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Karen,
Sounds like the frog question has been answered. Just want to pipe in that
barley straw IS fabulous for keeping algae growth down. Our pond is a
quarter acre, 10 feet at the deepest, and barley straw beats the heck out
of raking algae. It also provides a haven for tadpoles.
Gretchen

On Thursday, May 21, 2015, Linda Feltner <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Sweet! I like the tunnel you gave the fish, very clever!
> We had Gambusia in Seattle, the water temps got cold in winter, and they
> flourished. Well, at 5000 feet, we can get darned cold where we are now in
> AZ. So cold in both places one doesn't dare feed the fish in winter, they
> will bloat and die, their metabolism is so slowed. We've cracked ice off
> the pond many times.  But the winters where Karen lives could certainly be
> colder.
>
> Ponds are fantastic! I can stare into them for hours. Watch the
> dragonflies and damselflies lay their eggs, birds galore, and also
> Southwestern Woodhouse toads, Sonoran Whipsnakes, and loads of lizards.
> Like someone mentioned, I am working on a better "bridge" that will allow
> them to reach the water and get out in case they topple in. Love the Pond!
>
> Thanks!
> Linda
> _____________________
> Linda M. Feltner Artist, LLC
> P.O. Box 325
> Hereford, AZ 85615
> (520) 803-0538
> www.lindafeltner.com
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> On May 21, 2015, at 9:08 AM, Suzanne Frechette wrote:
>
> Back when we had a koi pond in RI, we bought a black plastic mailbox,
> removed the door, cut off the back, strapped it to a paver and submerged it
> in a deep area of the pond that we built. The fish enjoyed swimming through
> it—sometimes they played follow the leader--and used it for safety as well.
>
> Gambusia (mosquito fish) are a perfect solution in warm climates. They’re
> native tropicals in FL and are fabulous consumers of mosquito larvae. In
> fact, they’re being raised and distributed for use in ponds and even road
> side ditches—an environmentally sensitive and sensible alternative to
> chemicals. I don’t know their cold temperature tolerance but guess that
> they would die out when water temperature drops below 50 or so.
>
> In RI, I used mosquito dunks—little donut shaped, non toxic foaters. I
> also use them in my micro pond in Narragansett, RI during the summer. Frogs
> and a snake or two love the little pond and birds stop by for a splash bath
> in the stone filled section.
>
> -Suzanne
>
>
> On May 21, 2015, at 10:43 AM, Linda Feltner <[log in to unmask]
> <javascript:_e(%7B%7D,'cvml',[log in to unmask]);>> wrote:
>
> I'm replying late here, I've been out of town.
>
> We've built several ponds with assorted filters. Frogs, toads. I think the
> other responses summed it up with the temperature issues.
>
> We do put fish in our pond, tiny "mosquito fish", or Gambusia. We have
> also put in  inexpensive goldfish, tiny ones, and they grow up. When the
> goldfish get larger, and more attractive to herons and raccoons, I put a
> black plastic pot in the bottom, on it's side with the bottom cut out. The
> fish then have a place to harbor when they are threatened. A cinder block
> on its side works too, the raccoons can't toss it over easily. The tiny
> mosquito fish seem to always be in great numbers, so they probably aren't
> as vulnerable as bright, large fish. We've even given them away to other
> folks with ponds. They breed easily even in a small pond.
>
> As far as a filter, a prefilter will really save the pump. They only last
> from 1-4 years anyway. We've had biofilters: one 50-gal barrel off to the
> side, behind a dense bush, and another (current) one that is a black
> plastic bowl/tub (supposed to fit in a half-wine barrel) with a spillway
> that allows the water to fall into the waterfall.  We are currently taking
> out the waterfall, it wasn't built like we wanted and has leaked for years.
> So I am now setting up a waterfall within the large pond liner, so all the
> water will be contained within it. That means of course that we eliminate
> the tub-like biofilter. We have always benefited by the biofilter. not only
> will fish make the water cloudy, but so do the plant and bug debris.  I
> recently cleaned out a huge mat of "gunk" and plant roots, and am REALLY
> hoping we can get away with smaller plant root mass and no biofilter, but
> in my heart I think we will ahve to
> eventually incorporate it back into the system. There are a couple of ways
> to do it with our new setup, but I will save that project for another
> weekend.
>
> If  you do anything, I'd get some Gambusia.
>
> Best,
> Linda
> _____________________
> Linda M. Feltner Artist, LLC
> P.O. Box 325
> Hereford, AZ 85615
> (520) 803-0538
> www.lindafeltner.com
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> On May 11, 2015, at 5:47 PM, Karen Ackoff wrote:
>
> I'm new to country living, and my house has a small pond in the garden, or
> more accurately a "water feature". I figure the pond is about 100 gallons,
> and there is a little waterfall. Up until this year, I just let it be, and
> frogs happily inhabited it. So did algae and mosquito larvae.
>
> Clearly I don't want mosquito larvae breeding in it, so I cleaned it up
> and hooked up the pump that came with the house. Pump is working and
> includes a "pre-filter" which filters out large things like leaves and
> such. So the water is moving and mosquitos won't breed in it.
>
> I've been hoping frogs would find it and so, one did. We've had about 2
> weeks of rain, so I went to remove some water from the pond so it won't
> overflow. And in it was a frog, floating just under the surface of the
> water, still and vertical, looking dead. I scooped it out and was planning
> to toss it into the woods. But when I looked in the bucket, it was
> swimming. OK, so I put it back in the pond. It looked dead.
>
> So I pulled it out of the pond and sat it on a rock nearby. He is sitting
> there now (it's been about 4 hours). He has shade and lots of places to
> hide. I sprinkled water on him a couple of times. His throat is moving in
> and out, and he is sitting and alert, but doesn't move if I touch him
> (toads don't move when touched either, so maybe this is an amphibian
> "thing"). I just checked on him and he is sitting under a spider web (smart
> frog!).
>
> Is there anything I can do? Or should I just leave him be?
>
> I did pile some rocks to provide better egress from the pond, and I'm
> planning on adding some pond plants as well. A few lily pads and whatever
> else looks interesting. Will probably put some barley straw in, as I hear
> it helps prevent algae build-up.
>
> Any advice? Thoughts? Ideas?
>
> I do not want to put fish in it - I would just be feeding wildlife around
> here. And I'd have to filter the water then (with more than a pre-filter).
> Meanwhile, every week or 2 I pull a few buckets of water out, and put a few
> fresh buckets of water in. I have well water, so there is no chlorine.
>
> Thanks!
>
> K
>
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-- 
Gretchen Halpert
Illustrator/educator
Scientific Illustration Distance Program

www.gretchenhalpert.com
www.BotanicalTravelTours.com

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