Sunlight is one of the primary drivers of any food web. If you have suspended solids in your waterway – in other words, if you don’t have water clarity – your system is missing a big opportunity as cloudy water blocks sunlight. BioHavens are great at providing water clarity, and you’ll notice a difference as soon as they hit the water. They grow the sticky biofilm that acts as a filter for suspended solids. They even filter tiny clay particles that are so challenging to remove from water. And tiny particles of heavy metals too. As long as you position them where the water has some circulation, you will find your water clarity improves in no time and you’ll reap the benefits of sunlight hitting the water.
Here at our headquarters we have a pond called Fish Fry Lake (you may have heard of it). Initially water clarity was 14 inches. Now it’s as much as 19 feet. Best of all, today Fish Fry Lake is in an upward spiral where productivity is increasing. We know this because we measure the game fish we catch and note the catch rate. We measure their size, health and growth rates. They are markers, helping us understand and measure our water quality. As fish catch rates get better and better, the water quality does too, hence the “upward spiral.”
Folks want to know…”will it work here in my pond?” Reality is that when you achieve water clarity, and sunlight penetrates deeper into your waterway, more life will happen there than anywhere on this planet.
But be careful what you wish for, because sunlight can trigger growth of aquatic plants as well.
But if BioHavens are present in the water, competing in the waterway for nutrients, the plant growth can be managed, stewarded, so that the weed beds don’t take over. Some weed bed coverage in your waterway (say, 40%) is good for the system, if the plant species are native and perennial. BioHavens can shade out undesirable aquatic plants. Again, it’s all about positioning of the islands. And remember, plant native perennials on your BioHavens too. There are dozens of appropriate plant species that thrive, some of which are “hyper accumulators” (monster eaters) of the nutrients that would otherwise grow into algae.
That’s another topic, but an incredibly interesting and important one! For another day!