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As winter starts to hit you should reduce the amount of food you feed your fish to about 2 to 3 times a week, any more could result in uneaten food impacting the water quality. There are specialized foods that you can feed your fish as their dietary needs change through the winter months which are designed to stop fish having undigested food rotting away in their stomachs and reduce the amount of ammonia being excreted into your pond. There are a few things to do to protect your pond from pond plants but on the whole pond plants are very hardy.

Most pond plants will rest during the winter months and will start to loose their leaves as they stop growing. Any leaves that have been shredded should be removed from your pond before they sink to the bottom and decompose. If you have non hardy plants such as water hyacinths in your pond we would recommend removing them indoors to avoid frost damage. As your plants die back in the autumn you should prune back dead leaves and stems to prevent them decaying in the water over winter.

You can cut hardy plants such as waterlilies just above the base of the plant, any marginal plants can also be cut back if there is a risk that they could droop over into the water. Winter is a time when your pond is more prone to heron attacks because the plants that once protected the fish throughout the year are no longer there. A net over your pond not only stops leaves and debris from falling into it but also protects you fish from predators such as herons. You can also use a decoy to keep the herons away.

Terms and Conditions. Skip to content. With autumn now coming to an end your pond will start undergoing a significant change. Should I clean my pond for winter?


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Is it a good idea to cover my pond at winter time? Shallow lakes are probably the most likely candidates for winterkills. But deeper small lakes have experienced fish kills in the winter due to lack of oxygen. Many reservoirs were created by flooding land by placing some type of dam in a river system. Most of these types of lakes will have a higher than normal amount of decaying vegetation on the bottom because they are essentially flooded lowland.

They also are typically quite shallow. Heavy ice and snow cover do not allow sunlight to penetrate which means there will be no photosynthetic activity to produce oxygen. So instead, oxygen is consumed as plants die off and carbon dioxide is produced.

Pond in winter

An open area as small as a few percent of the overall water surface is typically sufficient to prevent a winterkill. Keep in mind that the saturation level for oxygen in water is temperature dependent and that colder water holds more oxygen.


  1. Feeding pond fish.
  2. Tips for pond maintenance in the winter.
  3. Farm Pond Maintenance to Prevent Winterkill?
  4. Because fish are cold-blooded, their metabolism is slowed down in winter, so only a small amount of oxygen is required in the winter months to satisfy the oxygen demands for fish. The rest of the oxygen demand comes from plants and decomposing organic material.

    De-icing equipment can also be used to allow for wet storage of docks and boats in the winter months. These units operate by directing the flow of warmer water from the bottom to the surface to keep areas ice free. Keeping an area ice free in your lake also acts as a refuge for water fowl. Pushing water from the deeper part of the lake back towards shore can keep the shoreline open for livestock if so desired.

    Former Inhabitants; and Winter Visitors, Winter Animals, and The Pond in Winter

    Each body of water must be looked at closely to determine which method of de-icing is most appropriate. Your email address will not be published. Farm Pond Maintenance to Prevent Winterkill. Keep in mind that some structure is necessary for shelter to keep small fish away from predators.

    Pond in winter Heissner

    Chemically treating lakes with herbicides is typically a short term solution and does not get rid of the nutrients that are the reason the plants are there in the first place. Keep runoff from flowing into the pond by creating berms around the entire perimeter. Shallow ponds allow for more shallow vegetation to grow, which can die off in the winter months.

    Whenever there is an accumulation of snow greater than four inches or so, shovel or plow as much as you can off the ice. Make sure that you have a properly working septic system or if you are using an old outhouse, that the bottom of the pit is not close to the water level build it up if you have to. Refrain from using soap if you bathe in your lake. When removing dead vegetation, be careful not to inadvertently remove floating pond plants that will grow again next spring.

    Benefits of Pump in Winter

    Move or remove plants. Move hardy plants to deeper water, at least 18 inches If the pond freezes entirely, remove these plants and store them indoors for the winter.

    Benefits of No Pump in Winter

    Clean the pond filter. Moving the filter close to the surface of the pond so that the air bubbles breaking the surface of the water may prevent the pond from freezing completely. Alternatively, remove and store the pond filter indoors for the winter. Vacuum the pond.

    Should You Keep Your Pond Pump Running in Winter?

    Once the plants that need to be moved have been, vacuum the pond to clear out dead plants and other debris in order to prevent toxic gases from being produced that can be lethal to fish. Feed fish less. If your pond contains fish, reduce the amount of food you feed the fish as the temperature gets colder. Stop feeding the fish completely when the temperature drops below 50F 10C to keep the fish from creating more waste products that the remaining plants can process.

    Since the fish will be in semi-hibernation, there should be enough nutrients in the pond for them to survive the winter. Cover the pond. Keep the pond clean from falling leaves and branches by covering it with a screen for the winter. This will also make pond preparation in the spring much easier.

    Shade cloth, netting, and landscape fabric work well. Be sure to secure the screen around all edges of the pond. I would suggest emptying it so it doesn't freeze over, but you can leave it full. Yes No.