Preventing Toxic Gases in Your Pond

Your pond is an amazing ecosystem of fish, plants, and soothing running water. But did you know that is also home to toxic gases? Do you know the process of preventing harmful gases in your pond? These gases are part of the natural environment of your pond because your plants and fish produce them. Yet, these gases cause harm if they remain in your water. They need a way to escape to maintain the delicate balance of your pond.

Types of Toxic Gases in Your Pond

Your fish take oxygen from the water and produce ammonia through their breathing, excretion, and urine. Plants and excess food also build ammonia levels in the water. Some of that ammonia mixes with bacteria to create nitrites and then nitrates, which act as fertilizer to your plants and ponds.

Anaerobic bacteria also produce toxic gases. This type of bacteria occurs from organic buildup that is often at the bottom of your pond. Adding chemicals, or allowing herbicide or fertilizer to enter the pond, may be extremely harmful to your pond as a whole.

How to Tell if Your Pond Has a Problem with Toxic Gases

Toxic gas problems are often hard to detect, but watch out for the following symptoms:

  • The fish are heading to water surface frequently and seem to be “gasping” for air
  • The fish frequently stay near a water feature that circulates water
  • Your pond has a foul odor
  • Algae is growing and spreading quickly all over your pond

Preventing Harmful Toxic Gases in Your Pond

Although toxic gasses are a natural side effect of the life cycle in your pond, when they build up, they cause harm to your plants and fish. Cutting down on these gasses is a great way to make sure your pond stays healthy. Consider trying these methods if you notice problems with toxic gas in your pond.

  • Adding an aerator to add more oxygen to your pond
  • Adding an additional water feature that will circulate the water better
  • Removing organic waste build-up that may release toxic gasses from both the bottom and the top of your pond
  • Complete partial water changes periodically (no more than one-third of the water at a time)
  • Adding a mixture of live plants that will produce additional oxygen
  • Cleaning your pond filter regularly
  • Consider adding floating plants for more shade and to trap the oxygen in your pond