Having about half the watershed running into my main 3 acre pond from corn/soybean farm land, adding a sediment pond has been a good addition. All of the agriculture runoff water comes through this sediment pond. It keeps some of the sediment and nutrients from going directly into the main pond, giving time for at least some of it to settle out in this sediment pond.
This thread is going to be backwards from most construction threads. I did not start a thread for this sediment pond when the construction started, so instead you will see the finished results and then the thread will go backwards to show how it was built.
So this first set of pictures is of the completed pond. Have not measured it accurately but guessing to to be about a tenth of an acre and about 8' max depth. It is too big for me to clean out with my backhoe, but decided instead to make it as big and deep as practical so maybe will not need to clean it out for many years.
Edit: later in this thread I built a pre-sediment pond ahead of this pond that is small enough to be cleaned out with our backhoe. It catches the biggest part of the sediment first.
Added a single 9" diffuser for aeration and several pallets for FHM reproduction.
I tried best as possible to make the overflow pipe high enough so fish could not swim from the main pond back up into the sediment pond. This will allow me to use the sediment pond as a forage pond. At least for a while. The problem is, the pond being so near the top of the hill I could only get a differential in height from the main pond at full pool of less than a foot.
I used a 6" overflow pipe from the sediment pond to the main pond. During large rain events this is not near enough. But by using a fairly small pipe it allowed me to keep the outlet higher than the full pool level of the main pond so fish would not swim back up. But in large rain events when the pipe is running full bore and sediment pond two inches above it, the emergency overflow will become the main source of overflow flow. This is by design and have already had rain events where the 12' wide emergency overflow was utilized. Will not claim this was the best solution, but it is what I came up with.
Eventually there will be a big enough rain event so the main pond is a foot above full pool and the sediment is flowing full bore and fish will be able to swim from the main pond back into the sediment pond. So it can never be kept a pure forage pond. But it will function as one till such a rain event happens. It could be next week, could be five years from now. Kansas weather. The ponds were just too close to the same elevation to do anything different.
FHM have been in the pond (trapped and added from my forage pond) since it first had water.
Around now 175 1-3" RES and 100 CNGB from Dunn's fish farm were added. Going to see how the CNBG get along this far north compared to my northern BG. I just like RES and maybe some day can actually learn to catch them. Would be nice.
Digging the hole. This is the fun part. I did a good share of it but one employee helped put in some hours as my back gives out after long hours on the tractor. I took these pics as he ran the machine.
Dirt pile got considerably higher and wider from the last pic by the time I finished the next day.
Would have liked to put in a lot bigger pipe. Could have and probably should have put in multiple small pipes.
But the problem with the large pipe was, I still had to put an emergency overflow about 8" above the bottom (full pool) of the overflow pipe. So the largest pipe of any value would have been an 8" (which is what I should have used in retrospect)(edit: that is an 8" pipe. I don't know what I was thinking when I posted itm as a 6"). The reason is, if I did not allow for large flow at that level, we would back water back out into the ag field, pond it up, and break over the top of the terrace. The overflow has to carry the flow of the terrace, slowed down by a double culvert that passes under a farm road at the top of the hill. Even at the levels I've set the pipe and emergency we still back some water temporarily in the field. But we have it about right so it only stands for about an hour at most and maybe half an acre. Acceptable to me to gain the benefits of maximum available water capacity and full pool height of the sediment pond. Just one of the compromises I had to make with the pond being nearly at the top of the hill.
Concrete on each end, and a couple of concrete anti-seep collars in the middle.
No one in their right mind would hire me to do concrete work. Yet I see stuff my dad mixed up 50 years ago by hand still pretty solid made of portland cement and chat (chirt from lead/zink mine tailings - not the best aggregate because of acid content). I actually used some of his old slabs that came from around the old barn at the exit of the emergency overflow to keep it from eroding the bank as the water fell into the pond. This concrete is mixed with a 3pt tractor mixer. It will be around longer than I will.
I usually sucker my oldest grandson Bret to do the shoveling stuff into the mixer. He is a pretty stout lad. He helped with all of this.
first pic sediment pond water Second pic main pond water third pic the two for comparison
There was a lot of flow through during this rain event because it rained several inches. Plus the adjacent field had been freshly tilled in preparation of sowing winter wheat. So the main pond is showing some turbidity from the rain.
The sediment pond has been clearing up after a couple days where it gets almost as clear as the main pond. Not completely, but almost.
Added a Pre-sediment pond to the sediment pond. Had room in the terrace channel coming into the sediment pond to make an approximate 40'long by 20' wide by 5-6' deep mini-mini-mini pond.
This one is small enough I can easily clean it out with the backhoe as needed. It should catch the largest dirt particles and any corn shucks or debris that comes of the agriculture field right next to it. Ag field is in the background in the first picture.
Water comes from the field via a terrace, through a double culvert that has a road over the top, and dumps directly into this very small pond. It then exits this pond and runs over about 30' of the original terrace channel (which is rocked and is part of a 4-wheeler road) into the sediment pond. Then ultimately the water goes from the sediment pond into the main pond.
Pictures are poor. It snowed before I thought of taking some. Will get better pictures when it fills with water.
The clay piled to the left in the first picture (to the right in second picture) will eventually be moved out and used elsewhere.
May throw a few FHM in it next spring just for kicks.
It should keep water in it. Since this is the first stop for the water from the terrace it will get recharged very quickly with any small amount of runoff from a rain event. Evaporation may make the level drop but I seriously doubt it will ever go completely dry. Maybe low enough and poor water quality that FHM might be the only thing that survives year round. Not to mention the potential of freezing solid in the winter.
My guess is, during a large rain event, minnows and even BG will swim against the current and be in this pond (more like a big puddle actually) anyway. Likely they will have die offs, on and off because of various factors, but I would expect it not to stay devoid of fish for long periods.
I'll throw some FHM in occasionally anyway just for the heck of it. As long as the water is good, like you said, it should provide some minnows for down stream, as they get flushed through during larger rain events. During a big rain event the two culverts flow full flow and water even backs up into the field against the culverts about a quarter acre. So a lot of water will flow through this area once, twice or even more during a typical year.
It will hold water. Solid yellow clay like they make bricks out of at Acme Brick about 5 miles west of us. It sets basically at the peak of a hill, with only the terrace channel being low enough for water to pass over the hill (through the culverts), diverted from the farm field to the east. We needed this terrace to provide adequate watershed for the main pond, so it was built right after the main pond was built.
One problem with making this pond as well as the bigger sediment pond and mini forage pond is that they rob water from my main pond. I have a pretty limited watershed to keep the ponds full to begin with. So all this additional surface acreage (less than .2 total though) is water caught before it enters the main pond. So in a drought, any rain event just enough to have a little run off but not much, fills these small ponds first and keeps it out of the main pond. We will never have a problem with the ponds filling, as we are in a high rainfall area of the state with some occasional very large rainfall events. But we also have some extended very hot, dry periods. So during those times these small ponds may cause the water level in the main pond to go lower than it otherwise would. I built the ponds this spring and we had a really dry year where the main pond got to about 2' low. This included the initial fill of the small ponds robbing water from the main pond, so I hope this last year is as bad as it ever will get.
It may rob water to your big ponds in droughts, but I think it has benefits even during those times. Around here, with our soil types, during a drought it gets that fine dust/powder everywhere as the ground gets disturbed/ground up. Then it rains, and you get a serious amount of sediments flushed over the ground. Now you will capture it.
Snrub, you could always cut a trench a few feet wide and a couple feet below the overflow height. Then back fill it with pea gravel. That would filter the sediments and maintain the level with your main pond. The overflow would allow FHM to be pulled into the main pond in high water events also
Good idea, but right now I get maximum depths from the pre-sediment pond and the sediment pond by keeping the full pool levels at higher elevations. That actually might work pretty good between the pre-sediment and the sediment because there is only a few inches difference in full pool elevations.
The sediment pond is close to a foot above the main pond when both are at full pool, and until we have a rain event large enough (will take a really big one, maybe once every 5 years) where fingerling bass can swim against current and end up in the sediment pond, I can use it for other forage purposes. If I made it where water would leak through to the main pond it would lower the level about a foot and make it not nearly as nice around the bank. It would actually likely work better for sediment purposes that way, as it would always have an extra foot of "surge" capacity and give that much water additional time to "settle" out. But I kind of like the idea of being able to use it as a forage pond till it gets contaminated with LMB. Right now I have 100 CNBG and 175 fingerling RES in there as well as FHM's.
I guess your idea still would not preclude me from doing the same thing. Would just lower the static full pool water level because it would seek the same level as the main pond. Hmmmmm. Will have to give that some more thought.
Don't know if I explained it well enough for any of the above to make sense.
Thanks for the idea. That is one of the things so cool about this forum. Lots of ideas we are exposed to we might not otherwise have thought of.
I am requesting anyone who has made a sediment pond and has a thread about it here on PBF to post here on this thread with a link to their old thread. Or in the future if you decide to make a sediment pond and write a thread about doing it and this thread has been helpful in that event, come back here and post a link to your new sediment pond.
There are several old threads that I read about sediment ponds that were instrumental in encouraging me to make one for my pond. I thank those PBF'ers for creating those threads. I can't find them right off hand, but as I do will create links to them. One person I remember had several sediment ponds in series to clean up the runoff into his main pond. His thread was one of the main ones that encouraged me to make the pond in this thread.
By linking these similar projects together, when someone finds a topic that interests them and they want to know more, the links to other similar projects will be there for them. Find one thread on the subject, finds several.
So anyone with a sediment pond thread, I invite you to provide a link to your thread on your project.
I am requesting anyone who has made a sediment pond and has a thread about it here on PBF to post here on this thread with a link to their old thread. Or in the future if you decide to make a sediment pond and write a thread about doing it and this thread has been helpful in that event, come back here and post a link to your new sediment pond. ..............................................................
So anyone with a sediment pond thread, I invite you to provide a link to your thread on your project.
Snrub, I don’t recall if I posted a thread in 2006 about my “sediment” pond or not, but I do have a photo journal if that will be of any interest? I really didn't intend to do anything except cat tail removal but out pond builder thought otherwise.
As of now our little puddle has become a stagnant pool when water in main pond recedes from drought.
I have pulled the trigger on a Kasco 12 volt Emergency Surface Aerator - I could not achieve this goal without HighFlyer contribution who will rig up all the solar components for our “prototype system.
Catmandoo had a really good thread with a wetlands project, but it was along time ago (2010?). I remember reading it but now any references I came across to it said the page would not load.
One thing I have struggled with is how best to post pictures. Most use a hosting site and I actually have one of those. But I usually just upload my pictures to this sites server. The downsides of that is the picture has to be clicked on to see it and it also takes up server space on the host so if a lot of people do it that way might cost more to host the site. (I don't mind donating to help with that cost). Lots more efficient for PBF if the pictures are stored off site. But back when I was reading a lot of the old posts (need to do some more of that - lots of interesting stuff) I often came across very interesting threads where the person posting the pictures quit using the host site for the pictures, so the pics were gone. Could not see any of the old pictures. So that is the down side of using a separate site to host the pictures. If I don't keep up with the site used to host the pictures (or they go defunct), all will be lost access to PBF pictures for the threads.
I'm anxious for the satellite image to be updated for my property so I can get a fresh picture of my sediment and forage ponds.
I find it interesting that you left a big cut between the ponds so they are joined together. I took steps so mine are separated. During average rainfall events water flows into my sediment pond, then exits into the main pond via a overflow tube. But with big rain events with a lot of runoff, only a portion will go through the tube and most over the emergency overflow.
I tried to make the water enter in a way that it has to slow down and turn a couple times before exiting, hoping to give time for more sediment to fall out of suspension.
I can see it will cause me to manage the ponds separately, but at the same time give me the opportunity to use the sediment pond as a forage or grow out pond for the main pond. Pro's and Con's.
If I ever want them together (maybe I no longer want to expend the energy to manage the small pond) a backhoe and a small bridge for the 4-wheeler will solve the problem pretty quickly.