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PostPosted: May 11th, '18, 19:38 
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I'm working on designing a biofilter for my mom's new pond, but I'm still a bit lost on some of the points - I think I might be quite a bit off.

The pond is 150 m2, and about 50 cm deep, so 75 m3 or 75.000 liter. We might make it deeper at some point, so oversizing the filter would be needed. It's in northern Europe, temperate climate. Small fish have already invaded it somehow. We didn't introduce them!

The water is very murky, and it would be amazing if we could get it completely clear.

I'm basing my current design on a calculation where fish eating 1.5 kg of nitrogen-rich feed per day would require about 400 l of high-surface filter medium. I don't know if it's possible to estimate the ammonia production in the pond per day, so for now I'm just going for about 400 l of filter medium.

I've read that in ponds, it's good to turn over all the water in 2 hours, however that would require a huge and expensive pump, so I'm just planning to get a 10.000 lph pump and see how it goes. That would require about 8 hours for full turnover. Is this a bad idea?

For the filter itself, I'm currently planning to largely use the design in the following video, only in an IBC and using filter mats and potentially some filter balls. Filter mats because I don't know how much non-biodegradable stuff will be pumped into the filter, so it would be nice to be able to just take the mats out and hose them off.




So basically I would have the water come in at the top, have filter mats and balls in the lower half of the IBC, and use a SLO to get the water at the bottom out and back into the pond.

Also, I would probably have the water come out into a 1 m2 media bed with some plants, which would then overflow into the pond, and expand the gb area if this turns out to not be able to consume all the nutrients.

We might also put some water plants into the pond at some point, but as we might want to make the pond deeper, it would be nice to be able to only have external GBs for now.

Should I do anything differently?

Picture of the pond (at the moment pretty much a mud hole):

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PostPosted: May 12th, '18, 10:27 
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Firstly rules for AP and small ornamental ponds don't apply to large ponds, soaks and 'tank dams'.

Artificial filtration will not provide much in a larger pond - you need to look at plants in the water and aerobic zones etc. Which is basically emulating natural ponds. For aeration a fountain sprinkler would work or some ornamental waterfall/watercourse where water splashes and bounces off of rocks.

Forget about turning the water volume over in any period.
You just need to focus on oxygen and water circulation - these offset inevitable algal blooms.

what sort of fish are you looking at ?


If you want to run a pond fed AP system in a greenhouse (given Denmark) then that is fine and the plants will be able to use it but it will not keep the pond clean or filtered. Even if you had 2000 Litres of grow bed/media.


only in an IBC and using filter mats and potentially some filter balls. Filter mats because I don't know how much non-biodegradable stuff will be pumped into the filter, so it would be nice to be able to just take the mats out and hose them off.

This would be a waste of time and money. Dont buy any plastic or man made filter material.
Filter mats will simply clog up very quickly and be a waste of effort and money.
If anything just bulk buy gravel or coarse rock by the trailer/small truck load - it would be much cheaper.

Better would be to use your pump to make a small rocky race or something and us the remaining cash get a solar pump to spray some water up in the air. Pond plants will establish same as your fish (arrive with birds etc), else get some rushes/reeds etc. Floating weed etc will also help use nutrients.

Try looking at one of the 'natural pond' type websites.
One person here who does this is Pete [user Petesake] - mentioned in his threads.

try this > viewtopic.php?f=18&t=27800&p=544491&hilit=pond+filter#p544491

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PostPosted: May 14th, '18, 17:27 
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Well, seems it's back to the drawing board then.

I have no idea what sort of fish they are.

I got this book:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0865718458/ ... 41_TE_dp_1

as it seemed to be the highest rated relevant one. Will get back to you when I know a lot more.


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PostPosted: May 17th, '18, 18:21 
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>> I have no idea what sort of fish they are.

that is less of an issue as most natives are small anyway.
It is more a case of what you want to stock the pond with - different fish types have different needs.
(eg. koi vs trout vs catfish vs perch etc etc


>> Well, seems it's back to the drawing board then.

no that was in the past.. consider this a natural progression of the process.

>> Got this book .... as it seemed to be the highest rated relevant one. Will get back to you when I know a lot more.

Quick scan on Amazon and Google and it seems to have the content you want - plants, plant shelves etc.

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PostPosted: May 17th, '18, 19:37 
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Couldn't have said it better myself Darren.....

Hi Zhia my bio pond is 3.6 m at it's deepest and could submerge 10 SUV's in the main body.This mass of water helps keep the temps down during summer when it evaporates 6-8 mm a day.
It's nice to swim in but due to the neibours gum trees which leaves a tea like colour through 1 - 1.5 m of water. If I take a bucket full out it appears clear. It has a PVC semi-potable liner and 12000 kg of round washed river rocks in the 3 grow beds. The roots are like carpet over and around the rocks and clean every thing that gets pumped in there via 12000 Lt per hour circulating pump.

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1 viewtopic.php?t=27800
2 viewtopic.php?f=18&t=27965
3 viewtopic.php?f=18&t=28231


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