An artificial fish pond is basically a re-creation of nature, and by implication, it means that anyone looking to make one, must try to follow some laws of nature in order to be able to have a working ecological system within an artificial fish pond. This article is going to be detailing some essential materials or equipment that are needed for an artificial fish-pond and the important roles these equipment play in maintaining a balanced ecological system.
Underlay and Liners
Underlays are made of 100% polypropylene, they are the first material to be laid after a pond builder has excavated his or her allocated pond space. The main objective of an underlay is to protect the liner from rocks and roots. It basically serves as an intermediary between the ground and the liner.
Liners are EPDM rubbers that are laid on top of the underlay. They are very flexible, waterproof and also very durable, and can last for 60 to 70 years. The best standard specification for ponds is 45mil EPDM rubber liner.
These are devices that suck up all large debris that would have originally found its way to the water pump, or filter for that matter. It should not be confused with net-like skimmer with a long handle, usually used by pool boys to remove debris from swimming pools. There are two major types of skimmers a) Floating skimmers and b) in-ground skimmers. Floating skimmers as the name suggests are left to float all over the pond and suck in debris as it floats along, while the in-ground skimmers are mounted in the ground at the very edge of the pond. The best for an artificial fish pond is the in-ground skimmer, and the reason it is the best for an artificial fish pond will be explained later in this article in the waterfalls section. Remember, the goal is to recreate nature as much as possible.
These are devices that clean the pond’s water systems by trapping smaller debris that was not caught by the skimmers
They maintain an inflow and outflow of water in the artificial pond, by forcefully pushing water through various water channels created for the pond
PVC pipes and Fittings
These are plastic pipes that act as a medium through which water is channeled in and out of the pond. The pumps push water through the PVC pipes.
Waterfalls with stream/Aerators
An artificial pond can have one or two waterfalls built at one edge of the pond alongside a stream with steps that stretches down into the main pond. The major reason anyone would want to do this, is to create dissolved oxygen for the fish and beneficial bacteria. It cannot be stressed enough, how important it is to always have enough dissolved oxygen in the pond. Now, talking about why waterfalls should be on one side of the pond and the in-ground skimmers at the opposite edge of the pond, is that, as mentioned at the beginning of this article, it is apparent to recreate nature as much as possible, so with both these equipment mounted on either side of the pond, a river…..like flow is created, in which water is being turned over every 20 minutes (approximately). The waterfall with a stream pushes out water and the skimmer sucks off the water, creating a good river-like flow. Apart from the technical advantage of having a waterfall, It has an aesthetic advantage. Waterfalls when properly made, do add a kind of natural and beautiful appeal to the surroundings, thereby enhancing the whole landscape appeal. It doesn’t end there, much extensive clinical research have been carried out to ascertain the therapeutic effect of waterfalls, and it has been found to relieve stress, reduce noise, lower high blood pressure, and enhance mood. On the other hand, if one can’t afford waterfalls as a means to create dissolved oxygen, he or she can make use of Aerators. These are small parts placed on the end of faucets. Typically they are tiny mesh screens that split the flow of water into multiple small streams, adding air in between, by diluting the water stream with air, aerators significantly reduce the volume of water flowing from the faucet. They do this while maintaining the feeling of a high-pressure flow. This is by far a cheaper alternative when compared to the waterfall approach. Depending on the amount of water the pond-owner wants to save and the amount of disposable income available to spend on utilities, there are various types and sizes of aerators to choose from. Living water aeration is a good source for getting various types of aerators commonly used.
The equipment listed and described in this article may not be the cheapest for making an artificial pond, but it is the optimum and best, at imitating nature. This system saves the pond-owner the trouble of cleaning or sterilizing the pond weekly but instead gives room to just clean the pond at 4 to 6 weeks interval without ever having to sterilize it, and here is why it shouldn’t be cleaned/sterilized regularly. Seventy percent (70%) of fish waste is liquid, and beneficial bacteria is needed to act on this waste and disintegrate it, and if not properly disintegrated, this will cause a serious build-up of ammonia------and it is a no----brainer as to what comes after that. Not cleaning or sterilizing the artificial pond, actually gives the beneficial bacteria time to live and colonize within the pond, thereby leading to a proper break-down of fish waste.
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