shallow pot hole pond

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shallow pot hole pond

Postby jarozzy » Thu May 23, 2013 8:35 am

I recently purchased a property that was previously owned by a landscape company. In one corner that company had scraped about 2 feet of top soil off, making a shallow low spot that holds water most of the year. It is about 2.5 acres and 2 feet deep, with a spring fed stream about 15-20 feet away along one side. Being an avid duck hunter i thought that this will make a perfect small duck marsh/waterfowl food plot. right now it is just bare mud with some sparse weeds growing in it, it floods during the rainy season then slowly drains. I would like to drain it to plant some plants like Japanese Millet, and then in the fall re-flood it during. My question is what type of structure would you recommend for me to use, to flood and to drain? I do not want to use gas water pumps as it would take to long, and i would have to make sure they have gas in them. Yesterday i went out there and shot some grade. Being a hole dug there is no real dam and or any real slope. The stream water level is about 5in higher (it has been very wet so i think it is a bit higher than normal) than current pond water level (which is perfect depth). The stream does flow fairly fast. Will the flow of the stream allow for enough pressure for water to pass through a pipe into the pond even if it is full? Would it be better to allow it to draw down on its own and plant different plants and then let it fill on its own, and add water as needed come season? If that is a better option what plants should i plant? I am in SW Missouri, i cannot get rice very easily, but could if i had to, and i don't want to spend to much money.

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Re: shallow pot hole pond

Postby troutbum43 » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:43 am

I know this answer will probably sound like a broken record but I would recommend trying to engage with a state or federal biologist. The USFWS partners for fish and wildlife program or NRCS will I'm sure at least be happy to talk with you on the phone. With wetlands it really takes boots on the ground to develop a plan, look at the grades, soils etc to decide whats going to work best. In general it sounds like you have a good system in place. A quick drawdown/dryout can promote non desireable plants like cockleburr that will outcompete other plants. I'd take a look at the plants you have in there, what looks like sparse weeds could be some natural moist soil plants that can make great waterfowl food like pigweed. Hope this helps you a little, it sounds like you have all the right ingredients for a good seasonal wetland now just got to figure out how to put them together to make some food!
Conserve, promote, protect and enhance...then harvest!
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Re: shallow pot hole pond

Postby tenfingergrip » Mon Jul 08, 2013 10:45 am

Without seeing exactly what your set-up is and only going on your description of the property, thought I'd include a sketch I did about 10-12 years ago of our impoundment at our club. We had a perfect scenario with a blue water, constant flowing stream, running within 100 yards of the upper end of the field and within 50 yards of the lower drain end. The lower end of the field occasionaly flooded during heavy rains and active beavers so decided to install an impoundment. If you can make heads or tails out of the sketch, a flashboard riser was placed across the stream at the upper end to raise the water level in the creek to allow the creek to be diverted into another flashboard riser and pipe that connected to the ditch that had been dug around the three sides of the field. Another riser at the bottom end of the impoundment allowed the water to stay at a constant level and flow back into the lower end of the creek.

During the season, the entrance riser was kept at one board less (- 5.5 inches) than was the creek riser. This allowed for constant water flow into the impoundment and for the water to also spill down the creek during rains. When the boards were in place, it backed up about a half acre of water up the creek which had more vertical banks than did the lower end.

The ditch around the field was sloped from top to bottom on the sides of the field and was approx. 1 foot below the elevation of the field. This allowed for a gradual water flow and allowed for draining at season end when the lower riser boards were pulled.

To answer your question about draining the pond and filling the pond, the stream that you wish to pipe in will continue flowing thru the pipe until the water level in the pond reaches the level of the water coming in or it will continue until the pond overflows the banks if that level has not yet been reached. To drain the pond, you must have some area lower than the bottom of the pond in which to either pump the water out or dig a ditch that would flow to a lower elevation with a standing flashboard riser and pipe into the ditch. There are govt. programs that assist in creating impoundments and your local Farm Services Agency or NRCS should be able to assist you in determining if what you want to do would qualify for financial assistance as well as technical assistance.

Good luck. Hope it works out!

Click on sketch to enlarge
Impoundment for Moss Hill.jpg
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Re: shallow pot hole pond

Postby Black Smoke » Tue Jul 30, 2013 1:53 pm

From my experience in northern IN 2 years ago we made an impoundment for a guy but he was pumping out of a pond but that is beside the point in what I am going to say. We went in and took out the top soil and got down to clay/sand and dug it deeper to hold water then put the top soil back on built a dyke/levee whatever you wanna call it around the outside edge of one side where he then put a blind. The landowner then planted millet in it and was very patchy and from my experience you can plant millet about anywhere but with it being sand and clay it didn't take that well in some spots. He said he wanted it deeper so we dug more out and brought more top dirt in and this year it look 100 percent better just for the fact that we got more top soil on it. As for a recommendation for a structure you ... efault.htm this is all we use for building wetlands. I couldnt find a good site to show you but I hope this helps. Just an idea
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