Frequently Asked Questions

Having an issue with your pond or water garden? Let the experts at ATAC Pond Management help you out! Below is a list of answers to some the most frequent questions that we receive to help you avoid common pond mistakes. If you have any questions that are not covered below please contact us and we can provide customized recommendations and solutions to help you improve the health and appearance of your pond.

 

ATAC Store Questions

1. Where is ATAC Located? – ATAC’s headquarters as well as our main hatchery and pond management shop is located at 4229 Wilmington Rd. Oregonia, OH 45054.

2. What are your hours? – ATAC’s hours vary seasonally. See the times below to see when we are open currently:

Spring/Summer Hours                                                                    Fall/Winter Hours

 (Mar. Through Oct.)                                                                       (Nov. Through Feb.)

M-F – 8AM to 5PM                                                                            M-F – 8AM to 4PM

SAT – 9AM to 2PM                                                                            SAT  - Closed

SUN – Closed                                                                                     SUN – Closed

3.  How can I contact ATAC? – You can easily reach an ATAC representative by calling 513-932-6529 during our normal business hours or by emailing us anytime at sales@atac.cc

 

Lake Management Questions

1. What is a Lake Management Program?ATAC’s lake management program is the best way to keep your pond free of unsightly algae and pondweeds. This program consists of 14 visits between the months of April – October (every 2 weeks) by an aquatic specialist who will monitor the health of your pond and treat any algae/weeds that are present at each visit. Our lake management program is comprehensive and covers a wide range of aquatic weeds that are common in the Midwest. If you are interested in receiving an estimate for your pond sign up for a free property survey today!

2. What is a property survey?- ATAC offers free property surveys to all customers interested in our lake management program. When you sign up for a property survey, an ATAC pond management specialist will visit your pond as soon as possible to take surface acreage measurements and assess the condition of your pond. We use the information collected during the survey to accurately create an estimate for our lake management service, in which we visit your pond every two weeks typically from April to October for treatment. If you are interested in a free property survey you can sign up easily with our online interest form.

3. What is that growing in/on my pond? -  Identification of algae and pond weed species can be tricky as many weeds look very similar. Don’t waste your time and money by misidentifying weeds in your pond; let an ATAC aquatic specialist help you out. You can either email us a description and picture of the weeds in your pond or bring in a sample to our store, and we can identify them for you and provide specific treatment recommendations for a small fee.  For persistent weed problems, sign up for a free property survey today to receive an estimate for us to care for your pond through our bi-monthly lake management program.

3. What is that film on my pond’s surface? – Throughout the summer months a variety of films can form on pond surfaces. The most common film is caused by the breakdown of organic material within the pond and is generally white in appearance but can also look yellow or green if there is pollen on top of it. This “biofilm” cannot be treated with pond management chemicals, but its prevalence can be reduced over time with the addition of beneficial bacteria to the pond. Films caused by planktonic algae can sometimes be difficult to distinguish from “biofilm,” but these planktonic films can be treated with algaecides like algymycin.  If you have specific questions about the film growing on your pond please check our blog or contact us and we can help to provide you with treatment recommendations. Also, since pond films can be difficult to identify and treat, we can help you! Sign up for a free property survey today to receive an estimate for an ATAC specialist to care for your pond all summer long.

4. What can be done to get rid of cattils around my pond? - Cattails can be very difficult for pond owners to manage because they grow up from rhizomes located deep under the soil. If you find your pond overgrown with cattails  there are several methods you can use. You can treat them with chemicals by spraying cattails with aquapro or shoreklear or allow an ATAC pond management specialis to treat cattails for you through our lake management program or by requesting a single treatmen. This can greatly reduce cattail cover but it is important to know that cattails will generally grow back over time unless the rhizomes are removed from the ground. This can be done manually by digging up cattail rhizomes or by hiring a company to excavate them mechanically.

 

Fish Stocking Questions

 1. What species of fish do you carry and what is currently available? – ATAC carries a wide variety of fish that are native to the Midwest U.S. Some of our most commonly purchased include hybrid bluegills, largemouth bass, and triploid white amurs. To see a full list of the species we carry and what we currently have in stock please see our fish availability page.

2. What fish do you recommend for my pond? – To help new pond owners avoid confusion when stocking ponds ATAC has developed a set of recommended stocking rates that can be applied to any size pond. Stocking the recommended species listed at the specified rates will help ensure that your pond has the right ratio of predator (ex: largemouth bass) to prey (ex: bluegill) species. ATAC also often offers several specialty species such as smallmouth bass and striped bass that are great for those interested in fishing in their ponds . No matter what fish you choose for your pond, it can be very helpful to sign up for our forage fish stocking program. This program includes stocking forage fish (ex: fathead minnows) at least twice a year to help promote the health and growth of other fish in your pond. Be sure to check our fish availability page regularly to see what fish we currently have available in our shop or for delivery.

 3. Why should I stock grass carp in my pond? - ATAC recommends stocking grass carp, also known as Triploid White Amurs, in the majority of ponds that we work with because they are a great biological control for a wide variety of common pondweeds. Grass carp have big appetites when they are young. Therefore, when they are stocked at the proper rates, they can greatly reduce pondweed growth to make pond management easier and cheaper for you! ATAC generally recommends 4 grass carp per every 1/4 acre of your pond. However this can be increased if you regularly have heavy weed growth. We also recommend restocking Amurs regularly to ensure maximum effectiveness. Additionally, please note that all Amurs that ATAC stocks have gone through a sterilization process and therefore they will not reproduce your pond. If you are interested in stocking grass carp to help you manage your pond you can place an order now for delivery or pick-up in store.

 4. How do I know what species of fish are in my pond? - Surveying fish within a pond can often be a difficult task especially in large or deep ponds. The cheapest and easiest way to do this is either to visually inspect fish in your pond or catch-and-release fish. If this is impractical for your pond ATAC also offers electrofishing pond surveys in which we stun and count fish of all species to get an accurate estimate of the number and size of fish in your pond. (Prices will vary depending on the size and location of the pond.)

 

Fountain/Aeration Questions

1.What fountain brands does ATAC carry? – ATAC has a wide variety of fountain options to fit any pond size or budget. We currently carry all the following brands: Airmax, Aqua Control, Aqua Master, Kasco, Oase, Otterbine, and Power House. Please check our fountain page for more information on specific fountain models.

2. What aeration system is right for my pond? – Aeration is very important for the health of your pond as it helps maintain a consistent dissolved oxygen level which is essential for avoiding pond turnovers and fish kills. ATAC offers a variety of aeration options to fit any pond need. Our surface aerators and fountains both effectively aerate water near the surface and come in a variety of sizes and price points. Many of our fountains have the added benefit of changeable spray patterns and optional add-ons such as lights that can improve their aesthetics. For owners of very deep ponds or those looking for an aeration system that can be run year-round, bottom diffused aeration is a great, cost-effective way to aerate the whole water column. For more information on your aeration options please see our blog and feel free to contact us with any question at sales@atac.cc.

3. My pond is leaking. What should I do? - The first step in fixing a pond leak is to identify the cause and location of the leak. Pond leaks can start for a variety of reasons but two of the most common sources are erosion and digging by animals such as muskrats. If you are able to identify the source of your leak you can take steps to address the leak (i.e. following our recommendations for erosion control or trapping muskrats) When you have stopped the leak from getting worse, products like betonite clay can be used to close the hole(s) that water is leaking from. ATAC is currently out of stock of betonite clay but we hope to begin carrying it later in 2019). For major pond  dam leakage problems we recommend contacting Mike Montag with PRM landscape management.

How do I reduce erosion around my pond? - Erosion can be a big issue for pond owners. It can ruin pond aesthetics and function. Luckily, in a lot of cases erosion can be greatly reduced if a pond owner takes steps to prevent it before it gets too bad. One way to reduce erosion is to plant beneficial, native plants that work to compact soils and remove excess water from soil. Therefore, placing beneficial plants in key areas like near steep slopes and on exposed, sandy soils around your pond can solve a lot of erosion issues. If you need help determining where and what to plant contact us for a planting proposal with planting recommendations created by an ATAC expert. For widespread erosion issues another method that is very effective is the installation of a rock border or rip rap around your pond’s edge. This method works very well for controlling erosion by covering exposed soils but it unfortunately can get expensive especially for large ponds.