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Pond Winterizing Questions

Discussion in 'Indoor/Outdoor Ponds' started by rainbowcharmer, Dec 8, 2011.

  1. rainbowcharmer

    rainbowcharmer AC Members

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    I searched for winterizing and found a couple of REALLY old threads, but had additional questions to what those answered, so hopefully someone can help. :)

    I saw that feeding below a certain temp was discouraged because the goldies slow down so much and won't eat and it fouls the water, but the rosie reds/minnows do not seem to do that. They are active all the time, no matter how cold the water is (or so far anyhow that seems to be the case, and I've read that you'll see them swimming below the ice if the pond freezes over), so I'm wondering if I should still feed them throughout the winter if the pond isn't frozen and the fish are active?

    The odds of it freezing over are low since I live in GA, and the temps here just don't stay cold enough for very long to have that happen, especially since the filter/waterfall runs 24 hrs. So that's question 1 - should I feed the minnows?

    And my second question I asked on my pond thread, but I don't think many people read that anymore since it's a little older - and that is, is there an air temp at which I should shut the filter off due to danger of freezing in the pipes that are above ground? Those pipes are 2" PVC, and are carrying about 3400 GPH from 4' below ground level (which will never freeze that deep here), so I'm not sure how easily the pipes would freeze, and at what temperature I should be concerned there.

    In Jan/Feb here we typically see some teens/twenties overnight with warming to 40's during the day. It is incredibly rare that we'd ever have a 24 hour period of not getting above freezing.

    Any help on those two main questions would be much appreciated.

    Thanks! :)
     
  2. SubRosa

    SubRosa AC Members

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    I can't imagine it cold enough for the water inside the plumbing to freeze with the pump running in your situation. As long as the water is moving that rapidly through the plumbing and the water temp stays in the 50's it won't get cold enough at night to be a problem even for exposed piping. If you're concerned you could always mulch over the exposed pipes to help hold in some ground heat. Watch out for waterfalls and other return features though. Enough ice could potentially form to direct water out of the pond. As far as feeding I've never kept Rosys outdoors but if the fish are active then put a tiny amount of food in and see what happens. Let the fish be your guide.
     
  3. rainbowcharmer

    rainbowcharmer AC Members

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    Well the water temp is bouncing right now between 50-60 degrees (at the surface anyhow, where my thermometer floats). I imagine it will get in the 40's during the colder months. It hits around 50 after a cold night, and comes back up near 60 after a sunny day, so it's definitely fluctuating a lot.

    Also, mulch isn't possible as the pipes are above the water on their way up to the waterfall, so there isn't anything to mulch around. I could potentially get those insulating pipe covers from Lowes. I would imagine they make them big enough for 2" pipes, though I've only ever bought the ones that are sized for like a 3/4" pipe, so I'm not 100% sure there.

    I figure if the minnows are eating and the filter is still running, it's probably not likely that I'll end up with some crazy ammonia spike just because the 4 goldies aren't eating. So I guess I'll go with that . :)

    Thanks.
     
  4. SubRosa

    SubRosa AC Members

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    Pipe insulation is a good idea if just to keep UV off of the exposed plumbing to lengthen its life.
     
  5. LiveMermaid07

    LiveMermaid07 Bloody Mary. As in, hand me one.

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    You might be able to use the burlap for trees to wrap around the pipes?

    Last year I left my roies out side and stopped feeding them and the comets at the same time, they did fine.
    It did freeze about the top 6inches and that was no fun making a hole in I'll tell ya.
    I was not running a filter on mine then.
    You must be farther south then me.
    :)
     

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