Pond Algae Invasion! Tips for Getting Rid of Pond Algae, from the Tampa Bay Pond and Rocks Store
It’s green, it’s slimy! It creeps, it crawls! It can overtake a pond in mere days! Sounds like something straight out of a horror movie right?
For pond owners dealing with this green monster, that is exactly what it can prove to be! It’s called algae and it comes in all types and shapes.
Here are the most common questions most pond owners have.
- What exactly is algae?
- What are the most common forms in ponds?
- How can I get rid of it and prevent it from coming back?
Well… your friends at Tampa Bay Ponds & Rocks know a thing or three about algae.
The first thing you have to know about algae is that not all types are bad for your pond.
In fact, most of it is beneficial! There are two categories: good and bad. The good algae is unavoidable and a natural part of any freshwater ecosystem. The bad algae, however, is usually a result of poor water quality and excessive sunlight.
So what exactly is algae?
Algae are rootless plants that grow proportionate to the amount of nutrients available in the pond water. Some also consider algae to be a fungus. But to most pond owners the definition of algae is trouble.
Simply put, a combination of sunlight and high nitrate content equates to more algae.
There are MANY different types of algae, but for pond owners three stand out above the rest:
- Pea Soup (or Green) water (Planktonic Algae)
- String algae, (filamentous algae)
- Fuzz (or Carpet) algae
How to get rid of Pea Soup Algae (green water) in Your Pond
Pea soup water also known as Planktonic algae is caused by single-celled algae that are suspended in the water column. If left untreated for a period of time, it will turn your pond water completely green.
This is arguably one of the hardest types to control. Keep in mind though that this type is NOT harmful to your pond. If anything, the fish enjoy the shade from the sun.
But if lack of visibility from your pond and or fish is simply making you “green”, here are a few tips from Tampa Bay Ponds & Rocks to help you to get rid of it and have clear water again:
1. Conduct a 20% water change to reduce the volume of Algae.
2. Add an UV (ultra-violet) clarifier which will provide clear water within 10 days and will maintain clear water year round.
3. Reduce the amount of sunlight the pond is exposed to by using a blue dye.
4. Decrease how much you feed your fish and completely cease fertilizing your pond plants until you have clear water again.
5. Clean out your skimmer and/or filter removing any debris that may be helping to “feed” the algae.
6. Add more Beneficial Bacteria to the pond. The helpful enzymes will use the nutrients in the water starving the algae of nourishment.
7. Be patient!! Green water will eventually clear up over time. Although taking the above steps will speed the process, do not expect instant results. It might take several good weeks or more until there is no more PEA GREEN SOUP in your pond.
How to get rid of String Algae in your Pond
The next most common Pond algae is String Algae. It’s long and hair like and tends to grow around marginal plants, cling to rocks, and linger in stream beds. There are a few things you can do to get rid of this intruder.
1. Physically remove as much of the String algae as possible. You can do this by using a toilet brush (preferably new…eww) and twisting it around the strands.
2. Use an ECO FRIENDLY algaecide to first, kill off all the Algae. Most algaecides will turn the Algae black and then deteriorate and be sucked up in the filter.
3. Make sure you clean your filter after using the algaecide! Also, collect any dead String Algae before it can have a chance to contribute to “PEA SOUP.”
4. Add a Beneficial Bacteria a day after using the algaecide. Using both the products together not only kill the String Algae but prevent it from coming back.
How to get rid of Fuzz or Carpet Algae in your Pond
Fuzz or Carpet algae is the next contestant. This is that green covering that can be found on the sides of the pond, on the rocks of your stream and waterfall and sometimes on the bottom of the gravel.
No matter how ugly this type of algae appears, it is actually a natural part of the pond and has its benefits. Fish, frogs, snails, turtles and any other aquatic life that made their way into your pond enjoy eating it and it helps add oxygen to the pond.
But, if you must get rid of Fuzzy or Carpet algae this is what we recommend you do:
1. The most effective way is to hand clean the rocks. We have found that using a dish scrub or coarse cleaning pad works the best (do not attempt to use a rag.)
2. Clean out your filter of any broken-up algae.
3. Plecostomus and snails may be purchased to control carpet algae as well. They enjoy the fuzzy treat.
4. Reduce the amount of food you feed your goldfish and Koi. If left without processed food they too will eat the Algae.
Remember that getting rid of algae all together WILL NEVER happen! Unless of course you decided to pour bleach in your pond—we do not recommend this! These tips will help keep the algae monster under control putting an end to the horror flick!
Discover why so many people in the Tampa Bay area visit Tampa Bay Ponds and Rocks for all their Pond related needs!
If you live in the Tampa area of Florida and need quality pond maintenance supplies or need advice about what you need to keep your pond healthy and beautiful, the pond experts at Tampa Bay Pond and Rocks are here to help you!