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Robyn's Pond Blog for December 2016

Last Updated: 1/2/17

1. I did pond work on 12/4/16. I removed the net from the 153 gallon pond although I didn't have the time to remove the leaves near to it. I cut down the iris in the 153 gallon pond. The 1800 gallon pond was at 43 degrees F, and the 153 gallon pond was at 46 degrees F. I squirted the filter materials and the bioballs. There were seven pickerel frogs in the biofilter! I didn't have the time or strength to try to catch them so I left them in the bottom. They will be okay as long as the power does not go out on a day that is below freezing.

2. I did a little bit of pond work on 12/11/16. The 1800 gallon pond was down to 38 degrees F, and the 153 gallon pond was 42 degrees F. There was a dusting of snow in the morning, and there was still ice on the ponds and in the hoses when I went out at 1 pm to do chores. I did not get in the big pond this week and will now do that every two weeks if the weather is okay, and the net is not frozen on. I pulled the net back off the big pond's waterfall. This lets wildlife drink all winter from the waterfall when everything else is frozen. The net has to stay on all winter because herons will show up any time of the year. I have had them in snow. There's no cover for the fish in the winter. I then raked up as many leaves as I could from the pond garden. I'm sure in a few days, the winds will kick up and deposit a few hundred leaves in the pond now that it's not fully netted. This happens basically every year, and then the surface flash freezes with leaves in it.

3. On 12/12/16, I bought two dwarf hamsters for my 20 gallon tank where I had the mice.

4. On 12/13/16, my rabbit Harry died. He was 11 years and 2 months old.

5. I did some pond work first thing in the morning on 12/18/16. Why? Well, at dawn, it was 55 degrees F after there was freezing rain the day before. There was also some snow and sleet which was still around. I finished the pond work by 10 am. After that, it rained, sometimes pretty hard, and then the hell winds returned around 1 pm, and the temperature dropped to 40 degrees F within an hour. So, I got while the getting was good! The 1800 gallon pond (still half covered in ice) was at 38 degrees F, and the 153 gallon pond was at 40 degrees F. I changed the filter floss around the main pump which I do four times a year. I changed out the oyster shell in the biofilter. While I was clearing the waterfall of leaves and dead grass, there was a little pickerel frog there. He was pretty confused with the up and down temperatures! The fluctuations killed off one of our bee hives according to the bee keeper. The airline tubing had frozen a few days earlier in the 153 gallon pond, and I kept either putting off or forgetting to change it. This day, it was detached, and it worked upon reattachment as it had thawed out. It will probably freeze again soon.

6. On 12/26/16, I did a little bit of pond stuff. The 1800 gallon pond was at 44 degrees F, and the 153 gallon pond was at 42 degrees F. I topped off all the ponds and put in a few additives. I did not get in the big pond.

Continue to the January 2017 pond blog.

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