Ponds and lakes are a valuable natural resource. They add beauty to the landscape, provide recreation, and are a habitat for fish and wildlife. A natural body of water is a complex biological, chemical, and physical community. The quality of the water determines the health of the entire ecosystem and the aquatic organisms living within it – from microscopic bacteria to large fish.
The “engine” that drives everything within a body of water is the presence of oxygen in proper levels. A pond’s condition deteriorates when its bottom environment cannot support aquatic life. The bottom is where the most oxygen is consumed and the farthest from the surface where it is replenished. Without adequate oxygen at the bottom, beneficial bacteria do not break down the organic waste. This results in increased layers of sediment (muck) along the pond bottom. Simply put: without oxygen, a pond cannot clean itself.