Basic Koi Care

Keeping pond Algae under control

Pond Algae

The Causes and Controls

A real problem for many koi fish pond keepers is Algae and how to keep algae under control. You wake up one morning and there it is, a real “pain in the neck” that can give you headaches for months if it’s not kept under control.

So what is algae, what causes algae and how can you take control of this pond water problem?

What are the two most common forms of pond Algae?

Plankton algae are microscopic, floating algae that gives your koi pond water that green color, better know as “Green water Algae” or the dreaded “Pea Soup Algae”. In order to be healthy, all koi fish ponds need a good growth of plankton algae.

However, when the plankton algae really starts to bloom in the warm summer and becomes over populated that’s when the dreaded “Pea Soup Algae” occurs which makes your koi pond water so green that you can not see your koi or pond fish.

Filamentous algae are the worst algae of them all! Better known as pond moss, hair algae, string algae or just plain “Pond Scum”. Filamentous Algae begins growing on the bottom of the koi pond in the early spring and looks likes a green carpet on the rocks in your koi pond.

As the green carpet grows higher it breaks away from the bottom and floats to the top causing the “pond scum”. This type of algae is of no value to the health of your koi pond in fact, in can actually hurt your koi and pond fish.

How can an over growth of algae hurt my pond fish?

A light green algae color of your pond water will not harm your koi pond fish.

In fact, it’s very healthy for your koi fish and koi pond. The problem begins when the green algae is so numerous that your koi pond looks like “Pea Soup”, or when your koi and goldfish pond becomes covered with filamentous algae.

Not only does this give your pond a bad appearance but it can cause serious pond water problems.

During the day the algae grows by using sunlight and carbon dioxide and the algae releases oxygen by a process know as “photosynthesis”, but at night the algae uses the oxygen in your pond water to continue to grow.

Too much algae can bring the dissolved oxygen level so low that it could kill your fish overnight. An overnight fish kill due to low oxygen levels because of excessive overgrowth of algae is not uncommon.

There are three major causes of Algae Growth, what are they?

# Too much sunlight: Ponds with no shade have problems with excessive algae growth especially, in the summer when the days are the longest.

Helpful Tips:

You can reduce the sunlight by adding a blue dye that helps keep the sun from penetrating the water.

Add floating plants to provide shade.

A proper sized U.V will reduce the Plankton algae “pea soup” color of your pond water, however it will do little to control the Filamentous algae.

#Too many nutrients in your pond water:

Algae thrives on nitrogen and phosphorus. And what are the sources of these two culprits? Nutrients which are caused by, fish waste, fish food (overfeeding), decaying waste like grass clippings, leaves and branches that lie in the bottom of your koi and fish pond. Any run-off from land around your pond can add nitrogen and phosphorus to your pond water. All this makes great food for algae to grow.

Helpful Tips:

The best way to remove nutrients from your pond water is by using a “natural bacteria”. Aqua Meds offers two products that will remove nutrients and sludge from your pond. NO HARSH Chemicals and is very safe for your pond fish and wildlife. Organic Control will remove nutrients from your pond water.

Plus, Aqua Meds Sludge Remover will quickly breaks down and digests organic waste in the bottom of your pond. The natural bacteria in Aqua Meds Sludge Remover actually uses all the “sludge” in your pond as a food source and clears your pond of sludge with NO HARSH Chemicals.

Stopping the “run off” from the land around your pond with a barrier to protect your pond water from nitrogen, phosphorus and dangerous pesticides will really improve the quality of your pond water and reduce algae growth.

# Low oxygen levels in your pond water:

** Low oxygen levels are caused by the amount of oxygen it takes to break down the waste in your pond which is cause by fish waste, fish food and other decaying waste that lie on the bottom of your pond.

However, this is not the only cause. Algae can be a big cause of low oxygen because of its life cycle. When algae dies it produces dead vegetation which causes even more oxygen depletion.

A pond depleted of oxygen will “come alive” when you add the proper aeration to the pond water! Plenty of pond water aeration is algae’s number one enemy! Air diffusers do a great job in adding oxygen to your pond water.

Aqua Meds Pond Support removes sludge, plus, its unique slow release oxygen formula improves the life supporting oxygen throughout your pond.

Plus, aeration will greatly enhance the growth of the “good bacteria” in your pond which will help keep your koi and pond fish happy and healthy.

Finally, solving your algae problem with the use of non-chemical methods is much safer and much less stressful on your fish. Getting a “head start” on your algae in the spring, by following the above natural methods before it becomes a problem, is the secret of success.

Not all Algae is Bad

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