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Thread: Pond construction begins

  1. #61
    Oyagoi koifishgirl's Avatar
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    Jan 2005
    No problem about high jacking my thread as I have a lot to learn, reading about experiences from you guys helps.

    Steve the four inch pipes are to deep in the ground so I will be putting a elbow on the pipes and putting a cap on the pipes to use later if need be. I want to try and keep water from one pond out of the other so if I do something wrong in one pond I wont mess up all my ponds.. Since I am still in the very early stages of learning and you guys have helped me with what needes to be done. I am looking back over the thread and re reading the the post so I make sure I do this right. I dont want to have to go back and redo. I am going to put a one inch pipe running from my well down the length of the four ponds and tee off with on inch pipe to each pond and am going to put a cut off to each pond. I have thought about doing this though and tell me what you think. I am thinking about putting a elbow on the water inlet pipe and run the pipe up about three feet and another elbow to get a good splash on the surface so I can get a little more air into my ponds. Since I cant move this once in place I am hopeing that it will not be in my way of working the ponds.

    Maurice, I was wondering in a greenhouse like that it get very hot, how to do keep the water from overheating? Do you use the fans in the greenhouse like my father did in the plant nursery? Even will the fans going it still got pretty hot. My father was something else when it came to cooling off a greenhouse. He would buy gallons of white paint and water it down and throw it on top of the greenhouse to cool it down a bit, he still had the light coming in, it just was not as heavy, this worked kind of like shade cloth it was just cheaper.

  2. #62
    Tategoi Maurice's Avatar
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    Dec 2003
    Somerset, England. (land of the country bumpkin)
    Bubbles from an airstone or diffuser transfer very little air into the water on their way up. Aeration is all about increasing the water SURFACE area. Bring the bottom water to the top, bring the bottom water to the top and you are increasing the SURFACE area hugely. It'll all about the interface of water surface and air.

    Rest assured, the open pipe method of aerating a pond works great and you are not loosing air capacity by running your airblows at a positive back pressure with airstones . Waisted energy and short lived equipment costs money.


  3. #63
    Tategoi ranskye's Avatar
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    Feb 2005
    a few things here kfg, do what steve said and use a 90 degree elbow, it dont matter how deep the pipes are in the ground. the deeper the better anyway cause that allows you to use even less pumping.you get real control over water heights this way. if theyre down deep and can drain to waste as well you are laughing. show us a pic.

    im wondering which side you have the pipes through the wall.. whether they are on the long side between ponds- so if you drained the water it just goes into the next pond or are they positioned down the short harvest end where you can drain it to waste?
    both wouldnt of hurt for better control of water. but im hoping atleast youve put one in the ditch short end.
    if not drill or dig one in or run a bendy pipe through the top of the bank with valve at base of ditch and a brick holding the other end in the pond under, and leave it primed..how? put a pump on the end for a minute and then shut it off once its siphoning. then its a drain tap.
    even if its just two inches diameter.

    anyway if your 4 inch is only linking ponds then also defintaley have the ability to overflow the top of your pond to waste, it might be that two ponds side by side cant take anymore water in times of flooding..a simple open pipe at desired height will do you.

    either way though, on the four inch deep pipes, use the ninety elbow and enough pipe (3 and a half foot?)
    inserted into that elbow to go up higher than water surface level and just below pond wall height, then push it down a bit lower..leave it higher than water level still (operating level governed by the horizontal waste overflow) if your worried about sectioning off disease concerns from next pond. you can leave it tilted on any angle to get your running height, tilt over lower to drain out..

    i think you should read up some stuff on disease.
    i think your ponds are linked.. so what are you gonna do about disease transfer between ponds anyway?? think alternatively.
    DONT panic.
    look at it from another direction, i suggest if you look at it from another direction youll get less disease than thinking disease is looming and just waiting for you to flow water from one pond to the other..
    a while ago i mentioned that a farming system that flows all the way through is no good, i meant that more for bloom and pond succession control, itd be ok for bigger fish but you need to exercise some management control over some ponds. the more you control easily the better

    quarrantine all your incoming fish and dont over do anything to start with.
    dont overfeed dont overstock dont overfertilize dont under air. if no air.. understock till you can buy air. as for stocking rates.. try ask your local boys.

    thats more important a call.
    if you get disease your not just gonna stop it by avoiding water transfer..hangon how can i put this.. dont just try stop disease by stopping water transfer between ponds. not that you want to flow constant but you will want to transfer sometimes.

    stop disease by understanding how it occurs and try not let it occur..if it occurs or likely to occur then dont transfer.

    believe me, sometimes you could take a disease pond water and throw twenty litres into a non diseased pond and it wont infect that pond.. cause your treating it right in other ways. depending on the nature of the disease.
    so for some diseases however this might be a real bad idea and people are gunna freak for me giving you such a theory..that type of thing is the exception and not the normal..its not like your farm is totally ruined once disease is there. its not a fibreglass tank that can get cleaned and dried easy.
    youve got a lot of ponds and its near impossible to clean or sterilize them all at once withought sending out your stock somehwere else.
    you just do what you can and understand the processes.

    ussually people will jump straight to a drastic chemical cure as first resort not the last..try take away the cause..sometimes you may take away cause with a chemical but as long as you rememebr the original cause youve done well to avoid needing it next time.
    ive seen one farmer that uses a nasty chemical as part of the production cycle but thats kinda missing the point really. i dont think we need to push it way into the unatural when we can do well on a famr of good size with pretty good management and very well with excellent management.

    I reckon youll find if you remove it from your broodfish and look after stocking and feeding rates and water q. your doing it right. keep an eye out, know your fish. know your water and know when your pushing the envelope.

    its very hard to stop water from one pond going into the next under normal farming operations even without them linked.
    sometimes youll practise seeding, sometimes youll want to drop water to the next to run fish into it without the fillup time and settlement time..
    if theyre linked your working around that now and approach it right and itll be ok.

    diesease can get around on nets, via buckets, it takes a very pedantic person, to avoid that type of contamination.. that shouldnt be the word we are using here though.


    the thing you want to avoid are the parasite ones from the start.
    argulas, worms.. that sort of thing.
    others that develop from overfeeding crowding etc are avoidable mostly.if you see this develop stop any water flow or should i say transfer between ponds and work out what you did wrong then treat it.

    remmebr i mentioned wanting the ability to drain all water out to waste or effluent and complete dry? thats so you can kill a disease pond, quick and start again..
    i think that why our fisheries make it like this for an all control approach but whos got bucks for that.

    but back to your pipes..
    so this set up would be called a standpipe, you can have the elbow in the pond or outside the wall near a drain ditch. if you want to lower the level you simply lay it over to the height you want, screen the top with fine mesh.
    im wondering also about the one inch pipe from well, is that because you have small pump only, i cant remmeber the capacity.. if its a decent pump, try upsize the pipe run. you want to run it into a corner away from ripping up your wall though. somewhere out and away of the harvest entry point. you can only get so much aeration here, its mainly to fill your pond ok. best to have it most efficent at filling the pond. the pipe run into the ground at lowest height possible IE just abouve any water level you wish to fill to and the least elbows and restrictions..
    check out pumping losses.. ie, pumping head hieght, suction head height, elbows, tees, lenghts of run, pipe diameter.. all those things. read up.

    it might seem strange but if youve got a small pump, they dont like running long distances and heights..pump it up and into a larger diameter that acts more of a distribution channel than anything else. imagine an open channel that distributes water with no restrictions..then again maybe you dont have cheap pipe available. 16 ponds and a little pump and a lot of fills and all the restricitons will add up.
    it may be best for you to locate a second hand pump later to do the job right once your producing some bucks and using more ponds.

    i gotta bail for a while. good farming.

  4. #64
    Oyagoi koifishgirl's Avatar
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    Jan 2005
    ranskye, The four inch pipes where put in so I could have water running from one pond to the other. fill one pond then the next then the next and so on, but since I have thought about problems with pond contamination I have decieded to put a cap on the pipes and run the one inch pipes to fill each pond, this way I can treat each pond seperate. Well let me say this it, was brought to my attention by you guys in early posts. Also Randy the pond guy said to do as you guys have told me. I really think I waisted my money putting in the pipes from one pond to the other.

    My drain pond will be the lowest pond and I will use the shipon methed to move the water to this pond, he built the ponds so he could if he needed come back and drain the ponds and clean them out for me later. I can also use this method when draining and cleaning and prepairing my ponds.

    The reason I am putting in one inch pipe is this is all my pump should be able to handle. I think what I have is what you would use for household purposes so I will have to upgrade later with a larger pump, and holding tank.

    As for the drainage ditch I have not had that built yet, it will be the end of summer before I do this, when I have next three ponds built. I will only have a total of 7 ponds then and then the up coming spring I will need the drainage ditch.

    Take a look at my early pics the second set that I posted, you will see that the 4 inch pipes link each pond and they are about 1 foot under the surface, I dont see where these pipes will do me any good. I may be wrong but I think I should cap them. My only concern now is how I am going to get a constant supply of air to each pond without running me a arm and a leg in cost. If I put a blower in each pond your talking about 25 dollars a month per pond, that would be 100 dollars and month for four pond 200 for eight and 300 for 12 ponds and the 400 for 16 ponds. What do you think? I mean 100 dollars a month to start up to 400 dollar at the final stage. Will the farm make enough money to be effecient. Whos to say, I think it will but I was trying to find a way cheaper than this but I can after you guys have brought this to my attention that I need to spend a little extra money on cost to keep the end cost down. Pay a little more for certain things and in the long run will be cheaper, what i mean is the cost of buying chemical to fix all my ponds plus the other cost could run me into more money than I should be spending because I wanted to go a cheap route.

  5. #65
    Tategoi Maurice's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Somerset, England. (land of the country bumpkin)
    KFG, sorry to say but if you are scrimping of cash now, while only just having your ponds dug, you should have cut back on the number.

    Better to have one pond with a couple of air pump suppling air than a handful and no money to run a blower. Better to end up with one crop than none at all.

    I feel your 1 inch supply will stuggle to fill one pond, I'm not sure how it will do with filling all and making up for leakage as the others fill.

    How many gallon an hour does your pump produce?
    Sorry for being so real.

  6. #66
    Tategoi ranskye's Avatar
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    Feb 2005
    hey i was sposed to be on a break!!!!ha.

    yeah maurice is right about that but i think you realise your stumbling through it as you go..i remember thinking sheez what? youve got the machinery in already????????????

    i thought id told you that your better paying for one dug pond with air than two without! sometimes it seems that half of what ive told you has gone to waste
    anyway well still, not all is lost.

    i assume you havent got the funds to cover such power bills and new machinery..if i was totally confident in the local fishy economics, your ability and markets then id say get a loan.. but i know nothing of it around there. so i cant say how viable it would be.

    so that you dont ever go hungry, get some rabbits too and shoot some birds that try and eat your fish. dont let them go to waste. if youve got no money for the right things, you can save in someplaces.
    what you might do is tackle the farm slowly, building up numbers and market and experience. its not like your totally green to it. a three year plan is better than getting yourself worrying. i think you did mention you would have a five year plan so dont rush anymore into things without knowing whats best.

    you can most likely follow a formula and do ok and not go broke right away.
    for example you can stock at half stockings and keep a day job and do an hour in the morning and 2 in the arvo till harvests. id suggest you may need to do this into the second winter and have a more certain chance at becoming viable after the fist few crops of the next season or the one after that even.
    so dont throw in the day job just yet, i wouldnt suggest anyone do that unless theyve been around for five years..watching and analysing..unless they
    know what theyre doing exactly and still have the financial backing to take them there..
    remember winter time is easy enough to go broke if your just hoping to finance of the farm product. cold is no growth and no breedings. so you must one day make enough in summer to keep sales going strong all year or make plenty enough in summer. i like constant cash flows better.
    heres what you do, if you cant spend on equipment and running..
    have one running with air, one without or two running with some split air and the third without. itll show you the differences.
    those two stocked up at 3/4 what the other farmers are doing and the other at half of that. dont get it wrong all together, you can do ok with no aeration.. you just need way more work and ponds. thats why i said just build a bank of big ponds and not 16 little ones. 16 seperate holes in the ground sucks.

    dont skimp on fertilisers or liming, but dont overdo the fertilising. dont over feed either. thisll avoid total crashes and reduce o2 useage.
    see why air is so good?

    you need to choose a line that will keep your fish alive and growing fast other than trying to get far too many and ahve them die off.

    i was concerenbd youd put those 4 inchers in the wrong wall, i think that was cause you settled against the effluent pond and just wanted more surface area..though those 4 inch pipes arent a complete waste, better if they didnt just go one foot deep into the side too, but anyway you will use them one day. elbow em up and run overflows or cap if you can fill cheaply, doesnt it rain there??? that might save you a hundered or so bucks but as you can see itys not reliable or something to count on when farming.

    you treat each pond seperatley yes, i remember you saying you would recirc the whole lot...fine for growouts only. not for fry ponds and full control over dates and blooms.
    who knows you might have them all as grow outs later.
    but that doesnt mean you cant use gravity to help you now, least your having a go and got something.

  7. #67
    Oyagoi bekko's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by bekko
    pond 12 ft x 50 ft = 0.014 acre
    0.014 acre x 16 ponds = 0.22 acres total water surface

    Anticipate the maximum feeding rate to be 50 lbs/acre/day
    50 lb/acre/day x 0.22 acres = 11 lbs/day of feed.

    You will want to budget 1 lb of supplemental oxygen per lb of feed.
    11 lbs feed/day x 1 lb oxygen/lb feed = 11 lb supplemental oxygen/day

    Oxygen transfer efficiency in shallow ponds from bubble diffusers is only about 0.5% at a ambient oxygen concentration of 3-5 ppm.
    11 lbs oxygen/day divided by 0.5% = 2200 lbs/day oxygen passing through bubble diffusers.

    At 1 lb of oxygen per 60 cubic feet of air, you need
    2200 x 60 = 132,000 cu.ft of air per day
    This is equal to 92 cu.ft/min or 92 cfm.

    Using the Sweetwater brand of regenerative air blowers, you would need a 1.5 hp unit to deliver 92 cfm at a depth of 3 feet. But, rather than buy a 1.5 hp unit initially, I think you should get a 0.5 hp unit the first year, add a 1.0 hp unit the second year, and another 1.0 hp unit the third year. You will not need to run them all at the same time, but you do need back-up equipment for this critical component of the operation.

    The 0.5 hp unit draws 471 watts (0.471 kw). Running 24/7 for 10 months of the year, the electricity use will be
    0.471 kw x 24 hr/day x 300 days x $0.08/kwh = $271/year
    Triple that ($831/yr) at full capacity when running 1.5 hp of aeration.

    Well Water:
    Most people would run a water line from the well head along the line of ponds with a tee and valve at the deep end of each pond. You will want the water supply to be at the deep end so it is available at harvest. That is probably a 1.5 PVC pipe. Tell me about the well pump and maximum water output?

    Pond-to-Pond Transfers:
    I would suggest you run a second 1.5 inch water line alongside the first - again with a tee and valve at each pond. This line will not be connected to the well pump. If you want to transfer water between ponds, throw a submersible pump into the pond you want to pump from and connect it to the PVC pipe with a length of flex swimming pool hose. Open the valve on the pond you are pumping from and the pond you are pumping to and plug in the pump (on a GFI circuit of course). This will let you move zooplankton from one of the last ponds in the row to one of the first ponds in the row without fussing with yards of hose.

    I am not sure of the advantage of having pipes joining adjacent ponds. Most people would put a 4 inch line through the berm at the deep end of each pond. Inside each pond, the 4 inch pipe would have an elbow and a vertical standpipe with a screen which extends up to the water surface. On the outside of the pond, each of these drain lines would connect to a tee and all the tees would be connected to a manifold. If you tilt the standpipes at the elbow in the pond you are pumping from and the pond you are pumping to, water will flow by gravity from one back to the other.

    -steve hopkins
    KFG, you either mis-understood or came up with the pipe between ajoining ponds on your own. I think what we suggested was that you run a drain pipe through the end of each pond and manifold them together. There would be a riser pipe in each pond to control which pond is feeding water to the manifold. The manifold would terminate at the sump or effluent pond or could be closed off with another riser. We also discussed being able to pump water from a pond with heavy zooplankton to a pond with newly-hatched fry. The drain pipes and manifold described above could be used to return water from the fry pond to the zooplankton pond without using a siphon - even if the two ponds in question were at opposite ends of the row.

    Use at least 1-1/2 inch pipe for the inlet line from the pump. You will need the larger size eventually, if not immediately.

    You can get by with a half-horse air blower to aerate all your new ponds. Electrical cost is about $271/year.


  8. #68
    Tategoi ranskye's Avatar
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    Feb 2005
    im pretty sure that pipe through the sides of the pond came about early on when she decided she couldnt afford the ditch or outside pipework, i spose its a bit hard to understand what we were talking about without pics if youve never seen a farm.

    i have used such pond joining pipes like kfgs between ponds to move water from a big rain catchment through topping up the first second third fourth and fifth.
    though these were just on ponds with growing yabbies, certainly you cannot beat a pump feed to each pond from your well, it was a cheap way of moving water round a dodgily set up farm. i hated that farm when it came to filling ponds, no pipework no decent pumps. i think kfg can get a cheap second hand pump thatll work for a longwhile, ive used one twenty years old and its fine.an old sewerage pump.

    that idea of steves with the manifold and one lenght of pipe linking them at sump level is a really really good idea, ive never seen that in operation but itd work so well, it kills a coupla birds with one stone. id seriouslyt look into that one later when there was some cash flow.
    if the ponds are lined up well you can excavate a trench and put pipework in later but it wouldve cost way less to do it early as the walls went up.
    it might cost a thousand bucks in pipes alone so im guessing thats why you went the other quick way. id say about 3 grand and youve got everything you need.

    i think what steves saying is have a run of pipe at sump level (or just below)run it all the way along the outside of the ponds. (that pipe feeds to a harvest box area on outside of ponds in a suitable access spot).
    each pond on the inside has its own standpipe hooked to a t off that pipeline..that can be tilted on its elbow collar, if all ponds have a standpipe in place you can tilt one over to fill another pond, likewise you can pump from the well into one end of that pipework,your filling pond would have its standpipe lowered and it will fill that pond for you. heck thats a good idea. its one pipework for real easy harvesting, water exchanges, effluent water to waste, seeding, filling from well, saving water, recycling..
    thats me on the next farm. maybe even 8 inch pipe, i spose in harvesting time you could run fresh or fresher water into the sump and or pipes to flush em through the line to the harvest box.

  9. #69
    Oyagoi koifishgirl's Avatar
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    Jan 2005
    Steve, I knew I would end up doing something wrong before it was over with, Its hard to understand somethings when I dont know a thing about mud pond construction. The 4 inch pipe construction is what a local farmer told me to do as this is how he gets air in all his ponds, He has a sweetwater air blower that he uses to get air to all his ponds and he uses a sweetwater air blower for seven ponds. So that is why I had the pipes put in that way. Since reading about disease I am going to cap off the pipes and take a different route. I can use the pipes to transfer water in good conditon to other fry ponds if need be but I would still have to use a pump, so like you said I can buy a long hose and transfer that way. I must be lost some where, I thought i was going about it right by not transfering water form one pond to the other to help control my ponds, if I use the 4 inch pipes that are in the grownd and I mess up one pond wont it mess up all of them.

    Ranskye, I am not worred about being able to pay electric bills, I just dont want to do something wrong and it end up costing me more than it should. I am going to do what steve has suggested and get a half hourse power pump to start out with and then upgrade. I realize that I wont be make large amount of money at the start

  10. #70
    Tategoi ranskye's Avatar
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    Feb 2005
    ok kfg, thats cool, i thought you were worrying about bankrupting yourself, an earator will ease your mind for sure, itll pay you back 5 times.

    id defintaly leave em there in the wall. as you go along youll add a heap of things that allow you to exercise better control. it might be that you hardly use them but one day youll be glad theyre there, one day it will suite you to fill a pond with water from next door pond. no great advantage now but later..

    it may be that the other farmer runs all ponds at the same time, i mean if you harvested the middle one your connection would be lost. its not something id do as a running system but a helpful tool to use sometimes.

    whatever reason he does it, it probably works for what he does.
    i think exchange of information between farms keeps things getting better. its allways good to hear what others are doing and what its getting them.
    some people tend to lock emselves off and do lots of things the hard way.

    the thing youll find in aquaculture is everyone has different experiences and ways of tackling a problem and everyone thinks their idea is best, until they see or develop better. some will swear on one thing and others will swear against it. find what works for you. keep exploring what is going on and can be acheived. remember all farms are different.
    a farm should suit your outcome.
    if you know nothing much then everything is like.. oh i never wouldve known that.. i never thought of that..what was that word again??
    already on this site since you began the project you wouldve come somewhere.

    im not the one to give you the best advice in the world but ive worked on a few different farms and i like what i like and id rather hear your doing things easier than harder.

    i like to keep a pond seperate in its own water, i like to run em at different ages to suit markets, i like to harvest easily and fill quickly, drain quickly. dry quickly.
    also somtimes i like to pump some water from one pond to another..sometimes.

    youve made me want to start a farm from scratch and do it the rightest way i know to help make life easier. i dont have that much cash though even though it would pay me back a whole heap and make farming life so much easier.

    keep plodding along and keep an ear out for what everyone has to say and think about its purpose on your farm and how it fits in with what you want to do and what you can manage.
    if your farm gets disease it wont be becaue you linked the water or sent some disease to another pond. think prevention yes, thats a secondary prevention measure, block em off once your full anyway. i think you still dont get what steve means about the pipes, maybe ive got it wrong.
    it does allow you to stop water flows when you want. which will be most of the time..
    if you get disease and you must do something. youll get it all under control once you have a feel for what happens in a pond.
    really if you watch your fish and the water you shouldnt even get it.
    that why id suggest you check on others peoples stockings.. serious farmers stcokings and feedings would be overboard for you just now.
    thats why im suggesting to pull back from their rates.so you dont get dissapointed right away.

    get a cheap test kit and monitor your crops water. plot it on a graph, when you see it go out of range youll notice the fish go weak within a few days.
    youll see em go off thge food. spin, flash behave differently!! in some way before they have it set in fully. thats when you do something about it.
    then after you know that sign, the trick is to try and avoid it going out of their range. stop the over feeding. do water changes .. that type of thing.
    check your air, ph, temperature, alkalinity. ammonia. plot them all and youll get a real understanding quite fast.
    ive noticed disease to hit around week 6 to 8 for me, only earlier if stocking and feeding was ridiculously high. that disease was stopped with air and better watching of feedings. i know in that case it wouldnt infect another pond unless the other pond was overfed or highly stocked.
    however diregard what i say here on this and manage them on an individual basis, that will tell you exactly whats going on.
    dont be afraid to look up info on fertiliser rates and all that type of info that steve pulls out of his bag of tricks. i think if you practise half of the stuff youve learnt on this site youll do quite well.

    so now go get crackin on the first crops.

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