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Robyn's Pond Blog for August 2015

Last Updated: 9/6/15

1. I did pond work on 8/2/15. The 1800 gallon was at 75 degrees F, and the 153 gallon was at 74 degrees F. I squirted off all the filter materials and the Cyprio biothings. I add water and additives to the ponds. The hardy canna that I potted in rocks last week as floating around again. I put it back in the pot and threw some large rocks in there but it will probably come out again. The ground is too hard right now to dig up dirt. The ground hog, Chewbacca, chewed up what remains of my two bags of pea gravel and river stones so I put the rocks in plastic litter buckets and threw out the chewed-up plastic bags.

2. I got Freddie the box turtle to the vet on 7/30/15. He insisted on liquid Baytril but I couldn't get her to open her mouth so I got shots the next day but only two of them (that's all they had) which I gave her the next two days. The morning of 8/3/15, I was able to give her an oral dose, and I got more shots the next day and gave her one. Unfortunately, she was too far in to her respiratory infection, and Freddie was dead the morning of 8/5/15. She may be the last box turtle I will ever see on our land.

3. I did pond work on 8/9/15. The 1800 gallon pond was at 74 degrees F, and the 153 gallon pond was at 72 degrees F. I squirted all the filter materials and the bioballs. There were about four small green frogs bouncing in the filter so I took that as a good sign. I pulled out two wheelbarrows full of weed grass from the waterfall area. I can actually see rocks again!

I then weeded the front iris garden which no longer has any iris in it (just some half dead daylilies and a weird lilac bush) for the first time in three years. The weeds (Japanese bittersweet and wineberries mostly) were like a prison around the fenced in garden.

4. This entry is not related to ponds but it does show how I am still learning new things about animals. I was walking down the road on 8/14/15 when I saw a bug like no other. The body was yellow and fuzzy like a teddy bear. On the sides were two pathetic wings that were pink and yellow! I knew enough to know that this was probably a moth that had just come out of its chrysalis. I gently touched it with a stick as it was running across the road, and it let out a poop seemingly way too large for its little body. It did that twice. I had to do research to discover that this was a rosy maple moth, Dryocampa rubicunda, and that other moths also poop in defense. If you were a predator though, you would think the moth would be more appetizing after it evacuated its digestive tract! Look up that moth. It is absolutely stunning!

5. I did pond chores on 8/16/15. The 1800 gallon pond was at 74 degree F, and the 153 gallon pond was at 73 degrees F. I did the usual (squirted flosses, put in additives, added water, etc.). I removed the floating pond plant ring as the water lettuce has started to replicate pretty well. The ring was full of mostly water lettuce, a few water hyacinth, and hundreds of newborn green frog tadpoles (I had noticed eggs last Sunday). My two surviving hardy waterlilies and smaller tropical waterlily are not doing very well but the bigger tropical waterlily is in great shape. It has two huge white flowers most mornings but they close early (like 10 am). I fixed my little sandstone bridge in the overflow area that had collapsed towards the pond and was no longer level. I just shoved rocks and slop under the low end. It's held up by two bricks on each side.

6. I did pond work on 8/23/15. Both the 1800 and 153 gallon ponds were at 72 degrees F. I changed the PondMaster filters which were pretty clogged. I squirted all the filter materials, put in additives, and topped off the ponds.

Ja 7. Throughout my web site, you may have read me mention the "weed grass" that I pull all the time in and around my ponds and yards. I just looked it up to remind myself what it is actually called. It is Japanese stilt grass, Microstegium vimineum, but I'll probably keep calling it weed grass! It is the dominant species on my land.

8. I did pond work on 8/30/15. Both the 1800 and 153 gallon ponds were at 72 degrees F (same as last week, strange!). I squirted all the filter materials. I squirted the Cyprio biothings in the kiddie pool. I topped off the ponds and put in additives.

While sitting on the cement bench and taking off my hip waders, I looked to the left at my lotus, and sitting on a leaf was a little, tiny green treefrog! I have only seen one once before on our land about five years ago. They are not common where I live. I don't know when I'll get to processing the photos for my web site (still working on March!) since I've had no time and now started another position at my job which will take time to get settled in to. I did put photos of the green treefrog up on the Fishpondinfo Facebook page though. The frog was missing its right eye.

Continue to the September 2015 pond blog.

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