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Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522053 06/03/20 06:16 AM
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QA - Here are some thoughts just from high level. You aren't running 24/7 to avoid raising the temp to a level that stresses fish. However, if the DO gets much lower you possibly risk fish dying. I think bump up the run time and gather more data. It really seems like the only short term option to me. Long term option - what about installing a bigger pump to get even more turns per run time? It would seem that if you exposed the water to atmosphere even more it would have no choice but to absorb more O2. If you could do that in the same run time you are doing now then you shouldn't have to worry about temp.


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Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522055 06/03/20 07:30 AM
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I hear you WB! Thanks for the thoughts, we are thinking along the same lines.

I just added 2 more hours to the run-time last night for a total of 9 hours (dusk to dawn). I estimate that I am, now, turning the pond over 3 times at night while the air is running. Foregoing the rule of thumb regarding at least one turnover per day, my pond does not seem to adhere to this rule...I plan to monitor the DO and keep increasing run-times until temps get up there. We'll see what that does. I have room to extend the run-times further into the morning hours, but summer heat is coming. I have removed 100 crawdads in the past few days which should reduce turbidity. Not to mention, it's pollen-water floaty-surface scum season and the water's surface is looking a bit "thick". With all these variables changing...who knows the real causes and effects? So long as DO goes up...I don't have the luxury of caring.

Just for record keeping and ease of comparisons...the last two nights readings (after re-calibrating the DO meter strictly to the the instructions)...

6/2 (5pm)...

________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
DO______ 6.2____________3.5____________2.3
PH______ 8.1____________7.8____________7.7
Temp_____82 F___________71____________69

6/3 (5pm)...

Secchi = 11"

________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
DO______ 6.0____________5.0____________2.6
PH______ 8.0____________7.8____________7.7
Temp_____82 F___________75____________70.1 (EDIT - I had typo'd in 60 instead of 70 - my bad)

Last edited by Quarter Acre; 06/03/20 05:06 PM. Reason: Temp Typo at EDIT

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Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522070 06/03/20 02:49 PM
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Wow, those are huge DO gains at 24" and 36" at the cost of a small amount at 6".

Since I love crunching numbers...

You gained 42.8% more DO at 24".
You gained 13% more DO at 36".
You lost 3.2% DO at 6".

Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522071 06/03/20 03:07 PM
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QA,


A series of measurements starting in the morning (like 6 am - 10 am) might help tell you how long to extend your run. The O2 level won't shoot up when the sun hits but takes a while to get up there as the plants produce it.

Also, is there an expert comment on the thermocline QA is showing? Is that a sign of inadequate mixing?

Last edited by Bocomo; 06/03/20 03:08 PM.
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522072 06/03/20 03:09 PM
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Interestingly Bob Lusk just made a post saying that fish WILL choose favorable Temp over DO. That is kind of counter intuitive, at least to me.


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Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Bocomo #522074 06/03/20 05:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Bocomo
QA, A series of measurements starting in the morning (like 6 am - 10 am) might help tell you how long to extend your run. The O2 level won't shoot up when the sun hits but takes a while to get up there as the plants produce it.

Also, is there an expert comment on the thermocline QA is showing? Is that a sign of inadequate mixing?

Quick DO checks last week around 8am were consistent at 3-4ppm top to 36" down. The aeration system kills the upper DO levels, but improves the lower and makes it all poor IMO. I will be increasing the run-times an hour or so a day as loger run-times helped last fall once the summer temps faded. I'll be watching DO this weekend pretty close.

I think he thermocline you may have thought you saw in my data was a typo...I had a 60.1 instead of a 70.1 (it's been corrected - sorry and thanks for bringing it to my attention). Otherwise, the true delta T's are pretty typical at the end of the day when air shuts off in the morning.

Originally Posted by wbuffetjr
Interestingly Bob Lusk just made a post saying that fish WILL choose favorable Temp over DO. That is kind of counter intuitive, at least to me.

I saw that and thought that my fish must really hate 75 to 82 degree water more than DO in the 2's.


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Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522085 06/04/20 07:56 AM
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QA, I hope you don't mind me jumping in here but your post about whether to aerate or not along with Bob Lusk comments about water temps verses DO has me questioning where to go with my existing aeration system. Do I want cooler water or higher DO numbers. I have been searching for a leak in my 1800' of air line along with rebuilding two pumps has kept my aeration shut down so far this year. I'm still working on solving the problem of not enough air to run the six diffuser system. After 4 yrs of aeration experience at my pond, I continue to questioning myself on how to keep my water temps down and DO up during our hot summers temps? Even after I fix my aeration system, I may just leave it off this summer just to see what I can see. My fish seem to have survived my 92 to 87 degree water temps over the past summers using aeration with no thermocline. How will they do without aeration but cooler water temps may be answered this summer.


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Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522087 06/04/20 08:56 AM
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Jump in Tracy, the water is fine (maybe??? lol). The more the merrier. I'm not ready to shut my aeration off for the sake of experimentation, but you have found yourself in a situation that may lend itself to that test. Keep us updated on the results.

Readings where taken again yesterday and I think I will continue to regurgitate the previous readings for ease of comparison. Air run-time has been extended by an hour or so every night since the first reading was taken and we received 2 inches of rain this morning, so, who knows what that will do to this evenings readings. Typically, my rain runoff into the pond has DO levels around 6. The 12" drain pipe had about 3 inches of running water at the intake...it got a decent flushing. The pollen floaties (or whatever it is) was getting pretty bad. This rain will make the surface appearance much better and, I predict, make the turbidity worse. I'll see this evening.

6/2 (5pm)...

________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
DO______ 6.2____________3.5____________2.3
PH______ 8.1____________7.8____________7.7
Temp_____82 F___________71____________69

6/3 (5pm)...

Secchi = 11"

________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
DO______ 6.0____________5.0____________2.6
PH______ 8.0____________7.8____________7.7
Temp_____82 F___________75____________70.1

6/4 (5pm)...

Secchi = 10"

________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
DO______ 6.8____________3.5____________2.5
PH______ 8.2____________7.9____________7.8
Temp_____84 F___________73____________71.1

Steve - -thanks for running some numbers. I must say that the DO numbers are tricky to get as the meter requires that the probe be moving 6" per second in order to read accurately. That is difficult to do in the pond and the display is constantly moving slightly, but not so much that I cannot get a mental running average. I would not put too much emphasis on the DO percentages. The ppm readings could be off by a couple of tenths.

I'll get more meaningful data this weekend when I can get a few sets a day (morning, mid, & evening).

Last edited by Quarter Acre; 06/04/20 08:57 AM.

Fish on!,
Noel
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522091 06/04/20 12:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Quarter Acre
________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
Temp_____82 F___________71____________69
Temp_____82 F___________75____________70.1


These temps have me perplexed.

I'm running mine ~10hrs - 9:00pm-ish til 7:00am-ish, depending on when I start/stop the pump.

Last couple late afternoon temp checks I've done have been ~75° on top and ~70° 10' down.

You're seeing ~12° delta in the top three feet.

Are you sure that your air pump is pumping the amount of air that it's supposed to be pumping?

Are those numbers saying that maybe it isn't?

I don't know, but it seems odd given the similarities and proximity of our ponds.

Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522093 06/04/20 12:46 PM
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These temps were taken 12 hours after aeration was turned off. - giving it time to stratify a little??? I am going to bet that the temps are very consistent below the 36" to the bottom. I will look over the pump this weekend while running, but I think all is good with the pump. It's not uncommon for my pond to have a good delta T between the very surface and a foot or so down, long after the air turns off. The water temps have been very consistent from top to bottom at the end of the air run-time, indicating good turn overs.

IIRC your pond is deeper than mine. Mine is 10 foot and your water is much more clear. Does muddy water heat up more at the surface??? My pond also receives very little wind action. I'm just thinking of the differences that may come into play.

Keep an eye on me Augie! I will get more temps checks and such this weekend and maybe it will paint a more thorough picture.


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Noel
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522096 06/04/20 01:21 PM
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I'll check mine again in a day or two. Got ~5" of new water overnight so not much point checking it today.

The water in mine hasn't cleared to anywhere near like what it was when you saw it last summer. Last summer it was pushing 6'. Right now it's more like 3'.

The mudbugs I got from you are down there working hard, which is a good thing. I've been finding dozens of 1"-1.5" baby crays every time I rake FA.

Clear water is really pretty to look at, but the dang snotgrass goes crazy when it gets too clear, so in my case the reduction in visibility is welcomed.

Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522100 06/04/20 02:29 PM
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Good to here the craws took. I am looking forward to running checks this evening JUST to see what the rain event did to the water.


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Noel
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522101 06/04/20 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Quarter Acre
Steve - -thanks for running some numbers. I must say that the DO numbers are tricky to get as the meter requires that the probe be moving 6" per second in order to read accurately. That is difficult to do in the pond and the display is constantly moving slightly, but not so much that I cannot get a mental running average. I would not put too much emphasis on the DO percentages. The ppm readings could be off by a couple of tenths.

I'll get more meaningful data this weekend when I can get a few sets a day (morning, mid, & evening).

I know your data isn't enough to make a sweeping conclusion about aeration, but it's got me wondering if I want to eventually aerate my pond. Going by what Mr. Lusk said, would it be reasonable to conclude, that if you're meeting the bare minimum DO for the species you have without aeration, that aeration isn't required? By not aerating, you're keeping favorable temperatures, which are apparently what fish prefer over water that has more DO than they need.

Some interesting stuff here.

Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Steve_ #522104 06/04/20 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve_
Originally Posted by Quarter Acre
Steve - -thanks for running some numbers. I must say that the DO numbers are tricky to get as the meter requires that the probe be moving 6" per second in order to read accurately. That is difficult to do in the pond and the display is constantly moving slightly, but not so much that I cannot get a mental running average. I would not put too much emphasis on the DO percentages. The ppm readings could be off by a couple of tenths.

I'll get more meaningful data this weekend when I can get a few sets a day (morning, mid, & evening).

I know your data isn't enough to make a sweeping conclusion about aeration, but it's got me wondering if I want to eventually aerate my pond. Going by what Mr. Lusk said, would it be reasonable to conclude, that if you're meeting the bare minimum DO for the species you have without aeration, that aeration isn't required? By not aerating, you're keeping favorable temperatures, which are apparently what fish prefer over water that has more DO than they need.

Some interesting stuff here.


Aeration has other benefits beyond just additional O2 for fish respiration. It allows aerobic decay of organic matter, which is much faster.

Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522121 06/05/20 06:20 AM
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I have been a fan of aeriation for the past 4 yrs but at my place in the hottest part of the summer July, Aug the water temps are just to high when aeration is running whether it is early morning run or a night run. I don't have a deep pond and was designed to be 12' in one deeper pools and 10' in another pool section of the pond. But in the hot summer months the pond will be shallower due to evaporation. This also comes into play when aerating at my place. I see the benefits of diffused air but I have also seen the negative side of it. I have been listening to Bob Lusk the past couple of years when he speaks of cool water refuge during the hot water season. His comments has influenced my thinking and I have made several changes when it comes to diffused air but nothing I have done so far gives me a cool water refuge. I am still looking at it all.

Last edited by TGW1; 06/05/20 06:26 AM.

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Tracy
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522126 06/05/20 08:32 AM
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I'm with you Tracy, I have never achieved a thermocline in my 1/4 acre pond with the air running. I have lost faith that it can be achieved in a small BOW, AND still maintain good turn-overs. My three diffusers are 3 feet off the bottom and spread out evenly in the dam side half of the pond. I could move them higher in the water column, but then the lift rate diminishes and my run-times would need to approach 24 hours a day. Maybe this would be better, but I don't think so, hence not putting in the effort to raise the diffusers (again).

Originally Posted by Steve_
Going by what Mr. Lusk said, would it be reasonable to conclude, that if you're meeting the bare minimum DO for the species you have without aeration, that aeration isn't required? By not aerating, you're keeping favorable temperatures, which are apparently what fish prefer over water that has more DO than they need.

Some interesting stuff here.

This is were the thread title comes from..."To Aerate OR Not to Aerate". In my case, I am hoping to maximize my little puddle and that is why I have air in it. That and I like to tinker. I believe that aeration should help do that, but the trick in warmer climates is to balance it with the water temps. The one piece of info that I am really missing is...what constitutes dangerous DO levels? I assume that I am pushing that limit, but I really don't know. Bob says "They really can't judge the difference between 3.5 ppm or 6.5 ppm." in this thread...

https://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=522102#Post522102

This make s me think that 3.5 ppm is not so bad, but I don't want to take it out if it's original context.

IMO, a pond without air will balance itself. Meaning that once the biomass meets the available DO levels fish will start to suffer in one way or another. This suffering can be in the form of lack of growth, increased illness, or, during an extreme event, a fish kill. An aerated pond allows for more biomass (given that it is done properly and adds DO to the pond), but when the hot summer starts to push the temp limits the aeration must be cut back. This improves the chances of that extreme event. IMO.

EDIT: Added yesterday's data...........................................................................................................

I grabbed some more readings yesterday to compare to the earlier weeks data...

6/2 (5pm)...

________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
DO______ 6.2____________3.5____________2.3
PH______ 8.1____________7.8____________7.7
Temp_____82 F___________71____________69

6/3 (5pm)...

Secchi = 11"

________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
DO______ 6.0____________5.0____________2.6
PH______ 8.0____________7.8____________7.7
Temp_____82 F___________75____________70.1

6/4 (5pm)...

Secchi = 10"

________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
DO______ 6.8____________3.5____________2.5
PH______ 8.2____________7.9____________7.8
Temp_____84 F___________73____________71.1

6/5 (5pm)...

Secchi = 10"

________Surface (@6")____24" down______36" down
DO______ 7.3____________4.1____________3.1
PH______ 8.5____________8.0____________7.7
Temp_____84 F___________73____________71.5_____At the very bottom = 70.7

Secchi = 10"

We had 2" of rain yesterday morning and received a good inflow (and out). In the past, the rain water inflow had DO levels at 7ppm. The air run-time was increased the night before by an hour or so. It's hard to tell what the exact reason for the slightly increased DO is, but I think increasing the run-times is helping so I will continue until the water temps get high.

125 crawdads have been removed this last week with and additional 15 about a month ago. I'm looking for improved water clarity. Yesterdays rains did not make it worse, so that's good.

Last edited by Quarter Acre; 06/05/20 08:48 AM.

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Noel
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522154 06/06/20 06:54 AM
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I see where your visibility is at or around 10". Is that due to plankton bloom or suspended clay? When I had the bloom keeping my visibility @ 10" I was concerned/worried to the point I added Alum/lime to clear things up.
And I have too much vegetation due to the water clearing. Plankton, like vegetation also effects the DO. One thing I have noticed this year is my water temps are quite a bit cooler, I think it's because of shading due to plants.


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Tracy
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
TGW1 #522234 06/08/20 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by TGW1
I see where your visibility is at or around 10". Is that due to plankton bloom or suspended clay? When I had the bloom keeping my visibility @ 10" I was concerned/worried to the point I added Alum/lime to clear things up.
And I have too much vegetation due to the water clearing. Plankton, like vegetation also effects the DO. One thing I have noticed this year is my water temps are quite a bit cooler, I think it's because of shading due to plants.

I am pretty sure the low visibility is due to both clays and blooms. What kind of blooms, I can not say. The pond is trying to surface scum-up on me right know. The oily looking film that turned into serious scum floaties last year. Here's a pic of the water, the grey bucket is about 4-5" under water. A jar test shows that it clears up well within a week or so...I'm thinking clay and blooms...This photo was taken before the surface scum appearaance.

[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]

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Last edited by Quarter Acre; 06/08/20 01:04 PM.

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Noel
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522235 06/08/20 01:34 PM
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I was able to get multiple readings this weekend for evaluation. Aeration was set to run 8:30pm to 10:30am the night before and left there all weekend for the following data points. The two days were very sunny and peaked in the low 90's (hot and humid).

6/6 ________6"deep_____24"_____36"_____7 foot deep (at the bottom by the dock)

(6am) DO____2.7________2.7_____2.6______N/A
(12pm)DO___3.5________2.9_____2.8_______N/A
(5pm) DO___7.0_________2.4_____2.3______N/A

(6am)Temp___74 F______74_____74_______73
(12pm)Temp__84________74_____73________73
(5pm) Temp__87_________75_____74_______73

6/7 ________6"deep_____24"_____36"_____7 foot deep (at the bottom by the dock)

(6am) DO____2.9________2.9_____2.9______N/A
(12pm)DO___4.2________3.2_____2.9_______N/A
(5pm) DO___8.2_________3.2_____2.9______N/A

(6am)Temp___74 F______74_____74_______74
(12pm)Temp__83________76_____75________75
(5pm) Temp__88_________77_____75_______75

Secchi readings hovered at the 10-11" visibility the whole time and PH readings were consistent in the morning from top to bottom around the 7.5 to 8 range which changed as the day grew long landing at the low 8's at the surface to the mid 7's at 36" down.

The only conclusions I can draw from this is that the daytime hours really boost the uppermost DO levels along with rising temps while the aeration mixes is all back in at night to yield lower DO levels throughout the water column along with consistent temps top to bottom. I have to admit...I don't know what to think of the data beyond that. I suppose I will continue running the air "as is" until temps get obnoxious and then consider shutting the air off completely (gradually) and then get more readings to see what happens without air.

I am open to comments and advise (as usual)!


Fish on!,
Noel
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522239 06/08/20 02:56 PM
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So I have a few questions, and forgive my ignorance on the subject. Is the reason that a pond's temp increases with aeration related to the outside air temperature of the location of the compressor? (i.e. If your compressor is outside in 90-degree air, it's sending 90-degree air into the water, which is what causes the water to heat up.) If yes, would the opposite also be true, if the compressor is in a climate-controlled room, which could potentially send cooler air into the water?

Last edited by Steve_; 06/08/20 03:29 PM.
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Steve_ #522242 06/08/20 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve_
So I have a few questions, and forgive my ignorance on the subject. Is the reason that a pond's temp increases with aeration related to the outside air temperature due to the location of the compressor? (i.e. If your compressor is outside in 90-degree air, it's sending 90-degree air into the water, which is what causes the water to heat up.) If yes, would the opposite also be true, if the compressor is in a climate-controlled room, which could potentially send cooler air into the water?

The water tends to heat up due the the added exposure to the sun and ambient air temps. This is because the water is constantly being turned over bringing cooler water up and allowing it to "soak up" the heat. Eventually, you heat up the entire column of water. Some heating occurs due to the hot compressor air, but I am betting its negligible compared to the power of the sun and air temps.

Last edited by Quarter Acre; 06/08/20 03:39 PM.

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Noel
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522247 06/08/20 04:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Quarter Acre
Originally Posted by Steve_
So I have a few questions, and forgive my ignorance on the subject. Is the reason that a pond's temp increases with aeration related to the outside air temperature due to the location of the compressor? (i.e. If your compressor is outside in 90-degree air, it's sending 90-degree air into the water, which is what causes the water to heat up.) If yes, would the opposite also be true, if the compressor is in a climate-controlled room, which could potentially send cooler air into the water?

The water tends to heat up due the the added exposure to the sun and ambient air temps. This is because the water is constantly being turned over bringing cooler water up and allowing it to "soak up" the heat. Eventually, you heat up the entire column of water. Some heating occurs due to the hot compressor air, but I am betting its negligible compared to the power of the sun and air temps.

Ahh, thank you for the explanation. I'd be interested to see what would happen if you aerated your pond with a compressor sitting in a refrigerated (LOL) room. For science!

Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522277 06/09/20 12:47 PM
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Some "fun" numbers to throw around while we're being scientific....If you had a 2.5 ton chiller (specifically made to cool water and about the same BTU or ton rating as a 1300 square foot home's AC unit) and a 5 gallon per minute pump...it would take 1700 hours to cool the pond down 10 degrees (about 70 days). This won't work in my neck of the woods.

In a more real sense, I can see how a 500,000 gallon pond (~ 1/4 acre) with aeration could easily be fighting a 1 degree increase per day as summer heat escalates. That chiller system would need to remove 1 degree per every one of the half million gallons per day. In order to do this, you would need to pump every gallon of the in a 24 hour period...that's a 350 GPM pump. The tonage on the chiller unit would need to be about 17 tons. Just to give an idea of how big that is...A 3000 square foot home requires a 5 ton unit. AND, the pump is massive, in the neighborhood of a 10 HP motor. AND, we are talking about a chiller system that is designed to chill water as efficient as possible. The introduction of cool air from an air-conditioned room into an air pump would be pretty efficient aside form the fact that the AC room air would have to overcome the heat generated by the air pump first, but the efficiency of the air bubbles cooling the water off would be horribly in-efficient.

Disclaimer: I have made some very crude assumptions in the above mumbo-jumbo and could certainly be off by a fair piece, but regardless...It would take a lot of equipment to keep a pond cool during the heat of the summer in the warmer climates.

Thanks for the diversion Steve_! Back to your regularly scheduled program...


Fish on!,
Noel
Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522281 06/09/20 01:30 PM
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W
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W
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QA what are your night time low temps around there?

Last edited by wbuffetjr; 06/09/20 01:30 PM.

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Re: To Aerate OR Not To Aerate?
Quarter Acre #522289 06/09/20 04:29 PM
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The last week or so has had lows near 70 F and highs in the mid to upper 80's and low 90's


Fish on!,
Noel
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