What Are the Benefits of Pond Aeration?
Most people look at a pond with an aerator (like a fountain or waterfall) and notice only the aesthetics. If you are the pond owner, however, you are also looking to see that the aeration system is working as it should.
Oxygen is the most critical component to the health of a body of water. Ponds receive about 80% of their dissolved oxygen from plant photosynthesis.
The rest comes from aeration, either naturally through wind and waves, or through installed aeration devices.
Pond aeration increases oxygen levels in a pond. It enhances the aesthetic beauty of a pond. It also strengthens the ecosystem under the pond’s surface.
Let’s see how many ways pond aeration benefits your pond.
What Pond Aeration Does
Aeration de-stratifies the water column. Ponds and lakes consist of stratified layers. Temperature and oxygen levels separate the layers. Pond stratification causes many environmental problems.
The purpose of pond aeration is to add to and stabilize the amount of dissolved oxygen throughout the water column. Doing so improves the pond’s health.
Pond Aeration Improves the Quality of the Water
An aerator improves water quality by circulating the water.This improve stabilizes pH balances. It also reduces alkalinity and removes excess carbon dioxide.
If your pond is deprived of oxygen, sediments at the bottom release gases and metals that compromise the water quality. Proper aeration releases many of those gases and metals at the oxygen-water interface.
In addition to improving the water quality, aeration also decreases the cost of pond treatments.
Aeration Reduces Pond Algae
Pond aeration works in three ways to reduce algae.
Reduces Algae Exposure to Sunlight
The aeration system disrupts the algae spores as it circulates the water. The system sends the spore to the bottom of the lake.
The algae spores mix as they move into deeper lake or pond areas. This reduces the algae’s exposure to sunlight. Reducing sun exposure limits algae growth.
Increased Concentrated Levels of Phosphorus (P)
Secondly, aeration increased the concentrated levels of Phosphorus. This lowers the chances of algae growth. Algae needs Phosphorus to grow.
Once Phosphorus enters a pond, you will have a difficult time trying to remove it. Pond aeration causes an oxidation reaction.
This, in turn, causes the phosphorus to bind with iron that is naturally there. Once this new form of Phosphorus is bound to the iron, it settles down into the sediments. It remains there and unavailable for plant and algae growth.
Maintains Proper Levels of Dissolved Oxygen
Finally, as long as the pond maintains good levels of dissolved oxygen, Phosphorus will remain at bay. More dissolved oxygen in the water also means less harmful blue-green algae and less noxious green algae.
Aids in Decomposing Unwanted Bacteria
Aeration circulates oxygen through the entire pond. The oxygen helps to decompose bacteria whether it’s floating on the surface or settled below at the bottom of the pond.
When the algae in the pond die off, bacteria move in to decompose the dead algae. The oxygen speeds up the decomposition process. The algae decompose more quickly and create fewer harmful byproducts.
Makes the Pond Inhospitable for Mosquitoes
Mosquitoes rely on stagnant water. Mosquitoes, like any other insect, have multiple life stages. One is the larval stage. During this stage, the mosquito larvae live in standing water.
They often rest on the surface tension on top of the pond water. Larvae hatch from eggs. And female mosquitoes can only lay eggs on calm water.
By adding pond aeration, you can eliminate the chances mosquitoes have of using your pond as a breeding ground.
Aerators agitate pond water. It keeps the water surface moving and disrupts the surface tension of the water. The surface is not inhospitable to eggs.
Breaking the surface tension also makes it difficult for larvae to remain on the surface and thrive.
Eliminates Pond Odor
We know that pond water stagnates due to stratification. When that happens, you smell a sulfur odor. The odor comes from bacteria at the bottom of the pond. The bacteria releases gas that then escapes into the air.
The pond’s surface receives oxygen, but the bottom layers do not. The bacteria depletes the oxygen below as it works on the decaying matter at the bottom.
When a pond doesn’t have the right circulation, the bacteria use enzymes to ferment and digest the decaying matter. This creates waste products such as carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulfide. These are the sources of the odor.
Weather changes disturb the stratified layers of water. The gas and oxygen-deprived water rise to the surface. It brings the rotten egg odor with it.
Pond aeration maintains circulation, thus giving the pond the oxygen it needs to manage the matter within it.
Enhances Fish Habitats
Pond aeration is essential to maintaining the health of fish in your pond.
In any pond, the water temperature is inconsistent. Some areas will be warmer, especially if parts of the pond receives more sun exposure than other parts during the day. Areas that don’t get exposure to sunlight or that are stagnant are colder.
An aerator distributes and evens out the temperature of the pond. The temperature is consistent throughout the pond.
Temperature consistency benefits any types of fish that do well in warmer water in warmer water.
Better Oxygen Quality for Fish
Also, fish need oxygen as does any living thing. Aeration guarantees that the fish in your pond are getting fresh oxygen.
Aeration also creates an escape for toxic gases that build up in the pond. Gases can either poison or suffocate the fish.
Ponds Are Complete Ecosystems
Your pond and surrounding banks is a complete, living ecosystem. There is a great deal happening under the surface at all times.
Choosing the correct aeration system for your pond depends on the conditions of the pond as a whole, from the surface to the muddy bottom. It’s worth your time to consult with a professional and discuss his or her recommendations.
If you have any questions about pond aeration, please contact us.