Pond management

Rubline

Eight Pointer
Our pond is getting some green slime algae on it, I've used some products in the past but if I remember correctly the water needed to be a certain temperature for it to work properly.
I would have to wait till sometime around the end of April or first of May for the water to get warm enough for the treatment to work.
Was wondering if anyone could recommend something to use now before the green stuff gets too wide spread.
It would have to be animal safe, we have horses that drink out of it.
 

took

Ten Pointer
Contributor
Cutrine Plus - $36.82 on Amazon. Comes in a gallon jug. I add half of it to a 2 gallon pump sprayer, then fill with water, and spray directly on the algae. Then mix remainder and do again. I have a 3 acre pond and was just seeing some show up around the edges and spayed this past Thursday. A gallon diluted like above will go around the 3 acre pond easily.

I just ordered another gallon and will spray again in mid/late April if I see more coming back. I have been doing this for a few years and it works great. Typically takes 2 gallons each year and I do not have any other trouble the rest of the summer.

It is safe for livestock.
 

sky hawk

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
Cutrine Plus is copper sulfate. That is what you want. It comes in a liquid or granular form. Either is diluted in a sprayer and sprayed directly onto actively growing algae. It doesn't have to be a specific temperature, but as with most herbicides/algicides, it needs to be actively growing.

I use the granules diluted in a backpack sprayer and treat on a warm, sunny day. Treat before the algae gets out of hand. You will use less product and will not suffer significant oxygen depletion. I am not aware of any restrictions for livestock or horses.
 

bigten

Twelve Pointer
Contributor
sky hawk, I hate to disagree, but refuse to use copper sulfate. It is a heavy metal, that will get the job done on a temporary basis, but settles to the bottom and is there forever. That would be my last choice. There are other materials that will work as well without the future effects.
 

darkthirty

Old Mossy Horns
Tilapia are about the best at controlling philamentous algae as anything I’ve ever seen or used. Not sure about NC laws and stocking them though.
 

41magnum

Ten Pointer
you could have some good advice so far
but, NOW could get a return on your taxes!
I've advised neighbors to get pond advice from their County Extension Service, and they were glad !!!.....for instance, most folks don't know to dig it deep at the uphill/end, to slow it filling in with sediment.

some even got financial help building their ponds.
 

Cootmeurer

Six Pointer
PondBoss Forums will have pages and pages dedicated to this topic alone. The moderators there are professional pond builders and managers and have forgotten more than most people will ever know.
 

Eric Revo

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
Try barley hay or barley hay extract to clear algae from your pond. It works great, fast and isn't a poison.
 

sky hawk

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
sky hawk, I hate to disagree, but refuse to use copper sulfate. It is a heavy metal, that will get the job done on a temporary basis, but settles to the bottom and is there forever. That would be my last choice. There are other materials that will work as well without the future effects.
There are other products that can work. However, copper sulfate and related products are effective, have been used for decades, and are probably still the most commonly used product for algae infestations. Cutrine Plus is a chelated product that uses a lower percentage of copper to reduce buildup. I suspect the negative effects of copper buildup have been overstated by companies selling expensive alternatives, but certainly if someone is concerned, they should do the research themselves. The next most common (non-copper) product used for treatment is probably GreenClean. Or Aquashade as a preventative. Every pond is different though. There are tradeoffs.

I will admit to being a non-alarmist. If a product works, is cost-effective, and is considered safe by our current overly-protective environmental agencies, I don't usually discount it as an option.
 

IE_88

Spike
My dad has a pond approximately 1/2 acre. He struggled with algae for along time. He used copper sulfate and some type of dye that turned water Blue. Both worked temporarily. A few years ago he purchased a few grass carp and hasn’t had a problem since.
 

Rubline

Eight Pointer
I put grass carp in our pond 8 years ago, we've continued to get algae on the pond but it hasn't been too bad.
This year it has shown up earlier than normal and I think it's due to all the rain we've had the past year.
I'm going to treat the pond this weekend with copper sulfate, the algae is spreading fast.
 

sky hawk

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
Grass carp are an effective biological means of control for many pond weeds. However, they are only marginally successful on controlling cotton algae (which is the most common fibrous type) and I don't see any effect on slime algae. Anytime there is a vegetation issue, that would be my first step. But understand that they often won't control algae completely. I have seen ponds where they did and some where they didn't.

There is really no downside to grass carp other than the initial cost, so I recommend all ponds have a few if they have vegetation problems.
 

darkthirty

Old Mossy Horns
Just from my personal experience, young grass carp (<5lbs) will eat damn near anything green and will eat all kinds of algae. Once they get larger, I’ve never seen grass carp eat algae. I never recommend grass carp as a remedy for algae. Also another problem with grass carp is once they get old, even though it’s pretty cool to see 6-8 40, 50 even 60 pound fish cruising the banks of your farm pond/lake, those big fish lose their effectiveness at controlling aquatic vegetation simply because they’re not eating as much. I tell people to add new grass carp every 6-8 years and get those big, old fish out and replace with more efficient 12”-18” yearlings.
I said it previously, but if stocked in April/May and it’s legal, tilapia will eat the hell out of algae. I’ve stocked them in several golf course ponds, and high end subdivision ponds with million dollar clubhouses that are wedding venues and the owners did not want blue or green water for the sake of wedding photos. They work extremely well IF they’re stocked at the correct rate and early enough in the year.
 

nccatfisher

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
Just from my personal experience, young grass carp (<5lbs) will eat damn near anything green and will eat all kinds of algae. Once they get larger, I’ve never seen grass carp eat algae. I never recommend grass carp as a remedy for algae. Also another problem with grass carp is once they get old, even though it’s pretty cool to see 6-8 40, 50 even 60 pound fish cruising the banks of your farm pond/lake, those big fish lose their effectiveness at controlling aquatic vegetation simply because they’re not eating as much. I tell people to add new grass carp every 6-8 years and get those big, old fish out and replace with more efficient 12”-18” yearlings.
I said it previously, but if stocked in April/May and it’s legal, tilapia will eat the hell out of algae. I’ve stocked them in several golf course ponds, and high end subdivision ponds with million dollar clubhouses that are wedding venues and the owners did not want blue or green water for the sake of wedding photos. They work extremely well IF they’re stocked at the correct rate and early enough in the year.
X2 young ones are great. Once they get big the most they want to do is gorge on fish food if you are supplementally feeding other fish.
 

Rubline

Eight Pointer
Thanks to those that mentioned the grass carp, the carp in our pond are huge, 20 lbs plus I think, it sounds like they are no longer effective.
 

sky hawk

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
They’ll get a lot bigger than 20 lbs, but their effectiveness does decrease with size.
 

darkthirty

Old Mossy Horns
X2 young ones are great. Once they get big the most they want to do is gorge on fish food if you are supplementally feeding other fish.
I had one guy who fed pellets in the winter and in the summer, he mowed around his pond and always blowed the grass clippings in the water as he mowed. He basically turned his grass carp into welfare moochers. Lol. They were cool to watch eating the grass clippings, he had a couple that were 50-60lbs but he’d conditioned them by feeding and grass clippings that they were useless as tits on a boar in terms of eating cattail shoots and that’s like candy to a grass carp but his rather take the handout. Lol
 

nccatfisher

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
Yep, fish food vacuum cleaners.
They are really fragile also. I have a few in my small pond and of course they have turned into moochers. I throw out fish food to draw the bream and then catch them for flathead bait. Using usually a very small bronze hook and worm. One sucked in a worm on my ultralight bream rig when I was catching bait last year and of course ran me all over the pond before I got him in. He was hooked right were he gill goes into his body and bleeding like a stuck hog. I have hooked numerous bass like that while catching bait and just cut the line and left the hook in and they were fine. That rascal was belly up the next day when I went down to feed them.
 

bigten

Twelve Pointer
Contributor
^, yep, I don't think they handle stress very well as they age. I periodically have to hook and pull out one when they start struggling. I know its dying when that happens, so I try to get em out as soon as i can. Still got 3 that are about useless any longer that I'm expecting to have to get any time.
 

nccatfisher

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
Yeah, I guess I am a fool but they have been around so long and I have kinda gotten attached to them. I hated to kill one of them that way. Kinda made me feel bad.
 

darkthirty

Old Mossy Horns
Yeah, I guess I am a fool but they have been around so long and I have kinda gotten attached to them. I hated to kill one of them that way. Kinda made me feel bad.
You’re not alone. Lol
Most of the time if I tell a landowner they need to get the big ones out, you’d think I’d called their momma a whore. Lol
I completely understand tho. I’d most likely be the same way.
 

nccatfisher

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
You’re not alone. Lol
Most of the time if I tell a landowner they need to get the big ones out, you’d think I’d called their momma a whore. Lol
I completely understand tho. I’d most likely be the same way.
LOL I have a small pond and know they need to be out. The last time I had some big boys in there and they got sorry I had a friend that had a big pond, (about 10 acres) he wanted them so I baited them up with fish food and thew the cast net over them and gave them to him.

I am pretty sure they have long since died, that was years ago and he told me when I got some more "moochers" he wanted them. I don't have but two left so it is time for me to get 3-4 small ones and get rid of the non productive ones.
 
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