Have you ever wondered why the water in your pond seems to reduce from time to time even when you are sure it is not leaking?
This is simply a natural phenomenon that affects your pond and other water bodies like streams and rivers.
Evaporation is a natural phenomenon in which water from surfaces of objects and water bodies escape into the atmosphere in the gaseous form. Evaporation is always happening around, even in ordinary day-to-day activities.
What Are Other Examples of Evaporation in Our Everyday Life?
Do you wonder how the sweat you perspire leave your body, how wet clothes hung on a line gets dried, how the steaming tea you made got cold without refrigerating it, what about how salt is made from seawater? I can go on and on.
This is simply evaporation at work, just as what happens in your pond. So, the water that leaves your pond goes into the atmosphere, but the questions you might want to ask is how I know what the normal pond water evaporation rate should be, how do I know when my pond is leaking or evaporating. Let us school you.
What Is Normal Pond Water Evaporation?
Even though it is established that ponds lose water by evaporation, but there are levels of water loss that is normal for a pond to lose through evaporation.
When this loss is more significant than expected, you have to troubleshoot what other factor could be draining your pond.
An average-sized pond will lose 1 inch of water weekly, and if the pond is large, it might lose about 3 inches of water weekly. Some factors can tamper with this rate, and they include:
- The quantity of water in the pond: the more water in the pond, the more water will be lost through evaporation.
- The amount of sunlight: the ultraviolet ray of the sun can cause water on the surface of your pond to turn to vapor and escape to the atmosphere. So, on hot sunny days, you should expect the amount of water you lose to evaporation to be higher than other days.
- Wind and air pressure: the same way clothes hung on a line dry faster on windy and hot days, so too, the quantity of water that is evaporated from your pond will increase due to the speed of the wind.
- The temperature: We all sweat more when the weather is hot because heat evaporates the sweat from our bodies, so does water leave your ponds on a hot day making you lose more water from your pond at a higher temperature.
- The humidity of the area: humidity is the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere. When the humidity is high, it means the atmosphere has a lot of water vapor already, so that the evaporation rate will be reduced. So, if the humidity around your pond increases, the evaporation rate will decrease.
- Shade: shade has a way of blocking your pond from direct exposure to the sun. These shades are usually in the form of trees and shrubs. So, if you have lots of trees shading your pond from the sun, the less water you will lose from evaporation.
- Surface area: If your pond’s surface area is wide, you should expect to lose more water than those with less surface area. This is because a wide pond has more area from which water can escape in the form of vapor.
- Pond agitation: the more splashing the pond, the more evaporation and the amount of water loss.
How Much Water Does a Pond Loose to Evaporation?
The factors listed previously will modify the amount of water a pond will lose to evaporation. All things being equal, the expected amount of water that will evaporate from ponds can be seen in the table below:
|Gallons of water pumped hourly||The pond dimension in inches||The quantity of evaporation in inches|
|500||5 × 10||0.8|
|1500||10 × 10||1.3|
|2000||5 × 10||3.4|
|2000||10 × 10||1.7|
How Do I Stop My Pond from Evaporating?
If the rate of evaporation is not so high as to affect the living things in your pond, then you might give to endure it. However, if the water is an issue for you, you can do the following to reduce the rate of evaporation in your pond.
- Reduce the amount of agitation of your pond like splashing.
- A trellis can be fixed at the edges of your pond to block the sun rays from hurting your pond surface.
- You can plant trees or bushes around your pond that will shade the pond from the sun ultraviolet rays.
- Adding aquatic plants like the green taro plants, water Lillies, and the likes will block the pond’s surface from which water vapor escapes.
- The spread of a thin film of a material made from coconut oil on the pond surface also slows the evaporation rate. This material has no color nor taste and does not harm the life in your pond. I must add that this method is still under research.
- Another innovative option is the addition of non-toxic dye in the pond will reduce the rate of evaporation by reducing the ability of the sun’s ultraviolet rays to penetrate the water.
Does Pond Water Evaporate in Winter?
Evaporation occurs in all seasons; the only difference is in the rate. During winter, the temperature is very low, and so the amount of water on the pond surface that will escape as vapor is reduced because there is little heat to ” help more vapor escape from the pond”.
How Do I Know If My Pond Is Leaking or Evaporation?
If you are losing water from your pond, The two main reason is leakage and evaporation. However, there are a few things you will have you do to ascertain the cause of the water loss, including:
- Check the table on the amount of water loss to see if it is within the average rate for your pond’s dimension.
- Check all the atmospheric conditions like temperature, humidity, sun rays, and the likes and see how they affect your pond. For instance, during winter, a loss of 4 inches of water weekly can never be attributed to evaporation because evaporation is low during winter.
- Compare the rates at different seasons of the year as a guide. For example, if you lost 1 inch weekly in summer and 2 inches in winter, it just points to a leakage.
- You can compare the evaporation rate on your pond with those of your neighbor, whose pond is like yours.
- You can troubleshoot for leakage to be doubly sure.
What Are the Possible Causes of Pond Leakage?
You can do the following to determine the cause of leakage in your pond, and if there is none, you can safely blame the water loss on evaporation.
- Ensure there is no structural error during the construction of your pond.
- Check to see if the stream or waterfall (if any) that is supplying water to your pond has been obstructed from somewhere.
- Check the plumbing of the pond for leakage. Check all connections, joints, filters, and everything that constitutes plumbing for any leakage.
- Check the liner of the pond; if it is ripped, then get it patched. Also, watch out for rodents like squirrels and rats that might chew on your pond liner.
- Drain all the pond water and check the bottom of the pond for a leak, and if discovered, caulking should be applied at the exact place.
How Often Should I Change Pond Water?
Pond water should be changed from time to time because ponds are not like rivers that water flows into and out of them.
Pond water should not be changed completely at once because it might affect the living things inside. So, you can start by changing 15% of the water weekly and gradually increase it to 18% the next week so that the living things inside adjust to the water change.
There are a few factors that will determine how frequent your pond water and it includes:
- The number of plants and animals living on the pond: the more the living things in the pond, the faster the water gets dirty and must be changed. Two the size of the pond relative to the living things in them: bigger ponds with few living things should be drained less often.
- The more effective the filter system, the less often the water should be changed.
- The more water evaporated or leaked away, the more often the water change.
We reiterate that your pond losing water should not be an issue for you because it is natural within some given limit, an average of 1 inch weekly. If you are not comfortable with the water loss, you can reduce the rate of evaporation.
I hope you found this helpful and can now handle the loss of water in your pond. So go ahead and have all the peace you have sitting just beside your pond, and don’t let a little water loss cause you to lose sleep cause evaporation is just a common phenomenon.
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