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Dam and Lake Improvement Basics

Once we have adequate aeration and circulation we need to stimulate the natural beneficial bacteria that will break down the sludge at the bottom and consume the nutrients that feed the algae.

This can be done with a liquid and a pelletised product – the pelletised product is great when you are
starting off as it will sink to the bottom and slowly release the goodies where it is really needed.

The liquids are fantastic to use in combination and as a maintenance product – there are even stimulant products for these beneficial bacteria and enzymes.

Once we have that under control we then need to look at controlling the nutrient source.

Whether it is soil run off, stormwater catchment, falling leaves, overstocked with fish or something else there is a way to control it and we can discuss this in your consultation.

We then look to get some aquatic life growing to further reduce the nutrients, improve the aesthetics and provide a habitat for some local wildlife. We can discuss planting out the banks and creating floating islands full of aquatic plants.

The most popular way to start is Subsurface Aeration.

Subsurface Aeration

What is Subsurface Aeration?

Subsurface aeration is designed as an alternative source of aeration taking oxygen to a pond’s lowest depth along the bottom. Diffused air systems utilise an air compressor, located on the shore, that delivers oxygen through a hose to a special diffuser lying on the pond bottom.

Subsurface aeration is the more economical option in comparison to the alternatives, it is super effective at aerating and circulating  – particularly when we start talking about the more technical things like breaking the thermocline. 

Benefits of installing subsurface aeration:
  • Oxygenation can help limit nuisance vegetation and algae by facilitating the conversion of pond nutrients to forms that do not sustain algae growth.
  • Reduces the accumulation of sediment at the bottom of the water body, which is one of the most common signs of an ageing pond.
  • Reduces anaerobic bacteria which can produce ammonia and hydrogen sulphide, which can be toxic to other organisms and produce foul odours.
  • Gives aerobic bacteria  (good bacteria that feed on the same nutrients as weed and algae) the oxygen they need to thrive
  • Quiet and Cheap to run
What products can I purchase to produce energy that also reach the subsurface aerator?
  • Wind-powered and solar options available. 
  • A single unit installed within 10m of the water’s edge (so you need a 240v power point available) with a bottle of liquid beneficial bacteria
  • A higher output unit with 3 diffusers in the ventilated cabinet installed within 10m with a liquid treatment.

Some of our Available Options:

Solar and Wind with a lot of options to upgrade panels or the windmill size to generate more power and run more diffusers.
Because there are so many variables we encourage you to email us your street address and we can start by having a look via google earth. We can then five you some ballparks before booking in a consultation.

Floating Fountains  These are what most people want but a lot of people don’t realise the cost that comes with them.
Here is a brief overview of the basic ones available.
Again there are a lot of variables so please reach out with some details and we can give you a better estimate before booking a consultation.
We also recommend adding liquid and pelletised treatments with these units and then looking at erosion and planting options.

The Best and Most Professional Solution

Is to build an intake bay area in one end of the water (it’s like a height adjustable skimmer for really large water bodies) and to pump the water to the other end and into a wetland filter. We build the wetland filter up slightly higher than the dam so the water can flow back to the dam via some nice waterfalls.

This is moving into a far more effective solution as you are now filtering the particles out of the water and pushing the water through a very cleverly designed wetland that will remove the nutrients from the water with a massive population of beneficial bacteria and aquatic plants.
The waterfalls aerate the water and we get circulation by sucking from one end and returning to the other.


There are tonnes of options here too. We can add streams, multiple waterfalls, multiple suction points and multiple filters depending on how many million litres you have and what sort of biological load there is.


These will of course work extremely well in conjunction with a sub surface aerator as well.
We need components like these, plus a power supply, quality pumps, an excavator, a few truck loads of different filter mediums, aquatic plants, large boulders and an artist to build the waterfalls.
This type of solution starts at $30K

Aquascape Wetland Filter Kit
Aquascape Intake Bay Kit


And what does all this look like – well have a look at this. This video is of the completely man made swimming lake at the Woodford folk festival in QLD.


It was constructed over 4 months from July 2019 with the grand opening just before Christmas (even though it was up and running for a few weeks prior) It was excavated, lined with a quality underlay and then a rubber epdm liner (well quite a few rolls joined and seamed together), the rock walls and natural river gravel floor, beaches and island were all made by a very talented team.
It is managed with the same intake bay, and wetland filters, waterfalls and sub surface aerators.
It is 6m deep in the deep section and holds 9 megalitres (9 million litres)

We were one of the talented crews to work on this amazing project and are master certified aqua-scape contractors.

If you are interested in something like this we would love to chat.