Duck pond questions

Guernsy

Songster
Jun 5, 2020
118
214
116
Hello
So, I have ducks, 4 of them. Right now I have a kiddy pool and about 4 large round water dishes for them to play in. It is a lot of work and water to clean every day, especially if you live in CA and water is expensive. I have read some of your posts about trying to fix up a duck pond like situation with a kiddy pool or a larger container. I also have a 6x2 trough that I was planning on using as a ducky pool. However, I would like to incorporate a filter, maybe a waterfall, etc so the water stays clean. I know, there is cost involved, and labor. However, I am not scared of labor nor cost, I just want my ducks to be happy and not to waste water all day long. If anyone has a good link to a site or idea on how to build a system where I can incorporate a strong filter or two ( I understand that I might have to have separate filtration barrels) that will keep the tank clean for at least a few weeks. I would appreciate it.
Thanks,
Julia
 

U_Stormcrow

Crowing
Jun 7, 2020
2,135
4,831
326
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
Julia, I have more space, more ducks, and much cheaper water (from my well), but similar questions. I've been digging all over the internet, and rechecking my books, without good results. The only thing I can consistently find is that duck ponds need A LOT of filtration. More than water gardens, more than koi ponds, more than aquaculture!!!!

The site I found yesterday which was best so far essentially demanded a small pool pump with multiple jets to keep the bottom agitated, an extremely turbulent waterfall for oxygenation, suggested bubblers or other oxygenators might also be needed, AND suggested a "bog filter" of AT LEAST 35% to the surface size of the pond, proper. For a small number of ducks over a reasonable time scale, I can't imagine that's remotely cost effective. Sorry I don't have a better answer, and hopeful you find something that works for you which is not so extreme (as I'd like to copy it!)

In any event, here are the best two webpages I've found so far, though there may well be some upselling involved, as they have a product they are offering.
Pond Building Blog

I have read a number of DIY multistage biofilter mentions, such as this one - but the follow ups re: their long term durability and effectiveness are near non-existent.
 

Guernsy

Songster
Jun 5, 2020
118
214
116
Julia, I have more space, more ducks, and much cheaper water (from my well), but similar questions. I've been digging all over the internet, and rechecking my books, without good results. The only thing I can consistently find is that duck ponds need A LOT of filtration. More than water gardens, more than koi ponds, more than aquaculture!!!!

The site I found yesterday which was best so far essentially demanded a small pool pump with multiple jets to keep the bottom agitated, an extremely turbulent waterfall for oxygenation, suggested bubblers or other oxygenators might also be needed, AND suggested a "bog filter" of AT LEAST 35% to the surface size of the pond, proper. For a small number of ducks over a reasonable time scale, I can't imagine that's remotely cost effective. Sorry I don't have a better answer, and hopeful you find something that works for you which is not so extreme (as I'd like to copy it!)

In any event, here are the best two webpages I've found so far, though there may well be some upselling involved, as they have a product they are offering.
Pond Building Blog

I have read a number of DIY multistage biofilter mentions, such as this one - but the follow ups re: their long term durability and effectiveness are near non-existent.
Thank you, I will check that out. What always puzzles me is that big man-made pond not too far from my house. Maybe, I should just walk my ducks over there for a swim every day, lol. Anyway, they have a little house, as big as my duck pen, which holds their filtration/pump system. It is actually a bit noisy. The pond does have a lot of vegetation, so I am sure that helps too. Yes, it is large and there are bass and other fish in there. However, I can't even count the ducks that live there. The water is not clean by any means. When one of my kids was young, he had to go in there to retrieve his little boat, he smelled awful. Yet, they do have some sort of filtration going on to keep the pond alive and going, who knows what. LOL
Anyway, I understand what you are saying, it will be difficult and probably not cost-effective. I am not ready to give up. I will check out your links.
Thank you for your response.
 

U_Stormcrow

Crowing
Jun 7, 2020
2,135
4,831
326
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
PLEASE let me know what you find!

We are contemplating digging out a chunk of the back of the property, when the excavators come to dig foundations for our home, line the bowl with bentonite (already have a high clay soil, but not high enough), for a duck pond/goat puddle/runoff collection site with a very large bog filter - but we have 30 acres, only 8 of which we plan to either clear or underbrush. So land, and water, aren't concerns for me. Closest power source is almost 600' away, up and down a hill, unless I try to run a pool pump with solar somehow, with all the expense that would entail. My wife is for this plan, I am not.

So if there is a working, reasonably priced, home brew solution for a body of water closer in size to the existing pool (80 sq ft) with much lower power (preferably DC) demands, I am definitely interested.
 

BallsEleven

Chirping
Dec 12, 2019
101
136
98
South Louisiana
PLEASE let me know what you find!

We are contemplating digging out a chunk of the back of the property, when the excavators come to dig foundations for our home, line the bowl with bentonite (already have a high clay soil, but not high enough), for a duck pond/goat puddle/runoff collection site with a very large bog filter - but we have 30 acres, only 8 of which we plan to either clear or underbrush. So land, and water, aren't concerns for me. Closest power source is almost 600' away, up and down a hill, unless I try to run a pool pump with solar somehow, with all the expense that would entail. My wife is for this plan, I am not.

So if there is a working, reasonably priced, home brew solution for a body of water closer in size to the existing pool (80 sq ft) with much lower power (preferably DC) demands, I am definitely interested.

Man, your situation is my dream. If I were you I'd just go ahead and dig an acre pond. Add fish vegetation and you would be set. Wouldn't need a pump or filter in that situation.

I plan on buying 10 acres north of town as soon as I can for a future home site.

To the OP:

The problem with holding water above ground is water temp fluctuations. It is hard to keep it clear.

If you are going with a container though, I would go as large as you can. Like someone else posted, a bog filter or bio filter would be your best option. There are a lot of websites that show you how to do this in 55 gal barrels.

Bog would work a little better because of the plants feeding on nutrients at the top. Bio filter would be much easier to clean out if using bio balls.

Will it be clear clean water? No, but it will probably save you from constantly draining and filling your water.
 

U_Stormcrow

Crowing
Jun 7, 2020
2,135
4,831
326
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
Look, I'm not saying I haven't measured out a potential pond in the 3/4 acre under brushed area, one tree to be removed, measuring roughly 60' x 80' in an existing bowl at the "bottom" of the surrounding "hills" (its FL, anything w/ 5'; elevation difference is a hill), with perimeter just touching the edge of the existing canopy of the surrounding well established trees (mostly hickory), feathered edge proceeding to a depth of 4 1/2' to support a small family of tilapia, one side set aside for the bog filter, and sourcing cypress and water plants from the local swamp 1/4 mile distant...

I'm just saying the budget goes to the house first, so I can get out of this RV, and get my furniture out of the barn, allowing me to finally bring some goats on property to add to the ducks, chicks, and dogs.

;)

My dream too. I'll be on this land till the day I die.
 
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