How to Build a Pond For Happy Fish

For people who love having fish as pets, there’s nothing better than getting a new fish or two for the tank. If you have a koi fish pond, those new fish will be very large and can be extremely expensive. For a small, indoor fish tank, the fish can be virtually any size. Many stores today have freshwater fish supplies, and big-box pet stores will have a large selection of them. The nearest fish pet store may have a lot as well if it specializes in fish.

To find the widest supply possible, you often have to go online. Some of these online stores have online pet fish delivery so that you can have your fish sent to you. This of course takes a lot of specialty packaging to make sure that the fish arrive alive. What kind of fish is the best for you? It’s important to think about the other fish that you have in your tank and make sure that a new fish will go well with them. Aggressive fish shouldn’t be put into a tank with community fish. Community fish types are generally all good to put in with each other and will be safe from being attacked.

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Whether you have an existing body of water on your property or are looking to build a fishing habitat, you likely know that you can’t simply release different species of fish into the water and expect them to thrive. Instead, fish need either natural or artificial fish habitat structures that support their need to eat, seek shelter and more. But what do fish really want? Follow these tips to learn how to build a pond for happy fish on your land.

Start From the Beginning
To build a pond that will allow fish to thrive, you should first consider where you plan to start digging. A good rule of thumb is that a pond should have at least 15 acres of land draining into the body of water: any less and the water won’t get the nutrients it needs, while significantly more will reduce the life of the pond through excessive sedimentation. Additionally, watersheds in forested areas may mean that the pond needs fertilizers. The best way to navigate these concerns is to contact your local office of the Natural Resources Conservation Services (NRCS) to discuss the soil and other qualities of your area.

Stock Your Pond Correctly
A healthy balance of mutually beneficial species is a sign of a successful pond. However, many property owners learning how to build a pond for happy fish often overstock with too many fish or even too many different species. Pond owners should first let their body of water age over the summer to develop populations of crustaceans, insects, and other forage species, before contacting their state’s Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. For a fee, this agency will be able to provide the correct number and combination of different young fish that can thrive together. Do not try to stock your pond with minnows taken from local creeks and rivers, as this can introduce diseases and parasites.

Add Proper Cover
Fish need cover to be used as shelter and a source of food. For this reason, pond owners are encouraged to allow aquatic vegetation to grow in the pond as a source of oxygen, but this may not provide the necessary amount of coverage. Because of this, a number of wildlife organizations have started using fish attractors in lakes and saltwater areas to help promote a healthy environment. These fish structures help draw forage species and provide protection, making them extremely useful to fisherman, who can take advantage of the fish attractors’ appeal to catch sportfish. Fish attractors can be used in private waters at the owner’s discretion. Experts recommend placing one every 50 to 100 feet.

Maintain Your Pond
Pond owners should work to prevent leaks and promote good water quality by paying close attention to the pond itself and the areas around it. This can mean repairs, the addition of lime and other fertilizers, and other tasks. In some cases, your pond may even become overstocked and you may need to kill off some of the population. Before you make any drastic decisions, however, it is recommended that you contact you local Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources to prevent serious damage to your pond.

Figuring out how to build a pond for happy fish can be quite a challenge. However, by making smart choices and using your resources, you can soon have the perfect pond for fishing and simple enjoyment. Start planning out the perfect location for your pond today!

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