Digging out farm ponds

Discussion in 'Fishing General' started by Elitebowhunter, Apr 18, 2011.

  1. Elitebowhunter

    Elitebowhunter New Member

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    Need some input on this guys. I have a farm pond that's about 1-2 acres or so. The pond is well over 30 years old and is becoming very shallow. I open water/ice fish this pond often. During the past winter ice fishing I noticed that the deepest part of the pond was only about 6-7 feet deep. The pond is great for 3-5 pound bass and USED to have catfish in it. Long story short I am wondering what would be the best way to dig this thing out so its back to its original depth (15-20 feet deep? I have considered a backhoe however, there is no way in hell that it will be able to reach out to the middle. Would you go with the dragline route or is there something better and more cost effective?

    I would like to do something that is not going to have much affect on the fish in the pond.

    Above the pond is another old existing pond that has row crop around it (reasoning for my pond being silted in). The pond I own is surrounded by pasture up to the neighbors fence.

    Thanks for the input
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2011
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  3. AIRASSAULT

    AIRASSAULT PMA Member

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    i've seen some very loooooong excavators out there.. if anything, they could reach out there a good ways and give you some deeper areas, maybe not the whole pond.. i just did a quick search and found one that can reach 22 meters... you need to dig out that other pond above too.. that is your "silt pond"... keep that one dug out and you shouldn't have to dig out the big one in a long time.
     
  4. hotshott2289

    hotshott2289 Active Member

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    you could get a long boomed excavator, but your best bet would be to breech the damn and get in there with a dozer.. that'd be the best way to get your pond done right
     
  5. hammes357

    hammes357 New Member

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    if the excavator is hard to find any body with a crane and a drag bucket and if it was in your price range could do the job and pile the muck right up for you
     
  6. Elitebowhunter

    Elitebowhunter New Member

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    wouldn't this have to dry out then so you could get in there to dig it out? Some of the ponds take months if not years to dry out, or at least what i have heard.
     
  7. Daver

    Daver PMA Member

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    My thoughts match up with Hotshot too, I would lean towards breaching the dam and then dozing it out. It might take a year for it to dry out enough to run the dozer through, but in the long run that is what I think would work best.

    I have seen and fished ponds that were scooped out, and I have yet to see one that really worked well. Let us know what you do though, I am curious.
     
  8. hotshott2289

    hotshott2289 Active Member

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    it would have to dry out, but you can breech the dam and when the water blows out you will loose some of your silt, and then you can dig some of it out if you are having problems getting it to dry out. It really depends on how deep your silt is, if your talking 2-3' it really wont be an issue to get in there and get it cleaned out really nice, we've had old ponds that we made bigger just by draining the original and a month or so later go in with a dozer or two and re build it.
     
  9. oldgene

    oldgene PMA Member

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    I had an excavator come in a few years ago and work on my pond, they have quite a reach but won't be able to reach the middle, but they do make a good trench around the pond that then has deep water. If you bust open the dam and drain it and want to move out 15 to 20 feet of silt, I believe it will take a long time for it to dry out, plus you have to start over with stocking your pond. If you are catching 3 - 5 lb bass and have good quality bluegills I would go with the excavator, then throw some cats in for fun. Remember to use 6 to 8 in cats for restocking if you use fingerlings the bass will eat'em up faster then you can put them in.
     
  10. Elitebowhunter

    Elitebowhunter New Member

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    Couple years ago had a excavator come in and do that to one of the smaller ponds. Did a pretty good job but as you stated, they will not be able to reach the middle of the pond. Its about 8-10 feet deep along the edges and about 2 feet out in the center. Makes things a little interesting when you are fishing. :rolleyes:
     
  11. AIRASSAULT

    AIRASSAULT PMA Member

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    well, if anything, you could always build a castle out in the middle and keep a moat around it.... just sayin :D
     
  12. iowabucks

    iowabucks Member

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    I have fished a farm pond that was dredged with an excavator about 8 years ago. It had a really nice 10 foot deep trench not far from the banks. These days it's back to about 5 foot deep again. There is tall grass all the way around the pond so there can't be too much runoff going in the pond.

    It was nice after it got dredged, but it didn't last long. Maybe a dozer might be your best bet for lasting effect on depth.
     
  13. tbrownarcher

    tbrownarcher New Member

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    Has anyone suggested a dredge??? they float and can reach anywhere I know you could get what you wanted whith that ?

    thanks,
    Nate
     
  14. tbrownarcher

    tbrownarcher New Member

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    oh ! sorry for that! I hadn't read the previous reply and the job has probably been abandoned by now or completed anyhow.

    Nate
     

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