June 1, 2007
During the past two weeks, Charlotte-Mecklenburg
Storm Water Services
has responded to numerous reports of fish dying in local ponds. Heat and extremely dry weather are two of the biggest factors.
During the past two weeks, Charlotte-Mecklenburg has responded to numerous reports of fish dying in local ponds. Heat and extremely dry weather are two of the biggest factors.
As water temperatures increase, the amount of dissolved oxygen in the water naturally decreases. Oxygen levels also drop if there is abundant aquatic plant growth or algae. A period of sunny days combined with high levels of fertilizers or other nutrients in a pond can cause algae blooms, which deplete oxygen levels and kill fish.
Current drought conditions in Charlotte-Mecklenburg are compounding these problems. Rainfall replenishes oxygen levels in water. Without rain, water in the pond can become stagnant and oxygen levels can drop dangerously low, resulting in fish kills. As dead fish decompose, more oxygen is depleted from the water. So it's essential that dead fish be removed immediately and disposed of.
Pond owners are encouraged to:
· Install a fountain or other form of aeration device.
· Avoid applying fertilizer within 100 feet of a pond's edge. Fertilizer promotes algae growth.
· Do not throw grass clipping leaves or other wastes into a pond. Yard waste depletes oxygen levels in the water as the material decays.
· Remove dead fish, trash and waste from a pond immediately.
If you are experiencing a fish kill in your pond, call Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services at
For a pond to remain healthy and supportive of fish and other aquatic life it is important that you develop and implement a pond management plan. To learn more about