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Paula Offline OP
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We have .35 acre, 8’ deep quarry, 1million gallons water. Long neglected. Full of goldfish, which we are not worried about eliminating. Other than frogs, there are no other fish in this pond.
We have spent $$$ on various natural products to clear up the suspended, planktonic algae. Water remains murky and green.
Thinking of applying copper sulfate and aluminum based chemicals. Once water is clear, to replenish the bacteria, we would then add beneficial bacteria back into the water body.
Thoughts? Thank you so much for replies!

Last edited by Paula; 08/20/23 08:25 AM.
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Copper sulphate/sulfate is a temporary fix. It kills the algal growth, it then decomposes, the nutrients are re-released into the water and then forms an algal growth again-because there is nothing else using it, OR.. it's being produced faster than it's being used by aquatic plants.
At .35a and 8' deep, I come up with about 450,000 gal water unless it is literally straight up and down on the shore-as-in a vertical wall.
I'd treat with Copper sulfate, wait about 3-4 days then treat with Alum and for the extra cleaning power I would use Hydrated lime at 50% of Alum rate just to help bind any suspended particulates.
You need to spend some time to determine your source of nutrients, like water inflow and what's in it, decomposing matter in pond, fish waste, fish food, etc..

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Thank you for replying. With respect to copper sulfate, and algae cycle. will it make a difference if we add beneficial bacteria, pond dye etc to prevent further algae growth?
I’m thinking of using alum as well.
The pond dimensions are 236x72x8’ d. So around 1million gallons

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Bacteria will consume a very small amount of the nutrients that algae forms on, but I'm not sure it will be noticeable. Something else has to utilize the available nutrients. Dye will also help somewhat but the nutrients are still present, it just limits photosynthesis that turns nutrients into algal growth.
I still come up with a max of 500,000 gal. Could you clarify your slope of shoreline and max depth?

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There is very little shoreline, it is 8’ wide slopes very quickly to 4’ then 8’ max. The entire perimeter is 546’, or about 14,500 sq ft . irregular rectangle.
If there was a way to post a photo it would help, maybe.
The nutrients, come from too many goldfish, ( which are not fed ) and leaves etc.
We are planning to get a few bass to deal with the goldfish, it’s just a matter of finding the time to fish for them. Lol

Will adding bacteria compensate for copper sulfide binding or sitting at the bottom of the pond?
We can also use muck remover etc.

Last edited by Paula; 08/21/23 11:48 AM.
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Thanks for link re bass, but I’m in Ottawa Canada, don’t think they will get through customs, lol!

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Copper sulfate can set on the bottom and slowly become covered with silt and sedimentation.
I guess at this point it is important to know what your goal is for this pond because unless you have something to utilize the nutrients, you will continue to fight algal growth to some degree.
Bacteria is naturally present in most ponds if it has proper oxygen levels. Adding bacteria doesn't really do what some claim it does, Natural bacteria reach a balance like everything else in the pond and adding more could stress the entire colony-many different strains present.
You mention leaves being present.. this is a source of nutrients, that unless used by something, only add a higher concentration going fwd.
Another option would be to use a very low volume pump to move water very slowly thru a trough of beneficial aquatic vegetation and slowly runs back into pond, a compact wetland area..
Not to beat the horse to death but unless your slope from shoreline to bottom depth of 8' is literally straight up and down-as-in one step from shore is 8'deep, you only have 500,000 gallons max capacity.
My 27,000 sq ft pond with 11' max depth holds 890,000 gallons-metered, that's 5/8 ac.
Being correct on the volume will be important for any application of chemical of any sort.

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[u][/u]Hi again The end goal with this pond is to swim in it, as such, I would like for it to be clear enough to see bottom. Currently, we cannot see bottom as it is so green and murky.
There is aeration, which hopefully will help curtail algae growth and clear nutrients. We have used muck removers, phosphate binders, beneficial bacteria etc. Nothing has worked to clear the water.
Recently, we added 10lbs of copper sulphite, which barely cleared the water, a few of the goldfish died, but there are still plenty left, including fry. The copper sulfate had no impact on them!

We would like to keep it as natural as possible, bearing in mind it was originally a quarry.
It is home to frogs, which we enjoy. Last year, There were 2-3 turtles, but haven’t seen any this year.
Other than nuisance goldfish there is no other aquatic life.
Eventually, We will add a few bass to control the goldfish and to keep spring tadpoles in check.

As far as how many gallons, we are estimating it is at most 8’ deep. So 500,000 gallons would be correct.
It is 236L x 72w (average width)

Last edited by Paula; 08/21/23 07:55 PM.
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If copper did not help clear the water some then maybe the suspended particulates are not algal in nature???
I'm hoping Bill Cody will chime in here... I feel like I am not helping you much, part of that is because even aeration does not inhibit algal growth.
esshup, Bill, ewest, TJ, can someone provide something more here??

Last edited by Snipe; 08/21/23 11:08 PM.
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Thank you so much for all your efforts on my issue.
Finally figured out how to attach photos. So here they are.
Just to re-iterate, my goal is to see the bottom of the pond. There is no floating algae, there is chara, pond weed and algae growing on water lines and rock below water surface.
Other than debris from vegetation, too many goldfish, and a few frogs there is nothing else leaching into the pond.
Now, I am also concerned that by adding 10lbs, of copper sulfide we may have harmed the pond. Though the goldfish are still thriving, unfortunately.
We will be getting water tested also.

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Last edited by Paula; 08/22/23 02:19 AM.
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More photos

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The goldfish could also be part of the turbidity. If they don't have much to eat, they will root around in the bottom of the pond.

You can't have a natural swimming pool (what is what you are looking for) without underwater plants to utilize the nutrients that are in the water. That typically means having plants in a different, shallow pond that equals the existing pond, but only 3' deep or so. If you have clear enough water that you can see the bottom, you will be growing algae on the bottom.


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Originally Posted by Paula
[u][/u] The end goal with this pond is to swim in it, as such, I would like for it to be clear enough to see bottom. Currently, we cannot see bottom as it is so green and murky.
Nothing has worked to clear the water.
Recently, we added 10lbs of copper sulphite, which barely cleared the water, a few of the goldfish died, but there are still plenty left, including fry. The copper sulfate had no impact on them!

We would like to keep it as natural as possible, bearing in mind it was originally a quarry.
(average width)

Nutrients come from the soil - just like in growing crops. The only way to get away from the green (plankton bloom) and see the bottom (super clear water) is to sterilize the soil/water. Lots of copper will do that - for a time. It can also kill fish in low alkalinity water -- see your goldfish for example. You can dye the water so that no light penetrates but that is not a long-term solution and will also prevent you from seeing the bottom. If you have dirt, water and light you will have plants (plankton) of some type. Even swimming pools turn green without chlorine - which will also clear your pond - for a short time. Hydrated lime will also clear the water - short term but at that pH it would not be a safe swim. Wish we had an easy fix but there are degrees of clarity and costs associated with them.

Last edited by ewest; 08/22/23 11:44 AM.















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Paula Offline OP
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You are correct, There is no easy solution. I need to remember that over 50yrs ago, it was originally built as a quarry. Hence, I assume the bottom would have been sterile.
Over time, vegetation grew with foliage falling and accumulating at the bottom.
At one point, someone introduced goldfish which continue to thrive, and are a nuisance.( I am astounded that they survived after adding 10 lbs of copper sulphite. )

I agree, goldfish would be adding to the turbidity issue. Moreover, that adding 10lbs of copper sulphide barely hurt them is astounding.
We will add more water plants to help with the nutrification.


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