The Healthy Fish Pond: Why Filtration Matters

A fish pond can be an attractive feature in any garden, but if you want to build a pond, one of the things you should not forget about is the need for a water filter.  A manmade pond is not a natural environment, and simply leaving your pond to look after itself is not going to work. You need to keep the pond healthy for your fish, and a filter is the way to do that.

So what do you need to know about filters? Here is a quick guide to fill you in with the essential information.

Do You Need a Filter?

If you only want to keep plants in a small pond, filtration may not be necessary. However, this depends on the type of plants you have and how many you use. If you want to keep fish in your pond, you will usually need a filter.

A filter not only cleans the pond and ensures it is a safe environment for the fish, but it also makes it easier to look after your pond, and it will keep the water clearer so you can enjoy looking at your fish even more.

Types of Filter

There are three main types of filter. However, it should be noted that many filters contain all three in a single system, and there are many to choose from (see Swallow Aquatics for examples).

A mechanical filter is required to remove the solid waste from the pond. This keeps the water looking clean and prevents the build up of dirt.  UV filters are also used to keep ponds clear by reducing the growth of algae. A UV filter is  not always essential, but it is still highly recommended.

The most important type of filter is the biological filter. These are used to clean the ammonia that forms as a result of fish and plant waste and can cause ammonia poisoning. It does this by creating a healthy environment for ‘good’ bacteria to grow, which clean the ammonia and  convert it into nitrates.

Choosing a Filter

As a basic rule, if you have a large number of fish in your pond, you will need a larger filter.  There are no hard-and-fast rules, but the first thing to do is measure the volume of your pond,  and you will then have a good idea of the size of filter that you require so you can avoid buying one that is too small or too large.

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You should also take the location of the pond into consideration, including how easy it is to access, when making your decision because there are different types of filters to choose from.

For example, you could choose a filter that will skim debris from the surface and pump the water back to the other side of the pond. These pumps are easy to maintain and disguise. Or  you may opt for a submersible filter that remains under the water, which is a good option for  small ponds with a small number of fish. An external filter is another option, but you will  need to hide the system somehow, which could prove to be a larger effort.

You should also remember to buy a pump along with the filter. The pump will supply the water to the filter at a particular flow rate, so make sure you choose a pump that provides the perfect amount of water to the filter without pumping it through too quickly or slowly.

Find the Right Filter for Your Pond

If you want to enjoy a healthy, clean pond throughout the year, make sure you find the right filter. It does not take long to choose a filter, but make sure you get the right one and you will  enjoy a clean and fresh pond full of healthy fish for many years to come.

Leo Wells is a landscape designer with an eye for natural environments. With his keen sense  for detail, he knows the ins and outs of keeping elements of a landscaping thriving.

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