Early summer teased us with mild temperatures, but recent trends brought the stark reminder–dog days of summer are back. How does summer heat affect your pond?
As temps reach high 90’s with heat indexes near 110, expect water levels to drop 1-inch every two or three days. If you fed fish all spring, be aware certain feeds affect water quality. As catfish and bluegill consume 2-pounds of grain-based feed, they produce 1-pound of waste. Waste sinks to the bottom. Biological activity peaks in hot water. Without exposure to air and sunlight, waste builds and creates water quality issues.
Should this occur, fish stop feeding consistently. Closely monitor such developments. Daytime pond activity produces oxygen. Nighttime events consume it. Oxygen levels typically drop to lowest readings around daybreak. If you see fish at the water’s edge, their gills are burning and they’re attempting to escape deteriorating conditions.
Don’t wait for these events to occur and lose crucial hours locating equipment to improve conditions. Develop a plan now to aerate water quickly. Stage equipment for immediate deployment, if needed. The more water you can draw from a few feet below the surface, the better. Don’t pump from deep, stagnant holes. It will compound the problem. The surface spray nozzle should offer a fog setting like a fire hose.
We don’t want to alarm you, but the smaller and shallower a pond, the higher the risk for water quality incidents. Observe fish activity. They’ll signal symptoms if they need a breath of fresh air. If you’re contemplating an aeration system, we can custom design a plan for any pond size.