I’m new to the Pond Boss Forum - this actually the first posting on any forum so please bear with me. I am trying to find out what it costs to build a 1-2 acre stock tank in north Texas. I’ve been told I have excellent soil [clay] on site. Can anyone tell me a budget number for building it - maybe an amount per yard? It will be fed off a creek (when it rains) and the run off back into the creek.
I'll bet Bob Lusk knows what a ballpark price for there would be.
I recently met with a dirt guy and a customer that wants to build a pond. The dirt guy said here in Northern Indiana he was looking at anywhere from $25K-$35K per surface acre for a 100% excavated pond, no dam, all dirt spoils disposed on site with good clay found on site. It all depended on depth of the pond, if pumps needed to be brought in to keep the hole dry while it was dug, and what other treasures they came across under ground that they had to deal with.
This dirt guy has all the equipment needed, and has 8 guys working for him.
This is one of those: It all depends. If stopping up a draw, it’s one thing. When digging a hole, it’s another. Pure clay isn’t good for a dam. When dry, it cracks. It needs to be a soil mixture called loam. And, Breckinridge, like my place at Bowie, isn’t known to be like East Texas with plentiful rains. At this time, both of my ponds are down about 5 to 6 feet with no rain in sight. Three small water holes are history.
Drive around the area looking for ponds. Stop and ask questions about who impounded the water and whether they would use that guy again. Heckuva difference in pond builders and clearing land.
Ask what they would have done differently.
I agree with Dave - there is no substitute for talking with your neighbors! (Plus getting to know them better is a bonus for future good relations.)
Even if they can't recommend a good pond builder, they might tell you one contractor NOT to use.
Also, local knowledge sometimes trumps expertise. If they hit caliche 6' down in the pasture adjacent to yours, then that is good to know while you are still in the planning stages and can move your pond site to a more favorable location.
Good luck on your project!
Dirt guys around Breckenridge charge from $2.50-4.00 per cubic yard to move dirt, however most prefer to bid the job. I've seen small "stock tanks" cost as little as $4,000 and some are more because of the site. Each pond stands on its own merit, based on site, watershed size, proximity to good clay and the type of equipment. Check with the Natural Resources Conservation Service in Breckenridge. I bet they have a list of pond builders there.