We have a duck pond on the farm. Or something like a duck pond. It’s a large hole in the ground half-full of water, covered by Azolla (a native water fern), surrounded by grasses and visited by waterbirds. It has one major fault, it doesn’t have a water flow either in or out. It really could use some more water and Frank has grand plans to run irrigation piping from the downspouts of the shed into the pond to top it up when it rains, but that’s for some future date. In the interim, the pond languishes.
But the local bird life don’t really seem to mind that their pond is only half full. Recently I found 3 different species sharing this little space: a pacific heron, a cattle egret and 2 little Australia Grey Teal ducks.
I suspect the local frog life (which is prolific) isn’t too happy about these visitors, but I like the fact that this property has so many different environments to keep a huge diversity of wildlife hanging about.
A dam, we call this a dam here. An Australian farm without a dam is not a farm.
Make sure the wildlife remains abundant there, otherwise the mozzies will make a meal of you.
Yeah, I thought about calling it a dam, but a dam is generally something that is on a slope or an indentation that collects the normal water runoff. A farmer just builds up a pile of dirt creating a dam and it fills with water. Mine is a hole in a flat paddock that looks like it was excavated, more like a swimming pool. I honestly don’t know how water gets in there. It’s higher than the water table (or at least the top of the river) but maybe there is some underground rivulet making its way to the Hawkesbury that keeps the pond at this level. Since we’ve been watching it (since May) we’ve had long periods of dry and a couple of huge showers and the water level hasn’t moved much (though it is a couple of inches lower as evidenced from the plant life).
As for mozzies, I’ve been warned they’re ruthless. If the dam/pond didn’t provide ample breeding ground, the river would. We’re DOOMED! 😮
I have always wanted a pond! That one looks nice. I am glad you are enjoying all the aspects of your new place so much.
Once we find a way to keep it topped up, it will be fantastic. We think we’ll plant it with edibles and so it will feed us as well as the local birds.
I’d have called it a dam too. I’d never have thought of using the term duckpond but it’s way more evocative!
How intriguing about the water level. I wonder if it might have been an area of swampiness or dampness in the paddock originally that was then excavated to make a proper pond.
It’ll be interesting what food plants you plant in there.
(I’ve finally got a blog-reader I like, and can find things I want to read in easily. Yay!)
Okay, it’s a dam. And all those farmers out there with real dams can roll their eyes at me 🙂
I don’t think it’s dampness. This property (though hopefully not the house) is in a flood plain, but when it’s not flooding, it’s pretty dry. The pond is at the same elevation as the pecan orchard and rose garden and they don’t get wet. It’s just strange (actually, I prefer your word: intriguing).