The main, most important difference between an aerator and a fountain in a pond is their intended purpose. A fountain is primarily installed for aesthetic purposes and relaxing ambient noise - they are decorative, with only slight/secondary benefits added in the way of water oxygenation. An aerator is installed specifically to introduce oxygen to the water for the overall health of the pond. Fountains are beautiful and certainly a great addition to any pond, but do not rely on them solely for aeration purposes. If anything, we would recommend coupling a fountain with an aeration system for best results.
There are several benefits to using an aerator in a pond:
- Increases oxygen levels: Aeration helps to increase the level of dissolved oxygen in the water, which is essential for the survival of fish and other aquatic life, such as beneficial zooplankton (in a pond ecosystem, zooplankton play an important role as a food source for many aquatic animals, including fish, amphibians, and birds. They also help to control the population of phytoplankton, which can become overabundant and cause problems such as algal blooms).
- Improves water quality: By increasing the oxygen levels, aeration helps to reduce the buildup of harmful substances such as algae, which can improve the overall water quality.
- Reduces odors: Aeration can help to reduce the formation of unpleasant odors caused by the buildup of organic matter in the water.
- Promotes healthy fish and plants: Aeration can help to promote the growth of healthy fish and aquatic plants by providing them with the oxygen they need to survive.
- Helps to prevent fish kills: In the absence of aeration, dissolved oxygen levels can drop, leading to fish kills. Aeration can help prevent this from happening by providing the fish with the oxygen they need to survive.
- Enhances aesthetic value: Aeration can enhance the aesthetic value of a pond by creating water movement and by adding oxygen to the water, which can help to keep the water clear.
What are the common culprits of fish kill events?
Fish kills due to oxygen deprivation can occur for a variety of reasons, including:
- Natural causes: During the summer, when the water is warm, oxygen levels can drop due to increased bacterial activity and algae growth, which can lead to fish kills.
- Overstocking: When there are too many fish in a pond or lake, oxygen levels can drop to the point where fish can no longer survive.
- Human activities: certain human activities like construction, dredging, damming and other water body modification can also reduce oxygen levels and lead to fish kills.
- Drought: low rainfall and low water levels can increase the water temperature and reduce the oxygen levels of the water, leading to fish kills.
- Low water flow: when water flow is low, the water can become stagnant, leading to a decrease in oxygen levels and fish kills.