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How to Build an Artificial Fishing Lake

Updated on April 4, 2016

Les Rouvets "Man Made" Coarse Fishing Lake in Guernsey.

Les Rouvets "Man Made" Coarse Fishing Lake in Guernsey. © Cindy Lawson
Les Rouvets "Man Made" Coarse Fishing Lake in Guernsey. © Cindy Lawson

Ideally, when you decide to build a fishing lake you need first to find a suitable piece of land, and then have the "vision" to imagine how that piece of land will look once flooded with water.

The most suitable locations are to be found on low lying land, so ensuring that water will naturally drain into the lake frequently and avoid it drying up. An added bonus is if a stream flows alongside the lake, as this can naturally provide a supply of water that will drain through to the newly built lake if you build a small ditch from the stream to the lake at the lowest point of your new lake. Do not be tempted to allow the stream to directly feed into the lake itself, as in a matter of a year or two the silt build up in your new lake will have reached levels that require urgent attention. This is not only expensive to resolve, but often hard to achieve once your surrounding trees have become established, (so making it difficult for machinery to access the silted up areas), and may even require you draining down your lake to enable the silt to be safely removed, (which leaves you with the new problem of what to do with your fish stocks whilst the work is completed).

Naturally it is very tempting to simply dam the stream and allow the man made lake to fill to the point it overflows the dam, (as was done at Les Rouvets Lake pictured above). The risks here are that once the wooden dam degrades or begins to rot, it could give way at any time, in which case where is all that water going to go? Also, the silt does gradually ruin the lake unless removed every few years. In the case of Les Rouvets Lake above, the problem has been that the end of the lake where the stream enters, is now only a couple of feet deep due to the large level of silt that has accumulated since it was first dug out in 1963. In the years since the lake was first built, the surrounding trees and shrubs have matured, and now, the only way to remove the silt would be to drain the lake to around half full, then allow a number of weeks for the silt to dry out before getting ramps built to enable a digger to access the silt and remove it, without itself sinking into the silt buildup. Even then, a number of the mature trees and shrubs would have to be removed to allow access to a JCB of suitable size to complete the work, and this in itself would prove a very costly exercise.

Make sure that if you do have a stream running next to your new lake, the bank between them should be high enough that if the stream is flooded after heavy rains it will not affect the lake and will follow it's own natural course as usual.

At the deepest part of the lake a "monk" should be built, which allows the water level to be controlled, but also allows the lake to be drained completely if required.

Les Rouvets "Man Made" Lake in Guernsey

Do Trout Need Running Water?

It used to be believed that for trout to thrive they required running water, but this has proven to be a false assumption. So long as the water is clean and deep, trout will flourish. It has been proven over and over again that trout have successfully survived in man made concrete reservoirs and artificial ponds with no flow of water running through them.

A Small Lake in the Early Stages of Being Built

Depths and Temperatures

The depths you choose for your lake will largely depend on the fish you intend to stock it with later. Temperature-wise any water that remains over 20 degrees Celsius over the Summer is ideal for coarse fish, a cooler water that does not go above 20 degrees Celsius in Summer is better for trout. Rainbow trout will cope better with higher temperatures than brown trout. Coarse fish such as the Cyprinids, e.g. carp and tench, are pretty tough, although ideally they should have deeper areas of over 1.5 - 2.0 metres where they can go to for the duration of the winter months and remain semi-dormant until the warmer weather arrives. Trout will require a minimum of 2 metres to ensure the water remains cool enough for them to thrive.

Oxygen Levels

Naturally oxygen levels will be very important to your eventual fish stocks. In hot weather oxygen levels can drop to dangerous levels. To avoid this potential problem it is important to firstly ensure your lake is not too muddy, or full of underwater weed, and secondly that the surface area is sufficient to absorb as much oxygen as possible, because a deep lake with a small surface area will not absorb as much oxygen as a shallower lake with a large surface area.

Water Quality

It will be an important consideration as to the quality of water you will be able to provide in your new lake. Ideally the pH levels should be between 6.5-8 regardless of whether to intend to stock the newly built lake with trout or with coarse fish.

You will also need to determine that the water that feeds your lake is not polluted in anyway, so follow your feeder streams to their source to ensure cattle, pesticides, sewage etc are not inadvertently being fed into your new lake.

Suitable Species of fish for Clay or Gravel Bottomed Lakes

If your lake has a gravelly or hard clay bottom, then it will prove most suitable for trout, as the Cyprinid species of coarse fish such as carp and tench tend to stir up the muddy bottoms of lakes looking for food, which would be difficult for them if the bottom was gravel or hard clay.

Wildfowl such as ducks on your lake are not a problem if the numbers are minimal, as the droppings they produce will fertilise the water and the lake will therefore be the perfect habitat for the natural foods coarse fish consume.

Planning Your Lake

Before you go ahead and dig a big hole in the ground, consider that most anglers enjoy the feeling of being "the only person fishing". It is therefore important to create a lake that is not a perfect circle, and has bends and curves that can be separated by trees and shrubs to give the illusion of isolation for the anglers. In addition to this advantage, there will be a far greater fishing space around a contoured lake than a perfect circle.

You will obviously need large earth moving machines to commence building your lake, and even this only follows you obtaining the correct planning permissions if you don't want to be forced to fill your newly dug lake in again.

Make sure you get a number of quotes for the work involved, ideally from companies who have experience of digging lakes out previously. Quotes can vary greatly, and make sure they are based on the completed job, not on an hourly rate.

Damming Your Lake

To dam a lake the best course of action is to find an area of low lying ground such as a valley, then build a dam to trap the water and prevent it flowing away. This will be made far easier if the lake will be fed by a stream, although an an overflow will then obviously be necessary. Bear in mind what I said earlier though about the stream not ideally feeding immediately into the lake to avoid silt build up.

Firstly you will need to remove all trees and shrubs from around the proposed area, as the roots of these would, over time, act as a point for water to drain out of the lake. The same will apply to grass, reeds etc, as whilst they rot they will create routes where water can drain through, and water will always find a way!

Next, you will need to build a ditch approximately half a metre deep across the valley where you intend to place your dam, (see figure 1 below). This will ensure the dam is secured on the site and avoid water seeping through. Please do not avoid this step as a shortcut, or you may well live to regret it.

You will next need to lay a drainage pipe at the base of the dam, at least 30cm in diameter assuming you have only a very small stream feeding your lake. This pipe will only need to be used in the event you need to drain your lake using the "monk" which also needs to be built. Ensure your pipes have posts driven in each side of them to avoid the heavy action of the machinery from disconnecting them later on. These pipes must angle slightly downhill to make sure water flows in the right direction, (much like your crockery draining board at home).

At the top end of the pipe you need to dig a hole for the foundations of the "monk", the bigger the better. Depending on whether you have a clay soil or not determines on the thickness. Hard clay will require one metre thickness, but softer clay will need digging out to whatever level is necessary to reach firm ground. A monk of 3 metres in height in soft clay will require a concrete foundation of at least 2 metres cubed. Do not make the mistake of taking shortcuts on this, as you will only end up with a monk that tilts or is not functional.

Make sure reinforcing rods are used within the concrete foundations (which must not be too wet to avoid water seepage), and these rods should go to the full height of the monk.

Bear in mind your monk should always be built at the deepest point of the lake in case you ever need to drain the lake down completely.

Draining your lake every year or two enables removal of silt, debris, and diseased fish, and facilitates easy repairs.

figure 1
figure 1

The Monk

Building your monk will largely depend on the depth of your lake. Any depth over 2 metres will require a concrete or brick monk, whilst under 2 metres a wooden one will suffice.

The advantages of having a monk are many, not least of which is the fact you can drain down your lake periodically to remove silt, debris, diseased fish etc.

It is important that your monk is made from material sufficiently strong to allow for the huge water pressures it will have to cope with in the event you need to drain the lake. Ideally a lake deeper than 2 metres will require a concrete monk reinforced with iron rods.

The three walls of your concrete monk will each need to be at least 30 cm thick, and in the event you plan to build a deep lake your monk may need to be four metres high or more.

The diagrams below illustrate the view of the side of the monk open towards the lake (figure 2), and the view from above the monk looking down (figure 3). These illustrate the grooves where the stop boards and gratings will be situated. U irons are ideal for using in these grooves as they allow the boards to slide up and down very easily when required. If the pipeline and the apertures of the monk measure 30cm the two irons will need to be welded together so they are running parallel 30cm apart. Holding the two U irons apart should be two cross bars, one at the top and one about 10cm from the bottom. These must not be on the lake side of the frame or they will make handling of the boards difficult. Ensure all iron is covered in anti-rust paint.

The two bottom ends of the U iron frame will need to be embedded in the concrete foundation, ideally when the concrete is being poured. The frame must be absolutely straight, and should be checked with a spirit level both horizontally and vertically and supported in their position with poles. When the concrete has set the frame can be used as a guide for building up the monk.

Depending on whether you need to simply let off surface water, or if you need the ability to let water away from differing levels will determine how many sets of boards you need. A single set will only allow drainage of surface water, whereas for differing levels two sets of boards must be allowed for. This means three sets of U iron grooves. The outer will be to keep back debris and fish, the third inmost, to hold the boards regulating the level of the lake. The second, middle one to hold boards, one of which is replaced by a similar sized grating. This grating must slide up and down easily and it can be put at the level at which you wish to draw off water, (see figure 4 below). If for example you wish to draw water off from the bottom of the lake, you will slide the grating down to the bottom of the second, or middle, set of grooves, and slide the boards above down to rest above the grating. The water will then flow through the grating and then up and over the third, inmost section, down through the monk and out through the pipeline, (see figure 5). The actual level of the lake is always governed by the height of the boards in the innermost set of grooves.

figure 2
figure 2
figure 3
figure 3
figure 4
figure 4
figure 5
figure 5

Naturally you will need to alter the draw off level when required, and obviously when the lake is full the grating and the boards will be covered in water so you cannot get to them. The way this is achieved is by placing an extra board temporarily in the third innermost set of boards so that all water stops flowing. Each board has eyelets attached to them, and using a long hook iron, (see figure 6 below), you will then draw up all the boards and the grating, then remove the temporary board from the third section so that the water flows again.

figure 6
figure 6

The dimensions of the grating should be square so that the bars can be aligned either horizontally or vertically as required. When the lake has to be emptied the grating can be placed so the bars are horizontal. As the water flows through the debris will only block up the top bars, allowing the water free flow through the lower bars. Naturally this will require less attention than if all the bars were vertical.

The boards used should not be made of oak, as if left in contact with the U iron for a long period the action of the acid in the wood can destroy the iron. For stop boards elm is best.

Once your Monk has been built it should be rendered inside and out to prevent leaks.

Ensure that the last three or four pipes at the outflow are bedded in with as much concrete as possible. This is because in the event of an emergency and you need to drain your lake down quickly, the force of the water could shift the last pipes with the result of washing your dam away completely.

The Dam Building Stage 2

Once your monk is completed and the concrete has hardened, you will need to dig a further ditch on the downstream side of the outlet pipes, and this will then need to be connected to the original stream. On the upstream side of the lake in front of the monk (which currently does not have any stop boards or grating fitted), you dig a further ditch towards the stream so that the stream is directed through the monk, into the original stream bed.

Next you need to block off the old stream bed so that it dries out. It will soon be filled in once the dam building commences.

The stream bed where the foundation of the dam will be must be completely cleared of all vegetation, after which you can bring in the heavy machinery.

Assuming you are using a bulldozer it is important that the dam is built up layer by layer completely. For example, if your dam is going to be 50 metres wide at the base, the bulldozer should from the start push over the whole of that 50 metres of width, and as the dam grows higher and narrows, he should continue to travel over the full width of the dam. The weight of the machines will then consolidate the earth below.

As the machine comes closer to your pipes you will need to be very careful that the pressure of the earth he is moving does not push your pipes apart and cause them to block up. This can happen even when the bulldozer is several metres away. To prevent this get the machine to stop 8 metres away from the pipeline. Then make the machine push it's bladeful of soil at a reduced speed, and gently lift the blade and let the soil fall down in front of the machine, before reversing away a good 20 metres or so at gentle speed. This will need to be repeated until there is sufficient earth for two or three men to shovel it further towards the pipeline, and eventually onto the pipes themselves where they will need to tread it down firmly. Once there is three or four metres of soil on top of the pipes the bulldozer can carefully drive over the soil to compress it down. For the first 20-30 journeys over the buried pipes the machine should be driven slowly until the earth has been fully compressed and the pipes have no tendency to move. It is worth periodically checking the pipe by looking down the end of it to ensure daylight is still visible at the other end. If not, the pipes have shifted and will need to be dug up and realigned.

The soil used to build your dam should be as waterproof as possible, therefore the obvious choice is a clay soil possibly topped with another type of soil so that the clay is not likely to simply slip away.

You can never overdo the width of your dam, and the wider it is, the more stable it is going to be. Generally speaking, the width at the top of the dam should be equal to the height of the dam. In other words, a dam that is 5 metres high should also be 5 metres wide at the top, (see figure 9 below).

The final height of your dam should be around 50-60cm above the highest water level of the lake. The larger the lake the greater this safety margin should be. The overflow will regulate the level of the lake, and this level should be a little below the top board of the monk. In other words, the surplus water should always exit through your overflow, not through your monk.

What is very important is that the depth your machines dig to should never be deeper than the bottom of the monk, otherwise you will be unable to drain the lake completely. Also the sides of the lake must slope towards the centre and the bottom of the lake must slope towards the monk and the dam.

The Overflow

An overflow is important to have in addition to a monk, (which in itself should not be relied on solely as a means of maintaining water levels). Even if the stream feeding your lake is very small, the overflow will need to be considerably larger to allow for unforeseen storms or floods that may produce a massive surge of water through your lake. If you look at figure 7 below you will see that the overflow has been located where the dam joins the edge of the valley. It is important that your overflow is built on virgin soil that has not been disturbed by machines to minimise the risk of water seeping through, and possibly eroding away your dam at high speed.

First dig a channel 30 cm below the future level of the lake. Commence this digging on the lake side, and then slowly downwards in an arch towards the stream where it emerges out of the pipeline under the dam. The width of the channel on the lake side should be about 4 metres. This channel can become narrower and deeper as it slopes down the offside of the dam. The intake, the lake side, of the overflow needs to be very wide to prevent sudden rising of the water levels within the lake. It is also wise to allow room for a fish barrier made of finely meshed plastic net, which will prevent your fish from escaping, and catch any debris. The wider this barrier is the less attention it will require to clear it. The fish barrier is usually semi-circular and staked firmly one or two metres in front of the overflow.

The 30cm channel you dug below the level of the lake is to form a floor for the overflow made of concrete. This floor will need to be extended a metre or more into the lake, (see figure 8) below to view this in profile.

The floor will need to be extended a metre or so into the lake to prevent water seeping underneath. The sides of the overflow to the back of the dam can be made of brickwork, or concrete, and the whole structure will need to be reinforced with iron rods.

It will also be necessary to have "ears" of concrete both sides of the overflow that extend into the soil, also to prevent seepage.

Do not forget when the overflow is being built that it controls the level of the lake, therefore in relation to the monk it must allow for a level of water slightly lower than the top of the board in the monk.

Bear in mind the overflow is being built before the lake has started to fill with water. Currently all water is running through the monk and the pipes under the dam. Problems could arise if you experience unforeseen heavy rains for a number of weeks, in which case the monk and pipes may not be able to take all the water. If the water rises to a point where it reaches the top of the dam and then runs over it, your dam could be washed away completely. If your stream is unpredictable it is a good idea to build the overflow before the dam.

The lake can be filled three to four weeks after the work has been completed. This delay is to allow all concrete to harden, and to check to see if the monk or the overflow have settled in any way. When you do commence filling the lake it should be done slowly, and the inflow hatch boards should be adjusted to ensure the lake does not fill by more than 5 to 8 cm every day. As the water rises the pressures on your structures will be considerable, so if the water only rises slowly it will enable you to correct any problems.

figure 7
figure 7
figure 8
figure 8

Summary

1) Find a piece of land that is suitable for the type of fish you intend to stock your lake with. i.e. 2-3 metres of depth for a trout fishery or at least 1.5 metres for a coarse fishery.

2) Determine your levels so that no neighbouring land is in danger of being flooded.

3) Divert the stream (if you have one), into a new stream bed around the lake.

4) Clear away all vegetation from the ground where you intend to site your dam.

5) Lay your pipes and build your monk.

6) Ensure that the earth that makes up the newly built dam is properly consolidated and that the correct angles have been achieved, i.e. towards the lake is 1 in 4 and on the offside the angle is 1 in 3, (see figure 9 below).

7) The overflow is built in it's correct place where the dam joins virgin soil on the side of the valley.

8) Dig the draining ditches on the bottom of the lake to make draining in future years easier.

figure 9
figure 9

Lastly

All you need to do now is to consider what vegetation to plant around your lake and if you want to build decked fishing swims etc. It is wise to give the lake a month or two to settle down before attempting to stock it with fish, and then you will probably need to supplementary feed for a while until the natural food supplies establish themselves.

Research Sources

Apart from my own experience I found the 1984 book called "Sports Fisheries in the Making" written by the late Alex Behrendt a very useful source of research.

The diagrams used in this Hub were drawn by Katharine Behrendt and were also obtained from the same book as above.

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    • Bard of Ely profile image

      Steve Andrews 9 years ago from Lisbon, Portugal

      Interesting hub, Cindy!

      Here on Tenerife we desperately need rain or the pools at Erjos will dry out. I have never seen them so low and the news has reported that most of the reservoirs in the north are really down.

    • compu-smart profile image

      compu-smart 9 years ago from London UK

      Wow!, I have all the tools to start building a lake!! Now I just need some land!!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 9 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Go for it compu-smart, it is a great project and well worth the end result even if you only do it on a small scale.

    • guidebaba profile image

      guidebaba 9 years ago from India

      Great. I just love fishing.

    • Aya Katz profile image

      Aya Katz 8 years ago from The Ozarks

      This is a great hub! I have a five acre pasture that I want to turn into a chimpanzee habitat. I want to build a lake with a big island. Chimpanzees can't swim, so this would be a natural barrier. (A wall or a fence wouldn't hold them.) The lake needn't be big, compared to the island. So in fact, you can think of it more like a moat. I was thinking of stocking it with fish just to keep the water clean.

      Any suggestions on how to do this? I'm on a budget.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Aya Katz, great idea as I have seen this kind of environment provided for Chimpanzees on documentaries before, and know they cannot swim so it makes a great natural barrier.

      I don't believe having fish in your "moat" would necessarily keep it "clean", as the fish will produce waste in their own right. The best way to keep water clean is using various plants that oxygenate the water and so provide a natural habitat for wildlife to thrive. By all means you can put fish in there too, and the choice you have of fish will be based upon if the water is running water or stillwater, and what part of the world you live in, depths you can provide etc. These fish would be more for "novelty value" though, and if you are on a budget and don't really have a huge personal desire to actually have fish, I would suggest lots of the kind of plants I have suggested, and they could be purchased either through local pond fish type stores, garden centres or possibly online. If you are worried about the pond weed getting out of control, then I would suggest adding a few Grass Carp, who will feed on the weed itself. If you do add Grass Carp try to ensure they are all the same sex, as if they breed they will quickly eat ALL of the plants you have introduced leaving you back to square one.

      Good Luck, and if I can be of any further help please feel free to contact me again.

    • Aya Katz profile image

      Aya Katz 8 years ago from The Ozarks

      Mistyhorizon, thanks for the advice. Grass carp, all the same sex. But how long do they live? How often will I have to replace them if they are not allowed to reproduce?

    • Aya Katz profile image

      Aya Katz 8 years ago from The Ozarks

      Are grass carp readily available in North America?

    • Jerilee Wei profile image

      Jerilee Wei 8 years ago from United States

      Some of our biggest headaches and expenses in building ponds on our farm were involving the permit process. We placed islands in the center of each large pond and had each pond overflow to the next. The islands were great for nesting Canadian geese and other wildlife. Good hub!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Aya,

      Not sure if you can get Grass Carp easily in North America as I am UK based. these fish live for many years, and easily over 40 or older so not too many worries about replacing them as they die off.

      Jerilee, you are right that certain permits may well be required depending on where you want to build your lakes, and we too have more than one lake feeding into another, as our main lake feeds into a smaller Koi Carp only lake, and then into a further lake that is currently very shallow and used for growing Watercress in. The water from this lake drains down through a stream to the nearby beach and out to sea. Our lake too has two islands in the middle of it, and is full of wildlife especially

      Waterfowl and Dragonflies, truly a proper nature reserve.

    • Trsmd profile image

      Trsmd 8 years ago from India

      why you are using Bold Letters in your Pages?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Trsmd, only because I think it makes reading easier, especially if people have eyesight problems. :)

    • profile image

      faz27 8 years ago

      hi i have a question about the land if anyone can answer it. lets say i bought some arable land 22 acres just down the road from my house and assuming i could get planning on it how would i know if it would hold water? does all land hold water if you dig deep enough? is there a way to test it. its not far from a natural stream "beck" as they say in yorkshire. really fancy my own fishery lol

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Not all land will hold water, it really needs to be a clay soil. If you dig down far enough you will most likely reach a clay layer, but if not, you will need to buy in large amounts of clay soil to line the lake bed. If it is constantly fed by the stream it will make your life a lot easier, as it will help to keep it topped up until the lake bed settles down and holds water naturally. If you do line the lake with clay soil, then give it a few weeks to dry out and harden up before attempting to fill with water.

    • profile image

      Martin 8 years ago

      G'day Cindy,

      Pretty awesome bit of work.

      Martin from the Rockmount.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Martin, Really appreciate the compliment. See you in the Rockie very soon :)

    • profile image

      Adam B 8 years ago

      Very interesting HUB, how do you make money with it?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Well, the way to make money is to charge people an annual membership fee to come and fish it, or charge them a day ticket rate to fish it purely occasionally. With coarse fishing it isn't about eating the fish, it is about the challenge of catching them, outwitting them and breaking local or world records for weights etc. All fish are rereleased unharmed back into the lake and live for many many years.

      Alternatively you could stock a lake with trout, and again charge people to fish it, but allow them to take home the first two fish or so they catch each time. The trouble with this is you do need to keep restocking your lake as the fish can't breed fast enough to keep up with the demand.

      We charge £250 (UK pounds), for an annual membership, £150 for a 6 month membership or £10 for 24 hours, so this is where we make our money from.

      Hope this helps and thanks for stopping by :)

    • RGraf profile image

      Rebecca Graf 8 years ago from Wisconsin

      Extremely good hub and very informative!

      Thank you.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks RGraf, glad you enjoyed it :)

    • Belly Decorations profile image

      Belly Decorations 8 years ago from Bossier, LA

      It's been a dream of ours to build a lake on our property. I really appreciated this hub. I visited a lake in Germany that had a stream that fed the lake and a stream from the lake fed back into the stream. It was constant freah water and looked as though very clean. Large grates held the stocked fish in. You said that this would cause a silt build up to run the stream into the lake. Do you think if the stream ran out of the lake it would decrease the chance of silt build up?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I doubt it Belly Decorations, as we have a stream that runs into our lake, and overflows into a further lake at the other end before draining into the sea ultimately. We still have problems with silt build up, and due to the nature of the woodland surrounding our lake it is impossible for us to get a JCB down to the lake to scoop out the silt. It does take a number of years for the silt to build up though, so you could plan in advance to leave enough room a large vehicle to get down to the shore in the future if the silt needs removing, but you must be able to allow the lake to drain down to make this possible. Otherwise you need to follow the plans as in this hub to divert the stream around the lake.

      Thanks for your comment and your visit.

      Good luck.

    • profile image

      agaton 8 years ago

      Actually I have seen a restaurant having a pond or what you call it catch basin of water, they used to earn their living with this pond. The restaurant actually is above the pond. You can see fish from a top and catch your own fish to cook and eat. You can come and see it ourself at Malolos City, Bulacan, Philippines

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Sounds like a great idea agaton, and thanks for telling me about it. :)

    • makemoneyeffortle profile image

      makemoneyeffortle 8 years ago from Loxahatchee

      What a great Hub not a subject I would have thought of. Nice job.

      Dave

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks makemoneyeffortle, it is a great project that is very satisfying. Thanks for commenting :)

    • profile image

      dunny 8 years ago

      how much would this all cost then?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Golly, now there's a good question. So much depends on what you need to pay for, e.g. have you already got land, or do you need to buy it, how big do you want your lake, how deep do you want your lake, will you have to hire a JCB, or do you have friends in the trade who will help you out at 'mates rates'. In any case, you will be talking many thousands of pounds, and this is a long term investment.

    • profile image

      dunny 8 years ago

      i dont have land, i will be hiring jcb if i do it my mate who will be doing this with me will be using the jcb. i will need about enough for a small commercial fishing pond about 5 foot deep

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      This is still a really hard question to answer dunny. The price of land in areas varies greatly (and I am no expert on what land costs where), JCB hire could also be very expensive even if hired self drive. You also need to get planning permission from the authorities before you commence building your lake. Then you have to consider the price of stocking your lake with decent sized Carp, which could be many thousands of pounds in itself if you buy them in at decent weights. I estimate to build the lake we have now all over again today would probably cost us around £50,000 without fish to stock it, and assuming we already owned the land. To buy our lake complete now, with the land, would cost around £100,000. I don't know if this helps you at all.

    • profile image

      dunny 8 years ago

      kk thx :) its allways been a dream of mine and maybe in the future i will have the money to do this

    • profile image

      dunny 8 years ago

      kk thx :) its allways been a dream of mine and maybe in the future i will have the money to do this

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      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I hope you do too dunny, as it is a great buzz to run your own fishing lake, plus watching it mature as the plants grow and the wildlife moves in. You could always draw up a business plan and approach a bank for a business loan to set up a fishing lake.

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      Patrick 8 years ago

      Very good information Misty. Just what i was looking for. Thank you for putting the time in so others can learn from you and ultimatley save a fortune.

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      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Patrick, really glad this was what you were looking for, and hope it truly helped :)

    • santoion profile image

      santoion 8 years ago

      I believe that YOU are Great !

    • oldtimephotos profile image

      oldtimephotos 8 years ago

      hi misty. i am looking at starting to build a 4 acre carp lake in the uk should be starting it in 5 weeks and we are going to follow your guide,i read it all and we get it but i cant get my head around the monk ,how wide are the boards and is there 1 big board for each slot , or are there lots of boards in each slot.we dont get it . can you help us.. thanks pete..

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      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi oldtimephotos/Pete. Each slot is better with a number of boards so that you can simply drop the level of the lake if you need to, rather than being forced to completely drain the lake each time you remove a large single board. Hope this helps.

    • Charia Samher profile image

      Charia Samher 8 years ago

      The photos look so natural. Someone must have been so rich to put up something like this. Anywayz if you're going to make lots of money out of it, then why not. =) Very nice!

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      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Charia, yes, the person who built it originally was very rich. Sadly he died a number of years ago after he moved away from the island. I wouldn't say it is currently a good way to make money as here on Guernsey people are pretty determined to stick to sea-fishing, so freshwater fishing is more of a labour of love. My guess is that if this lake was on the UK mainland it would be very successful though.

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      Jonathan 8 years ago

      Hi,

      I have my eye on a very old lake which will require lots of work to turn it into a fishery. I wondered what the round stone 'well' looking thing was, but presumably this is the monk.

      This explains the low level of the water, a section of the monk was missing allowing the water to drain.....I had assumed the lake had a leek and would require more major work.

      This lake is probably 200 years old and is almost completely full with silt and mostly dried solid, I intend to dig it out myself with hired machinery, but how do I know if it is clay lined and how can I avoid punching through this layer?

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      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      The "Stone Well" looking thing is no doubt the monk and the water level should rise once the missing section is replaced. If the lake was originally 200 years old I can only assume that the soil there must have been correct for lake building, and is therefore no doubt clay. A clay soil will tend to Stick together if you squeeze it in your hands, plus in hot weather it will produce cracks along the surface. You could also get a sample tested by a laboratory of course, or do some research on the geology of the area in your local library. Try asking elderly local residents who may know a bit of history on the area too.

      As far as the risk of "punching through the clay layer" goes, it is a hard question to answer. Clay is usually quite deep a layer anyway, my advice would be to dig a "test area" first, and go down as deep as you would like the whole lake to be. If you then fill this area with water and it doesn't drain away you have cracked it. If it does drain away you can quickly repair the problem by introducing clay soil back into the area until you reach a safe level. Again, your other alternative would be to pay for a geological type survey to be done on the land that will determine the various layers of soil, (usually a long 'tube like' sample of land is taken that will show the layers in cross section allowing an accurate report of the various levels of soils etc. If you can find out some history on the lake you may find references to how deep it used to be, which is a pretty good guideline to follow.

      I hope this has helped and wish you luck.

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      Jonathan 7 years ago

      Thanks for the advice.

      Do you know where I can find information on water volume requirments for carp? The lake is just under 2.7 acres and we would like to introduce carp to maybe 30lb with a view to having some 40's in the years to come.....Do carp require any specific volumes of water in order to grow to this size? This will affect how deep we excavate the lake.

      I have done internet research but with no success, are you aware of many books on the subject of carp fisheries? I googled the book you noted in your research sources but your page was the only hit!

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      Mike 7 years ago

      I just purchased 65acres with 10 low flat acres the rest is rolling hills. I am looking to build a lake/pond but am curious if there is a general cost formula ie. 1 acre lake cost x amount. I also wanted to know who to contact about a permit for such an endeavor?

      Thanks

    • profile image

      mike 7 years ago

      sorry forgot some where can you get the water if there isn't a ready source or if the county doesn't allow to tap into the stream that is nearby. I would assume you can dig a well for it but not sure.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Firstly to Jonathan, the main thing is depth with Carp, so a few feet will never be enough. Ideally 7 feet plus is best but anything up to about 20 feet is better (after this it starts to become too deep for ideal conditions). Sorry not to have replied sooner, but your post did not get sent to me as for some reason it was identified as possible SPAM.

      The book I referred to is out of print, so best sourced ffrom a site that specialises in "out of print books".

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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Mike, two very good questions. Firstly the cost formula will vary hugely depending on where you are located, (and where we are located land is at a premium, so costs would be huge). As for your second question, I am guessing that if you can't utilise the stream itself you may have to simply wait for natural rainfall to fill up your lake, or alternatively, (but of course more expensively), get the water tankered in, or chat up your local fire brigade.

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      john mccredie 7 years ago

      there are many many ways to build lakes, including spawning streams for trout for example and to also use it as a geoexchange source for heating and cooling.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks John, yes there must be many ways to build lakes, but sadly there are few articles on the Internet that explain to people how to do this. Perhaps you could write one on the spawning streams for trout etc as this would add to the online information available to the public!

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      Michael 7 years ago

      Hi

      I just purchased 40 acres that has thirteen catfish ponds. There is a water source of three year round springs; two of which flow through the ponds. We are going to have the inner burms removed which should give us an approx 13 acre lake. I read this site and quickly became aware of the silt issues resulting from streams flowing directly into the lake. Thankfully, the two streams can be routed around the ponds into the third stream. Is there any method or compound available that will control the silt? If I route the water around the lake, will I still have silt issues? The place has been poorly maintained and will need alot of work. I just want to build the lake as maintenance free as possible. Any suggestions?

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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Michael, there are products and fish safe chemicals on the market that claim to reduce or even get rid of silt altogether, although I have not tried them personally, and am not sure how expensive it would work out to use them on a large scale. An Internet search for "silt removers" or similar should produce results for you.

      If you route the streams around the lakes you shouldn't really have any silt issues as the streams bring in the silt. Of course over many years you would get a natural build up of silt type substances that rain washes in from the banks etc, but the timescale for this to cause a problem would be many years longer and then the silt removing chemicals would control it if used occasionally.

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      Michael 7 years ago

      Thanks so much for the info. I will check this out and will most defintely monitor this site. Thanks again.

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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      You are welcome Michael, glad to be of help.

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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Sorry John, that was SPAM, that is why I have deleted it. If you want me to post a link please ask and explain why it is a good idea first. Thanks.

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      Dave 7 years ago

      Just came across this site and wanted to say thank you and well done on production of a such a well written and informative article. I am currently researching the idea of creating a lake for fishing and have struggled to find any decent information apart from this. Thanks, Dave.

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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thank you so much for this comment Dave. It is great to get such lovely positive feedback. I truly wish you well with your fishing lake, and promise you the end result will be worth all the hard work.

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      jonathan22 7 years ago

      thank you for creating this very informative page, it has helped me know end with my reserch, could you tell me who i need to contact for permission to build a lake? is it down to local planning officers at the council or is there a governing body for lake construction? many thanks

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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Jonathan, well I don't know exactly where you are located, but generally it would be down to local planning officers who would no doubt liaise with local environmental depts. Always a good idea to emphasise the improvements it will offer to local wildlife, such as encouraging birdlife, dragonflies, waterfowl etc. Make a point of planning to plant lots of woodland, wildflowers etc around the lake area, this will drastically improve your chances of your plans being approved.

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      ciderfish1968 7 years ago

      hi misty thanks for the info,have already dug some test holes,will the water table stay roughly the same after excavations?not putting stream into lake as some effuent pollution,but have springs higher up.unfortuneatly little clay about to puddle,unsure how high water will reach?any ideas please?thank you.

    • profile image

      ciderfish1968 7 years ago

      http://hubpages.com/hub/How-to-Build-a-Fishing-Lak... thanks for the info,very helpful.im planning to dig alake,done some test holes so have idea to ground water level.but will water level stay same after excavations?not joining stream as some pollution,but have springs higher up. little clay on site, so wont be able to puddle, just wondering where water level will end up? Any ideas?thanks for your help.

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      Mike Pitcher 7 years ago

      Very useful article. This has given me food for thought. Land needed now and fishing will follow. Thanks

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Mike, thanks for the feedback and I wish you the best of luck with your own lake.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi ciderfish, I am sorry I can't really answer this one as it is hard to judge based on the information available. I would guess your test holes will have given you a pretty good indication of what to expect water levelwise, but the only way to be sure is to try it and see. You could buy in a lot of clay soil and re-line the lake hole to be sure, but this could prove costly and time consuming. My guess would be that you initial investigations will prove fairly accurate as even gravel pits can be filled with water without it seeping away.

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      cassidy 7 years ago

      We have a small 1 acre spring fed lake on our acrage, and we`ve been thinking of getting it stocked, but there doesn`t appear to be any algea or plant life present. how would we go about getting it to grow? could we collect a few 5 gallon buckets of weeds and water from another lake and just dump them in? or would that not work?

      thanks for the great article btw :)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I would first suggest you get your water tested to make sure there is no underlying reason why nothing is naturally growing in the lake. If plants won't grow then there is a good chance that fish won't thrive either. Once you have confirmed the water is fine I would try to obtain oxygenating plants, water lilies etc etc from a reputable source. By simply transferring the plants from another lake you risk also transferring diseases that may be present in the fish currently living in the lake.

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      Deslynn 7 years ago

      Hey, thankyou for the info. Ive been thinking about building a lake myself.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks to you too Deslynn, I hope you do :)

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      ciderfish1968 7 years ago

      thanks for your help,will proberbly dig out lower area first saving top soil. if hit water,put in drainage ditch.just dont want heaped look round edges!thanks again.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      The lake we have was dug out manually, but the surrounding area was used to spread the removed soil around in order to avoid the "heaped look". It all depends on if you have enough land surrounding your lake to allow this to be viable or not. You could put an advert in the paper offering the removed soil free to anyone who needs it to raise the level of a garden or field. You might have to deliver it to them, but this is usually cheaper than the costs involved in dumping it in landfill sites.

      Good Luck.

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      Simon F 7 years ago

      Great rescource and information..thank you.

      I am hoping to build a 1/2 acre Lake quite soon, with a view to it becoming a Carp Fishing Syndicate..So, the info here has been most helpful..thank you

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Simon, thanks for the feedback.I wish you every success in your syndicate lake.

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      sedona7 7 years ago

      This is great information Misty. Thank you

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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Sedona7, so delighted this was useful to you.

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      Tony Bevington 7 years ago

      pbevington@toucansurf.com

      You dont mention filling a lake from springs.I have just completed a small one fed by springs that have never dried up for at least thirty years.Now uncertain as to when stock it as there was grass growing in it prior to it being filled.This is now underwater.The lake is 100 feet long and 20 feet wide

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Tony, no problem with filling a lake from springs before diverting them again. Our lake was filled this way. The only problem with springs are the silt they bring in, and the risk that if the water upstream gets contaminated in any way, the contaminant will be washed into your lake and potnetially kill your stock. As to when to stock it, I would give it a good 6 months to allow the grass that has been covered in water to rot away and the natural food sources such as bloodworm etc to start to get established prior to your stock being introduced.

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      Tony Bevington 7 years ago

      Thanks for that.What I have done is to use the spring to maintain a level(not diverting it) So the springs fill the pond continuously and the level is held by a sluice gate that allows just the same amount to overflow as the springs are giving.Consequently a level is maintained but also I have the benefit of the water flowing.The contamination problem probably will come from Nitrates from farmland.The nearest home and certainly no industry is more than two miles away.(Cornwall UK) Thanks again will leave it otherwise till next year.

      Tony

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Tony, we too have a sluice gate or weir to maintain the level, but the stream has caused a significant problem with silt, not to mention algae washing in and the risk of contamination from such things as slurry (liquified manure) sprayed on to the croppping fields over here, washing into our lake. Far better to divert the spring in such a way as you can re-divert it into the lake only when you need to increase water levels after a hot spell. The woodlands around our lake are now very dense, plus we have a very steep grassy slope down to the lake. This makes it now impossible to get a long-armed JCB down to the shore in order to dig out the silt. The sad thing is that in another 20 years or so the lake may be so silted up it is unusable and there will be virtually no solutions unless we cut down many mature trees, (which local authorities will never allow). I urge you to avoid the stream constantly flowing into the lake as you will no doubt live to regret it no matter how clear the stream or spring many seem to look at.

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      Alan Cooper 6 years ago

      I have found a pond that i intend to stock with trout it is an old mill pond around 60 years old. It looks healthy will snail, fry and a good incect life and the water is crystal clear.However there is about 18ins of suspended silt on the bottom is this harmful to fish. Will it need removed or is this ok to stay.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I don't think the silt will cause you a problem providing it isn't getting any deeper, alternatively you could try the chemical silt removers to break it down. A lot of natural food will be living in the silt, so you might want to leave it where it is as once removed it will take time for the pond to settle down again.

    • profile image

      Alan Cooper 6 years ago

      Thanks for your speedy response if the silt is not going to harm the fish it can stay in i will be however instaling a silt trap as the 2 ponds are spait stream fead i do have a sluce gate to control the flow in

      thanks again for your advice

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Good luck Alan, I am sure you will do well.

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      Tommy 6 years ago

      great stuff misty. I'm trying to persuade a local land-owner to follow-up on an old idea to build some lakes in a valley. Very early stages, but have a fisheries management consultant coming next week to have a look. Are you able to share a website on these hubs of your finished lake? We'd be fed by a borehole into a clay-lined valley (it's not clay-lined yet!). Would have to be self-funded by the incoming earth-movement required. Area of around 9 acres total.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Tommy, I am afraid there is no main website where these are featured as I wrote the hubs here on hubpages itself. The only other site you could visit pertains to our lake as a business, and can be found at www.lesrouvetslake.com .

      Your project sounds really exciting. Perhaps you could write about it on hubpages and include stage by stage photos as it is created (assuming it goes ahead).

      I wish you the very best of luck.

    • profile image

      Szack 6 years ago

      Hi I'm looking at building a lake but there is no stream near by! The land is well below the water table and should fill a lake naturally but I'm worried that a stream is paramount to build a health fishing lake? Is this true?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Szack, no a stream isn't required to build a healthy lake, so long as the water in it has been given time to settle before it is stocked with fish, and it isn't overstocked, and it has the right plants to keep the water healthy etc, then the only concern you might have is if you have a hot spell and the water level drops, but if you are below the water table this is unlikely to cause you a problem.

    • profile image

      6 years ago

      how much would this cost

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      funny 6 years ago

      how much money would this cost

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      A hard one to answer funny, the problem is that labour costs vary enormously area to area, as does the cost of land. Assuming you already had the land it might be stoney, need clay adding, streams diverting etc etc. It is like saying how long is a piece of string? Even the size you want your lake to be is a factor in price, plus the cost of plants and vegetation if none is already on the site. Do you want islands on the lake or not, how deep do you want the lake to be...... this list goes on and on. All I can say is that the overall cost if starting from scratch is going to be many tens of thousands of pounds, and this is not a project I would recommend you take on unless you are very wealthy or are doing it as part of a syndicate of people, perhaps to form a fishing club or business.

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      clarkey 6 years ago

      Hi Misty, we are looking at a 3 acre site close to the north eastern coast of Bulgaria. We want to develop this as a carp lake. The land sits in a natural hollow & looks to be ideal, although we will have a geological survey before we go any further. The lake would have to be fed by a well which is dug to a depth of 30 metres. Will this be suitable? Is 3 acres big enough to accommodate a lake & maybe accomodation? We are going to look at the possibility of european grants to help with the cost of building this project. Any ideas where I could get some advice?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Clarkey, I would imagine that the results of the Geological survey will best determine the suitability of the area you have in mind. Without knowing the supply of water this well can provide it is hard for me to comment, although the 'natural hollow' sounds ideal as our lake too is in a natural valley where water tends to drain to anyway.

      Three acres should provide a nice sized lake, and depending on how much accommodation you wish to build should be adequate. Our lake and land is less than 3 acres and can happily provide fishing swims for up to 18 anglers. If we were allowed to build log cabins or similar around the area there would still be plenty of room to do so.

      I am afraid I don't know where you can apply for European grants or get advice on this though. It is not something I have any experience of as we took on our lake after the building had been long since completed and paid for by a private individual.

      Good luck with your project.

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      carpkid 6 years ago

      Hi misty,I am looking at digging a threee acre lake on my dads farm have done some test holes and found it to be clay .I could pump in water to fill it from a brook which is about a mile away.but once it is full would have no water supply how much do you think the water level could drop in a long dry sunny period.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Carpkid, well in the summer here our stream slows down very considerably, but I wouldn't say the overall level of the lake has ever dropped more than a few feet, even when it is really quite hot for three or four weeks with no rain. So long as the lake is quite deep it shouldn't dry up on a clay bed unless you are in a very hot climate. Hope this helps and good luck.

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      Heidi Marie 6 years ago

      Hi, your sight is so informative, and wonderful! My question is how much maintenance is required for a lake. We are purchasing a home that has a 1 acre lake on the property. It is very clear, stocked with fish, plants, and has a large fountain running. I have only had 100 gallon ponds previously, and so we have no knowledge on the maintenance if any on a 1 acre lake. Thanks so much!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I am not sure I can answer this Heidi, as if it has a fountain it sounds 'artificial', whereas our lake is pretty much completely natural, and therefore requires little or no maintenance unless a tree comes down or it gets really silted up. A 1 acre lake is big for a fountain, so I assume the maintenance might be minimal, but I would ask the vendors for advice if I were you, as it largely depends on if it has an artificial liner or if it has a natural clay soil lining etc.

    • trebuchet profile image

      trebuchet 5 years ago from Buckeye State

      Top notch Hub...useful insight for someone considering a shot at constructing a pond. Thanks

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Trebuchet, although this really is geared more to lakes than ponds, although I guess the definition of the difference varies country to country. Here in the UK / British Isles a 'pond' would be small back yard type set up, perhaps 6ft x 4 ft containing goldfish etc. A lake would be anything considerably larger than this. Our 'lake' is about the size of a British Football pitch, or a tad smaller.

    • profile image

      henry96 5 years ago

      i like carp

    • philipandrews188 profile image

      philipandrews188 5 years ago

      That sounds interesting, Misty. You could just go fishing at your own home anytime you want. Very fun to do!Great hub.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      We did for the first few years philipandrews188, but like many things you can have any time you want, the novelty wore off and we tended just to enjoy the surroundings but not bother fishing. Other people still do though, but in November we are giving up the lake as we can no longer afford the rental the land owner charges us. It is a real shame, but he won't negotiate on the rental at all so we are left with no choice. :(

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      Anna 5 years ago

      Hi there, we are complete beginners when it comes to fishing being more horsey but we have purchased an agriculturally property which means we need to carry out an agri' business.

      A friend has suggested we seriously look into building a lake & running it as a business. We own the land, we have our own plant equipment and a stream feeds all our water troughs currently on a 10 acre site. We also intend using the manure from our livery yard to produce our own worms.

      A couple of questions are

      1 How big should a lake be to be profitable? If the average client with day pass pays £10 and we want to earn min £500 per month. How much space between clients is needed? It made complete sense to not have just a circle but rather a meandering lake which provides greater space for clients and also a large lake for oxygenation rather than small and deep. Which are cheaper fish to buy to stock and therefore how deep for that fish? Should my husband build jetty from bank for each client to protect land? What are considered to be excellent facilities... Toilets, cafe' etc

      Sorry if this is exhaustive but you are the expert and we prefer to contact an experienced individual. thanks

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Anna,

      Good questions, and firstly I should say that to make a good lake commercially viable the bigger the better. Our current lake is just under the size of a UK football pitch, and this provides about 12 fishing points (swims), each about 15 feet apart.

      Next you need to remember serious coarse anglers want to fish for Carp, Common Carp, Mirror Carp, Ghost Carp etc. Another very popular fish is a Tench, mainly green Tench.

      Carp require a good depth of water to produce a decent weight/depth of belly, (ideally at least three metres), shallow water loses oxygen quickly in hot weather also, so this makes a good depth very important. Before the stream began to silt up our lake the depths were over 17 feet in places, and even now much of the lake is over 12-15 feet deep and the fish thrive and grow.

      Carp are not cheap to buy, and bearing in mind they only gain 2-3lb a year in weight, you will need to buy them at a good size in the first place.

      If you wish to interest anglers seriously your Carp need to be 30-40lb+ in weight. You will also need to try to ensure they come from a fishery where they can verify they are KHV and SVC virus free, which are Carp diseases that are now prevalent in the UK.

      Each fishing swim ideally needs a minimum of 20 feet between it and the next one, but more would be better as anglers like their privacy and don't want their lines to cross if a fish on the hook drags the line into a neighbouring anglers line.

      A circular lake is fine as long as it has 'features' within it such as islands. A meandering lake is also fine with the right depths, but again features are good as the Carp feed up against things like islands, under water lilies etc.

      You don't need decked swims/jetties per angler unless there are overhanging trees etc behind the swim that require the angler to be further out into the lake in order to avoid getting snagged up in the trees when he/she casts their line out. We have 12 marked swims, only three of which are jetties/decked swims.

      Facilities that would be ideal would really consist of toilets only. Most lakes don't even offer these as anglers are quite happy to go into the woods for those 'functions'. I think cafe's etc would ruin the experience for most anglers, who want things as close to nature as possible. You could offer tackle on loan I guess, but this would require a deposit and far more input in terms of delivering relevant tackle to the lake and collecting it at agreed times afterwards, not to mention the deposit's too.

      We always pleasantly surprised anglers new to the lake by allowing dogs on leads, small disposable bbq's and even small camp fires in designated areas. Most lakes do not allow these things, so it helped to gain popularity with the people who were ex-UK anglers who had moved to Guernsey.

      I hope this info has helped, but feel free to contact me again if you have more questions :)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      One extra facility you might want to consider adding is a small shop that sells bait, e.g. boilies, worms, maggots (in various colours), sweetcorn (flavoured), luncheon meat (also flavoured), hooks, lines, floats etc. This is convenient for those on site fishing.

      Another option I have seen on other lakes is a 'packed lunch service' where you deliver sandwiches, hot bacon rolls, flasks of coffee etc to the bank so the anglers don't have to bring their own. You can do this to order if you go around the lake in advance, take an order when they book to fish or even call them on their mobile phones by the lake (assuming you took their number when they booked). This can offer a good extra income.

      Do bear in mind this is a long term investment, as building a lake is expensive, tens of thousands of pounds in fact, and unless your facility is top class you will wait along time to get into profit. However, Coarse Fishing is the most popular sport in the UK, so if you do it right you will be in with a good chance of being successful. Make sure you don't 'scalp' the land, (anglers like trees and shrubs between them so they have camouflage and privacy). Parking is important, and angers don't want to hike miles carrying all their fishing tackle to the banks of the lake. Parking is also important. Offering the option to allow anglers to 'bivvie up' (camp) overnight, is another major plus as so many places do not allow this a chuck their anglers out at around 8pm at night (overnight is the best time for fishing so a bad time to not have any fishermen allowed on site).

      You will need to consider that having a bailiff go around the lake a couple of times a day will deter those who try to fish illegally, or without a rod licence (they will need this even on private property and can obtain it from the post office).

      You might want to consider security to ensure Eastern Europeans do not try to poach your Carp as food (in many countries such as Latvia Carp is considered a delicacy, trouble is that they are valuable fish here, so to have them stolen for food is a costly loss).

      I really hope all of this has helped you out, and wish you the best of luck :)

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      stephen 5 years ago

      HI MISTY

      your hub is really good.I have been habouring an idea of a a fishing lodge for quite a while now.I would like you to connect me with the likes of Dunny,Szack,Clarkey and we see whether we can exchange ideas on having fishing lodges.I have brilliant ideas we can share

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Stephen, thanks for the compliment. I wish there was a way to connect you with Dunny, Szack and Clarkey so you can exchange ideas, but all the information I have on them is in their comments here, so I don't even have an email address for them. Your best bet is to leave an email address here so if they, or anyone else likeminded, wish to make contact with you they can do so through this page.

      Good Luck with your fishing lodge, it sounds a lovely idea and a great project.

    • profile image

      stephen 5 years ago

      Hi M

      Thank you for your kind advice.This is for anybody who is trusted and would like to partner with me for a fishing lodge.Email:flugork@yahoo.com.

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      baldeagle88 5 years ago

      I have a 1/2 acre pond adjacent my property in s/e England which is completely covered in bulrushes, how much should I offer the owner and what would it cost to clear?

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I can't really answer this one sadly baldeagle88, because my experience has been on the Channel Island of Guernsey where prices for everything from land to labour are far higher than the UK. You would be best off getting a proper valuation of the land and some quotes for clearing the bullrushes, digging it deeper etc. The total price you would pay for such a project is location specific, and having lived in S/E England myself I know this is quite an expensive area to buy property, but I am not up to date with the current prices.

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      Abdul-Jabbar 5 years ago

      Thank you very much for the nice information

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      You are welcome Abdul. Thank you for commenting :)

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      Andrew 5 years ago

      Hi We have cleaned out an old lake, silt fallen trees, is there a law that we have to get a civel enginers out to pass to job, its above an old village, it bust the bank 50 years ago in a flash flood in the winter days, Thank you

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I think you will need to check this out with your local authorities Andrew as the laws vary from region to region, but it sounds quite likely some sort of inspection might be required with the history of your lake. Certainly I would recommend you take out some third part liability insurance when you do have the lake full of water again.

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      Andrew 5 years ago

      Hi Thank you for getting back to me,We got one person in the village how think we need to get proper civel enginer, we got the district council and he said its fine,[he only look at the lake[ the lake is about the size of you first photo, we dont think there a problem. Thank You again.

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Good Luck Andrew, I hope it goes really well for you.

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      Arvi 5 years ago

      for a lot of budding lake owners; check out these guys work: www.soilmovers.com

      lots of lakes and resources to understand how they are building the lakes.

      discaimer: dont know them but maybe hiring them for my 16 acre lake project that i hope to start in about 4 months time in india

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks for sharing Avril :)

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      Josh 5 years ago

      Hi my father and I own some land in the Midwest part of the states. There are two gullies that meet in the middle of the property and could potently be dammed for lake about 5 acres in size. There is the problem of water and silt because water only flows when it rains. Due to one of the gullies having an S-shape and the small size of the land, its impossible to build lake to the side of it to prevent silt buildup. What do you think would be the be the best way around this problem? Also, is it better to rent earth moving equipment if you know how to use it, or just hire a professional?

      Thanks!

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Silt is a pain in the neck, but you can control it to a degree with certain chemicals and periodic draining down and dredging out of the lake (every ten years or so). Silt does tend to take a long time to build up though, and right now our lake has been drained right down by about two thirds whilst a new weir is put in and then the existing silt is removed by a drag-line digger. We are doing this via friends who can use the equipment, and if you have people who can do this (and you have free access to the equipment), I would advise this method because labour is so expensive per hour otherwise, and this is going to take a lot of hours (this advice applies for any work when building a lake, including digging it out).

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      sister928b 5 years ago

      A homeowner in our subdivision built a lake that we think is illegal.....it is flooding every ones property around it...there was a creek running behind the neighborhood and he just dug a big hole. We don not think he acquired permits, etc. Who do we report him to. We live in N.C.

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi sister928b, I am sorry, I have no idea on this as we live in the British Channel Island of Guernsey, and our laws, authorities etc are therefore completely different to yours. I hope you find a solution.

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      paddy kennedy 5 years ago

      hi i am a farmer from carlow in the south east of ireland

      i have 10 acres of land that is running alongside the river barrow i have a plan for to turn 4 acres of it into a course fishing lake but i dont have enough knolage of how to do so i was wondering if you knew any experts in this field in ireland that i could hire for consultancy advice.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Paddy,

      I am afraid I don't, although I think it is a great idea to do this with your land. You could try contacting some of the Irish Fisheries to ask them as they will know plenty of people in this field I would think. This link might help:

      http://www.fisheriesireland.ie/

      Good Luck

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      Martin Mathieson 5 years ago

      Hi - I have recently purchased a 7 acre lake near Limoges in France. I'm keen to keep it a nature haven, however, with a stream feeding in and exiting at the dam end, we do have a problem with silt and access. Most of the lake is not accesible due to tree's and the surrounding features. Any recommendations? Going forward, would silt traps help if so how are they best constructed?

      Many thanks.

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Martin,

      I don't know how bad your access is, and I know ours isn't great, but we are in the process right now of getting silt removed from the lake by using a 'drag-line digger'. This was the only option because of the access and the impossible 'arm reach' a JCB would have needed even if we could have got one down to the lake where we needed to (which we couldn't).

      To achieve this we have drained the lake right down so that it is only about 25% full (the fish are contained in this area). At this point it is our plan to have a large 'silt trap' (simply a 6 - 8 feet deep hole), dug out in front of where the stream comes into the lake. This will take years to fill with silt, but when it does it will be far easier to simply lower the lake level slightly, and then scoop out the build up from this trap. As far as we have been advised this should solve most of the problem with silt build up so long as we periodically get the hole dug out again.

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      Martin Mathieson 5 years ago

      Thanks for that - how does a drag-line digger operate? My lake is circa 400 yards long either side and between 50-80 yards wide. On one side there is a bridle path (and esablished trees preventing access), on the other there is a steep bank and established trees. The only access is at the top, just beyond the dam wall. I've had a few people look at it, but we are struggling to find a solution!

      Any advice you could offer would be appreciated.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      The dragliner digger is a bit like a crane, and it swings a bucket on pulleys out into where you need it to be, then the pulleys drag the bucket back towards the crane where the bucket is then lifted and emptied, (see picture in link below). I have to say from what you are describing I think you have a significant problem unless you can create access by removing trees. Have you considered trying those chemicals that break down the silt without poisoning the water?

      http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTQXa_v6AL...

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      These images might help with the dragline digger too. They use them a lot in mining etc, so thinking about it you might be able to use one if the damn end has a place the dugger could get to.

      http://t1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTNTvTWw9s...

      http://www.alaskastock.com/pix//207/IG/207IG_AB000...

    • profile image

      Martin Mathieson 5 years ago

      Thanks very much: you've been extremely helpful.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      You are welcome Martin, good luck and I hope you find a solution, perhaps even using a dragline digger from the dam end.

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      Rob 5 years ago

      I am looking to open up a fishing lake and farm, what sort of costs after buying land would i be looking at?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Rob,

      That is a bit like the 'how long is a piece of string' question. The variables are huge, factors like:

      what country you are in,

      what local rates you have to pay,

      third party liability insurance costs where you are,

      labour costs,

      machinery hire or purchase fees,

      prices and availability of suitable fish in your location,

      size of the lake you intend to build,

      etc etc.

      It would be impossible to give you a figure, all I can do is tell you what I have done here as a rough guide to what sort of things you will have to pay out for. It would best to get quotes local to where you are for the relevant things on the list.

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      zendaya 5 years ago

      wow this site is really informative

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks zendaya, I am pleased you think so.

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Sorry jonny and andi, comment had to be deleted as SPAM. Feel free to post a genuine comment with no links included.

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      dealea 5 years ago

      hi there, was wondering if you could help me out... iv just been granted planning permission for a one acre lake on my land in the northwest uk, the land is flat and there is no near by stream to top the water level up, would it still be worth doing and if so would i use an electric oxygenator? thanks x

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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      A stream should not be necessary as long as the lake is lined with a decent layer of clay as the natural water will build up through rainfall. You might want to get the lake partially filled initially using tankers just so you can start off some oxygenating plants to bring the lake to life. You certainly shouldn't need an electric oxygenator as the right balance of natural plants and wildlife will keep the water oxygenated. Give the lake at least 6 months of this before attempting to stock it with fish, and preferably get the water tested by your local fishery or water board before introducing them.

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      Anit Ghosh 5 years ago

      Hi.I read through the page and realized that this is very informative and exactly what i was looking for.Thanks a LOT !!! I need your advice on the following problem : I have built a lake (2000 ft square) and am unable to hold water.would it work If i buy clay soil and line the bottom ? If so, what should be the thickness of the layer ? Also, does the clay soil need any treatment ? Alternatively , would a 3" layer of reinforced concrete solve the problem ? Lastly, is there any other way to solve the problem ?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Anit. In your situation I would buy in the clay soil to line the bottom and the sides. You will need a thick layer though or the water will penetrate it. I would go for at least 2 foot thick. If the clay soil has simply been moved from a site where it is naturally it shouldn't need any treatment (although you could get a soil sample tested to make sure there are no signs of contaminants) as you won't be stocking the lake with fish for at least six months after it is filled anyway, by which time the plants you will have added will have established and nature should have found a natural balance. Of course you will need to get the water tested before you stock the lake too, but you will have a good idea of if all is well by whether or not you see other wildlife thriving in and on the water, (birds, dragonflies, midges, frogs etc).

      I wouldn't go down the concrete route because 1) concrete is porous, 2) 3" thick would be nothing like strong enough to stop things like slight shifts in earth movement or tree roots from cracking the concrete and 3) it is not a natural surface so it would take years for any kind of natural debris to build up on the bottom for the creatures like bloodworm etc to thrive in ready for the fish to eat. Many fish rummage around in this mud when feeding, (especially Carp who are mainly bottom feeders.)You would also restrict the possibilities for plants etc if there was concrete all around the sides and the bottom of your lake. I would describe what you would end up with as more of a reservoir than a lake.

      I can't think of any other suggestions right now, but basically I believe clay soil is your best bet anyway.

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      Anit Ghosh 5 years ago

      Grrrrrreat !! thanks a lot :)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      You are welcome Anit :)

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      KJErd 5 years ago

      Great read! I have all the equipment necessary to dig a lake and have the land to do it. But once I dig the lake, I am planning on lining it with light amounts of clay, gravel, and some concrete to help keep the water in. Will this work? And when I want to stock it with fish, what do I have to do to make plants grow? Where do I get these plants?

      Thanks for the read1

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I live in Guernsey KJErd, so I have no idea of where you can source the right plants, but you could contact your local fisheries or a local aquarium to see what sources they suggest.

      Concerned about you using gravel and concrete to line your new lake. Gravel is a natural drainage medium, and concrete is easily damaged by tree roots, pressures from the land shifts etc. Clay soil is the best option, but use a thick layer as I described in an earlier but still recent comment.

      As for getting your plants to grow, well they will quickly establish on their own providing the water is not polluted, so just make sure you put enough in to get your new ecosystem started. We were lucky, our lake was already was established when we took it on, surrounded by flag iris etc. We simply added a few more plants like lilies to make it better for anglers.

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      KJErd 5 years ago

      Thanks!

      We first dug out the lake with my own equipment and laid down light gravel at the base for engineering purposes. We also used some concrete to help for moving around and used some rebar and reinforced concrete for some parts but now we are using clay, about 2-3 feet all around as you suggested.

      Thanks for everything, we will contact nearby companies for advice on the proper plants to have.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Good Luck KJErd, I am sure you will be very successful and find the whole experience very rewarding.

    • Khan313 profile image

      Khan313 5 years ago

      Respected Madam,

      mistyhorizon2003,

      I am from a far away area of Pakistan [KPK Kohistan(Rural Area)] & i am the student of Environmental Sciences 6th Semester at COMSATS University. As I want to build a very small lake for fishing about 30 feet, I need your advice on the following problem:

      The area where i want to build the fishing lake is very stony and also what i have to do for fish feed any artificial or natural sources if any natural and easy way please tell me Madam i'll be very thankful to you..........

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Khan, 30 feet really is quite small, and you might struggle to keep many fish successfully in such a small pond (especially if you plan to fish for them) although it is not impossible. If you are determined to try this you will at least need to make sure it is pretty deep, and remember that oxygen in the water will vanish much quicker in a pond with a small surface area (especially in a hot climate), so you won't be able to keep many fish in it unless they are fairly small.

      Your latter questions are answered in the article and the comments here already, but in brief, you need to clay line your pond to a decent thickness to avoid the water draining away, you need to plant appropriate oxygenating plants in the pond, you need to give the pond at least 6 months to become established before introducing any fish, and natural food should be produced in the sludge that forms on the bottom of the pond/lake over time, plus insects etc that will fall or be washed into the water day to day. You may need to top up the food somewhat with fish pellets etc if the pond is not very well established or if it is overstocked with too many fish. If your fish begin dying they may not be getting either enough oxygen or enough food.

      I hope this helps.

    • Khan313 profile image

      Khan313 5 years ago

      thank u so much.............

    • Khan313 profile image

      Khan313 5 years ago

      thank u so much about every thing......

    • Khan313 profile image

      Khan313 5 years ago

      Assalamoalikum Madam,

      if i made the fishing lake by concrete is this is good for fishes or not?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Concrete is not ideal as I explained to someone else earlier in the comments here. My words to them were:

      "I wouldn't go down the concrete route because 1) concrete is porous, 2) 3" thick would be nothing like strong enough to stop things like slight shifts in earth movement or tree roots from cracking the concrete and 3) it is not a natural surface so it would take years for any kind of natural debris to build up on the bottom for the creatures like bloodworm etc to thrive in ready for the fish to eat. Many fish rummage around in this mud when feeding, (especially Carp who are mainly bottom feeders.)You would also restrict the possibilities for plants etc if there was concrete all around the sides and the bottom of your lake. I would describe what you would end up with as more of a reservoir than a lake."

    • Khan313 profile image

      Khan313 5 years ago

      thanks madam,

    • Khan313 profile image

      Khan313 5 years ago

      Thanks madam

    • Khan313 profile image

      Khan313 5 years ago

      Hi Madam,

      if you have an easy model for fishing lake construction in document form please send me on my e-mail...... Thanks

    • Khan313 profile image

      Khan313 5 years ago

      mikhan648@hotmail.com

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I am afraid I don't have anything I can email to you Khan, but everything you should need to know is within this article anyway. I wrote this a few years ago now and it came from my own experience, research and utilising the info in the book I mentioned within the article itself. I can only suggest you try to obtain the book too although it is out of print now and can be quite expensive to buy therefore. The book is a 1984 book called "Sports Fisheries in the Making" written by the late Alex Behrendt. I found our copy through an online Google search, so you might also find a copy the same way.

    • Khan313 profile image

      Khan313 5 years ago

      oho! sorry madam,

      thanx for every thing.............we are peaceful people

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      drummer 1 5 years ago

      hola,my name is pablo and i live in spain. i am about to create a 1 acer lake on some land i bought a few years ago.i have found your page very useful.the problem i have now is that i cant find any live course fish to stock the lake,do you know of any exporters that i can contact..................

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Pablo, it is tricky to know who could transport fish to you in Spain as we got our coarse fish locally to us. There are plenty of coarse fisheries in France, which might be your best bet as they could be transported to you without needing to go overseas. I would be inclined to recommend a Google search for 'French Fisheries', or 'buy coarse fish in France', 'buy coarse fish in Spain' etc (remember it is spelled 'coarse' not 'course' which is a common mistake made). If you can find just one good contact this way they should at least be able to recommend a source of coarse fish to you even if they are unable to supply you themselves. The main fish you will want are Carp, preferably Mirror Carp and Common Carp, so you could also run similar searches for these, and hope the places you find can put you in touch with suppliers of other coarse fish such as 'Tench, Rudd, Roach, Bream' etc.

      Don't forget to check the legal requirements for importing fish into Spain as you might need health certificates for them etc.

      Good Luck

    • profile image

      drummer 1 5 years ago

      wow that was quick,i have been looking for ages now with no results ,i typed in what you said, and bingo it came up on a site, i have already sent them a email and am waiting for them to get back to me.......thank you for the correct spelling of coarse it made all the difference,thankyou once again for your promt reply, i will let you know how i get on.mucho regards.pablo....

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I am so pleased you found this helpful Pablo and I would love to hear how you get on

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      greenfingers26 4 years ago

      hello, firstly this hub is very interesting, ive just been reading some of the questions and your answers about making fishing lakes, the topic of silt build up is very interesting. i have a stream flowing into a 0ne acre lake and there are two silt traps prior to the water entering the lake. the first silt trap is about 10ft round and 4ft deep and situated just as the stream enters my land, and the second is just a few metres from the lake which is about 8ft x 4ft and 2.5ft deep. distance between traps is about 100ft both traps are full and ready for a clean out, so they seem to be doing their job. i hope they are as getting heavy machinery in to get the silt out is a frightening prospect. do you or any fellow hubbers have any experience of these type of silt traps? and are they a better solution than having to drain the actual lake and move fish? as i say both traps are full but i have no idea how effective they actually are.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I am afraid I don't have any experience of using these 'greenfingers26' , but I have heard about them and suspect if emptied regularly these will at the very least drastically reduce the amount of silt build up. If they work, then naturally these are a far better option than draining the actual lake and moving fish.

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      Sean Gorman 4 years ago

      My email address is s.gorman@btinternet.com please if you can help me, I have 45 acres of land in the center of gloucester. Next to the river severn and a stream that runs along side there is a area of about 5 to 7 acres which i would like to turn into a fishing lake I have talked to the planners and they are happy with the idea so i need to find out who can help me plan and design a suitable lake or lakes. Please email me back if you can help, Yours with many thanks Sean Gorman.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I wish I could help Sean, but I live in Guernsey, so I am not aware of the relevant companies that help to plan and design lakes near to where you are. I do know that such companies do exist though, but you might need to do a Google search for 'lake designers', 'lake planners' etc and see what comes up. For example when I just tried this the first site on the list was this one: http://www.willowbankservices.co.uk/lake-and-pond-...

    • profile image

      Mohammed 4 years ago

      Hello there,

      I would like to build an An artificial lake in the garden of my house it is not that big one but i have imagined may be it could be a good idea, however i would like to have your advise please, Where my garden with an area of 80 square meters.

      my email address is:

      mase_01@hotmail.com

      Best regards.

      Mohammed Bin Eid.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Mohammed, I am not sure I can really help here. Firstly so much depends on where you live (planning permissions required, soil types etc). 80 square metres is not all that big, so if you were to create a fishing lake you could not keep many fish in it assuming you wanted them to grow to decent fishable sizes. You also need to check out how deep you could dig because Carp especially need a good depth of water. Most of the other information you need is already in this article (or in the comments), so I cannot really add to it further.

      Good Luck.

    • profile image

      shamsAlAriyaf 4 years ago

      Misty, needless to say, you have provided some very useful, and hard to find, information on this subject! Your thoughts on my situation will be very much appreciated... I'll make it in bullets for conveneience.

      * I intend to create a 0.75 acre (around 3000 sqm) lake in my property in the middle of Saudi Arabia! Yes right there, where it's hot and sunny a good 4-6 months a year.

      * I have plenty of water in a nearby well.

      * Main objective is aesthetics, but private fishing would be a big plus.

      * After reading your wonderful article, I decided to build the lake myself, with help from paid workers of all kinds. I don't think there are specilaized companies, and even then they tend to charge too much.

      * I plan to dig 2.5 meters creating some random lake shape.

      * Mud and clay seem to be available on the property itself. People used to build their homes here using clay. I will line the base and sides with about 1 meter thick clay.

      * But here is something different I'm thinking, and want your input on. I plan to use water pumps to pull water from the lake and pour on a winding stream that leads back to the lake. Do you think this is a reasonable alternative to filtering and oxygenating the lake?

      * Finally, how do you grow plants in the lake with all that stiff clay on the bottom?

      I know activity on this article has slowed down a bit, but hey, it's still a great article. Fahad.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Fahad,

      Sounds like a great project and one I see no reason for being unsuccessful. We don't filter or oxygenate our lake, but the stream that feeds into it is natural so new water is being provided all the time. I suspect your biggest problem will be water evaporation in the high heat, but if you are going to pump it from your own well this may not be an issue to you. If you are recycling the water for oxygenation purposes then try to pump it so that when it returns it drops back into the main lake from a slight height to trap as much oxygen as possible (say a metre or two above the surface of the lake).

      Re-growing plants, well we have never had a problem, and clay soil actually holds on to nutrients far better than most soils so there is no reason for plants not to grow in it. As time goes on a natural layer of decaying plant matter, fish faeces etc will provide a rich medium for plants to grow in. We have water lilies mostly right now, and they thrive and spread happily (plus looking pretty and being ideal for fish to hide under, spawn within etc). Simply get some young plants, tie them to a rock, and gently throw them into the water where you want them to grow (but try to make sure the existing leaves are no more than 12 inches below the surface so they can quickly grow to the top (don't worry, they will naturally spread to deeper water). We also have flag iris on the borders of the lake, and they also thrive in the conditions. A lake of 6 months old or more will naturally have more potential for plants and fish to be successful in it.

      Hope this helps and I really wish you luck with this project.

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      shamsAlAriyaf 4 years ago

      Great pointers again, Misty/Cindy! Yes, I think dropping the stream back onto the lake from a high level is good, but it may be difficult to do so because I'm planning on using pumps to pull water off of the lake into the stream and then let gravity lead the water back to the lake. I would have to use another set of pumps to pull water from a collection pool at the end of the stream to drop the water. So, I'm thinking may be an aerator could do the job instead.

      Great tip on dropping the plants into the water by attaching them to stones... I will try that. You don't think planting them before filling the lake would work?

      Finally, I'm thinking of erecting a conceret wall, 1 meter high, around the base of the lake alongside the edges to help keep the lake from collapsing! Not sure if that's necessary but it sounds like a good idea.

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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Well we currently have a Koi pond that is also man made and that is fed with water that comes from the main lake (which in our case is fortunately at a higher level than the Koi pond). To aerate the Koi pond we ran a simple syphon system using a length of hosing leading from the main lake into a length of standard drain pipe that we suspended above the Koi pond. Gravity does the rest as the syphon constantly takes water from the main lake and causes an effect much like a fairly fast running tap. This means no need for pumps electricity or anything. What you could do is get your pump to pump the water from your lake to a mini pond (or even a tank) that you create at a higher level of ground, then set up a similar syphon system so that it goes from the tank or pond back into the main lake. Alternatively is there any way you can raise the stream to a higher level than the lake itself so that when it 'arrives' at the lake it is already a few feet above the waterline and would therefore arrive almost like a small waterfall. You could still pump the water into the man made stream, but it would aerate as it arrived into the lake either way. Overall this would save you the cost of running an aerator (and the hassle if it ever breaks down).

      Re-planting the plants when the lake is still empty. Well, I wouldn't do that unless the lake had at least some water in it already. The plants are designed to live in water, so planting them in a plain clay soil bed would be unlikely to work. You would definitely need to weigh them down with stones initially regardless, as otherwise when you do fill the lake they won't have had time to root in properly and will just float up to the surface. Plant the plants early on too, at least a couple of months before you add the fish or you risk the fish dislodging them (more in the case of the flag iris type plants as they are more awkward in shape to weigh down properly, unlike lilies which are easy).

      Re-the concrete wall, well it really shouldn't be necessary if you are using plenty of good clay soil, but I don't suppose it would hurt to do so as a back up plan. Even incorporating plenty of rocks into your clay mix would help to stabilise the sides without the need for a wall though. When we restored the Koi pond from being mostly empty of water and totally overgrown and we had to make it watertight again, we simply plugged the gaps with loads of hardcore rocks and stones etc, and then covered all of that in a thick layer of clay soil. The pond was immediately watertight and filled right up in about two days.

      I hope this helps.

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      shamsAlAriyaf 4 years ago

      True I can always make the stream at a higher level, but it wouldn't look as nice as a low-level stream. I will try to reduce the residence time of water in the lake by increasing the speed of water going into the stream, so that water does not stay stagnant in the lake for more than (I don't know) 3-5 days. May be that will help.

      To be honest with you I have some considerable trepidation about the whole thing as it is a large project and a new concept for me... I fear that I may mess it up! I will, though, work out the design with an engineering office, if I find one. I'm seriously thinking this might turnout to be an amazing project, which has not been done anywhere in Saudi Arabia!

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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      You can make the stream look lovely at a higher level, just make it look like a miniature waterfall with rocks etc for it to splash over (all helps trap oxygen in the water). A stream flowing in at the same level as the lake is easily missed, and doesn't look particularly special (or even noticeable) at all. I know this because the stream that feeds our main lake is only a 'same level' stream, and it is barely noticed by anyone, plus it becomes overgrown easily. A waterfall however doesn't just look nice, but it sounds nice too.

      A good range of plants and fish will help keep your lake water healthy, especially if you include some oxygenating type plants from early on.

      As you will lose a fair amount of water to evaporation, pumping fresh water from your well will help keep the water fresh and clean also.

      You are embarking on an exciting project, and I am sure if you persevere you will get the results you are aiming for, and by being unique you could have a great business out there either for locals or tourists if you wanted to go down that route.

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      kirk tennant 4 years ago

      hi i am at the moment buying a house in guernsey that comes with a very big lake stocked with fish and was wondering what licence you need to let public fish on it as an income it is stocked with very big mirror carp and so on

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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Kirk,

      You don't need a licence as such, but what you might need to do is speak to the planning department to make sure they are happy with the 'change of use' to being a public fishery. They shouldn't cause you too much of a problem so long as you aren't looking to put toilets, litter bins etc on the site. You would need an inspection from Health and Safety too as they do like to check to see if you have adequate safety measures in place e.g. we put out two lifebelts on ropes so they could be thrown out to someone who had fallen in, we fenced off certain areas of the lake where there was a risk of people falling in etc. You would also need to get public liability insurance if you are planning to sell day tickets, this costs around £250 per year.

      What I would say to you is not to expect to make a profit from this. We have struggled in Guernsey to get people to even try coarse fishing, and this is not least because Guernsey people are set in their ways and really only seem to be interested in sea fishing. They can't get their heads around why anyone would want to pay to fish for fish they have to return to the water and can't eat, when they can go to the sea and fish for free and eat what they catch. Even the Guernsey Freshwater Angling Society only has about 55 members and they pay about £60 a year membership which entitles them to fish various disused quarries and one or two ponds around the island. We charge people £50 a year membership or £10 for a 24 hour day ticket, and we don't even cover the low rental we pay for the lake and the land around it. I think right now we have about 10 members, and we probably sell around two or three day tickets a week in the spring and summer, and none the rest of the year. It really is a labour of love rather than a viable business venture, especially when you factor in the extra costs like having the grass around the lake cut, the insurance, the general maintenance of things like the weir, dealing with the hassle of moving and cutting up any trees that come down (we lost 12 during the snow this year), keeping an eye on the lake to make sure no-one is poaching the fish etc etc.

      I am curious to know where the house is you are buying here, not least because there aren't many houses in Guernsey that have large lakes with them. I would also be interested to know if you would be interested in selling two or three of your large Mirror Carp as we are not allowed to import any Cyprinid species of fish into the Channel Islands due to the risk of them introducing the KHV or SVC viruses to the island which we are currently free of. For that reason we have had to rely on some we were given and some youngsters we managed to buy locally about 6 years ago. The rest of our Carp were all sourced from either the Reservoir here, or from fish that were donated to us by local people giving up keeping fish. It would be fabulous if someone like yourself was willing to part with two or three already at good sizes that we could add to our existing fish (right now ours go up to about 32lb in weight, and that one is a large Ghost Carp). Anyway, we would be grateful if you would consider it.

      If you want to contact me privately you can email me at fishing@lesrouvetslake.com You might also like to take a look at our website if you haven't already (the link is in blue in the text of the third paragraph of this article).

      Hope to hear from you.

      Regards

      Cindy

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      kirk tennant 4 years ago

      thank you for your info if we defo get the house i will defo let you have a had full of the fish in the lake in exchange for your knowledge thanks again. rather not say where the house is till i defo no we have it as the less people no about it the better chance we have getting it will let you no as soon as we do . as i am in love with it lol

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      Cindy Lawson 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks Kirk, that would be great. I also sincerely wish you the best of luck in getting the house as you do sound passionate about it. Look forward to seeing your lake if all goes well, and of course we would love to show you around ours :)

      Regards

      Cindy

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      goldentouch 11 months ago

      Great Blog ! What depth should a lake be if you plan on having trout in the lake? In the winter, temp get down to 15 to 20 degrees Celsius. The lake would be frozen over in the winter. I suspect their would be winter kill in the winter time.

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      Cindy Lawson 11 months ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Our lake was originally built as a trout lake as it goes. Before the silt began to build up it went to depths of about 17 feet. We don't get very cold winters here in Guernsey so the lowest temperature we get to is about -5 degrees Celsius and the lake has only frozen over once in the 11 years we have had it. I am not an expert of trout I have to say, but would imagine 17 feet is sufficient if the lake is unlikely to freeze over, but if it is likely to freeze over deeper is usually better.

      Glad you enjoyed this article.

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      CindyBarg 5 months ago

      Hi Cindy,

      I see you do have trees and shrubs next to your lake. Any suggestions which sort work best so as not to dry up the lake?

      And the placement of them...i'd like to send you some plans eventually so you could help me decide the safest options.

      Also, if you have any advice on what type of stones to incorporate into a brook that will not contaminate the water?

      These are just the beginning of questions I have as this is a new property for us and we're very excited for this opportunity to live closer to nature, to create wildlife habitat and decrease our footprint.

      I love this article and your feedback to people's questions...

      thanks so much!

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      CindyBarg 5 months ago

      Hi Cindy,

      I see you do have trees and shrubs next to your lake. Any suggestions which sort work best so as not to dry up the lake?

      And the placement of them...i'd like to send you some plans eventually so you could help me decide the safest options.

      Also, if you have any advice on what type of stones to incorporate into a brook that will not contaminate the water?

      These are just the beginning of questions I have as this is a new property for us and we're very excited for this opportunity to live closer to nature, to create wildlife habitat and decrease our footprint.

      I love this article and your feedback to people's questions...

      thanks so much!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
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      Cindy Lawson 5 months ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Cindybarg. I wish I could advise on this aspect of building a fishing lake, however the planting of all the shrubs and trees was done by the gentleman who built ours in the early 1960's so I am not sure of the names of the exact plants he used. The trees we have around our lake were also planted by him and include weeping willows, sweet chestnuts, leylandii, oaks and other native type species. I would avoid the Leylandii because they get huge, are only shallow rooted and therefore tend to blow down in severe wet and windy weather. We have lost two huge ones over the last 11 years and they were a lot of work to chop up and remove. Not sure I could advise on the stones either, but think any clean rocks would be fine. Our lake is fed by a natural stream so any stones or rocks were already there. Your local garden centre may well sell rocks suitable for ponds and rookeries though as I know ours do.

      Hope this helps, and good luck with your exciting new project.

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