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Thread: First pond, tropicals in Western Sydney

  1. #1

    Default First pond, tropicals in Western Sydney

    G'day guys,

    Last October I decided to set up a 530L above ground Laguna Pond as somewhat of an ornamental piece for my deck. The pond has been enclosed with a merbau box I have built to match my deck. Currently I have some umbrella grass along with some various other potted and floating plants growing nicely. I have an AquaPro 2400L/H submersible pump running that is connected to one of the AquaPro in pond tray filters providing filtration and water movement.

    The plan was to stock the pond over the warmer months with some livebearers to provide some colour and interest. I know that 'Summer tubbing' is a big thing in the US, but doesn't seem as popular here. It has really interested me since I first had some African Cichlids growing out in an outdoor tub last summer. I monitored the temp at the time and it seemed to be fluctuating from about 15C some nights and up into the low 20's during the day.

    I introduced several Guppies, Platys and Swordtails over the matter of weeks and all seemed to be doing well. I also introduced 5 Bristlenose, along with 2 Siamese fly Foxes. All fish seemed very happy over the Spring/Summer/Autumn months with the livebearers all breeding like crazy and the plants growing/multiplying. Very happy with the result, all fish seem to be more vibrant outside in the pond.

    I Chucked a 150W heater in the pond about 2 months ago to try and see how long I could extend it's viability, seems to be holding the temp above 19C even when I check first thing in the morning. I have redirected all the pump water flow away from the fountain to the underwater bypass (To reduce heat loss). I have also allowed the floating plants to practically completely overrun the surface area for Winter as I believe this this is also effecting heat transfer. The other little thing I have taken to doing is when I need to top up the water, I do a water change from my 4x2x2 tank inside through a garden hose out into the pond. This way I am provided with ready heated water and any nitrates will be readily eaten up by the pond's plants. I am feeding every few days still and from what I can see there still a load of happy Guppies, Platy's and Swordtails alive. Not sure about the 5 Bristlenose and 2 Siamese Flying Fox I also introduced. Will now wait until around September and pull it apart for a clean and to stain the wooden fascia .Then I should be able to take stock of exactly what is still lurking and what has worked well.

    Hoping to get a hold of a GoPro soon and try filming underwater to see if I can pick up anything.

    Cheers,
    Ian

    Last edited by mdk54; 09-10-17 at 11:56 AM. Reason: Photobucket links not working

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Perth WA
    Posts
    613

    Default

    G'day Ian. Welcome to AL.
    Nice looking little pond you have built there. Nothing better than having the sound of running water on a warm summers evening.
    If you can work out a way to route a bit of 19mm poly from a down pipe or from the gutter to the pond it will give it a nice flush of fresh water with the winter, and summer rains.
    I think the reason we dont do the summer ponding thing here in Oz is two fold. First we dont get the sub zero temps so we can actually stock a pond all year. Second is we tend to not look on our pets (fish) as temporary additions due to the cost and humanitarian reasons. An option there would be to set up a wintering aquarium (yes i'm trying to suck you into the aquarium hobby) that the warmer water fish could be housed in and kept alive for their full 10 year life span. It would surely save you money as keeping a 60-70L tank warm for the winter would be a lot cheaper in power than a 500L pond.
    Great to see a first time poster putting photo's up. Well done.

  3. #3

    Default

    Thanks for the comments Madmerv!

    Yes I first setup a large pot with a pump and some plants just for the sound and ambiance. Then I decided I'd like some fish so I upgraded to this size prefab pond. I guess what interested me the most was the idea of keeping tropicals outside. I had a 5.6Kw Solar system installed about 12 months ago, so not overly concerned at this stage about electricity. From my estimates if the heater was to stay on permanently (Which it won't) and forgetting I have solar during the day, it should cost about $22 a month to heat the pond. I currently have a 6x2x2 Malawi setup and a 4x2x20 Tang setup, but this is my first time mucking about with a pond.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Mornington Peninsula, Victoria
    Posts
    166

    Default

    I did some 'summer' tubbing last summer and bred some rainbows.
    Definitely the lazy way to do it!
    Are lining up a few other tubs and ponds for this spring/summer
    to give some more species a crack
    Cheers
    Adam

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