small runoff creek that is about 75-100 yards above the pond. The reason is I like the beauty of the meandering small tributary, BUT mainly to give the water some ability to increase the DO level as it tumbles and falls through several dropoffs and rock formations. I have read that well water has low DO levels and it is good to increase the levels if possible.

Let me know what you think! I appreciate your comments.

#64948 - 02/15/06 10:51 AM Re: Water Well to Support Pond in Dry Seasons

Registered: 01/08/04
Posts: 969
Loc: NA
OKIE, This is basicly what I did in our Ohio drought of 2002, Upper pond (pics on homepage under installs) was drained and recarved and sealed as it leaked into lower pond.This upper pond was enlarged and a 40 GPM dedicated well was put in. My driller calculated draw down in this 6 inch case and suggested that this 6 inch case and 1 1/2 hp pump would produce 40 gpm.Tested and it is right on 40 gpm of 52F water high in sulfer and fe. It ran for a few months (70-75 days if memory serves)and filled the 1.1 acre 12 average depth pond. The overflow to the lower pond is a 4 inch gradual depression that allows potential overflow to go down a fescue embankment, I wanted to try the grass embankmet to see what kind of erosion I would get and to date has worked out fine. This upper pond has very little water shed to fill it by design, The lower pond which is only 4/10 acre has 38 acre of water shed and a creek that runs to it which runs dry only 3 months out of the year.With the size of your ponds once they are full figure that 5 acres of surface with a evaporation loss of approx 1/2 inch per day (this could be high)is 68000 gallon and a 40 gpm well will pump approx 57600 gpm,so with a little rainfall and figuring the .5 inch loss would be the exception not the rule day in and day out you will be fine, As far as the aeration ripple effect I would not count on a lot of DO from that in your size ponds, Depending on maximum and average depth and eventual BOD you may want to look into diffused aeration even with windy conditions.Good Luck Ted

#64949 - 02/16/06 01:44 PM Re: Water Well to Support Pond in Dry Seasons
Bob Lusk Offline
Editor, Pond Boss Magazine

Registered: 04/10/02
Posts: 3126
Loc: Whitesboro, Texas
To raise 4 acres of water one inch per day, you need 75 gallons per minute. On a harsh Oklahoma day, you can lose half an inch of water per day to evaporation. I would say you need at least 50 gallons per minute to maintain the level during driest months, with no rain. Quality of well water is almost always good enough for fish. But, I would want to know the quality as well as volume. So, yes, I think you have a good idea to do what you want to do.
Teach a man to grow fish...
He can teach to catch fish...

#64950 - 02/21/06 05:33 PM Re: Water Well to Support Pond in Dry Seasons
OKIE Offline

Registered: 09/15/04
Posts: 34
Loc: Edmond, Oklahoma
Thanks for the feedback. I plan to go ahead with the well, I will let you know how it goes.
I hope we get the gpm we need to make it worthwhile!

#64951 - 02/21/06 08:41 PM Re: Water Well to Support Pond in Dry Seasons
M Spinhirne Offline

Registered: 02/16/06
Posts: 210
Loc: Montgomery, Texas
If you want to try to calculate the well size needed to maintain the ponds under normal evaporation periods for your area, go to the NOAA web site and look up the "pan evaporation" rates for your area. These are monitored daily at all major and minor weather stations as well as most airports. The pan evaporation rates are listed monthly and go back several decades. A pond will lose water at approximately 70% of the PER.
Based on that information, the normal seasonal rainfall, and calculated runoff rates for your soil / area, you can see what your expected well water demand will be in average and worst case scenarios. If you have a good idea of the actual surface area in acres, you can calulate the water loss or gain in gallon per day and convert to gpm.

#64952 - 02/23/06 07:04 AM Re: Water Well to Support Pond in Dry Seasons
Dave Davidson1 Offline

Registered: 01/04/06
Posts: 13734
Loc: Hurst & Bowie, Texas
That NOAA web site is pretty neat. I never did find the pan evaporation rates link. However, I did find some neat stuff about drought, water distribution and properties, etc. I'm going to come back later for more study. Gotta get my butt to work.
It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP

#64953 - 02/23/06 10:43 PM Re: Water Well to Support Pond in Dry Seasons
M Spinhirne Offline

Registered: 02/16/06
Posts: 210
Loc: Montgomery, Texas
Here are two links to evaporation calculations for small lakes / ponds. This information is a study of the evaporation rates of a specific pond and gives information on how to calculate losses. The other gives the PER for Texas. This same information is available for all states and is available from the National Weather Service or from your USDA.
All you need to do then is find the annual rainfall ( seasonally / monthly) and know waht the run off coeficient is.



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