Wildlife/Garden Pond

2014/05/15 by Posted in: HomesteadingIn the Garden

Hi guys. This is Mark and I’ve been researching something really cool that we want to do with this shallow ditch that we dug which is currently used to store grass clippings and leaves. . We decided to research how to make a pond that would include fish and eventually become its own little ecosystem. While researching the construction process, I first considered using a tarp liner but wanted to find a more natural alternative for an eco-friendly system.

A small section of a former tennis court was dug out for the future pond.

5/6/14 (Earlier Research: How to Make a Pond)

Materials Needed:  

  1. Sand
  2. Biodegradable Materials
  3. Waterproof Pond Liner

Pond Features:

  • Does not require a pump
  • Attractive to: Frogs, Slugs, Water sliders, Etc.
  • Ideal light conditions are a mix of sun and shade.

Pond Considerations:

Environmental Regulations

  • Larger properties may be subject to environmental regulations. Contact the Department of Agriculture to find out if there are places on your property that are protected watersheds, or if there are any other local regulations you should know about before you begin digging.

Wildlife and Pond Design

  • To facilitate the growth of wildlife, your pond should be deep enough that it won’t freeze solid over the winter; in cold regions, you’ll want to dig the pond several feet deep so that the animals living there can overwinter.
  • One side of the pond should have a gradual slope, a beach of sorts, so that animals that wander in will be able to make their way out. Animals can drown in ponds with steep cliffs on every side.

Pond Construction:

  • Pond Lining:
    • First line the pond with a layer of sand, making sure to cover every crevice. Next add a layer of biodegradable materials, such as newspapers or burlap. Cover this layer with a large piece of waterproof pond liner.
    • Different types of waterproof pond liners are available at home improvement stores, and often at garden stores.
  • Fill the pond: Use a hose to fill the pond up to the edge, making sure to stop before it overflows.
  • Trim the overlapping liner back to about 5 inches (12 cm).
  • Add water from a local natural pond. Add natural pond water, which contains bacteria and microscopic animals that will help establish your pond as a more natural water source for wildlife.
  • Watch as your pond grows “wild.” Your pond will change over time, attracting bugs and other creatures as it develops nutrients.
  • Don’t mow the area around your pond; instead, let wild grass grow.
  • Don’t introduce fish to the pond for several years. Their presence will prevent the pond from attracting frogs, snails and other wildlife.
  • Create a muddy pond bottom by dumbing the topsoil back into the pond. You may plant reeds and other natural aquatic plants, such as water lilies, to help facilitate the growth of other wildlife.

 

Source: http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Pond

 

Very informative research….Lots to think about. More details to come!!! For now, we have a lot more digging to do….

 


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