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Trial pond

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:41 pm
by GoldenWattle
Step 1 - dig a hole and sink in a 75L plastic tub. The place I chose to put the tub is a raised vegie patch that doesn't produce well. Even though it's raised about 15cm, it was extremely difficult to dig deeper than 35cm. The tub came up 15cm above ground level

Step 2 - border plants (roots in water, folliage above water): Juncus gregiflorus, Lythrum salicaria (Purple Loose Strife), Carex. The tub has rope handles and I used these to wedge small pots between.

Step 3 - aquatic plants (roots and folliage under water): Myriophyllum papillosum (Common Water Milfoil), Triglochin procerum (Water Ribbons).

Step 4 - fill tub with water.

Step 5 - add a small pump to create movement (mosquito control). I bought one for about $17.

Step 6 (optional) - add fish.

Step 7 - wait for the frogs to come...

Cost:

Tub - $15
Pump - $17
extension lead - $18
plants - $35

Total - $85

Image

For the short amount of time the pond has been there (about 3 weeks), the milfoil has gone nuts. I'd highly recommend it for oxygenating the water and for providing cover for fish and frogs...

Cheers,
GoldenWattle (#)

Re: Trial pond

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 6:34 am
by Pam
That's really nifty, what you did with the rope handles, GW.

Your optional stage 6 is perhaps advisable to help build a healthy ecosystem and as you say, keep down mosquito numbers.

Looking forward to your froggy pics.

Re: Trial pond

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:51 pm
by ColinM
...and step 8 - build a BIGGER one GW! :D

Looks great mate! 8)

Re: Trial pond

PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 5:22 pm
by Wanderer
Did you use those 'Non Frog Eating' fish though GW?

Re: Trial pond

PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 8:29 pm
by GoldenWattle
Wanderer wrote:Did you use those 'Non Frog Eating' fish though GW?

I took a few fish from a friend's dam not far from a creek. I wouldn't know what kind they are, but I'm willing to bet there's frogs in his dam. The largest two were just smaller than the size of guppies and I assume the rest were offspring since they were merely 1cm long x 1-2mm wide and swam in a school.

I did go to a garden centre that sold pond fish and they told me about 2 or 3 different fish they had that don't eat frog eggs or tadpoles. I think the price of the fish were about $15 each and I thought that was a bit steep. Do the frogs actually lay the eggs in water or at the water's edge? I was just reading a fact sheet about frog ponds that recommends planting native violets and tussock grasses around the edge of the pond. Would that be where they lay their eggs or is that for shelter only? I'm not sure if the eggs need to hatch in water...

Cheers,
GoldenWattle (#)

EDIT: did a bit of research and I'm guessing they are mosquitofish :oops: I read that they are considered a pest and can eat small tadpoles. Maybe I'm best off going back to the garden centre and getting the expensive ones after I remove the mosquitofish...

Re: Trial pond

PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2012 8:58 am
by Pam
You know, mosquito fish was the first thing that crossed my mind GW, for absolutely no reason whatsoever. I'm sure if you're going to buy fish though that you MUST be able to get them for less than $15 each though - that's awfully expensive feed for the birds if they happen to get lucky.

From observations of what the frogs do in our dam, almost always when egg 'froth' appears, it's in the water, but around the base of clumps of plants, at water level.

Re: Trial pond

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 12:36 pm
by MrFaulty
Moquito fish (gambusia) are listed as a Key Threatening Process - if you know someone with a bass, barra or trout in a tank, give them to them to eat!

Most fish will eat the frogs eggs which are usually laid in shallow water attached to juncus and the like, however, once tadpoles/frogs are established, they do a reasonable job of keeping the mosquito larva down.

Re: Trial pond

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 6:35 pm
by GoldenWattle
MrFaulty wrote:Moquito fish (gambusia) are listed as a Key Threatening Process - if you know someone with a bass, barra or trout in a tank, give them to them to eat!

Do you think aquarium shops will take them as feeder fish? (ie. if I give them away, rather than asking anything for them.)

BTW, I've done a bit of reading on forums and found out Eastern Little Galaxia (Galaxiella pusilla) and Southern Pygmy Perch (Nannoperca australis) are the most appropriate fish to stock in a Melbourne frog pond. I've discovered some garden centres will sell White Clouds (which are an import and a bit of a menace) and Murray River Rainbows (which are not endemic to Vic). Prices vary from $10 - $15 which I consider expensive for fish barely larger than guppies. At this stage, I removed the fish from the 'pond' and I'm waiting for a reputable shop to get stock of the Eastern Little Galaxia.

Cheers,
GoldenWattle (#)

Re: Trial pond

PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:50 pm
by betr2garden
What a wonderful little pond you've made GW. The rope handles to hold the plants is a great idea.

I saw a pond on the Better Homes and Gardens show which used a big pot and I have a few of these empty. So we are going to do this sometime soon. You have given us lots of ideas about plants and we'll keep an eye out for fish that will let the frogs breed.

Thanks for sharing.