Encouraging wildlife.

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Robson Valley

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Nov 24, 2014
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McBride, BC
Harvesting native plant seed. It's growing all around you. Maybe always has been.
Very lucrative business for land reclamation here.
Introduce nothing. You don't know the repercussions in years to come.

Consider upsetting the ecological succession in 1/2 of the pond.
Educational experience to watch the changes.
= = =
Funny but the land reclamation issue got out of hand = the plantings did so well in one place
that a herd of bison had to be introduced to graze over the region to keep the small shrubbery under control!
 

Toddy

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Jan 21, 2005
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We don't really have a bison problem in our country. We do have problems with things like Himalayan Balsam and Japanese knotweed though.

Even native plants can be a bit much in a small area.

M
 
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Janne

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Feb 10, 2016
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Wild Boar will become a problem within one (human) generation.

The passion for gardening has created a nightmare with the( willingly) imported plant species.

And of course the culinary imports, like Ground Elder.

It took me 4 years to eradicate them from my first garden in UK.
 
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Janne

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Not good.
Excellent! A young one is so tasty, it would turn a Vegan!
:)

Ground Elder is good eating too. Young leaves, butter stewed, are really nice. A hint of liquorice.

I took all the new shoots for three years, ate some, destroyed the rest, to make the plant 'tired', then took the Roundup bottle.

The Jap. knotweed is even growing in my village in the Lofotens. People did not know how bad it is.
I plan to take the shoots and cook them. Apparently a very popular Wild Veg in Japan!
 

Robson Valley

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Nov 24, 2014
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The bison are not and were not the problem. The success of the vegetation was the issue.
The bison were brought in as native herbivores to control the vegetation.

Not ever a risk of over grazing, either. Keep the bison breeding stock.
Knock down a bunch of the 2-year olds and eat them.
We are down from an estimated peak population (1880) of 60,000,000.
Might be 100(?) on the ranch across the valley from my house.
 

Toddy

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Japanese knotweed tastes, and can be used, a bit like rhubarb. The real problem is that any piece of it not destroyed by heating or drying or poison will root and start the whole thing up again. So any trimmings, make sure you cook 'em too before they end up in the compost bin.

M
 

Woody girl

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Mar 31, 2018
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I think Toddy has got it on the head. The local chap who keeps everything "tidy" just goes round the pond with a petrol strimmer and let's it all fall into the pond and doesn't clear it out, just let's it float around and rot down. I've tried to speak with him about it but... what do I know?
.... being a woman and not actually employed in this field. ..( tho I have been employed in land based jobs woodland reclamination and btcv etc for over 20yrs in the past.)
The green bit growing in the pond is grass. It's got a massive covering of duckweed and gets a nasty covering of algae in the summer.
When it was first cleaned out it was clear and about 2 feet deep. You could see newts and tadpoles water boatmen damsel flies and dragon flies among the many species. Now it's all but dead. Badly silted and just nasty. It was a wonderful place to sit and chill. Even some ducks made their home on the island (the brown overgrown bit) but I've not seen them the past couple of years. The blue pipe... good choice of colour!.... is the inflow and there is an outflow on the opposite side of the pond again through a duct into a ditch that flows into the river.
No water oxygenation plants were added to provide a hidey place for wildlife and oxygenate the water. I suggested it to council. They thought it would be a great idea... and I waited..... and waited .. but nothing ever happened. Money was the excuse though a few plants from a garden centre would not have broken any coffers but there you are. Excuses.
 

Toddy

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I have something of an over abundance of native watercress, originally from the Holy Well at Kilmory Oib. If you'd like some to quietly add to the pond, let me know :) It's even got assorted water beasties in it. Sometimes man made ponds need an injection of healthy wildlife.

M
 

Janne

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Feb 10, 2016
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2 feet deep is too shallow, many plants will happily and quickly colonize the whole pond.

My old neighbour raised carp as a business, had several ponds on his land, and build mine ponds. He made the largest one about 2 meters deep, about 45 degree slope with ledges, from the edge.


I had lots of plants on the sides, and water lilies in designated areas on raised ‘pads ‘ in the middle.

Shallow ponds get very warm in summer, algae like that, vegetable eating fish do not.

What is dug up can be used in the garden, a good top dressing!

G3t a couple of carp and plant them in and see how th3y fare!
 

Woody girl

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I have something of an over abundance of native watercress, originally from the Holy Well at Kilmory Oib. If you'd like some to quietly add to the pond, let me know :) It's even got assorted water beasties in it. Sometimes man made ponds need an injection of healthy wildlife.

M
I'd love some once I've got it into a better state. Thank you. Will let you know.
I suggested curly pond weed... that's what we called it as kids. Don't know the proper name. It's often used in fish tanks. Half a dozen of those put around it strategic places and allowed to grow on would realy help.
I don't think fish are an option maybe ninnows but it's quite static and in full sun in the summer. Better flow this time of year.
 
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Robson Valley

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Nov 24, 2014
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Pet store guppies are excellent mosquito larvae killers in closed ponds.

I'd recomment a local species of the pond weed: Elodea sp.
I say that as the plant seems an exellent habitat shelter for dragonnfly nymphs,
provided there's live meat for those carnivores!
 

Kepis

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Jul 17, 2005
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It's got a massive covering of duckweed and gets a nasty covering of algae in the summer.

No water oxygenation plants were added to provide a hidey place for wildlife and oxygenate the water. I suggested it to council. .
Algae is caused by an excess of nutrients in the water, so ideally a study would try and find out where these nutrients are coming from, is it decomposing muck on the bottom, is the water source picking up nutrients as it flows towards the pond, ie fertilisers etc from flower beds or even if rural does it flow close to farmland, arable or livestock?

We have just completed a two year study of one of our ponds that turned green each summer, the report, all 78 pages of it, indicates an excess of nutrients in the water caused by an imbalance in the stocking density of fish, so we removed a load of fish and planted more lilies, the removal of fish will hopefully go some way towards equaling the balance of species and biomass, the lilies will feed on excess nutrients in the water. Now we just have to wait and see what effect these measures will have over the next 12-24 months.

Water falling on water and wind causing a ripple will introduce much more O2 than plants, too much O2 can cause as many problems as too little, not forgetting that a high pressure in the weather will also force O2 into the water.
 
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Kepis

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Jul 17, 2005
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I suggested curly pond weed... that's what we called it as kids. Don't know the proper name. It's often used in fish tanks. .
I think you are thinking of Canadian Pond weed, its an invasive alien species and as such is illegal to introduce to the environment, if you want a native o2 plant then Potamogeton crispus (Curled pondweed), Myriophyllum spicatum (Spike water millfoil), Potamogeton perfoliatus (Perfoliate pondweed) or Potamogeton pusillus (Lesser pondweed) would be your best bets, as before though, take advantage of the advice given by the EA, they can make a site visit and offer far better advice than can be given based on an internet conversation.
 
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Kepis

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Jul 17, 2005
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2 feet deep is too shallow, many plants will happily and quickly colonize the whole pond.

Shallow ponds get very warm in summer, algae like that, vegetable eating fish do not.

What is dug up can be used in the garden, a good top dressing!

G3t a couple of carp and plant them in and see how th3y fare!
Rubbish, i look after and have looked after ponds that are two feet deep or less and they are fine, they have not been colonised in the 25 - 30 years that ive been looking after them, nor have we ever removed any plants from the ponds, bar a bit of reed cutting on one pond to promote regeneration of the reedbed which was undertaken by the Environment Agency.

Algae like an excess of nutrients, the warmth promotes growth, whilst fish may not eat algae, Rotifers do, these in turn are eaten by small fish, who then grow into bigger fish, fish are omnivores not vegetarian.

Good luck taking silt and putting it on your garden, its classified as toxic waste and subject to all manner of strict controls, it cant even be spread on farmers fields these days, before any silt can be moved from ponds and lakes it has to undergo tests to establish what is in it, such as poisons and heavy metals.

As for "get a couple of carp and plant them in", stupid and illegal advice, fish movements are strictly controlled and subject to strict consents, licences and health checks, "planting them in" could hold all sorts of serious connotations for fish and pond health in the future and is the best way to spread fish born diseases such as KHV & SVC.
 
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Paul_B

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Jul 14, 2008
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I know of someone doing a PhD in the ecology of a particular type of shallow farm pond found somewhere down south. Can't remember much but her research is kind of about showing how important it is to keep these shallow ponds healthy. Iirc they've got environmental role to play in helping with climate change or something like that. Got the info secondhand via someone who is not that clued up on wildlife and ecological matters hence my vagueness.

My point is in support of Kepis' more detailed knowledge on the matter. Shallow ponds can provide an important habitat and contribution. Knowledge on this is being increased more and more of late. However I grew up knowing two such ponds. A tiny one in my dad's allotment was a breeding ground for newts. Unfortunately when outside of breeding my dad used to cut a few in half with his spade. Tried not to but you can't always miss them there. All because of the tiny pond I reckon.

The other one was in the far corner of the field opposite our house. It was my mates grandparents farm so we hung around there a lot. By the time we moved away it was home to 20+ ducks. They often walked across the road to visit our front lawn. They didn't fly despite it being half a km from the pond. The pond was teaming with life. Not that small but shallow. If we swam in it we'd easily stand up in the deepest part even at primary school age.

These ponds can be so good for nature. I hope the one being talked about gets recovered as a good v habitat again.
 
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Woody girl

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Thanks for all the advice folks.
Definatly will not be introducing guppies or carp! At best it would be minnows but to be honest it's never had fish as long as I've known it.
Good to know the proper names of the pond plants. Thank you.
Lots of good info here.
Ponds of any size are very important in the environment so I realy want to see this one restored to a viable ecco system rather than a large muddy puddle.
 

Janne

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Feb 10, 2016
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Kepis. everythything was planned, dug, planted and stocked by a company/person that has ponds and raising fish as a profession.
Permits done and approved.

I assume he knew and know his business.

Most disease is spread by fishermen I recall reading somewhere.


Splitting hair, but an area of very shallow water I would call a wetland. Important for wildlife too!

Maybe even more than a deep pond?

I hope, WG, that you will get lots of frogs in the area. Animals in huge decline. And what is more relaxing, the croak of frogs in the evening!
 
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