Feed on

By now spring has arrived pretty much everywhere – except for my friends in the Northern states, Canada and the UP of my home state of Michigan.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind while getting your pond going for Spring.
1. Hopefully you kept your pump somewhere that it would not freeze and in a bucket of water to keep the seals moist. If not… do that next year. Before you hook up the pump, check it over, look for issues. Give the impeller a couple spins.
2. What about debris in your pond. Take a few moments and clean out any leaves sticks and anything dead in the skimmer – I always find interesting stuff in mine too. How is your pre filter, brushes and debris net?
3. Check your biological filter or aquafalls. Hopefully you kept your bio media wet. I keep my media bags and filter pads in the bottom of my pond near my aerator over winter. This keeps the bacteria healthy. If you didn’t do that – do it next year. It is always a good idea to wipe out any slime from your falls and filter. Gently clean the pads, don’t pressure wash them as it will rinse off the good bacteria and trash the pads. Do you need new pads? Put your filter back together.
4. Do you have a UV light? Look it over, make sure it is working. Remember the bulb is only good for 12 months even though it still lights up. Clean the quartz sleeve carefully, use vinegar and water. Keep the bulb dry.
5. I recommend doing a 25% water exchange. If you only have city water you may want to avoid this as you end up adding chlorine and needing to get that out. Make sure you set your water level back where it should be. Look around your stream, pond and aqua-falls. Do you see any moist spots where water is getting out of the pond? Now plug in the pump. Is water getting out anywhere? You may need to add some water now too.
6. Let it run for 24 hours before you bother testing the pH level. Make sure you keep cleaning the filter pad and debris net for the first few days (probably 2 times per day).
7. Time to check the water. There are many things you can check, but for simplicity make sure you check your pH. You want it between 6.8 and 8.2 – much better if it is around 7.2 in a safe range.
8. Don’t bother feeding your fish or adding bacteria or other treatments unless the water temp is 55F or higher. The only treatments that works well under 55F are pond dye, dechlorinator and pH adjusters. If your temp is above 55F by all means start your bacteria treatments. Double the first dosage of the year and keep on it every 2 – 3 weeks. If you use a algae treatment do that every 2 – 3 weeks as well,but alternate so you are doing that at a different time as your bacteria. Do your bacteria treatments in the morning once it is warm and sun is on the pond.
9. Feeding the fish – start slow, small amounts, make sure they eat it all and that all of the fish are eating. How do the fish look? Any issues?
10. Keep an eye on the fish, pH, water level and the debris net and filters until you know all is well.
11. Enjoy! Now go do some other chores :)

If we can be of any assistance give us a call.
Paul and Crissy

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