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Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 65
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Hey guys,

we have a seven acre pond that was completed being built last may. The pond was completely filled in october of last year. Since then the water level has not been maintained at all. Fortunately during the winter the water level was kept up by the rain water that we received. Well we haven't had much rain in say the last 45 days or so and the water level has dropped almost 3 feet! I need help and I need it bad. We had the pond professional built by a reputable excavating contractor and we have walked the damn and cannot find any wet or soft spots. I also checked to see where the drain valve pipe comes out the back of the damn and it is dry behind there as well. If we haven't stocked the fish yet then it would not be a huge problem but I have already fully stocked the pond, fertilized it, and purchased 3 stren feeders for feeding the fish so I definitely would want to avoid draining the pond if at all possible. Please I need advice on either who to call for assistance or advice. If there is any other info that you need please ask because I need to get this fixed before the water drops too low and the fish die off due to being overcrowded(I guess that's possible). The pond at it's deepest point is around 18' so it has a ways to go to be totally empty but I just don't even want to think about that happening.

HELP ME PLEASE.......

-lee-

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Lee, sorry to hear about your problems but with the info that you have provided me it will be hard to give you an exact reason so I'll just give you some of the reasons that it could be.The first thing that I would look for if I was there would be if there is any trees like willows or cottonwood they can really drop the water levels.Check the surrounding area to see if you have any new found springs or old ones that have increased their flow rates.Look behind your dam not just in the dam area itself but on back as far as 500'you could have missed the clue that would be the tell tell sign.These are just a few hints to look for without going into soil aspects that will probably be next.Hope this helps. DOC


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In California we lose about an inch per day during our dry season, up to 8 ft lost in season! Don't know about Tenn., but the combination of a new pond and no rainfall will certainly result in loss.

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Agree about the trees before I removed about 12 oak, hichory and maple I was losing about 1 inch per day. Now with the well going about 4 hours per day I am able to maintain full pool.

Bob in North Alabama

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so do I need to go around and cut down every tree within a certain distance of the pond? I really would prefer not to but if that's what is needed then I'll do it.

-lee-

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Lee, Can U get the builder to come out and take a look

I would imagine that he would have a guarantee

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Not at all!There is good and bad in everything in life.This is no different. You need to look for the bad and give it a new home.Broad leaf soft wood trees with a few exceptions,Willows, they can really do the damage.Cottonwood is the most productive in stealing the water from you.Cedar and let's say Ash are the least productive.I use a simple method that seems to work.At each tree test the ground see the moisture.Then you know what needs to be done.I don't want to go into alot of terminology and I don't think you do either.So if you have any questions email me I'm here to help! DOC


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LeeinMemphis:

This sounds suspiciously like a pond I worked a few years ago in the western reaches of the Texas Hill Country. Full, it would have been a 1.5-acre slice of heaven surrounded by miles and miles of deer, turkey and other critters on large, remote ranches. As it was, however, water that was 15 feet deep after a rain would quickly drop to a depth of 4 feet.

Enter Mr. Wizard here, with a few tons of sodium bentonite and a well-trained crew. Two days and a total of $11,000 later, we had an awesome pond that would hold 7 feet, no more.

Rain would fill it to 15 feet. Instead of retreating to 4 feet, it stopped at 7 and held like a jug.

Lee, check your site for fissures or formations of gravel. Here in the Texas Hill Country, they're pond-killers.

BTW, the landowner was good-natured about it, and chalked up our limited success to a fissure in the sidewalls of the pond basin, which allowed the water to escape.

It should be noted that I have never been invited back.

Mark McDonald
Editor


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