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 Post subject: Tank water or dam water
PostPosted: Feb 28th, '16, 17:04 
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Hello all...
im just getting started here and i only have the option of tank water or dam water... so which one would be best to start the new system with?


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PostPosted: Feb 28th, '16, 17:35 
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Tank water from a galv tank?


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PostPosted: Feb 28th, '16, 18:35 
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my tank is a poly tank..


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PostPosted: Feb 28th, '16, 19:59 
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very dependent on your specific water rather than specific to the type (dam or tank).
Same applies to bores.

Type of roof and roof plumbing (gullies, gutters and downpipes) will also affect tank water
(along with tank material - but you note poly, so should be OK)

Dam water is highly variable - does it have a lot of suspended sediment,
does it come off a livestock area, what is salinity.... is there an agriculture history (residual herbicides).
pH, is it high in iron / calcium / hardness / zinc etc

so hard one to answer, I have been looking at farm dams for a horticultural application on a large farm and only a few are actually suitable for horticulture. So dams can vary even on same property.


If you can get water tested (it costs around $100 for a suite of tests via most environmental labs),
else start small and focus on veg initially and see how things go.


On the rainwater there are various posts about zinc issues for fish (esp. galvanised) plus paint + lead +...
You may have to go to polycarbonate sheets or something, but as a rule rainwater is very soft and rain-filled AP systems go fairly acidic since rainwater <7 (usually 6-6.5).


Maybe some more information about your location (coast, hinterland etc) and soils/geology and the nature of the dam catchment and inflow would help.

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PostPosted: Feb 29th, '16, 17:06 
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thank you for the reply Darren...
I live in the Cooroy hginterland (carters ridge) and it doesnt have agricultural background, The dam does have suspended sediment in it (also has water lillies growing in the dam as well...) as for high in iron / calcium / hardness / zinc etc i have no idea...
I purchased the property about 18 months ago and i had to clear most of it (only got about 1/3 done so far).


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PostPosted: Feb 29th, '16, 20:46 
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>> thank you for the reply Darren... no problem.

On the dam (and even rainwater) try and get your water tested, even if just do basic drinking/domestic water standard tests (not sure what is available in SSC, heaps in Brisbane). Often your local shire can tell you. Water parameters are really handy to know and at least flag potential issues in advance.

If you go with dam water maybe stay away from food fish initially. Just go with a basic AP initially for say 12 months and see what happens. Can use it as a Mark-I learning experience anyway. Dam and rainwater combination will probably prove to be be fine and you can choose between them to balance pH if required.

Know it sounds silly but dam water is actually cycled to some extent. When used for garden vegies etc most residual is flushed away so you don't tend to accumulate. AP systems recirculate - if there are any issues with your water then they will be exacerbated in the AP whereas fish/yabbies grown in the dam might be fine.

The size of your system will ultimately dictate the need, your AP for example may conflict with your doemstic needs. If I had some confidence in the dam water I would probably filter it and go with that and the use rainwater / filtered dam for topping up as my AP water parameters suggest (keep in mind rainwater = slightly acid).

But personally I would definitely have it tested first ;-) I have seen some interesting things in farm dam water over the years. And equally listened to people tell me how they and their families happily eat yabbies/marron from those same dams.....

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