pond for ducks

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Holland4, Feb 22, 2016.

  1. Holland4

    Holland4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 29, 2015
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    Ok so have read some threads about ponds and pumps for ducks. We have a small pond that we dug out last summer for our 2 ducks. We just went to Menard's and got a pump and filter....what a disaster. I would have to clean the filter out every couple of days because the pump would start running extremely slow. We have a friend who owns a landscaping business and has a (big) pond himself for fish. He told me to just get a air pump, it's cheaper to run and it won't get clogged. Everything I have researched and looked up on ponds for ducks has said nothing about air pumps, why I wonder? So my question is could I use just an air pump in my duck pond and maybe get a vacuum to vacuum out the bottom every once in a while?
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    I have no experience with this but it seems worth a try.

    OldGuy43 set up a system but it was for a kiddie pool, not a whole pond.
     
  3. Holland4

    Holland4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 29, 2015
    Wisconsin
    Thanks, I have looked at his system...what a great system, but I am not sure it would work for our pond. I just don't know exactly the difference ( what it would do) between an air pump and water pump.
     
  4. revans2003

    revans2003 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have never used an air pump, but I would assume it will be susceptible to the same problems that a water pump would be. My pumps are koi pond dirty water pumps that are specifically designed to process solid matter like the duck poop, dirt and food that ducks bring into the water with them. The pump for my biggest pond can process solids up to 1.25" round and long. Pumps that are designed and purpose built will work better in the long run, especially when dealing with dirty water.

    No matter what you do, you will need to clean the filters regularly. There is no maintenance free duck pond. I spent a year building filters for my two Ponds and I have perfected them to the point where I can have clear water and only have to clean the filters once a week which consists of hosing down the filter pads and emptying the settling tank, a 5 minute process.
     
  5. Holland4

    Holland4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 29, 2015
    Wisconsin
    Thanks! What is the name of your pump and did you order it online? Wondering what type of set up do you have and do you have any pictures. All of the posts I have read pretty much say that it has taken along time to perfect the filter system....I am assuming the same for me. I used to have a couple of pools for them and over time had perfected that system, but I really wanted them to have a bigger area to swim ( and bigger area to clean). So we dug the pond and all summer I had been working on this whole pump and filter thing. We drained it for the winter and I will start over in the spring (soon) so that is why I am trying to figure the best pump/filter to get and go from there. Thank you so much for your help and feed back.
     
  6. tmorgan46

    tmorgan46 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    @Holland4
    @revans2003 shared his system on other threads and this weekend I was finally able to complete the build of my version of his idea. The swirly filter works like a champ and after just a couple of days running is already clearing the water up. If interested I'll add to this thread my set up for a ~300 gallon pond and a picture or two. If you have a smaller pond, I ran a DIY filter built with 5 gallon plastic bucket and the same filter media in the swirly filter. It actually worked quite well, the biggest drawback was the amount of space it took up, as it was submerged in the pond and the lid was just beneath the surface. On a smaller scale, would work quite well I'm sure.
     
  7. tmorgan46

    tmorgan46 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    And, I haven't had any issues yet, but I bought the budget pond pump from Walmart for 40 or 50 bucks. I'm sure they can be found cheaper than that.
     
  8. Holland4

    Holland4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 29, 2015
    Wisconsin
    Yes I would love to see pictures and diy set, my pond it a bit bigger though...it's about 6000 gallons. Our pond is 13ft by 15 ft and about 4ft deep. So here's another question......I see all of these diy pond filter systems with lava rock in it or the barley straw bales. Would something like that help with the muck, if I just had my pump going for circulating the water and then the muck is on the bottom with the rocks or bales? I only have 2 Khaki Campbells, so I don't have that many swimming birds. I know I am not that handy about this stuff and am asking a lot of questions so I really appreciate your help and feedback. Thanks again
     
  9. tmorgan46

    tmorgan46 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'll try to keep this as short as possible. And the only pictures I have right now are the finished project. I didn't think to snap photos along the way. I'm sure I'll be draining things and cleaning out in the next month or so, and I'll try to remember to take a few while I do that.
    So, the swirly filter is very simple and once @revans2003 explained things, it made a lot of sense.
    Materials: (I did all of my shopping at either Walmart, Lowes / Home Depot / Menards, and Amazon. TSC has quite a bit of these things as well)
    1 cheap pond pump. Walmart 40 or 50 bucks
    1" PVC pipe 5 foot long section. Lowes 2 or 3 dollars (you may need more depending on how far away you put the filter)
    1 1" PVC bulkhead fitting. Lowes 6 or 7 dollars
    1 3/4" to 1" threaded adapter. Lowes a dollar
    2 1" PVC 90 degree elbows. Lowes 2 dollars or so
    1 1" PVC Tee. Lowes 1 dollar
    2 1" PVC 45 degree elbows. Lowes 2 dollars or so
    2 bricks (found them laying around)
    1 4' X 2' sheet of florescent lighting panel (plastic grate that covers the lights in commercial buildings. I found the type made up of 1" X 1" squares.
    2 bags of lava rock. Lowes for 5 or 6 dollars each
    1 35 gallon plastic trash can. Lowes 12 or 13 dollars for the cheap ones.
    1 2" bulkhead fitting with a short nipple to be the output spout. TSC and most expensive piece probably 12 to 15 dollars.
    Filter media. I found some on Amazon that comes in a roll that is 3' long by 12" wide.
    Construction:
    Situate the filter close to your pond. The PVC pipe should be run from the pond pump into the filter. I drilled the hole for that about 14" from the top. Use the 90 degree elbows and sections of the pipe to accomplish. Cut the light grate in a circle the same circumference as the trash can (or barrel or plastic container) about 8" to 12" from the bottom. Also cut out a hole in the center big enough for the PVC pipe to go through. The PVC Tee will be at the bottom and two short pieces of pipe to extend out towards the sides of the filter. The 45 degree elbows go on the very end and place them so they point in opposite directions. It would look like this from the top looking down (I hope this works) \_____O_____
    \
    That O should be centered on the horizontal lines but not really possible with keyboard characters.
    The two bricks sit on the bottom and provide the support of the light grates. I cut two pieces of the filter media to fit and then placed the two bags of lava rock on top to keep them weighted down. The pump plumbing is finished and now cut the hole and install the 2" bulkhead fitting. Place it so it will pour back into the pond. Or you could always use pipe and fittings to return the water to the pond if the filter is not close enough.

    Fill with water and turn on the pump. Because our fine feathered friends have eaten every blade of grass and anything resembling a green plant, our duck and geese area is one big mud pit. When I filled the pond the other day, it was a nice brown soupy color as soon as the first few birds dove in. But after running just a couple of days, it's already beginning to clear up. I've had to clean the plastic screen on the pump, it was being restricted by hay and straw.
    Here's what it looks like finished:
    [​IMG]
    A few other notes. I found barley straw filter bags on Amazon and placed those in the filter. They do a great job of collecting very fine particles. The large black patch at the top was necessary because my first idea for return water failed miserable and I didn't want to waste the garbage can I cut a a section out of. So with two pieces of plastic, and a couple tubes of epoxy and some screws and washers, it covered my mistake and then I just drilled a new hole for the bulkhead fitting I went with. This spring I'll put some aquatic plants in the filter to see what effect that has. The one thing That I've omitted from this, and it was more my failing memory than anything else, but I neglected to put a spigot on the bottom of the filter to ease getting rid of the sludge that will build up on the bottom. If you're interested, there are great explanations behind the science of swirly filters all over the internet. All in all, I probably have $100 bucks invested and have ideas how this could be improved for a larger pond. If you were to put two or three of these filters with the same type of build connected in serial (the first filter output becomes the second filter input and etc etc.) then you could really improve the clarity of the water in a much larger pond. It would be overkill for my small pond though.
    Any questions or comments, please feel free to post here or send me a PM if you'd rather.

    Cheers!!

    Troy & Tina
     
  10. revans2003

    revans2003 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2015
    Sorry All, I have been away at training. I will post my setup over the weekend.

    The swirl filter has been replaced with a Super Swirl filter that provides crystal clear water :)
     

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