Is Algaecide safe for my pond
Algae forms in a pond when sunlight reacts with nutrients in the water. These nutrients are comprised of primarily Ammonia and Nitrate which you may recognize as the ingredients in fertilizer. These nutrients result from the breakdown of debris such as leaves, grass, and other windblown organic matter as well as from fish waste and uneaten fish food. As these items decompose the nutrients become the food for algae in many forms including string algae that covers rocks and clings to the surface of your pond as well as the usual green water also called pea soup effect.
There are several ways to control your pond water and keep it crystal clear. Each have benefits and certain drawbacks and are detailed below.
A liquid or powder algaecide is the fastest way to clear up your pond but also the fastest way to kill your fish and pond plants. A liquid or dry algaecide will chemically destroy algae but is done so with harsh chemicals and compounds that are being increasingly monitored or banned by certain states and municipalities. With an algaecide you can expect to see an overnight improvement but it comes at a price. The algaecide will be very hard on any plants you have in the pond. Additionally the oxygen supply in the water will plummet. When algae are alive they are living breathing plants that actually add oxygen to the pond water. Upon death it rapidly consumes all the available oxygen in the pond.
If you intend to use an algaecide please read the directions carefully as an overdose can quickly harm or kill your plants and fish. When using an algaecide you will also want to increase circulation in your pond with a waterfall, fountain or aerator. These will replace lost oxygen and hopefully prevent a fish kill.
Finally it should be noted that the dead algae will fall to the bottom of the pond and form the food for the next generation of algae.
Is algaecide right for your pond?