Pond Muck, Lake Sediment

Pond muck or sediment is the accumulation of materials such as decaying vegetation, waterfowl and fish waste, and any other organic materials that settle on the bottom of your pond. This sediment can grow into layers of potentially harmful muck that traps gases that when released can kill fish. The thick, dense sediment can become home to leeches and worms and it can lead to a smelly unattractive pond or lake.

A natural accumulation of falling leaves, dead tree branches, landscape waste, animal waste, and fertilizers are also common in most ponds and lakes. Natural water flow in and out of a pond or lake helps to control pond muck build-up by moving sediment and preventing build-up. If there is no water flow, oxygen levels are reduced, leading to further muck decay.

Pond Muck is naturally broken down by Anaerobic Bacteria which produces hydrogen sulfide leaving the pond or lake with an unpleasant “rotten egg” smell. This also leads to the production of harmful gases, methane, ammonia, and carbon dioxide which feeds algae and weeds. If these gases are not dissipated correctly they can be toxic to fish.

Pond & Lake Management

The question is, how do you rid your pond of Pond Muck? Pond Lake Management suggests one of the following options.


Install Bottom Diffused Aeration:

Bottom Diffused Aeration adds oxygen to the bottom of the pond, distributing oxygen evenly throughout the lake or pond. The influx of oxygen helps the beneficial bacteria spread and work to break down the bottom layers of sediment.
Aeration works overtime to eliminate pond muck. It is a great choice for proactive treatment of muck build-up, keeping your pond or lake clean, healthy, and visually appealing. With less muck, your pond will be less toxic for the fish and other water inhabitants.


Manual Removal:

Lake Sediment is removed by “raking” out the debris and decaying vegetation. This process can be time-consuming and difficult but it removes the harmful muck. Removing the larger, denser sediment allows the aerobic beneficial bacteria to break-down the fine debris which is not removed manually.
Manual removal is a costly, time-consuming process, that will remove the problem, but it will not prevent future muck build-up. If you only use a manual removal strategy, muck build-up will start over again, requiring another round of manual removal in the future.

Safe Removal with Microbe based Products:

Using a product that is designed to remove lake sediment build up. Products such as are designed with microbes that consume the dead vegetation and turn it into gas and water-soluble compounds. They are safe for fish and wildlife and work relatively fast and efficiently. The manufacturer recommends removing the large debris first, followed by raking and applying weekly until the “muck” and dead vegetation are cleared.