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Original Post (Thread Starter)
by Jambi
I have begun construction on an 8 acre pond. The contractor comes with many references and I am confident in his knowledge of the design and construction practices. The construction area is relatively flat pasture with 4 ft of slope +/- from front to back. We do have a watershed of 50 acres as calculated by the NRCS which assisted in the design. Additional watershed will be tapped into by terracing both sides if you will which should add another 50 to 70 acres of watershed. Construction challenges that we have all discussed will be creating depth and habitat.

Habitat plans will include lots of timber: standing timber in the construction area and sourced cedar (no oak) brush piles from across the property. I have some shallow water habitat plans using artificial materials.

One question contractor has left to me to decide was to leave standing trees that will be in the eventual pond or take them down and make brush piles with them. I would guess there are 40 to 50 mature pecans, hackberry, and a few cedar in basically one long wide area. I know structure and habitat is so important my thought was to leave them standing of course. When pond is full, we estimate standing trees to be in 8-10 ft on the deep side and 3-5 ft on the shallow side.

Now these big trees in shallow water I want to leave standing - Should I "Top" these standing trees now or just let time run its course and let high branches fall off as decay takes its course over the years? I'm guessing there is no right or wrong answer and it comes down to preference on what do we want to look at for the next several years.
Liked Replies
by Jambi
Thanks Dave. My contractor just finished construction last night. I decided to do pretty much what you did - I left about a dozen of the 40 to 50 trees standing. Instead of felling those remaining trees completely, my operator used his big track hoe and busted the tops out of the other 30 or so trees. Now it looks like a good ole Oklahoma tornado went thru there. I will have time to either pull out those crashed limbs or just leave them where they are (which at first impression I will likely just leave them) The track hoe was perfect as the height left on the main tree trunks is about full pool level. There are another dozen or so standing trees in the pond, but they are scattered and not bunched up so i left them in place.

In addition to these trees, I've pulled in around 50 cedar/elm/hackberry trees to make brush piles all over the pond. Some shallow, some deep, many right off the dam for future fishing spots while casting from shore.

Thanks for the tip on the carpet too. Great idea.

Overall the construction went better than expected. The guys did more than I asked for, and stuck to the bid. Now let it rain!
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