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Pool-Owner Client Wants Fish Pool


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I have a client that has not maintained his pool in 2 to 3 years there is zero chemicals in it it’s raining it’s all rain water he wants to put some small fish in the well eat some of the algae is there something that would go in there is on the inexpensive side because I’m not a total believer in this. He expressed that he was going to put pond snails in which he meant are the big apple snails that you through concrete in Florida so I’m trying to help them out without destroying his pool in case he wants to change his mind

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I agree not sure it’s a great plan. I would do common pleco to start. Catfish are tanks and can survive things most fish can’t. Take this with a grain of salt though since I have never seen a pool pond. My neighbor had a koi pond that had common pleco. He became ill which I did not know or I would have helped. A good portion of his koi perished but his pleco thrived. (They were large and looked like commons I never asked the exact type)

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Pools can be turned into ponds but it takes a commitment especially depending on location. For example if it's in an area where real winter comes, will the pool support life or will fish need to be re-homed? Then again, this almost sounds like a homeowner that's let his yard turn into a field and wonders if he could get sheep or goats to mow the lawn! ... I appreciate your skepticism.

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If there are plants, he'll have pond snails.   But if I'm not mistaken, Apple Snails are illegal save for the Mystery Snail variety. 

Small and cheap makes me think goldfish immediately, but I have no idea how safe it would be for them.    Just dumping them in without any plants or places to hide (get cool) is what would worry me.

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That is the pool. The snail is from a canal cross the street from his house. The problem with pleco in SW Florida is they destroy everything. Eat into concrete sea walls the erosion bags and dig under things several feet to hide. The snails do pretty much the same but are on a smaller scale. We have both native and invasive apple snails here but the bigger ones are invasive. A large will clean  tank glass in a few days. So those are out. I thought about mosquito fish but I don’t know how much vegetation eat

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That looks like it would make a great pond. If that's what he really wants, then regular feeder goldfish would eat a lot of the duckweed and greenery and cost almost nothing. A few lilies in there would probably flourish and provide shade. Most livebearers would eliminate mosquito larvae. Probably be able to catch some local. There's a few threads on here about catching local fish.

If he's not going to take care of anything in the pool, he'd be better off draining it.

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On 8/20/2021 at 10:41 AM, ErinV said:

May seem like a silly question but why does he not get you (or pool company) to clean it? 

My thoughts exactly. The pool should have a filter. Use it. A shock treatment with chlorine should clear things up pretty quickly. Mosquito fish are carnvores (they eat mosquito larvae) so they'd be prety inefficient as algae eaters. Mollies are more herbivores and are somewhat native to the southern states. As livebearers they'd reproduce to use up extra food. If I absolutely had to go with a fish, it would be mollies. They're cheap, can get fairly big in larger pools (6"-8" for the bigger sailfin mollies), are relatively native so if one escapes you won't get killed by the authorities. They're also pretty tough little fish. There's likely some hiding out in that nearby ditch where the snail was found.

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I'm curious... When you say your client, are you in pool servicing or aquarium servicing?  Or something totally different but he knows you're into fish? 

I know nothing about ponds, nor what can take care of the algae. I'd just get the professionally cleaned and then work on making a pond. 

There are fish that can handle very cold, even ice on top weather. And the pool is deep enough not to freeze over completely.  Maybe a couple dozen comets can thrive there.  But really, I know nothing.... 

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I like how this guy thinks. I would totally turn this into a fish pond. 😅

First thing I would do is test the water. Is this a lovely seasoned pond, or is it a toxic cesspit? Test for nitrites, nitrates, ammonia, hardness, pH, chlorine, all the things. What’s the temperature fluctuation? It looks like it’s in a greenhouse?? That will be great in the winter but in the summer it might be REALLY intense. If he really wants it to be for fish, he will probably need a lot of floating plants for shade, like lilies, to try to keep the water temperature down. And maybe some plants around the edge of the greenhouse to block some sun. Put some planters on the steps and grow irises or reeds or something else that can have submerged roots.

I would hesitate to do a common pleco because of how invasive they are. If this guy gets bored, what’s he going to do with it? Unless you can catch one from a local waterway. Then the net harm if he releases it later is 0.

This looks like a really fun project honestly. 😄 

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On 8/20/2021 at 5:54 AM, MJV Aquatics said:

Pools can be turned into ponds but it takes a commitment especially depending on location. For example if it's in an area where real winter comes, will the pool support life or will fish need to be re-homed? Then again, this almost sounds like a homeowner that's let his yard turn into a field and wonders if he could get sheep or goats to mow the lawn! ... I appreciate your skepticism.

How much do you think a goat costs? 🤣

 

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On 8/20/2021 at 12:05 PM, Hobbit said:

I like how this guy thinks. I would totally turn this into a fish pond. 😅

First thing I would do is test the water. Is this a lovely seasoned pond, or is it a toxic cesspit? Test for nitrites, nitrates, ammonia, hardness, pH, chlorine, all the things. What’s the temperature fluctuation? It looks like it’s in a greenhouse?? That will be great in the winter but in the summer it might be REALLY intense. If he really wants it to be for fish, he will probably need a lot of floating plants for shade, like lilies, to try to keep the water temperature down. And maybe some plants around the edge of the greenhouse to block some sun. Put some planters on the steps and grow irises or reeds or something else that can have submerged roots.

I would hesitate to do a common pleco because of how invasive they are. If this guy gets bored, what’s he going to do with it? Unless you can catch one from a local waterway. Then the net harm if he releases it later is 0.

This looks like a really fun project honestly. 😄 

My guess is that the metal framing around the yard is just screening and not glass. It's a somewhat common thing for suburban houses in Florida to have full screens around their back patios, including a screened in roof. I wouldn't know this except that I visited some relatives in Florida a few years ago, and all the houses in their subdivision had the same screened in back patios with pools.

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On 8/20/2021 at 11:21 AM, Gideyon said:

There are fish that can handle very cold, even ice on top weather. And the pool is deep enough not to freeze over completely.  Maybe a couple dozen comets can thrive there.  But really, I know nothing.... 

You probably missed the OP's post, but the home is in SW Florida. No worry about freezing!

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On 8/20/2021 at 9:25 AM, Eric R said:

My guess is that the metal framing around the yard is just screening and not glass. It's a somewhat common thing for suburban houses in Florida to have full screens around their back patios, including a screened in roof. I wouldn't know this except that I visited some relatives in Florida a few years ago, and all the houses in their subdivision had the same screened in back patios with pools.

Yup, my brother’s pool in Jacksonville looks exactly like this. The screening keeps the alligators out. 

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On 8/20/2021 at 12:28 PM, Patrick_G said:

Yup, my brother’s pool in Jacksonville looks exactly like this. The screening keeps the alligators out. 

😮 I hadn't considered that it was for alligators! [Not surprising, they seem to be in every single ditch you drive past on the freeway]

I had just assumed it was for mosquitos. Another reason not to live in Florida!

There's an idea for the OP. Take the screen down, have a pet alligator (or 3). I don't think they eat algae though....

Edited by Eric R
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On 8/20/2021 at 11:30 AM, Eric R said:

😮 I hadn't considered that it was for alligators! [Not surprising, they seem to be in every single ditch you drive past on the freeway]

I had just assumed it was for mosquitos. Another reason not to live in Florida!

There's an idea for the OP. Take the screen down, have a pet alligator (or 3). I don't think they eat algae though....

Do you invite the ex wife over for a swim after getting the 3 gators??? 🤔 😂

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Dip net or catch fish out of the canal. Why buy mosquitofish and plecos when they are free in Florida. The canals are teaming with invasives including those apple snails.

 

Just make sure to have a buddy around because alligators and snakes.

 

No need to buy water hyacinth or water lily either, just go to your local canal with waders.

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