Pond Boss Magazine
https://www.pondboss.com/images/userfiles/image/20130301193901_6_150by50orangewhyshouldsubscribejpeg.jpg
Advertisment
Newest Members
Duckster, Marell, DeeDee, Dominic Greco, DannyP
18,624 Registered Users
Forum Statistics
Forums36
Topics41,180
Posts560,273
Members18,625
Most Online3,612
Jan 10th, 2023
Top Posters
esshup 28,775
ewest 21,558
Cecil Baird1 20,043
Bill Cody 15,230
Who's Online Now
6 members (Sunil, catscratch, Pondside, azteca, FishinRod, jpsdad), 820 guests, and 162 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Joined: Jan 2024
Posts: 31
Likes: 1
C
OP Offline
C
Joined: Jan 2024
Posts: 31
Likes: 1
I have a few under water shelves and other features in my pond that I put in because they would be beneficial for the fish and also would reduce the amount of dirt to move, however both contractors I was getting to bid the job increased the price for them. I'm wondering whether it's worth keeping the features or just omitting them and using the money saved to sink a bunch more artificial structure in those areas? The contractor I decided to go with is charging $3,500 for them. Apparently, he's going to dig the whole thing out, and then bring the dirt back in to build the structures. Seems like double work to me, but I also understand if he's got a low paid guy on the machine, it's just easier to tell him to keep digging until he hits 12' and not have to worry about underwater features until the end. These aren't small features, and it's only a 2 acre lake so omitting them would add about 10% more water volume to the pond. While these features definitely could be used as nesting sites, there are other nesting sites in the pond as well. Thoughts?

Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 4,801
Likes: 15
O
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
O
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 4,801
Likes: 15
Hey Centex. Welcome! Are you able to share any pics of this? Having trouble imagining what this looks like.

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 3,701
Likes: 656
F
Lunker
Online Content
Lunker
F
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 3,701
Likes: 656
Will your pond be in clay at 12 feet?

If not, that is the only reason I (a non expert) can see for moving the dirt twice. (He needs to move the dirt, make a clay blanket on the pond bottom, compact the blanket, and then re-build the swales.) Further, how far is he moving the spoils from the pond? Even if he moved the swales out of the pond and then back in, that should be less work than a longer move for the spoils to their location outside of the pond. (Depends on if he is using dump trucks or scrapers.)

Is he using dozers? If dozers, ask him where his dozing slots are going to be located. Then agree to place your swales parallel to his dozer slots. That would be much less work (cubic yards of dirt moved) for him, and he gets to charge you the same price.

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 3,701
Likes: 656
F
Lunker
Online Content
Lunker
F
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 3,701
Likes: 656
Structure in Ponds - Pond Boss Link

ewest did an awesome post on structure and cover. If you click on the link, it should open on his 4th post in that thread.

The second picture in that post is an illustration from Lusk(?) showing the structure and cover in his ideal bass pond.

30-40% of that pond is swales!

I have seen photos on Pond Boss of well-constructed ponds from reliable pond builders. However, they look like beautiful bathtubs! Personally, I have never caught any fish in a bathtub.

IMO, most dirt guys consider a dirt moving project with a perfect final grade a sign of great skill. Whether it is the backyard of a new house, or the road bed of an interstate highway. However, a pond should not be a perfect grade. If I was a bass, that is not MY vision of paradise!

Of course, maybe I am a stupid bass and I would have been eaten when I was only 3" long. grin

Last edited by FishinRod; 05/27/24 02:59 PM. Reason: fix typo
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 16,125
Likes: 293
D
Moderator
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Lunker
D
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 16,125
Likes: 293
Hey Centex, I know a guy that dug the pond and populated it with big rocks and old farm equipment for structure. It works. He said it beat trying to sculpt dirt.


It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
Joined: Nov 2023
Posts: 329
Likes: 77
B
Offline
B
Joined: Nov 2023
Posts: 329
Likes: 77
I did some cuts and ledges in our pond build. Decorated them with rock outcroppings and some DIY fish habitat. Very happy with how they turned out. If I had to do it again I would but I would also insist the entire pond bottom was compacted after the dirt was brought back in. Ours were made with a dozer and if you walk in the areas the humps were installed be prepared to sink to your knees.....

Other than that.....love it.


I subscribe to Pond Boss Magazine
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 28,775
Likes: 910
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 28,775
Likes: 910
If the contractor is using a sheepsfoot roller to compact the pond basin to seal the pond, that's most likely easier for him to get it sealed then put the humps on top of the sealed pond bottom. More $$ because he's got to touch the dirt more times.

I think you could get better bang for your buck by installing artificial cover for the fish with the same $$ spent.


www.hoosierpondpros.com


http://www.pondboss.com/subscribe.asp?c=4
3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,558
Likes: 291
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,558
Likes: 291
Agree with esshup. Small bottom changes (2-3 feet plus added cover rocks , big limbs, brush on top are good). Lots of good low cost examples in the archive thread.
















Joined: Jan 2024
Posts: 31
Likes: 1
C
OP Offline
C
Joined: Jan 2024
Posts: 31
Likes: 1
Sorry for the late reply but to answer some questions. The soil tests have come back that we are solid clay all the way down to 20+ ft (as deep as the soil test went). I am likely going to rent and do the sheepsfoot roller at the end myself just because it would be cheaper. The clay soil is possibly the only positive about this building site (that and the proximity to my house). I was just out at the property doing some shredding and the tire ruts are still filled with water from rain that we got 5 days ago despite how hot it is. Looks like water can move through the top 3-4" of soil but then after that it's like a clay pot.

As far as the implements the contractor will be using. I ended up choosing this particular contractor because he has a variety of equipment including an old scraper. I can post a picture of the pond rendering I had done but having some difficulty figuring out how to do it. I have also told the contractor multiple times that the grades and edges don't have to be perfect and that I actually don't want them perfect, but we'll see what happens.

Ok, I found where I can attach stuff but because it's a PDF the file type is blocked. I'm going to have to try and figure it out later.

I guess at the end of the day, I have access to a lot of random stuff. I own a storage facility where stuff is constantly left behind and I'm also a home builder so I have access to the left over materials on job sites. I started moving it out to the property and started a pile but then my father asked me what I was doing with that trash pile. That was kind of a wake up call because that's exactly what it is, a giant trash pile. Do any of you have any regrets dumping a ton of plastic trash into your ponds? I guess it might feel a little different if you're buying the artificial trees and everything is uniform, but in my case that would be a bit out of my budget and given a little silly to do given that the stuff I have will accomplish the same thing for pennies on the dollar.

I'll try converting my rendering and posting it later today.

Joined: Mar 2017
Posts: 383
Likes: 90
C
Online Content
C
Joined: Mar 2017
Posts: 383
Likes: 90
I don't put plastic in my pond. I've read great reviews but I fear at some point it will break apart and float to shore, or the concrete I use to sink it will eventually crack apart and let it float up. Rocks, concrete, and wood are what I use. I'm likely the odd guy here though.
Sounds like you've got a wonderful start to your pond. Pretty exciting stuff!

Joined: May 2004
Posts: 14,094
Likes: 322
Moderator
Lunker
Online Confused
Moderator
Lunker
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 14,094
Likes: 322
I've had some plastic work loose and float up. I take it out.


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
[Linked Image from i.pinimg.com]
1 member likes this: catscratch
Joined: Jan 2024
Posts: 31
Likes: 1
C
OP Offline
C
Joined: Jan 2024
Posts: 31
Likes: 1
Hopefully this image works out. FYI for anyone looking to build a new lake, I highly recommend going onto Upwork.com and having someone do a 3D rendering. I was able to get this done for only $150 and it actually comes with full building plans as well. It's not perfect as you can sort of see that the area where run off water is supposed to enter the lake the architect put a high bank. However over all it really help me with the bidding process. Turned out that almost every contractor I talked to had forgotten one aspect or another of the lake and being able to visualize it really helped.

So what I am looking at omitting are the 3 underwater shelves. There is one to the left of the pier, one between the two peninsulas and one on the south side of the lake. The peninsulas are definitely staying and of the three underwater shelves, the one between the peninsulas is the one I want the most, so likely going to keep that one. However back to the original question. If omitting the other two shelves saves $1,500 would you just delete them or leave them in?

As many of you have pointed out, dirt work guys tend to like things to be smooth and neat. I have no doubt that my contractor is going to be the same way. I'm hoping to be out there on sight quite a bit at the end to guide the final touches, so I don't get a perfect smooth rectangle like what's in the rendering. Option two is that I rent a skid steer and do some of the final touches myself. The only big negative to this is that I've also got to sink all the brush and frankly I'm already a little worried about how much work I have to do to finish all the fish structure at the end. The last thing the contractor is going to do is remove the water diverters so that the run off starts funneling into the pond. He will have to do that before he removes his equipment which means the clock will be ticking to get all of my stuff done prior to us getting any rain.

Attached Images
1 (2).jpg
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 28,775
Likes: 910
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 28,775
Likes: 910
Originally Posted by Theo Gallus
I've had some plastic work loose and float up. I take it out.


I seem to remember a picture with pool noodles in it. LOL


www.hoosierpondpros.com


http://www.pondboss.com/subscribe.asp?c=4
3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 3,701
Likes: 656
F
Lunker
Online Content
Lunker
F
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 3,701
Likes: 656
I do a lot of hand/small equipment labor myself on our farm because we are usually on a pretty tight family budget.

However, there are MANY times when renting the proper machine gives a 10x return on investment. You renting a skidsteer with a grapple might be a great way to save lots of man hours of moving in brush and other structure into the pond basin. If you get a quick attach, then they would probably add the bucket cheap. Perhaps you could possibly build the deleted swales yourself at very little additional cost? (Or even mini-swales?)

Also, can you build any kind of gate option into the contractor's water diverters. I live in a semi-arid region, so I generally want the maximum water feeding to my ponds. However, there are some times when a really heavy downpour hits, it washes topsoil out of the wheat field and into the adjacent pond. That is two bad consequences! I would prefer a gate system with a small diameter drain. That way, I decrease the water velocity across the wheat field and reduce erosion, AND a significant amount of silt can settle out of the water column if I allow only a slower supply of water to hit the pond. I don't know if any of that would be relevant to your situation?

Finally, I don't know about the value of two shelves versus $1,500. Are there any quarries nearby? Maybe just get a bid for an entire load of large limestone if available. If it is NOT decorative, and they can load it rough and dump it rough, sometimes that stuff is pretty darn cheap. That might provide another environmental niche of additional diversity for your pond, and could be less than $1,500 for a couple of loads. Maybe worth a few phone calls?

Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 16,125
Likes: 293
D
Moderator
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Lunker
D
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 16,125
Likes: 293
I’m butt deep in cedars. I put some around the banks last year. Finally got enough rain to partially cover them.


It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
Joined: Jan 2024
Posts: 31
Likes: 1
C
OP Offline
C
Joined: Jan 2024
Posts: 31
Likes: 1
I'm still on the fence about this, mostly because I really like the idea of more water volume if I omit them. Overall though I need to wait and see how construction goes. I finished the shredding about a week and half ago, the contractor was supposed to scrape the surface to keep the grass from growing so we could get a more accurate marking of where the lake is going. He did about two laps with the scraper and determined the ground was too hard for it and needs to bring out some new equipment to rip up the ground. I'm going to mark the lake out anyways (much more difficult task than I thought) and hope that this construction can get underway.

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 3,701
Likes: 656
F
Lunker
Online Content
Lunker
F
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 3,701
Likes: 656
Good luck!

Sometimes when you excavate, everything goes exactly as designed. However, sometimes you get a big surprise!

My (non expert) advice would be to remain flexible if you get a surprise. Instead of rigidly sticking to the plan, be prepared to make some allowances as needed.

I would make a decision about the swales before starting, but if the pond construction forces some design changes, consider changing your decision if the alternative happens to become more cost effective/palatable.

Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 28,775
Likes: 910
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 28,775
Likes: 910
Get a weed whacker, 3' surveyor wood stakes and a roll or two of surveyor tape. Clear a 3' area, pound in the stake, tie a 3' streamer of surveyor tape on top. Easy to see.


www.hoosierpondpros.com


http://www.pondboss.com/subscribe.asp?c=4
3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
1 member likes this: FishinRod
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,202
Likes: 33
L
Offline
L
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,202
Likes: 33
I found out something recently: Around here those concrete highway barriers that have the rebar hoop in them for lifting are relatively affordable. There are others that are stackable, like legos. They may make excellent structures when stacked and leaned against each other.

Someone locally made a natural swim pond using those, and it turned out great.


Link Copied to Clipboard
Today's Birthdays
FireIsHot, smullins94
Recent Posts
Reward's Diquat - Toxic & Hazardous?
by Pondside - 07/21/24 06:10 PM
Happy Birthday to Al! (aka Fire is Hot)
by FishinRod - 07/21/24 05:55 PM
Using A Well
by FishinRod - 07/21/24 05:36 PM
Optimal vs. Purina
by jpsdad - 07/21/24 05:28 PM
Small LMB Gape and Proper forage size
by jpsdad - 07/21/24 04:14 PM
Cold or warm water pond in mid Michigan
by Bill Cody - 07/21/24 03:24 PM
Dock.
by Stressless - 07/21/24 02:55 PM
Fish kill - help
by Boondoggle - 07/21/24 12:27 PM
Hybrid Stripers vs. White Crappie
by Boondoggle - 07/21/24 10:14 AM
How to remove brown film/scum on 1 acre pond?
by esshup - 07/21/24 12:07 AM
Say hello to my little friend
by Pat Williamson - 07/20/24 04:13 PM
Electrofishing service - Wichita, KS
by blavis - 07/20/24 02:11 PM
Newly Uploaded Images
Major change since 2009
Major change since 2009
by SENKOSAM, July 3
Fishing with my Best Buddy
Fishing with my Best Buddy
by Theo Gallus, June 29
Eagles Over The Pond Yesterday
Eagles Over The Pond Yesterday
by Tbar, December 10
Deer at Theo's 2023
Deer at Theo's 2023
by Theo Gallus, November 13
Minnow identification
Minnow identification
by Mike Troyer, October 6
Sharing the Food
Sharing the Food
by FishinRod, September 9

� 2014 POND BOSS INC. all rights reserved USA and Worldwide

Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5