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Old 28-11-2009, 03:01 AM posted to rec.ponds.moderated
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Default What's up with the duckweed?

I'm glad someone asked. There is a picture at:

http://i181.photobucket.com/albums/x...s/IMGP0990.jpg

The clear area the aerator has made has gotten slowly bigger. For
those of you who may have tuned in late, this pond used to be entirely
covered in duckweed. The pond forms the headwater for a creek that
flows into the Suwannee River in northern Florida, so I am reluctant
to use means other than mechanical (that leaves out any kind of
herbicide) to control the duckweed. Besides, I've got friends that
swim underground around here.

The pond sort of looks like if you rested the state of New Hampshire
on its side. The eastern edge (where it meets Maine) is kinda like
the southern edge of my pond, where I have my cabin. The western edge
is pretty much like the northern bank on the pond. The southern fat
part of New Hampshire is kinda like the west side of...(OK, OK, I'll
quit flogging this image).

Anyway, the northern bank of the pond is not actually the end. I've
spent hours in the cabin gazing at the other side and thought I could
see (duckweed covered) water through the leaves. I launched my
sit-on-top kayak into the pond, paddled to the far side, and I could
see that the northern bank of the pond was really a peninsula that
almost cut a much bigger pond in two. There is a narrow channel of
water (I couldn't get my kayak through) that connects the two.

Over the next several days I made landfall at a spot in the upper left
of the picture. It's not easy to find a spot to paddle close to
shore, and harder still to find a place where I can get out of the
kayak. (I'm a bit of a gimp, and not nearly as graceful getting out
of boats as I once was.) Unfortunately, the landing was west of the
waterway heading into the "pond beyond the pond," and I could only go
about ten feet before running into impenetrable jungle. Still, I was
able to see where the creek flows out of the pond (something I had
never found before) and I found another spot, farther east, that will
serve as a landing spot (with a bit of work). I may well get to the
"pond beyond the pond" this weekend. I'll be sure to crow about it
and post pictures when I do.

Like I say, I've spent hours watching the pond now and I've watched
the turtles eat duckweed lots of times. There is at least one (I'm
not real good at distinguishing between individual turtles, "they all
look alike to me") that likes to swim around the edge of the clear
water where the aerator has bunched it up. Others swim along below
the surface, poke their heads up, open their mouths, scoop in the
duckweed, and then disappear below the surface again. The problem
is, while turtles do indeed eat duckweed, they just don't eat much of
it. Turtles can be incredibly motionless, and when they do move, it
isn't exactly at the speed of light. I would guess that a single
mouthful of duckweed might power a turtle for an entire day, if not a
whole week!

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention it is bitterly cold here. It is all too
easy to forget, being all warm and toasty in this cabin, but I'll bet
it doesn't even reach the sixties today.
..


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Old 28-11-2009, 05:55 PM posted to rec.ponds.moderated
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Default What's up with the duckweed?

I would guess that a single
mouthful of duckweed might power a turtle for an entire day, if not a
whole week!

I think you've got something there!

kathy :-)

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Old 29-11-2009, 03:52 AM posted to rec.ponds.moderated
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Default What's up with the duckweed?

Great progress, Galen. How big do you think the waves will make it?
Remember, a grass carp would clean it out totally.

Jim

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Old 29-11-2009, 07:24 PM posted to rec.ponds.moderated
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Default What's up with the duckweed?

On Sat, 28 Nov 2009 22:52:11 EST, Phyllis and Jim
wrote:

Great progress, Galen. How big do you think the waves will make it?
Remember, a grass carp would clean it out totally.


I make no predictions about the waves, but will a single fish handle
that? I've been thinking all along about a truckload or a major
operation to "stock" the pond. But if a single fish or evev a small
bucket load...well...that sort of changes things. Btw, I haven't seen
the otter for over a month now, so I'm feeling better about putting
fish in.
..

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Old 30-11-2009, 12:50 AM posted to rec.ponds.moderated
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Default What's up with the duckweed?



I think one will do it. You could check with your county agent...or,
if you could let me know the size, I could check here. I have two in
an acre pond and they keep it clear of greenery. They are sterile and
eat everything green.

Jim



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Old 30-11-2009, 01:17 PM posted to rec.ponds.moderated
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Default What's up with the duckweed?

I was just thinking about your pond beyond the pond. Could a carp
just swim away to the stream? Is the stream inviting/ If so, you
might lose it to better feeding grounds. They grow prodigiously.
Ours moved from 8' to 2.5' in a year and will level out at 3-4 ft.
Max eating is during growth, but they do fine regardless. i suspect
that if your pond exit is mall and the carp gets big, it will prefer
your pond to a stream. I am sure your county agent will have an
opinion about the duckweed and the grass carp.

Jim

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Old 01-12-2009, 10:19 PM posted to rec.ponds.moderated
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Default What's up with the duckweed?

On Mon, 30 Nov 2009 08:17:26 EST, Phyllis and Jim
wrote:

I was just thinking about your pond beyond the pond. Could a carp
just swim away to the stream? Is the stream inviting/ If so, you
might lose it to better feeding grounds. They grow prodigiously.
Ours moved from 8' to 2.5' in a year and will level out at 3-4 ft.
Max eating is during growth, but they do fine regardless. i suspect
that if your pond exit is mall and the carp gets big, it will prefer
your pond to a stream. I am sure your county agent will have an
opinion about the duckweed and the grass carp.


Having been over there now, I can say that during high water fish of
just about any size could make it through. However, we got less than
...9 inches (.88 to be exact) of rain last month, and it has been
anything *but* high water for the last few years, so right now the
pond exit is tiny. I think there might have been fish in the past,
but they all eventually went downstream. It's more exciting to tell
people that an alligator (which I have had in the pond) ate them.
..



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