Major Disadvantages and Challenges of Shallow Earthen Ponds
A shallow pond in earthen pond system is a pond that has less than two feet of water depth. According to my recommendations on this blog, an earthen pond should have at least three or more feet of water depth to ensure your fishes grows well. Therefore do not allow anyone to deceive you into digging shallow ponds because you might have to spend double the money to make necessary corrections. In this article, I have listed seven reasons why you should not raise your grow out fishes in a shallow pond.
Catfish predators find it easier to prey on catfishes in shallow ponds. This is due to the fact that your fishes have no hidden place in such pond system. For instance, there are some catfish predator birds that are up to three feet in height. These set of birds can easily walk in shallow ponds and attack their victims. Even when you net your ponds, they can still stand on the net rope and attack your fishes.
Water pollution is more frequent and sudden in shallow ponds. Most farmers mistakenly overstock their shallow ponds because of the large surface area making them to overrate the carriage capacity of such ponds. Any act of overfeeding may change the pond water suddenly. Also, there will be need to change water as often as possible to avoid spread of diseases.
Anyone that will want to steal with cropping net in deep ponds will think twice before embarking on such mission. However shallow ponds make it easier to steal with cropping net. Almost everyone that knows your pond is shallow can enter into such pond. Higher percentages of theft in isolated farms were carried out in shallow ponds.
Another disadvantage of shallow ponds is that farmers will not be able to stock as much as such pond should take to avoid challenges related with overstocking. Hence, shallow pond is a waste of limited land resource as far as catfish farming is concerned. The reason is that same piece of land that will contain 5000 pieces of catfishes in a deep pond of four feet may not contain more than 2500 pieces of fishes in a shallow pond of two feet or less.
In case of flood, shallow ponds can be easily overwhelmed and fishes taken away because there is small depth to protect fishes. Deep ponds do better in hiding fishes in situations of flood.
Sudden change in water temperature is another shortcoming of shallow pond. Cold or hot temperatures easily reflect on shallow ponds. As a matter of fact, growth of fishes in such ponds is always affected due to the fact that changes in water condition affect feeding pattern.
I have said it times without numbers that shallow ponds are not the best type of pond for raising big fishes. Big fishes always love to hide their body even when feeding. Your fishes may not eat well in shallow ponds when they reach certain size because they feel insecure. In fact they sometimes become restless in such condition.
However, there are other good sides of shallow ponds, some of which include:
Fries and fingerlings performs better in earthen ponds that are shallow in depth although they must be transferred to deeper and bigger ponds for continuous better performance.
Cropping is easier in shallow ponds for you might not need to consult expert croppers before you can harvest your fishes.
I will not forget to add that treatment of diseases is more efficient and effective in shallow ponds.
Lastly, general pond management is simpler in shallow pond system. It constitutes no security threat to friend and family that sometime visit the farm.